2027 Oak Bay Ave
Hours: Tues to Sat, 11:30am to 2:30pm and 5 to 8pm.
Phone: (250) 370-5195
I’m surprised that I never noticed Kissato Sushi before in my sojourns to the municipality of Oak Bay, which is one district over from where I live. The main reason is that there aren’t a lot of areas to park my car. It’s almost a must bus in the zone, given how restrictive the area is for vehicle traffic along the strip.
When I am here, I make the most of my time here. The avenue is even more of a throwback to the yesteryear than any other area, and I’m glad there are no signs of modernisation here, except maybe one operation or two.
The best known operations for eats here include the Ottavio Italian Bakery & Delicatessen and The White Heather Tearoom (review link). For where to buy alcohol, I highly recommend The Cork and Barrel; they are one of the few places that keeps a good stock of Strange Brew’s holiday drinks. Also, the Penny Farthing bar can be hit or miss, but as for buying delicious meats, I heartily believe The Whole Beast is tops. I go there to purchase their maple rosemary bacon.
With all that said, this district has only three sushi operations still running. Sadly, Osaka Sushi (review link) is permanently closed, and I consider them one of the best. Thankfully, Kissato can fit the bill, even though their selection is not as extensive. That is, sea urchin isn’t available. In what they offer is a terrific catalogue of the staples. The fish was especially fresh since my friend Max and I arrived at the opening, and we had enormous appetites going on.
Charelli’s Cheese Shop,
Delicatessen & Catering
2851 Foul Bay Rd
Hours: Tues to Sat 10am–3pm
Phone: (250) 598-4794
Just why I haven’t been to this deli in the past, when I was studying Applied Communications (now Digital Communications) at Camosun College’s Lansdowne Campus simply boiled down to time. A fit person could race down the hill and hike back up it when there’s an hour to kill between classes, but I’m the roly-poly type who may not achieve it. Plus, I want to enjoy my lunch more than to scarf it down before resuming my work in the a/v edit suite or be in class. Eating during session is obviously discouraged.
This operation opened back in 2003, and I’ve been aware of it for a long time. I needed a proper reason (other than being hungry) to head down, and when I heard they sold truffle oil flavoured potato chips–I was there faster than a bee to a spring flower!
The Snug Pub
1175 Beach Drive
Oak Bay, BC
J: When I first heard of the pub called “The Snug” my thoughts were of a small establishment so tiny that getting a decent table would be like me trying to fit into the jeans I wore back in high school. It wouldn’t be pretty and there would be no chance it could be done successfully. But upon entering Oak Bay Beach Hotel‘s pub, it was quite roomy and no matter where one would sit, you get beautiful views of the strait. I liked the pre-1800’s English decor, it was suitable for a man of my tastes.
E: Or rather, a man who looked like a chimney sweeper. I dressed up for the occasion and James was Oscar to my Felix. Well, nothing would stop me from wanting to revisit this place after trying out their seafood chowder.
1950A Oak Bay Ave.
Oak Bay, BC
E: Honestly, I have to wonder about the attitudes that go on in a Chinese restaurant. In a proper establishment, customers are kept happy and the employees will go out-of-their-way to make sure the customer is well served. But when the level in service drops, I get visions of Mel’s Diner from the 70’s TV show, Alice. It makes me wonder why Mee Wah is generally well liked within certain food circles.
J: Is it the food? Perhaps but I know it’s not the service, the service (or lack there of) is poor. The place wasn’t packed but it was still busy. And during the time we were there I felt as though we were wasting the server’s time. I had to wonder what was bothering her.
White Heather Tea Room
1885 Oak Bay Ave.
Oak Bay, BC
J: Ed and I were returning to one of my favourite municipalities, Oak Bay, and in this municipality is one of the jewels of the many locally owned businesses, the White Heather Tea Room. I wanted Ed to experience their service, the food and the atmosphere of what had wowed me before. I stopped for tea with sandwiches and pastries last year. And though I didn’t review the place, I couldn’t say one bad thing against this establishment.
With Ed in tow, I thought it deserved scrutinizing under the eyes of the Two Hungry Blokes.
E: Quite often, I’d ask James, “So why don’t you move there?”
Cinecenta is located in the thriving community of the University of Victoria (UVic) campus in Saanich. The theatre offers more than a reasonable rate for general admission while giving discounted rates for UVic students, faculty, staff and alumni. Discounted rates are also available to seniors and children 12 and under. Matinées are $4.75 for all seats. Second evening shows at Cinecenta are $4.75 for all UVic undergrads.
It’s a Wonderful Life
(USA – 118 mins)
Director: Frank Capra
Writer(s): Philip Van Doren Stern (story), Frances Goodrich, Albert Hackett, Frank Capra (screenplay), Jo Swerking (additional scenes), and Michael Wilson (contributor to screenplay)