I guess Commercial Drive just wasn’t ready for an American-Pie retro Quebec diner featuring poutine. We watched a man build Frenchie’s last year through months of hard effort. And we watched as day after day and week after week Frenchie’s was never busy. Some days it was hard to see a single bum in a seat. Not surprising it closed, I guess.
But Frenchie’s sad loss has proven to be a boon for the Drive because the space has been taken over and refurbished as The Reef, a Caribbean joint, with other branches on Main Street and in Victoria. We had dinner there last night and it was great! Simply but appropriately decorated and furnished, the atmosphere was good, the service attentive, and business brisk.
My better half had the Bajan fried chicken, which came with yardie yam fries, gravy and coleslaw. She told me it was the best fried chicken she had ever eaten outside of the house, and then called over the waitress to tell her the same thing. It was that good.
I had the goat roti, an enormous and wonderful bundle that I couldn’t finish (packed it up and brought it home). The smooth but highly spiced taste was exactly what I remember from Jamaica. Wonderful. Mine also came with their coleslaw, made without mayonnaise and with a very fresh taste and texture.
I look forward to herself and I going through their menu comprehensively over the next few months.