This is Vancouver’s Best Poutine on Davie Street Part 3 of 4.
For the other posts in this Best Poutine on Davie Street series:
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The following is the written review as well as more details about Fritz European Fry House that are not included in the video.
Restaurant: Fritz European Fry House
Last visited: January 7, 2010
Area: Vancouver, BC (Downtown/West End)
Address: 718 Davie Street
Price range: $10 or less
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
- Specializes in fries only
- Offers array of dips
- Potatoes fried in pure vegetable oil
- Canadian grown potatoes
- Available in cones
- Very casual, order/pay at cashier
- Seats 10 – very small wooden benche s
- More of a take out place
- Most popular munchies place
- Attracts late night crowd/line-ups after 12am ok weekends
- Open for lunch until very late
- Closed Monday
- Winner of numerous Vancouver based awards
Recommendation: Poutine (I like Mango Curry Chutney and Indonesian Peanut Sauce dip)
The Topic: Quest for Vancouver’s BEST Poutine on Davie Street
The Contestants: La Belle Patate, La Brasserie, Fritz European Fry House
4 Poutines later, the results are in!
Fritz European Fry House was my final destination for my quest for the best poutine on Davie Street (Vancouver, BC)! (It was not at a disadvantage because it was last, because I wasn’t “poutine’d out” yet!)
Fritz European Fry House is still on of the most popular places for people to get poutine in Vancouver. Along with Mega Bite Pizza, it’s common for locals to hit up Fritz for midnight munchies in downtown Vancouver. There’s always a line after 12am and I’m guessing 95% of their business is on the weekend and late night hours. It’s good even when you haven’t had a lot to drink, but it’s really really good when you have had a lot to drink.
It’s called a “European Fry House” but their most popular for their poutine – A French-Canadian specialty. I like them better as a European Fry House, and for me the highlight are the dips more so than the poutine. It really is reminiscent of places in Belgium in the choice of dips to the way it’s served in cones. It’s only if you order a poutine does it come in a styrofoam bowl.
What is Poutine?
Using the most common definition a poutine is fries, cheese and gravy. However the real authentic definition of a poutine is fries, cheese curds (specifically fresh cheddar cheese curds), and poutine sauce or “gravy”. (Some people will object to the word “gravy” – but it’s supposed to be a chicken based sauce).
On the table:
Poutine – 4/6
- Small: $4.50, Medium: $5, Large $6.50, Jumbo: $7.50
- The fries are hand cut, skins on, freshly fried in Canola oil and made with Russet Potatoes. This is the most popular and standard choice of potato for fries. It’s starchy but because they cut them a bit thinner it’s not as starchy. They were firm and slightly crispier than the other 2 poutines. The thinness actually held on to the gravy and cheese well, and it didn’t get too soggy until you got to the bottom. I actually really liked the fries here.
- What I like about Fritz is that they layer their poutine. Fries, cheese curds, gravy and repeat. Therefore you get 2 layers of well dress fries so there’s a really good ratio of ingredients.
- I’m not sure what base their gravy is, but I feel like it was thickened with cream because it was a lighter brown than the gravies offered at La Belle Patate and La Brasserie. The flavour is enhanced with black pepper and some dried herbs. I wish they used freshly cracked black pepper instead of the regular black pepper though. There was also some dried herbs in it and I think it was oregano.
- The cheese curds were the stringiest of all 3 places. That just means the cheese was a mozzarella cheese rather than an actual cheese curd. They melted almost right away so this poutine was very ooey gooey. It reminded me of mozzarella cheese stings cut into smaller pieces – it had the same texture and flavour.
- It’s not an authentic poutine because of the type of cheese. But if you like that hearty, rich, saucy and cheesy poutine…then this is it! Personally I enjoy it as a late night snack or hangover food rather than lunch.
Added note: This review is a little different because it was for my video blog. Therefore the food at Fritz European Fry House was complimentary, (although I did offer to pay) but my opinions are still honest and as non-biased as I can be. The opinions and views expressed in “The Quest for Vancouver’s Best Poutine on Davie Street” review and video are those of Follow Me Foodie/Mijune only. There is no paid advertising and as always I write for the benefit of the customers and not for the restaurants.
The following photos are paid for poutines from Fritz European Fry House.
Photos from January 1, 2010….yes, after New Year’s Eve…;)
Poutine w/Mango Curry Chutney and Indonesian Peanut Sauce – 6/6
- These are my favourite dips here.
The layering of their poutine…underneath the first layer….more fries, more gravy, and more cheese! I love how they do this!
Thank you for the review! I work here at Fritz, my father owns the place and I feel that you would need to brush up a bit on the information you post on a public website. Our cheese curds are REAL cheese curds brought from Quebec. That is a fact that we are the most proud of; it is NOT mozarella cheese at all. Therefor our poutine is the real deal and is authentic.
Other than that thank you for the very nice review.
Neda Totoonchi – Thanks for your informative comment Neda!
Please let me clarify myself regarding the cheese curds and “authenticity”:
When I refer to “real cheese curds” I am referring to the ones that are made fresh that morning, that don’t melt, and that squeak when you bite into them. Those are the freshest cheese curds and what is used on what’s considering “authentic poutine” in Quebec. So while it’s great to know that Fritz imports their cheese curds from Quebec, the traveling time to Vancouver would have affected the quality of the curd making it not as “squeaky” or making it melt at a faster rate since they risk drying out a bit during the traveling process. This would also depend on what brand of cheese curd it is. It’s a bit tricky, but personally I think that importing the ingredients from the source doesn’t necessarily always make something “authentic”.
I hope that clarifies my stand point, and again I really appreciate you commenting.
Yikes, I don’t even know where to start. I know I’m late to the game, but so many people base their food decisions on your blog that I feel I just have to comment.
First, there is actually no such thing as an “authentic” poutine because (as you’ve stated yourself) the true origin is unknown and subject to a great deal of contention. ‘Les québécois’ consider an authentic poutine to consist of brown gravy, French fries, cheese curds. Nothing more, nothing less. Everything else is a variant, and obviously flavour is subjective. If you insist on blogging about poutine, please consider using the term ‘classic’ poutine rather than ‘authentic’.
In French, the word gravy is “sauce”. There’s no other word. And by English definition, a gravy IS a sauce. Please stop saying that a poutine is made with sauce and not gravy. If a French-Canadian tells you otherwise, that’s probably because English is not their native language and they don’t understand that we have two different words that can express the same thing.
Poutine is made with “sauce brune” or brown sauce/gravy. It may or may not have a chicken or beef base. That’s an individual’s personal preference, not a fast and hard rule of poutine. Further, packaged sauce does not necessarily make it great either. Is it still a classic poutine? Yes, if it’s a brown sauce, regardless of the base. Again, flavour is subjective.
A cheese curd is a cheese curd is a cheese curd. Regardless of whether it’s made the same day, a day earlier, a week earlier. When you talk about “real cheese curds” you really should be saying “fresh cheese curds”. They’re still real cheese curds. Not everybody has the leisure of stopping by the ‘fromagerie’ in the morning to pick up fresh curds. Furthermore, I’d rather have cheese curds imported from Quebec rather than say fresh cheese curds from Birchwood Dairy in Abbotsford. (No offence Birchwood, I still love you!) That is simply my preference as a Québécoise. You on the other hand might prefer a poutine made with Birchwood’s fresh cheese curds.
No offence, but I think your readers would appreciate knowing the difference between your personal preference and what is considered a traditional or classic poutine. There aren’t many food items I’ll claim to have a lot of knowledge on, but this is most definitely one of them. If something is your area of expertise, I will definitely defer to you. Further, you’ve probably been to more restaurants than I could dream of in a lifetime, so your knowledge is invaluable! Please don’t dilute it with misinformation though. As a half Anglo (mom’s side) half Franco (dad’s side) Canadian having lived half her life in Quebec and half her life in BC, I get very touchy on the subject of poutine. Oh and it’s neither pou-teen nor pou-tin, it is pou-tsin. That’s the “authentic” pronunciation. 😉
p.s. I’m wondering why you haven’t blogged about Belgian Fries on Commercial Drive? Their pou-tsin is excellent! =D
p.p.s. In the spirit of sharing, my all time favorite is Italian poutine… instead of brown gravy it’s made with a tasty Bolognese sauce! If you like a meat and tomato based pasta sauce, you have to try it sometime!!!
Hi Kim, thanks for your comment. Please note I wrote this in 2010. I would write it differently now. Food history can be so arguable, but feel free to substitute words with your poutine vocabulary.