Located at 385 Burrard street, Elephant & Castle Pub & Restaurant occupies part of one of Vancouver’s most beautiful heritage buildings, the Marine Building. Completed in 1930 and standing at 21 stories it is an art deco masterpiece that is sadly overshadowed by more modern glass high rises that surround it on all sides. If you have never seen it I urge you to do so and while you’re there you might want to have a bite to eat?
I remember eating at Elephant & Castle with my parents when I was young and I recall it being a little boring, with traditional British pub food and a lot of murder mystery theme nights. Thankfully that is no longer the case. The decor is a sort of art deco mixed with clean modern lines which I really enjoy. It easily fits in with the rest of its surroundings within its historic address. I could see myself making this a regular stop for me for a beer and a bite.
The bar is quite long with the prerequisite beer taps sprouting from its top and there is a large drink menu above the shelves of hard stuff. What a fantastic idea! Never again will you need to ask what’s on tap or what wines or scotches they serve, it’s all there in nice big print and bright spotlights. Brilliant.
I ordered the fish and chips with a choice between cod and halibut, I ordered the halibut as it usually makes the best fish and chips. It cost $4 more ($13 vs $17) but halibut is worth it. When my food arrived I was a little disappointed that there was only one piece of fish that wasn’t that big given the price, especially given the fact that two of the people I was with ordered the cod and got two pieces? The fish was good and the chips were too, really nice beer batter and perfectly cooked. The tarter sauce had a little horseradish or something similar in it and was interesting…I wasn’t a huge fan. I like horseradish but this just didn’t work and it “stayed with me” all day.
The service was friendly and fast and the atmosphere was relaxed. There was a World Cup game on at the time and the only other customers were some Paraguay fans. I’m sure the music they normally play would be better than the Vuvuzela’s that drone in the background of every World Cup game, so annoying that I haven’t been able to watch a whole game this year.
So aside from a few little issues I enjoyed lunch at the Elephant & Castle. I think I might even take my wife there on a date night, plus any excuse to visit the Marine Building…