1228 Hamilton Street
T: 604 609 0080
Brief Description: Tasty, good quality seafood is in abundance at Rodney’s Oyster House in Yaletown. Combined with good looking (male) servers and a relaxing environment, Rodney’s is a great place to sit back and enjoy.
Special Note: Ladies, it gives me great pleasure to write this entry. Consider it a gift from me to you!
How many times have you gone to Earls, Joeys, Sammy J Peppers, or Cactus Club only to be served by some attractive waitress who really doesn’t have a clue how to provide good customer service? Drinks are forgotten, meals are mixed up, or worse, you get a sizzling hot skillet seared into your shoulder (true story – this happened to me!).When I first moved to Canada it was very interesting to visit these restaurant chains that intentionally employee young, attractive waitresses in order to attract male clients. Perhaps it is a case of rose-coloured glasses but I don’t recall this happening in Australia. A server was either good, or they were out – it didn’t really matter what they looked like. I have always thought how unfairly balanced this trend is. There are countless numbers of places for male diners to go and ogle beautiful servers but where can women go to ogle good-looking men? Drum-roll please, ladies…Rodney’s Oyster House!! Hallelujah! This is where all of the good-looking male servers have been hiding! Oh, and their food is fabulous too!
Keeping with a maritime theme, the restaurant décor is accentuated by distressed wood beams and painted white furniture. Fishing baskets, boats and nautical-themed accessories adorn the walls to help complete the Cape Cod fish shack feel. The staff are welcoming and the atmosphere is light-hearted, casual and fun. It can get a little rowdy in the evening but sit back and enjoy. People-watching is part of the fun. I have only been to Rodney’s Oyster House a few times but the only thing that stops me from going back there is the price. It can be quite draining on the wallet, even more so if you dabble in some oyster tasting (and why wouldn’t you?!).
The main food attraction, which I’m sure comes as no surprise, is the oysters. There are many varieties of oysters – some I’ve never even heard of – and they all come cold and fresh and served with lemon wedges, freshly grated horseradish and a selection of various hot sauces. Experiment a little with the hot sauces and test your tolerance. They start low on the heat meter but very quickly move into the “Oh oh!” category of heat.
Thankfully there are plenty of other seafood items available for those who are a bit squeamish about oysters. The menu is a happy plethora of seafood. You can indulge in chowders, various types of steamed mussels and clams, cold seafood options (such as smoked salmon, shrimp cocktails, and salads) and hot seafood options. The hot section really had me hooked (excuse the pun). The Scallop Galette ($15) was far-and-away the best dish I ate the night that I was there recently. Think golden, lightly pan-fried scallops, covered in shredded potato. Yup, I think you get what I’m saying…pure heaven. The Pan Fried Oysters were also delightful so I would definitely get those again.
There are a number of hot dishes that I am desperate to go back for: Potato Encrusted Halibut, Oysters Rockerfellah, Garlic Shrimp, Coco Curry Shrimp, and Pasta with Scallops all screamed out to me. Regrettably, I am only one girl and although my stomach made a valiant effort we (my stomach and I) will have to return to see if these dishes live up to our expectations.
The alcohol menu is mostly wine with a number of beers but I was stuck on the house special “Zydeco Stew”, which is their version of a Cesar. Robust and with freshly grated horseradish in the bottom, I downed a few of these the night we were there and I could have quite happily downed some more – the only thing stopping me was the price.
Final Thoughts: I really, really enjoy going to Rodney’s. The atmosphere certainly helps make it even more enjoyable but the food is exceptionally good (albeit a bit pricey), the drinks were going down almost too well, and the staff, well, they help make it even better.