There’s a sign that hangs high on the Connaught Fish & Chips building — located at 976 Main Street East at Gage — that claims the eatery is “the best in town.” A Steel Town staple, it’s been serving hearty meals to generations of Hamiltonians since 1930. Ninety years ago, it was located a few blocks away at King Street East at Connaught, standing near the spot you’ll find Donairs @ Gage today. In 1980, it relocated to its current home in a muralled building located directly across from Gage Park.
Whether you prefer haddock, halibut, cod, or Alaskan white, Connaught Fish & Chips’ menu is big with many dishes to choose from. If you’re not craving fish and chips, it also serves traditional pub fare, including chicken fingers (served with chips or rice), footlong chili cheese dogs, poutine, and hamburgers.
Given the option to take-out or dine-in, I’d suggest staying to enjoy your meal in the restaurant’s deceivingly large dining room located a few steps up from the take-out counter. Unchanged for decades, the cozy atmosphere is reminiscent of a well-curated antique shop or your grandmother’s basement, and I mean that as a good thing. My dad and I were the only ones dining-in early on a Saturday evening, giving me the chance to explore the restaurant’s collection of antiques, which includes radios and clocks, model ships, vintage books, and — at the time of our visit — a lot of Christmas decorations.
With large portion sizes at a reasonable price, Connaught Fish & Chips is an excellent choice when you’re craving a large meal but on a limited budget. Offering family packs with up to seven pieces of haddock or Alaskan white, as well as a large seafood platter, it’s also a great place to consider for a large family meal. (Kids’ meals are less than $6 and include a drink and dessert).
For years I’ve driven by Connaught Fish & Chips on my way to Gage Park or Ottawa Street, but I’ve never stopped for a meal; however, the restaurant’s crispy, not greasy, batter and homey atmosphere left me wondering why it took me so long. It’s no surprise to me now that Connaught Fish & Chips has been a neighbourhood favourite for decades. In a time of high rises and $100-meals, it’s more important than ever to support businesses like this one that are so closely tied to the city’s history.
Sunday — Closed
Monday — Closed
Tuesday-Thursday — 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Friday — 11:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday — 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.