It’s been a while, but we’ve been quietly eating over the past few months and have some new Nanaimo takeout thoughts for you. Check out the archive here!
Fairview Market – Asian Kitchen
Time and again people tell us how good the “Chinese” food is at Fairway Market. We’ve been skeptical. We’ve been through this song and dance before with the endlessly popular (but frankly inedible) stuff from Quality Foods.
So we popped in and ordered a three item combo with some chow mein.
Well surprise, surprise. We were right again and the Chinese food at Fairway is also gross, although slightly less so than QF.
Well you get a lot of food and can easily feed two people for $16. That kind of economy is hard to find.
The fellow at the till was also pretty friendly, so there’s that too.
SLIME. LOTS OF SLIME. Seriously, though. Why does heat lamp food have to be slathered in that starchy goo? The chop suey was particularly off-putting with the broccoli being just mush. We’ve had Chinese fast food before that wasn’t like that so we know it’s possible to be better. The chow mein was also no good as it was virtually flavourless.
Good Chinese fast food in Nanaimo is nearly mythical. One day someone is going to to make a killing selling quality a la carte Chinese dishes, but it is not this day. If you have a recommendation for us, let us know!
Long time readers of our blog know we love Indian food. We were thrilled recently to have an opportunity with friends to place a large order at the newest competitor, Masala Culture on Fitzwilliam. They’re in the spot formerly occupied by Sushi Kura (RIP).
We’re pretty sure Masala Culture is run by the same folks as the Curry Culture on Dover. Since we ordered from there last time we had Indian, we sort of knew what to expect.
As with their northern bros, Masala Culture has an extensive menu. There are lots of fun items to try, including safe stuff for your grandma, and more unusual items like dal and some goat curries.
While the curries did nothing to differentiate themselves from other Indian restaurants in Nanaimo, they were still good. The okra dish (see pic) was exceptional and you should definitely order it (right now).
There’s not much to complain about here. The parking is a bit sucky if the Oxy is having a busy night.
All that food above cost us a little under $100. It’s good value, good taste, and there’s plenty to experiment with on the menu. The ladies at the restaurant were more cordial than we’ve come to expect in town too, and so overall this one was a winner for us. We’ll be back! (Side note – we really are spoiled for choice with Indian food in Nanaimo. Why can’t we get even one decent Chinese place then?! Yeesh!)
The Cod Squad
Here’s another that has positive word of mouth. It’s been around FOREVER too, although we suspect there may have been some owner changes over the years. We ordered takeaway of fried battered cod, “chips”, and a poutine. Yes, we realize the redundancy of ordering chips and poutine, but hey, we’re serious food bloggers just looking out for our readers.
The fish was just perfect. We got big pieces of cod, cooked to juicy perfection, and the batter was fluffy and golden with crispiness in all the right places. It reminded us of old-school English-style fried fish. It even came wrapped in paper.
Sadly, the chips were no good. They were a slightly overcooked to our taste, but more importantly, there was almost no salt on them. Weak fries also meant the poutine was not particularly great, despite having tasty gravy and proper melty cheese curds. A small gripe too was that out takeaway came with coleslaw and tartar sauce, but both servings were way too small for our large order.
Order the fish. Skip the chips. Make the fries at home in the deep-fryer, oven, or air fryer (if you’re one of those people).