Original Joe’s Restaurant & Bar

Restaurant: Original Joe’s Restaurant & Bar
Cuisine: American/Canadian/Pub food
Last visited: February 26, 2010
Area: Multiple locations – Richmond, BC (Ironwood)
Address: 1215 Davie Street
Price range: $10 or less
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!

Food: 4 (based on what I tried)
Service: 4
Ambiance: 4
Overall: 4
Additional comments:

  • Multiple locations (Canadian franchise)
  • Offers traditional/classic bar food
  • Made from scratch dishes
  • Big portions
  • Great for beer
  • Lots of seating
  • Daily drink/food specials
  • Busy during game nights
  • Very casual atmosphere
  • Free parking
  • Big screen tv’s
  • Great for snacks/beer
  • Wine available
  • Small selection of desserts
  • Mon-Sun 11am – midnight

Recommendation: Joe’s Red Tractor Nachos, Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwich, Sweet Potato Fries

Original Joe’s is a really casual restaurant/bar/pub serving up traditional pub food made from scratch! I actually wouldn’t have guessed from the looks of it, but it is! They have multiple locations in Canada and in Vancouver and the lower mainland. This one I visited is the newest location – it’s the Richmond location that opened in January 2010.

I came to watch the Olympics Canada VS Slovak hockey game and we won…so my good spirits and enthusiastic atmosphere may influence my review to be higher than normal. Having said that I also don’t feel like I’ve tried enough to give a proper review, but I would definitely go back to try more things because I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed everything for the most part. The food was much better than expected and very affordable with big portions. It’s not pretentious and similar to places like Kelsey’s – definitely more bar/pub then contemporary restaurant like Earls which is also bar-ish.

They have daily specials at a bargain price – so there’s always something going on.

On the table:


  • Medium $9.50 Large $11.50
  • It was on special for $4.75.
  • It had 1 oz of Vodka but I could barely taste any…it was pretty much cranberry juice.

Joe’s Red Tractor Nachos4.5/6

  • Crisp tortilla chips piled high; layered with melted cheddar and mozzarella, roma tomatoes, red and green onions, black olives and jalapenos. Served with fresh tomato salsa and sour cream. Full 15.99 – Half 12.99
  • Add spicy beef, chicken or pulled pork 3.99 Guacamole 2.99
  • I ordered a half order with chicken and they are seriously ENORMOUS. The really wonder if a full size is twice as big for $3 more…seriously the half order could feed 4 and looks like a full order.

  • These were delicious! Lots of cheese, really fresh ingredients and big pieces of vegetables.
  • You can’t really screw up nachos, unless you cheap out and don’t give enough toppings or cheese.
  • I added chicken and it was nice big slices of grilled chicken breast.
  • The salsa had corn in it, which was awesome.

Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwich4.5/6

  • Slow roasted pork shoulder, pulled, then “mopped” in your choice of sweet onion mustard, cider pepper, or southern style BBQ sauce. Topped with honey slaw and served on a fresh white bun. Served with your choice of 2 sides.10.99 (They serve all the sauces on the side)

  • This was piled high and loaded with pulled pork and lots of honey cole slaw.
  • The pork wasn’t too juicy, but still good, and with the BBQ sauce it was fine.
  • I asked for all 3 sauces, however the server forgot 2 of them. I think the sauce I ended up getting was southern style BBQ sauce. It was a very tangy BBQ sauce with a big kick! It was almost like there was Frank’s hot sauce in it and tons of Worcestershire.

  • I really liked the cole slaw. It was very lightly dressed, not a gloppy mess so the veggies weren’t soggy. It was a tangy dressing and very mildly sweet with a touch of honey. Nice and crunchy.
  • The bun was just a regular burger bun. Nice and soft though.

Mango Pasta Salad – Side1/6

  • I didn’t like this side. It was a very simple pasta salad with dill like mayo dressing. The dressing was light but I thought it would be a sweet mango dressing.
  • There was pretty much zero mango taste. The mango was little bits of fresh mango tossed in the salad. I found 2 pieces the size of bacon bits in the entire bowl.
  • It didn’t necessarily taste bad but because they called it mango pasta salad, I was left very disappointed.
  • It tasted like a very lightly dressed regular pasta salad with some black pepper, red onions, and red bell pepper. There wasn’t much bell pepper either.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Gravy – Side2/6

  • This was the most traditional mashed potatoes I’ve had.
  • The mashed potatoes are very smooth and quite creamy, and although they claim everything is made in house…the potatoes tasted like packaged mashed potatoes. No garlic or additional flavorings…it was just any old mashed potato.
  • I’m pretty sure the gravy is packaged, it really tastes like it.
  • They topped the mashed potatoes with fried onions or shallots – which were extremely soggy and not good.

Steak & Prawns4/6

  • 6 ounce grilled steak and a skewer of prawns (your choice of garlic or Cajun) served with your choice of 2 sides. Friday special for $15.99
  • I don’t expect a supreme quality of beef and you have to take into consideration it is pub food – so lower your expectations a bit.
  • It was decent, it had a coating of course rub with sea salt on it and it was grilled really well. The meat was tender – not steakhouse quality obviously, but still very good.

  • The prawns were not made in house – I think they’re the pre seasoned frozen ones from Sysco Food distributor. I can’t confirm, but from appearance and the fact that you can chose the flavours I’m pretty sure they are the pre-prepared kind. They are still good, but just not made in house.
  • They’re a bit small and obviously fresh ones would be better, but for $15.99 – they do the job.

Sweet Potato Fries – Side5/6

  • Cut thin, fried crisp and seasoned with a house made spice blend. Served with our signature dill dip or chipotle sauce.
  • Extra 1.99 as a side, or 6.99 as appetizer
  • I thought they did a great job with these!
  • They’re very lightly seasoned and not that salty at all, but still flavourful. They are cut thin so they were actually very crispy.
  • I think they served it with the dill dip because the sauce wasn’t spicy at all…however it was orange so I’m not sure. It basically tasted like a yogurt based dip with dill flavour – so it was almost like a mixture of dill dip and chipotle yogurt dip…but not spicy.

Caesar Salad – Side2/6

  • This was just a standard quickly thrown together Caesar salad. Not much else to say here. A few bacon bits and croutons on top.


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