Today I’m reviewing one of Toronto’s hidden gems: Diana’s Oyster Bar & Grill. My friend Elaine and I checked the place out on a recent Friday evening. The place was packed, which should be expected on a Friday night, but we fortunately got a seat at the bar (which was where we wanted to sit anyway since Elaine is a hopeless drunk). We started off with one dozen oysters: 4 Fat Bastards (Washington), 4 Kusshi (Washington), 2 Lucky Lime (P.E.I), and 2 Acadian Gold (New Brunswick). My favourite was the Acadian Gold, because it was very smooth tasting with a nice sweetness to it. Elaine’s favourite was the Fat Bastard, big and meaty (she doesn’t appreciate the finer things in life, like I do!).
After the oysters, we shared some crab cakes. They were light and fluffy and served with a spicy aioli. For our main course, we ordered the farfalle with mixed seafood in spicy marinara sauce and a fettuccini with fresh lobster in brandy cream sauce. The farfalle was cooked perfectly; noodles were al dente and had a good mixture of different kinds of seafood. For the fettuccini dish, although it could have used a bit more seasoning, it was still a fantastic dish (could have used more lobster too, but that’s just me being greedy!).
Elaine and I met with Wilson (in the below picture), who has been with Diana’s since the restaurant opened in 2010. A few questions we asked Wilson:
What is your favourite type of oyster? East Coast – Colville Bay (P.E.I) & West Coast – Fanny Bay (B.C)
Cooked or Raw? Raw
Do you add any sauce to the oysters for yourself? Nope, I just use lemon, that’s all I need!
Have you ever encountered a bad smelling oyster? Yes! Once you open the oyster and the air comes out, it smells so bad that you have to run the other way.
What do you do when you have an odd shaped oyster and cannot open it? We throw it out if it’s really busy.
Wilson’s steps for shucking oysters
- Place the oyster on a flat surface and wrap a cloth around it to prevent sliding
- Insert knife between the shell
- Slide the knife into the oyster
- Cut the oyster from the bottom shell
- Serve the oysters on a bed of crushed ice with fresh horseradish and a lemon wedge or preferred sauce such as seafood cocktail sauce
Diana’s Oyster Giveaway
Here’s a chance for all you followers in the GTA to win a voucher for a free appetizer, 6 oysters (based on availability) @ Diana’s. Leave a comment below of your favourite type of seafood preference and how you like it prepared (grilled, raw, poached, steamed, seared or baked) to be entered into a random draw. Contest closes July 14th 2013 11:59pm. The winner will be notified by email on July 15th 2013. Good luck!