by Rodney's Oyster House
Calgary’s first true Oyster restaurant arrives today when Rodney’s Oyster House
opens in the 107-year-old Case Manufacturing Building at 355 10th Ave SW (at 4th) in downtown’s Beltline District. The opening is a ‘soft launch’ with the official opening taking place in mid-February.
Often deemed Canada's representative among the great Oyster houses of the world, Rodney’s Oyster House will be known to many Calgarians from the brand’s successful operations in Vancouver, Toronto and Prince Edward Island (PEI). Spread across two levels, with four bars, live lobster and crab tanks, the 320-seat Calgary restaurant will offer the freshest choice Oysters, live lobster, live crab, live sea scallops and other fish specialties, all served up with Maritime hospitality.
Built on a singular focus to grow, harvest, source and serve the best shellfish, Rodney’s Oyster House will offer anywhere from eight to 20 different Oyster varieties on any given day. It draws from its own Oyster beds in Prince Edward Island and the best growers in Canada, the USA and abroad, the company serving over 1.67 million Oysters in 2013 alone.
Founder and Partner Rodney Clark explains why the company has chosen to open its largest restaurant in the city. “Calgary is a place with which we have a 17-year relationship through Mount Royal University's Pearls of Wisdom
charitable event. We have become enamored with the energy and friendliness of Calgary’s people. We have seen that they work hard, and play hard, and we think the time is right to bring the best of the Maritimes to this city.”
Chef Robin Bowen, formerly of South Way Hotel and Conference Centre, says the fact that Calgary is land-locked is actually an asset. “When you live by the sea, you eat what you catch, but by shipping in select product, it allows us to choose what is showing itself best at any given time of year, from the Maritimes, the Atlantic Coast, BC, Washington, and even from as far away as Ireland, Scotland, France and New Zealand. We work with farmers and processors directly; to ensure that everything bought, prepared and served meets the high standards we set for ourselves and our guests.”
The 8,000 square feet of dining area at Rodney’s Oyster House has many distinct but flowing sections that mix up the experience and energy for diners. On the ground level, the Boulder Bar is the restaurant focal point where the main Oyster Bed and shucking action happens. Behind it, the Fish Camp features long harvest tables for communal eating while the adjoining Engine Room offers private seating. The nearby Galley is a mix of table seating with options to accommodate large groups, and its 10-seat bar is where diners can lock eyes with a live crab or lobster. On the mezzanine level, the overlooking Oarloft has its own bar and shucker, and can be booked out completely for private functions, while the Government Wharf private room is perfect for corporate lunches and dinners.
“The layout lends itself to serving groups of many sizes, from 2 at the bar to 200 around the restaurant,” says Front of House Manager, Karen Beck, formerly of West.
“We want to get to know our patrons, because just as every Oyster has a story, so does every guest. We want every visit to be memorable and fun, whether you are in for one Oyster at the bar or a live Alaskan King Crab.
Rodney’s features one permanent and one ‘White Plate Specials’ menu for lunch and dinner. While it takes reservations, it never books out the entire restaurant, always leaving room for walk-ins. From 3-6pm, it is ‘Low Tide’, featuring smaller bites to take the edge off after work. ‘Bait & Tackle’, a quick-serve lunch counter service features Maritime classics like Lobster Rolls, jars of New England and Manhattan Clam Chowder, and Oysters shucked to eat on the go.
Rodney’s opening hours are 11am -10pm Monday to Wednesday and 11am -11pm Thursday to Saturday.
For further information, please visit: http://rodneysOysterhousecalgary.com
Note to Journalists:
The founder and namesake of Rodney’s Oyster House is Rodney Clark, a native of PEI and an Oyster man through and through. Besides growing, harvesting and selling millions of Oysters, Rodney has shucked professionally on four continents, is a three time Canadian Champion, and has represented Canada twice at the World Championships taking home honours for ‘Best Presentation’ in 1995. With over thirty years in the Oyster business, Rodney’s philosophy has been guided by one simple quote from his father, J.A. Clark: "Give a good person a good Oyster and you will have them for life."
Find Rodney’s Oyster House
Social Hashtag: #RodneysYYC
Reservations: +1 403 460 0026 and Online
Location: 355 10th
Avenue SW (at 4th
Street SW) Calgary, AB