With 19 locations scattered throughout the Midwest, Elephant & Castle Pub & Restaurant is a class establishment, an old-style British pub with an interesting menu that is a mix of British and American cuisine. It can be found mostly in the upscale sectors of large cities across the country, from Boston to Seattle and anywhere in between. The pub opened its first location in Vancouver in 1977, but over 30 years of success has developed a refined taste and an atmosphere that seems equally tasteful for an early morning breakfast or a late night drink.
As you might imagine, the most well known item on the menu is the fish and chips, your choice of Halibut or Cod lightly beer battered and served alongside English chips and cole slaw. For lunch or dinner, people seem to favor this one. Other favorites include a Shepherd’s Pie with beef, potatoes and vegetables alongside a balsamic green salad, and a Yorkshire pudding topped with gravy. If you’ve never had British food, this is a safe place for a good introduction, as things are definitely ethnic without crossing into the unusual.
Another cool trend seems to be that the Pub has several signature dishes using the delicious Guinness beer. The lunch menu features “Guinness meatloaf” which features vegetables braised in the Irish dry stout, while the dinner features a Guinness stew, a beef and root vegetable combo simmered in beer. Oh, and if that isn’t enough, there is a chicken dish simmered in Jameson’s Irish Whiskey. Elephant & Castle takes beer battering to the next level and uses beer as an artful ingredient nicely inserted into other dishes. It’s very cool.
For me though, breakfast was my favorite part. The breakfast menu is pretty small but features plenty of eggs and omelets cooked any way you like them. Steak and eggs, ham and eggs, eggs benedict and eggs with veggies, you name it. The surprising star of the breakfast menu to me, though, is the banana stuffed French Toast. Raisin bread filled with bananas and battered before being lightly cooked. All told, the menu has plenty of cool surprises.
The atmosphere of the Pub is true to the English theme. It’s sort of dark and dank and closed in, which is sort of charming. The service is good, the people are friendly and overall there are plenty of reasons to want to give this place a try. I would suggest it would be a great place to try for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
- There are a lot of cool things to try for breakfast, lunch, and dinner alike. Don’t discount this place as a nightspot only.
- Try the many beer-cooked options for a nice introduction to British cuisine. If you’re already familiar with it, then there are still new things to try.
- Some of the locations serve as room service to local hotels, which might be a good idea if you’re feeling like spending a night in.