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Best seafood restaurant in Toronto

So I spoke to my coworker about her dining thoughts for this trip. She doesn't want to do anything to "enthic funky" I'm thinking of Nota Bene and Scaramouche (doing a August tasting menu) for two of the dinners.

She told me she like seafood so now I come back to you, my Chowhound friends, to help me find a good seafood place. It can't be too expensive -- our food spending is about $103 a day. We are staying at the Sherton Centre on Queen Street West and will not have a car.

thanks for your help!

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  1. Given your downtown location, my two picks would be Starfish and Chiado. But Chiado is more expensive, so I would lean toward Starfish. Both have wonderful fresh fish. Starfish is also known for its oyster bar.

    3 Replies
      1. re: Charles Yu

        Third Starfish, there is also Oyster Boy on Queen W. that is less expensive.

        1. re: katana750

          I second Chiado. Outstanding variety of fish and the wine list is a very different from what you will find at Starfish.

    1. As I recommended Starfish to you in another of your posts, I'll go with it again. It suits your needs in terms of quality, proximity, and pricing. Chiado, as worth a rec as it is, would involve a long ride on a streetcar or dipping into your pd's for cab fare.

      1. Agree with the Starfish rec, but would also like to mention that the seafood at Scaramouche (where you mention you might do a tasting menu) is topnotch. When I dine at Scaramouche, I tend to order the seafood dishes.

        Nota Bene also sources great quality seafood. The lobster salad at Nota Bene uses perfectly cooked lobster, but I wish they'd dress the salad with a non-creamy, possibly citrusy dressing rather than the buttermilk dressing they currently use. Nota Bene's wild Digby scallops are also high quality, and cooked expertly. They've changed their previous preparation (which didn't work for me), and are now serving the scallops with pineapple, jicama & coriander salad and chili oil. If I was at Nota Bene, I'd probably still stick with the seafood.

        1 Reply
        1. re: phoenikia

          I've mostly found the fish dishes at Nota Bene to be overcooked. The lobster salad is a definite avoid for me as well.

        2. My wife and I were pleasantly surprised by how good Zee Grill on Mt Pleasant was this past week. We had the diver scallops and pickerel between, both were done perfectly. Starfish is a great choice albeit a little on the expensive side for what you get.

          3 Replies
          1. re: lightbulb

            If I'm not in the mood of driving all the way downtown, Zee Grill has always been my up-town destination for good seafood. Next time try the corn clam chowder! Yummy!

            1. re: Charles Yu

              Just had dinner at Zee Grill tonight. I hadn't visited ZG for a few years. My meal was fantastic, especially considering the price point (mains mostly in the mid $20s, desserts $9).
              Enjoyed the wild gulf shrimp and calamari noodle dish, and an upside down apple tart with house-made vanilla ice cream. Nice fresh bread, too.

              Thought the quality was comparable to Starfish. Friendly, courteous server, too.

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              Zee Grill
              641 Mt Pleasant Rd, Toronto, ON M4S, CA

            2. re: lightbulb

              I love Zee Grill! It's actually my favourite choice for fish in the city. I love the cozy, friendly atmosphere, great (usually!) service and excellent menu. I always feels like a "downtown" restaurant has been plopped into my neighbourhood. The only reason I didn't mention it to the OP is that they are downtown and without car.

            3. Returned to Starfish recently and my companion and I both confirmed for ourselves that although it is not a cheap place to eat, (we spent over $100 a head including wine), the Haddock, Sardines, Whitebait etc. not to mention the Oysters, were all first class. Service was great and the Sancerre wonderful.

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              Starfish
              100 Adelaide St E, Toronto, ON M5C1K9, CA