A punning name seems to be obligatory for fish-and-chips shops these days. First there was The One That Got Away, which opened last fallon King Street West. Now Steven Karataglidis has opened Off the Hook on Broadview, which, in addition to succeeding Deep Blue as the Greektown’s only fish fry, might be Toronto’s first shop to fry its daily catch in gluten-free batter.
In addition to the gluten-free option, Karataglidis coats his fish in organic and organic Cajun batters—but it’s the fish itself that really makes Off the Hook stand out. “Our fish types are way different than any I’ve ever seen. No one else does red snapper or mahi mahi,” says Karataglidis, whose previous experience in Toronto’s food scene doesn’t extend much beyond counter service at Wendy’s and Quiznos. Along with the aforementioned red snapper ($10) and mahi mahi ($10), Karataglidis serves the more traditional halibut ($12) and sea bass ($12), all of which also come grilled for those watching their waistline.
Karataglidis’s seafood selection, which also includes lump crab cake ($12) and panko-crusted shrimps and scallops (both $12), is all sustainable (courtesy of Daily Seafood) and comes with a large selection of dipping sauces—curry, pesto chipotle, wasabi and, of course, tartar. And unlike many of the smaller grab-and-go shops—Chippy’s, Harbord—where seating is sparse, Off the Hook encourages dining in, with over half a dozen tables draped in black cloth. The room might be a little sparsely decorated, but that just allows diners to focus on what matters most: the fish.