Tide and Vine Oyster House (Niagara Falls)

While 2020 is a year that needs to end, I’m grateful to Mother Nature for the amazing weather she’s blessed on southern Ontario. I’ve never sat on a patio in November before - possibly because under normal conditions restaurants would have cleared them off – so to be able to enjoy one last lunch on Tide and Vine’s outdoor space was a pleasure.

If it gets a little cool, start with Kat’s chowder ($9 for the cup pictured or $13 for a bowl), the steaming creamy seafood concoction warmed me up in no time. I would have liked the potatoes to be in smaller chunks, to better mix with the fish, clams, lobster, scallop, and shrimp, but the starter was oh so hearty that a cup went a long way. You bet that hunk of buttery grilled bread helped to wipe up every drop of the savoury soup.

Tide and Vine certainly doesn’t skimp of seafood, their lobster roll ($24) absolutely brimming with Atlantic lobster. The soft toasted buttered bun was essentially filled with the crustacean and not much else, just a few slivers of lettuce for colour and to form a slight barrier between the bread and seafood.

I would have liked a bit more seasoning in the mayonnaise dressing the lobster – there seemed to be a lot of tarragon but little caper. But the shellfish was prepared well, barely cooked through, so it remained delicate and sweet.

Perhaps the sandwich seemed bland because the accompanying German-style potato salad was so flavourful. Big chunks of potato and carrots covered in a lovely onion and mustard creamy sauce… not necessarily the most pleasant to smell behind a mask afterwards, but oh so delicious.

Tide and Vine’s patio is in front of the restaurant and occupies a sizeable area; the eight tables feel far apart and safe. They smartly created a sense of separation by using low wooden walls, so you don’t feel like you’re in a parking lot, not necessarily an oasis, but a comfortable space, nonetheless. Maybe we’ll be lucky and there will be a few more sunny days before winter sets in. Let’s make the most of it and safely dine out, while we still can. 

Overall mark - 8 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Niagara Falls, Canada
 Address: 3491 Portage Road

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Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!

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