Firehouse Grill, Nanaimo

A couple of days ago, Don decided to try out the Firehouse Grill here in Nanaimo. Well, it has taken me a few days to really think about our experience. It pains me sometimes to say what I am about to say concerning a local establishment.

Parking is close to impossible (nothing adjacent to the restaurant that we could find), about a block away was all we were able to find. Anyway, a walk won’t kill us and I am now anxious to get inside. The building looks mighty awesome (an old fire hall, I think).

Well, it is hard to find the entrance as one door has been blocked up. If you are youngish and have knees that work well, the second entrance is not intimidating, but even with just a couple of stairs, a handrail would be more helpful. Open the door and the bottom step is RIGHT THERE in the dark.

You go up several steps and turn left to go up another flight of stairs and, AGAIN, in the dark. When you get to the top you are blinded by the bright light. We are seated in a booth and order a coffee while we peruse their two menus.

No, one is not a drink menu. This restaurant is a confusing one. They offer a menu for Sushi and the other for items that are all pretty spicy (at least from their names). I mentioned this to the server but she just smiled.

Not able to eat spicy foods, I opted for the California Roll. This, my friends, is my only sushi-type food I will even eat, so I figure it was a safe  one for me. Don, on the other hand, decided to try their Burger with the house Fire spicy sauce and fries.

Not so fast my friends. We waited san extremely long time before the food came out. Actually it was three refills of coffee for me. The California Roll was not edible. The rice was very old, and hard to put your teeth into and the seaweed they used could NOT be separated with any bite you took. The filling was totally without taste. I asked Don to try a piece to see if I was right in my assessment. He did and he agreed with me. I now did something I so very rarely do and I returned it to the kitchen. The server says when tell me what it and I’ll tell them. Not very nice or apologetic at all in her demeanor.

Don tried his hamburger (after he cut it in half to share it with me). He found it very spicy and the fries were totally covered with pepper. We couldn’t eat the fries (good thing perhaps?) and the hamburger was mostly a filler like sausage in it. It was very spicy and we did not like it. I thought it was probably mystery meat and that was being nice.

The server comes with a smile and then you don’t see her again. We had to track down another one to speak to and finally got our bill. We actually had to go to the counter and pay through the bartender as the server never came back.

Leaving the restaurant is even more dangerous that entering. We were in the back, going down two flights of stair and the bottom stair is right at the door. Someone should be brought to task and make it at least safe for people.

You figure this one out and decide if you want to try it, if you have not been here before.

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Cactus Club, Nanaimo

Yesterday, Don kept telling me we were going out for dinner but after looking outside, it was pouring rain. I suggested to him we go another time but he insisted that I wasn’t made of sugar, so get your coat on, we’re going. Suzanne kept teasing me about my “hot date” and now I am really worried. The first thought is “what did I do?”.

Off we went and were seated by the fireplace, which was roaring  and was most comfortable. Rain? What rain?

I ordered my usual glass of wine and Don ordered his beer and then we perused the menu. It didn’t take me long to decide but Don usually takes a bit longer. He doesn’t just choose the same thing over and over like I normally do; he is much more selective.

Our delightful server, Kimeesha, came to take our order and even offered the choices of the day. We decided to go with our choices. Don ordered the Shrimp Spaghettini and I ordered the Feenie Burger, sans the onion and relish. Don loved his choice. I sampled it but found it far too spicy for me. I really like my burger. Don sampled it as agreed as well. So, after ALMOST finishing our choices, Don asked for Crème Brulee for dessert. (Our favourite choice anywhere) We were told they don’t have it but have Key Lime Pie, and two other choices. We picked the pie and two forks. Yup, we did and groaned all the way home. We have been so good since Christmas at what we ate and this was a real blow out. Now, today, we are back at being good.

The memory of last night’s treat will stay with my memory bank for a long time. Going out for a impromptu dinner with your bestest guy in the world, makes it truly a special time.

To tell you something cute…we had a lady here this morning measuring for new blinds. I offered up coffee and cupcakes for us. She refused and I told Don,’ your treat is in the kitchen Darling’.  He doesn’t like icing.

She said to me “how long have you been married?” I told her and she said ‘and you still like each other?” I thought that was really strange but shows just how lucky I am. True story.

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