Nautical Nellies, now in its 15th year of business, is no stranger to recognition— the eatery, which overlooks the city's inner harbour, has topped multiple Open Table Diners' Choice awards in categories including Best Food, Best Seafood, and Best Overall. Fillets of wild Pacific halibut or Vancouver Island ling cod flake beneath forks, and shellfish, lobster, and dungeness crab claws teeter on multi-tiered seafood towers. Diners can sample 10 varieties of oysters and rolls of fusion sushi, many of which come recommended by the Ocean Wise sustainable seafood program. Grass-fed Angus steaks, aged for 35 days, are cooked to any specification, from well done to what chefs term “blue”— seared on the outside, with a cool center and a scrawled-on frowny face.
Thanks to the work of wine director Betty Furneaux and sommelier Lisa Hartery, Nautical Nellies' beverage programs are just as thoughtfully designed as their dining menus. Wine Spectator honoured the eatery's wine list with an Award of Excellence in 2011. Cocktails range from beachy mojitos to the savoury double-prawn caesar with vodka, Clamato juice, and two black tiger prawns. The restaurant also dedicates a menu exclusively to scotch.