As “Burger Ambassadors” for the upcoming YYC Burger Week, which runs from May 2 to May 10, 2014, my friend and fellow food blogger, Anna (@annasappetite) and I were tasked to visit three participating restaurants, one in each of the three price categories ($10 burgers, $15 burgers and $20 burgers) to get a “sneak peek” of the restaurants’ burger creations before the actual YYC Burger Week starts and report back on the YYC Burger Week website so everyone will get a glimpse of what they could expect to savour from each Burger Week participant/competitor. We had already gotten a glimpse of the YYC Burger Week creations at NOtaBLE – The Restaurant, The Fine Diner and Selkirk Grille earlier on in the weekend. I had also tagged along with my friend and fellow “Burger Ambassador”, Carmen (@foodkarmablog), to check out Brasserie Kensington‘s burger creation a couple of days earlier. For our final Sneak Peek, Anna and I visited Billingsgate Seafood Market & Restaurant (also known as Billingsgate MKT and Billingsgate’s Fish & Chip Restaurant), located in Stadium Shopping Center.
This was my first time visiting Billingsgate Seafood Market & Restaurant. I had no idea that this is one of the oldest continually owned and operated family businesses, not only in Calgary, but also in Canada. It was founded in 1907 by Bert Malthouse. Today, father Bryan Fallwell and son, Frank (Luke) Fallwell IV are the fourth and fifth generations, respectively, of their family to operate the fish business. The market offers a huge selection of fish and seafood while the adjacent restaurant serves up fish & chips and chowders, made from secret family recipes that have been passed down through the generations.
If you’re looking for something slightly different for YYC Burger Week or need a break from all the beef and pork burgers, you’re in for a real treat! For YYC Burger Week, Billingsgate is serving up a Samurai Ahi Tuna Burger ($10), which consists of a 5 oz ahi tuna steak seared with soy & sesame oil, and topped with crispy fried dulse, salmon ikura roe, wasabi aioli, all between a baked fresh daily Cobs Breads bun.
This burger totally knocked my socks off! The combination of flavours and textures worked together perfectly. I loved that the ahi tuna steak was perfectly seared. It was juicy, moist and flavourful. Besides the ahi tuna steak, my favorite part of the burger was the crispy fried dulse. For those unfamiliar, dulse (also known as sea lettuce flakes) is a red alga that grows on the northern coasts of the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. The dulse comes in small packages and can be found in many health food stores and fish markets. In this case, the dulse was deep-fried to provide a great textural contrast to the ahi tuna steak but without having an overpowering taste. In fact, I would say, unlike nori/laver (which is commonly used in sushi rolls), dulse has a very mild flavour.
I’m really happy to see Billingsgate come up with such a unique and great tasting creation for YYC Burger Week. This burger is definitely worth trying as it is not the typical fish burger with the battered and fried fish fillet that’s drenched in tartar sauce. Instead, this Samurai Ahi Tuna Burger is healthy, light and the ahi tuna is totally the star of the show. You’d better hurry as this Samurai Ahi Tuna Burger is only available at Billingsgate during their business hours for the duration of YYC Burger Week, which runs from May 2 to May 10. If you miss your chance, you might never come across a fish burger like this again!
Billingsgate Seafood Market & Restaurant
Bay 2B, 1941 Uxbridge Dr NW
(403) 269-3474 (ANY-FISH)