Saturday, March 22, 2008

Why the compulsion for such healthy menu options today?

Yesterday, a discussion I was having with Bruce about Good Friday food customs got us talking about fish 'n' chips places. I mentioned that Duckworth's Fish & Chips Ltd. has the best fish 'n' chips I've ever had, he brought up Highland Fish & Chips, which he used to frequent when he was attending night classes at U of T's Scarborough campus. This is when I had the bright idea to compare the two. We both agreed we'd best invite our sisters along, or risk destroying all attempts at civility during our respective Easter dinners.

We soon had our younger siblings in tow and were on the road! Jess suggested a third fish 'n' chips establishment — St. Andrew's Fish & Chips — which is when Caty and I solidified our plans to split a single order of halibut 'n' chips (with gravy, if it was available) at each place, so that we'd end up each having eaten 1-1/2 fish 'n' chips meals by day's end.

Our first stop was the aforementioned Highland Fish & Chips, which had good, fresh-cut halibut, homemade fries and gravy, as well as a large selection of Scottish fare, including haggis(!) which I was tempted to place an order for, but decided against. Jess' mushy peas order came after our frazzled waitstaff member was reminded that she had forgotten that part of the order.

Next up, we went out to St. Andrew's Fish & Chips and were immediately giddy that the signage on the way in indicated service of the elusive deep-fried Mars bar, as well as deep-fried Cadbury Cream Eggs(!) Unfortunately, our server informed us that, due the high volume of orders expected for Good Friday, they would serve neither item that day. Undaunted, Caty and I placed our second order of halibut, fries and gravy. Caty and Jess split an order of toffee pudding with custard sauce for dessert, and I took a Lactaid so that I could get a taste. I thought the dessert, as a whole, worked well, as the pudding was a bit bland, but the custard was a bit overly sweet.

Leaving St. Andrew's, Bruce began to see the error of his ways as far as lacking an eating strategy was concerned. Having just eaten two orders of fish 'n' chips with gravy, he was starting to feel considerably uncertain about being able to continue on with the task at hand. Begging for a break from deep-fried yumminess, we opted for a grease-eating reprieve and headed out to Fu Yao Supermarket, where I took some lovely pictures of, you guessed it, fish.

We proceeded on to our final planned destination, Duckworth's, which was expected to close within the next hour. From the street, we could see that the line-up went out the door and past three neighbouring establishments, so we lost the nerve to complete our comparison.

Mission: incomplete

Verdict: Caty and I deemed St. Andrew's the best of the three establishments, having had Duckworth's fish 'n chips previously and finding their fish to be on par with St. Andrew's, but their fries lacking, when compared to either of the other two places. Armed with the knowledge that St. Andrew's also serves the Unicorn of Desserts — the deep-fried Mars bar — we vowed that we would all return to share this experience.

Addendum: By evening, I had eaten one order of fish 'n' chips with gravy, the peeled and chopped kiwis I'd had for breakfast and the tangerine I had at my parents' place. I was starving! Erroneously, I then proceeded to eat a modestly-sized package of Chicharon/Tsitsaron (ew!) with a bowl of soup for a late-night dinner. Reflecting on the disgusting amounts of fat I'd ingested during the course of the day (cut, at least with some produce!) made me decide to eat considerably more healthily today.

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At Thu Mar 27, 02:22:00 pm GMT-4, Blogger Austin said...

You've been busy! Let me know next time you're heading down to St. Andrew's, I've been DYING to find a good fish 'n chips place in the tee-dot.


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