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Aug 17, 2011 02:09 PM

highlights of a 5 day visit to Halifax and Mahone Bay in August 2011

Day 1

fried clams & chips on the patio at the Mug & Anchor in Mahone Bay. We ended up in Mahone Bay after not being able to get a table at the Rope Loft in Chester, which was packed due to the Chester's Race Week. The Mug & Anchor's fried clams were the best fried clams I've had in years. Loved the Mug & Anchor, which was the perfect place to have a first Nova Scotian dinner for this Ontarian.

Day 2

made-to-order chickpea/beet/feta/carrot with Greek dressing salad at Petes-to-go-go. Neat concept, and very generous. A small was more than enough, so I took the leftovers with me, and ate them later. Would be even better if they offered fresh chopped basil, dill, cilantro, mint. etc as a premium option to add to the salads ;-)

sausage roll from Sweet Williams at the Historic Farmers' Market. Wish I'd waited to buy this at the Seaport Farmers' Market, because my sausage roll was somewhat underbaked, and not golden, like the others at the new market. Can see how they'd be pretty tasty if they were warm, and fully baked.

fenugreek old growler gouda, and cumin gouda from the Seaport Farmer's Market. Loved these cheeses! Brought some home to ON.

Tried the Acadie chocolate, made with dulse ganache, from Gourmandise Ave. Also purchased boxes of mixed chocolates for a hostess gift and for some friends at home.

Day 3

warm smoked haddock, poached egg, spinach, potato at Fid for brunch, and a cappuccino. Neat place for brunch. Was surprised it wasn't busier when I was there.

fish taco at the Battered Fish. Wasn't traditional, but the fish was perfectly cooked and so much better than the fried haddock I can find in TO. That taco was the best $1.99 food item I've purchased in a very long time. Would return to the Battered Fish for fish & chips, scallops, etc, on a future visit.

Day 4

donair from King of Donairs. Discovered I like processed meat donairs better than processed meat gyros, if I had to choose. ;-) For a processed meat-type of donair, this was the best I've had (the other versions were ordered in Ontarian and Albertan food courts) and I would definitely the Halifax version of donair again on future visits, if I was looking for fast food.

Day 5

morning glory muffin and a cappuccino from Just Us, and a cinnamon bun for later from Mary's Bread Basket, but purchased at Just Us. Both pastries were decent, but I'd probably order other baked goods on future visits. Liked the cappuccino.

Thanks to all the Chowhounds who helped me plan my trip. Loved Halifax, and hope to visit again next year!

1569 Dresden Row, Halifax, NS B3J, CA

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  1. Glad you had a great trip. I like our little city :)

    1. I'm sure you'll return- more for the folks than the food,'cos it's hard to find better!

      2 Replies
      1. re: kencod1

        You're absolutely right! I'm planning to return in the near future. I didn't meet too many folks, because I was at a conference packed with Come from Aways. Your fish & chips are the best I've found in Canada, so that could have something to do with me returning (as well as a chance to meet some more Maritime folks this time around!)

        If you only had time for 2 dinners in Halifax, where would you go?

        1. re: prima

          Here are some highlights from my 2012 trip to Nova Scotia and PEI:
          Chives in Halifax: excellent biscuits (recipe on the website), wonderful chowder with puff pastry "croutons" to add, delicious salad. Neat desserts.

          The Battered Fish- 2 pieces of haddock & chips, on the deck behind the Waterfront location, around $9.75. The Battered Fish serves my favourite fish & chips in Canada.

          Baan Thai: We had a large family-style meal here, and the food was great. Enjoyed their Beef Panang, the mango salad, sesame pork, basil prawns, basil chicken, sticky rice with mango. I'd return to try more of the menu.

          Peggy's Cove:
          We stopped at the Sou'Wester. Surprisingly decent chowder, small portion of Solomon Gundy, decent fried calamari, bland lobster/crabcakes that were mostly filler. Better food than I expected, considering the place is a tourist trap.

          Great chowder, full of haddock, and excelllent lobster club at the Grand Banker. We sat at the bar- friendly bartender.

          Super fish chowder (huge portion for $7.95), and great Fisherman's Platter (shrimp, fried clams, haddock, fried scallops) at Murphy's Fish & Chips. Best clams on our trip.

          Pictou Lodge: slightly undersalted chowder, but good crabcakes and good lobster sandwich. Friendly service and a beautiful view.

          Main Street Cafe in the Maritime Inn, which was recommended by a friend. My friend liked the chowder, and I liked the panko-crusted haddock. My other friend wasn't that impressed with the seafood pasta.

          Glenora Distillery's patio, located north of Mabou. I enjoyed a lunch of scallop-packed chowder and bacon-wrapped scallops on

          a slice of butterscotch pie at Aucoin Bakery ,

          Pleasant Bay:
          the chowder and lobster roll at the Rusty Anchor (wouldn't recommend the dessert at the Rusty Anchor- the pie wasn't very good, but our starters and mains were very good)

          Chowder and a lobster sandwich at Bell Buoy

          Nice dinner at the Claddagh Oyster house. Liked their chowder (spicy, with chili oil), the salad
          and the sticky date pudding.

          Lobster supper followed by a lemon square at Water Prince. I've always been lukewarm about mussels in Ontario,Quebec, NYC and in France, but I really liked the PEI mussels that came with my lobster at Water Prince.

          Hunter River:
          Enjoyed the chowder for lunch, followed by the raspberry cream cheese pie at Cafe on the Clyde.

      2. I'm originally from NS and if you have the time it is worth a drive to Halls Harbour for beautiful scenery and a good dinner at the Lobster Pound there.

        This is one of my favourite places to go when I go back for a visit.

        1 Reply
        1. re: TeacherFoodie

          Thanks ;-) Hope to visit Halls Harbour on a future trip.