My wife Heather and I are currently visiting in the Maritimes, and basically spending the summer with my wife?s family in Northport, PEI. We get to experience lots of Maritime adventures, such as going lobster fishing, canning up some lobster to take back out West, cleaning and canning bar clams for those who seems to always have a large supply of jobs in her ?honey-do? jar.
Last weekend we went to Halifax with our travel companions, Dan and Fay Rose who are also from Sidney, BC. Back in 1999, we had been introduced to a really great place in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. Heather dearly loves deep fried clams, and that is the whole clam, not clam strips like you often get in some restaurants. So of course every time we come to the Maritimes, she always says, ?And when were you planning on taking me to John?s Lunch?? So we went on the weekend, twice matter of fact, for lunch on Saturday, and then lunch again on Sunday before we headed back here to PEI.
In 1969 John?s Lunch was purchased by the current owners Fortis and Pat Faturos. Fortis was a fish buyer in his native Greece before he came to Canada, and he really knows his seafood. The fish and scallops are brought to the restaurant fresh, six days a week. The clams are from Digby and they are brought in seven days a week. The business has been so successful that the name has never been changed, and all these years the people keep coming, matter of fact from all over the continent and the world. There is a wall of fame in the shop where there are letters, pictures, postcards and monetary notes from all over of the world. In one area of the restaurant there are awards from the Atlantic Fishery Association, a picture of Adrian Clarkson when she was the Governor General, and even Bubbles and the rest of the gang from the Atlantic TV Show, ?The Trailer Park Boys?.
The specialty of the house is deep fried clams, but you should not forget to try the fish and chips made with haddock, or the scallops, deep-fried calamari, haddock tips, chicken, etc.
John?s Lunch is located at 352 Pleasant Street in Dartmouth, or more specifically in the Woodside area of Dartmouth. We even have it programmed in Sara, our GPS unit, and it is very easy to find. However, you do need to keep your eyes open while you are looking for the shop. It is an older house, and it is not very big, and the parking lot behind the house will only hold about six vehicles. Don?t drive away in despair, as right next door in the huge parking lot there are some reserved sites for customers at John?s Lunch.
After a visit here for a big plate of your favourite seafood, there is a bonus stop right near by. When you leave the parking lot, turn right and proceed a bit further down Pleasant Street to the traffic light and then make a left turn onto Atlantic Street, and then a quick right, and you will pull into the parking lot of Moirs? Chocolate Plant. They have a nice store where you can get some free samples, but we always have to take home a four kg box of their pecan clusters, which are a dead ringer for Turtles.
Anyone wishing to check out John?s Lunch, check out the restaurant?s website at: www.johnslunch.com