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Taste of Kingston | Dianne's Fishbar

Are you a seafood lover? Because I most certainly am and the opening of Dianne's Fishbar downtown Kingston just made the most logical sense to celebrate a birthday. Located steps from the waterfront, this new local establishment serves up some fresh sustainable seafood delights. Described as a ''Down East' seafood shack meets Baja Mexico', Dianne's Fishbar is a great addition to the City of Kingston.

Choices from both land and sea, the menu is well rounded offering a variety of appetizers, main dishes and desserts. The majority of the seafood is 'ocean wise' meaning that "the item is a good choice for keeping ocean life healthy and abundant for generations to come." The concept is actually very fascinating as it educates and empowers consumers about issues surrounding sustainable seafood. So in lamest terms, you are paying more money for a product that is caught and maintained properly rather than overfished and may be depleted with the next few decades. I am glad Dianne's Fish Bar is onboard with this notion and is informing the public.

Situated on the corner of Ontario St and Clarence St within the downtown business improvement area, location is key for the success of this restaurant. So when I decided to pop in on a Tuesday evening right after work hours (beating the rush of a dinner crowd that was expected), I was seated on their outside terrace promptly as reservations were made. My birthday companion was quite excited and rather famished, so we decided to order an array of dishes from two appetizers, a pound of calms, chowder, oysters and not to mention a pitcher of sangria along with a complimentary bread basket which were all outstanding.

While the server was sweet and attentive, her comments on how she'd be surprise if we finished our meals or we wouldn't have enough room on our table for the food we ordered was unnecessary. As a server you want to keep your customers happy and ultimately leave with a good tip. Then again our food came out at a timely manner as we had to actually request what should be given to us first and when we were ready for our next orders. 

As for prices, I couldn't complain. You pay more for freshness and not so much quantity. The food items ordered were tasty and definitely worth the wait because good food takes time as the menu advertises. This place wants to be known for their sustainable seafood, so you should know that it is not the prime place for fried fish dishes. Dianne's Fishbar is wise in their decision to not make fish n' chips or land items such as steaks and hamburgers their feature items as their competition Pilot House and The Keg respectively are down the road truly specializes in those items.

After reading reviews online, I was shocked as to what many people were saying. Dianne's Fish Bar is sister to Chien Noir, Atomica and Harper's Burger, three well-respected restaurants in Kingston with their own unique foods. Hence it has a certain reputation and standards to live up to, which I think were met perfectly. As an establishment that just opened up, it is still learning and adjusting.

I would return to Dianne's Fish Bar and my next item to order: Seafood Poutine!

Some of the lovely dishes ordered:

{Sea Inspired Glass}

The Rosé Sangria consisted of amaretto, strawberry juice and fresh berries. The combination of these flavours did not suit my palette. It was a tad on the stronger side with an overwhelming taste. Being the drink of the summer, the pitcher was a let down, as you would expect it to be refreshing and light, not leave you a bit tipsy. And I make this comment as I have had sangria oh so many times and not felt like the way I did. In addition, a bit too much of ice was added resulting in watering it down.

However, they were creative in their choice of liqueur and I guess I was not fond of the amaretto which tends to be sweet and almond flavoured because as a person who is allergic to tree nuts such as almonds, I would not be all too familiar with the taste. 

{Rosé Sangria}

The complimentary buns were unlike any type I've had before as they had a salted pretzel taste and consistency to them which was quite enjoyable. They were also moist and still warm, making the butter melt and infuse into the buns.


Our first order was a sample of the three authentic hand-made Mexican style corn tortillas i.e. fish tacos. They consisted of Baja Fish, Florida Shrimp Pibil and Roasted Cauliflower. Each taco was equally tasty but the Baja Fish just had the perfect combination of flavours to it making it the winner.

Baja Fish
beer battered Alaskan pacific cod, pickled red cabbage, radish, avocado crema

Florida Shrimp Pibil
pasilla chile, pineapple mojo, pico di gallo

Roasted Cauliflower
cilantro pesto, arbol salsa, toasted pepitas, mint


The Ceviche trio was next: Vallarta, Wild BC 'Sidestripe' Shrimp Aguachole and BC Albacore Tuna 'Poke'. Surprisingly I couldn't stop having the asian inspired sesame seed ceviche along with the Vallarta which was just stimulating in taste combined with the tortilla chips.

market fish, avocado, red onion, cucumber, green olives, chile, clamato lemon

Wild BC 'Sidestripe' Shrimp Aguachole
grapefruit, cucumber, jalepeno, cilantro, mint

BC Albacore Tuna 'Poke'
soya, sesame, ginger, lime, scallion


I am a big oyster lover and it just made sense to order a variety of Cascumpec P.E.I and Kusshi B.C.. 
Can you say yum?

{Fresh Oysters}

I don't know what it is but PEI oysters are simply my favourite. I had PEI's finest when I went to Garde Manger in Montreal over Christmas and it's simply hard to beat. 

{PEI Oysters}

I prefer mussels over clams but you only live once so I went ahead and agreed with my partner to share a pound of PEI Littleneck Clams in a old bay broth, lemon-garlic butter and topped with parsley. Let's just say I may just stick to my usual.


Now let's talk about the 'soup', it was quite good even though it was not a traditional thick and creamy chowder. It was filled with flavour though and the bacon added a little something something to it. Definitely ordering the large next time!

Dianne's Down East Fish Chowder
NB haddock, potatoes, bacon and cream

{Fish Chowder}

Hours: Open daily from 11h30am for lunch and dinner.

Be sure to stop by 195 Ontario Street and not to be in hurry because once again good food takes times!

Look out for more Taste of Kingston posts every Friday!


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Dianne's Fish Bar on Urbanspoon
Rosalyn Gambhir
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[name=Rosalyn Gambhir] [img=https://i.imgur.com/9rNiMGU.jpg] [description=Rosalyn Gambhir is the gal behind the blog The Staycationer. Whether it's exploring the local food scene with her foodie partner-in-crime or taking in the view from her favourite cafe, Rosalyn is always a tourist, looking for the next exciting adventure within Kingston, Ontario and beyond. The Staycationer allows you to rediscover hidden gems in your very own backyard.] (facebook=https://www.facebook.com/thestaycationer) (twitter=https://twitter.com/rosalyngambhir) (instagram=https://www.instagram.com/rosalyngambhir/)

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