Print Edition: January 7, 2015
32700 George Ferguson Way
Abbotsford, B.C., V2T 4V6
The first time I went to Jojo’s Fish & Chips Bana Restaurant was with some hung-over friends, a group of five who wanted greasy food. The idea of fish and chips at 11 a.m. didn’t appeal to me, but I’ve always been curious about the grungy-looking restaurant.
The inside isn’t much better. The décor is diner-style with truly ugly ’90s fish memorabilia. The décor colour is turquoise, very dusty fake plants are placed here and there, and there are random sea-related things on the wall. One friend joked about wanting to see Gordon Ramsay come in and tear the place apart.
But I found it was all part of the charm. Jojo’s is a well-kept secret, and my new favourite breakfast place.
We were accommodated quickly, though it was fairly busy. Jojo’s is bigger than you’d expect. And there are always a lot of older people there. Is it because the service is old-fashioned and friendly? Is it the classic and greasy food? Maybe it’s how cheap the menu items are. I get the feeling that Jojo’s is a hidden gem, and these older customers have been going for years without telling anyone else.
The servers were great. I like customer service, and not a lot of small talk. The servers seemed to feel me out; at the table next to me, a loud guy just wanted to chat, and she joked along with him. For me, she was prompt and friendly.
The menu is huge. There are several pages of breakfast items, with very good prices, ranging from $3.99 (meatless breakfast) to $10.99 (steak breakfast). Definitely the cheapest in town, and the portions are huge. Lunch is a couple pages of sandwiches, burgers, and melts, as well as classic fish and chips combos. Dinner includes the heavy-hitters, like pot roast, meatloaf and steak (up to $13.49). The seafood combos get bigger with dinners, with plates of shrimp, scallops and oysters.
My first time at Jojo’s, I had tried the fish and chips. I’m no fish and chips expert, but the fish was moist yet firm, and the batter was melt-in-your mouth, golden, and delicious! It felt so light eating, but it was a heavy meal. I had the lunch special — cod, chips, salad and pop for $6.99. The cod was great, but the chips were just very chunky French fries.
This time, I ordered a basic breakfast — two eggs, two strips of bacon (or sausage links), hash browns and toast. For $4.49! So cheap, and the plate was huge. Jojo’s offers the choice of cubed or shredded hash browns, and their shredded is fantastic; nice and crispy and greasy. Unfortunately, Jojo’s has very weak and watery coffee. It’s a shame, because unlike many breakfast places, they actually refill your cup very frequently.
My partner ordered the breakfast skillet, and every time he’s gone since he ordered the same thing — it’s a skillet of hash browns, onions, green peppers, smothered with cheese and topped with two eggs and two bacon strips (or sausage), with toast on the side. The cheese melding it all together is heavenly, and it’s only $5.25.
It’s a nice place to sit and have a leisurely breakfast. The tables are sturdy and clean, the atmosphere is welcoming, and you can tell the servers don’t hate their lives.
I’d definitely recommend it. Great prices, greasy food, big portions, and décor so ugly that it is kind of charming — like your favourite teacher in elementary school with a horrible fashion sense. Trying a breakfast there can be cheaper than a coffee at Starbucks. Give it a try!