ByWard Market's Fish Market Restaurant shuts down

Fish Market
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A well-known Ottawa seafood restaurant has joined the growing list of downtown eating establishments that are permanently closing their doors due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Fish Market Restaurant said Wednesday it’s shutting down after 41 years in the ByWard Market, saying the coronavirus crisis “has devastated our business.”

President and CEO Barbara Mireault said in a social media post the Fish Market’s sister restaurants at the same York Street property, Coasters Seafood Grill and Vineyards Wine Bar Bistro, will also not reopen. The businesses have been closed since mid-March when the province imposed strict measures to curb the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.

“With a broken heart we are closing our doors of more than four decades and as one of the very first restaurants in the Byward Market,” Mireault wrote on the restaurant’s Facebook page. “We will miss serving you beautiful fish meals and wine, we will miss our staff and management team and we will miss the market!”

The announcement comes less than a week after another downtown establishment, the Highlander Pub, said it was shuttering its Rideau Street restaurant and bar after an 18-year run. A few days earlier, another ByWard Market eatery, SmoQue Shack, said it was also permanently closing its location on Clarence Street.

Rideau-Vanier Coun. Mathieu Fleury was quoted last week as saying the city and local BIA were exploring various measures to support restaurants, bars and other ByWard Market businesses. This includes street closures that would allow for larger patios and give pedestrians more space to physically distance from one another.