Let’s Eat: The Galley

The Galley
Photo credit: Brian Turner.
Posted on: June 21, 2022

No matter how you get there, it’s worth the trip!

We are undoubtedly blessed with a proliferation of quaint picturesque small towns and villages and especially fortunate to have the added benefit of those communities located on one of our region’s many breathtakingly beautiful waterways. One such location is Portland on the banks of the Rideau system just south of Smiths Falls. The Galley Restaurant is a unique gem in this village, being located right on the water and serving some of the best dishes found in our area and beyond. 

My wife, son and I visited recently and were immediately blown away at the scenery in view through the wall of windows on the water side. The dining areas (there are several) are spacious and inviting with expected, but well-executed marine decor. The Galley serves lunch, dinner, and a wide variety of pub-style food. We stopped in for lunch and opted for some wraps and burger plates and weren’t disappointed. The servings were generous, hot, and delicious. My wife opted for a side Caesar salad, while my son and I dug into great fries. My Pontoon burger was as promised; loaded with thick-cut bacon, caramelized onions, and mushrooms. It was done right, on a hot flat-top to keep all of the 100% Angus chuck flavour inside. The Brioche buns tell you the kitchen is serious about upping the level of their food from simple pub-style to a cut far above. The crispy chicken wraps were loaded with lots of meat and greens, done like all the dishes, something more than you’d expect.

The Galley is also known for its take on Caribbean flavours and has created a substantial following for their crab cakes, island time salad, and Caribbean fries. While their hand-helds and appetizer sections of the menu have a great selection for any taste, they also have a mouth-watering entrée menu for some special occasion dining, like say, to celebrate Fridays.

If you peruse the reviews on The Galley’s social media accounts, you’ll find a common theme among the 4 and 5 star ratings; great welcoming staff. We experienced that first-hand during our visit. Service was excellent and we were immediately made to feel right at home. The prices are very reasonable with apps ranging from $12-$18, burger/wrap platters running from $16-$18, and entrees priced from S13-$30. They have a great selection of craft beers and wines for perfect pairings.

They’re located at 11 Water Street, right on the banks of the Big Rideau with plenty of parking and accessible entry. The Galley is open Wednesday through Sunday from noon to 8 pm, staying open to 9 pm on Fridays and Saturdays. You can check out their Facebook page or their website at lenscove.com/the-galley-restaurant or can call at 613-272-5125. They have an online reservation feature, great for busier times around the weekends. Whether you get there by car, bike, or boat, you’ll be sure to get a warm welcome and some next-level dishes to complete a perfect experience on the water.

Column by Brian Turner

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