Diana's Seafood Delight
It may not be as well known as some other fish mongers in the city, but Diana's Seafood Delight is definitely one of the best. In business since 1979, Diana's has built up a loyal clientele that's a who's-who in restaurant circles and includes names like Starfish , North 44 , the ACC and George Brown College .
It may surprise some to learn that Diana's is something of a Toronto outpost to Montreal's famous Waldman's and La-Mer . Diana worked with her two brothers in Montreal before branching out on her own in what was a dreary stretch of Scarborough in the late 70s. Originally, the business was purely wholesale and supplied seafood products to large grocers like Loblaws and A&P.
But over time the business refined its focus and now caters mainly to restaurants as well as a growing consumer base through its retail operations.
So what to get?
The star attraction here is definitely the oysters. From New Brunswick Beausoleil to BC Kumomotos, Diana's has a lock on the best oysters available on the market. Forget about shopping retail at Oyster Boy or Rodney's. Just go to Diana's and you'll get the best stuff at decent prices.
But coming here for oysters alone would also be a mistake. The store has a large Greek customer base and flies in fresh sardines, anchovies and other fish from waters in the Mediterranean weekly, arriving on ice Wednesday mornings. Line-ups start before Diana's even opens so if you want some of the Greek loot you'll need to get here no later than Wednesday at noon.
If memories from Greece isn't your thing the best day to shop here is Friday. Since a lot of fish and oysters arrives on Thursday, Friday will inevitably have the best and freshest selection. Along with the usual favourites like halibut, snapper and tilapia, you'll likely find some more intriguing offerings including sea urchins, organic black cod from BC and organic Irish salmon.
Rounding out the selection here are fridges full of smoked salmon (sent from Waldman's famous smokehouse), buckets of feta cheese, olives, halva, squid ink, various kinds of caviar, organic yogurt and mussel salads.