Five Fish Sandwich Competition Finalists Named

August 17, 2015

The Bermuda Tourism Authority [BTA] announced the five top vote-getters in the Best Bermuda Fish Sandwich competition today and said the winner will be determined in a live judging event at Harbour Nights on August 19th.

The 5 top vote-getters among establishments pre-enrolled in the competition are [list is alphabetical]:

  • Mama Angie’s
  • Rosa’s
  • Seaside Grill
  • Tribe Road Kitchen
  • Woody’s Restaurant

The BTA said, “Because there was no restriction on voting, establishments not pre-enrolled were eligible in the competition. Art Mels Spicy Dicy garnered enough votes to be among the top five of vote-getters.  However, Art Mels has politely declined to participate in the judging round. More than 1,200 votes were cast in the competition either online or by telephone.”

Slideshow with over 100 photos showing some of the entrants fish sandwiches


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“The level of participation and effort from business owners and the public far exceeded our expectations,” said Pat Phillip-Fairn, the BTA’s chief product and experiences development officer.

“After the judges have determined the winner on Wednesday we will survey the enrolled participants to better understand what impact this competition had on their business. Based on social media and the number of votes received, clearly the level of interest among customers was high.

“We would like to thank the culinary community and the voting public for engaging in this competition so enthusiastically.  Bermuda is unquestionably proud of its food culture and we look forward to highlighting the full spectrum of that pride in the visitor experience going forward.”

A video [above] featuring some of the telephone messages recorded during the competition was released earlier today.  The public is invited to attend the voting portion of the competition at Harbour Nights on Front Street this Wednesday evening at 7:30pm.

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Comments (73)

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  1. Terry says:

    Crazy.
    A sandwich is personal.
    I want a fish sandwich.

    Got fish?

  2. truth be told says:

    Why are they even having this competition? Everyone knows Art Mels has the best fish sandwiches ….

    • my view says:

      May be this is to see who is second best. Just looked at most of them and now I want a fish sandwich.

      • Regina says:

        If Art Mels really is #1 then why would they not want to prove it by being in the competition? I read their reasons but don’t buy it. I wanted to try one but all of this publicity about crap fish in their sandwich has cured my Art Mel craving. I’ll wait to see who the winner is then give them a try.
        Great idea btw.

    • Clueless says:

      Art Mel’s fish sandwiches are bush. #1 you are being over charged.#2 They serve you the cheapest fish..swine. this is why you are able to get the sandwiches so big while it’s about 5$ a POUND for swine.

      • Kiverja says:

        FYI: Swine is a pig. Swai is the fish.

      • BERCAN says:

        Actually called Swai fish and I agree its crap, not even good for you in any way.

      • Coffee says:

        @Clueless… That’s why one can’t tell the difference between Art Mel’s fish sangwich and a proper pulled pork sangwich !

      • Self says:

        I personally never understood the hype about Art Mel’s. They’re an ok sandwich, but nothing magnificent in my opinion. I stopped eating them years ago since they go straight through me.

      • PettyBDAthinking says:

        Clueless is right.. its not swine!!! Its Swai. Kno what you talkin bout before you talk it

      • Clueless says:

        My apologies… it’s SWAI.

      • Oh My says:

        If you are going to insult the sandwich at least get the fish name correct. it is SWAI not SWINE…..
        Still the best fish sandwiches going and it is not always SWAI on the sandwich or I would’t be eating them. Idon’t like SWAI

        • bermudacon says:

          It is ALWAYS SWAI!!!!!!
          And it is always disgusting, cat fish who would eat anything even their own “crap”.

          NO HEALTH BENEFITS!

    • Terry says:

      And KFC has the best cheekin ven yah hungry ann neid to feed de troops.
      Shalom.

    • Paget says:

      Consider calorie intake and the health implications of these sandwiches. We call these kinds of fish sandwiches heart attacks on a plate.

    • U r delusional says:

      They definitely don’t! They are big an that’s what gets everyone’s vote but they are def not the best tasting!

    • fishy says:

      I agree!!!!!!!! No other place can come close to Art Mel.

      • Between de lines says:

        Sure they can come close… all they have to do is use EXTRA EXTRA thick bread! After all that’s what you’re paying for…Ain’t that much more fish on their sandwiches than anyone elses.

  3. she taste says:

    Everyone knows Art Mels isn’t local fish. Trash fish between good bread. That is all

    • Sorry Sir says:

      I don’t get this notion that “If it ain’t local fish, it’s trash”
      Soooo, you’re saying that spices, batter, and the way it’s cooked has nothing to do with it? Art Mel’s is a great sandwich. It’s one of the best if not the best fish sandwich on the island.

      Now imagine if it had fresh fish in them!
      It would probably taste the exact same….

  4. Kee says:

    You can’t compare a fish sandwich that uses local fish to a fish sandwich made with tilapia or foreign fish. The best fish sandwich in Bermuda is by far a personal choice. Unless you’ve tasted every fish sandwich made by all entrants, the title will always be considered ‘thus far’. Like I said it’s a personal choice and “thus far”‘, my pick is Angie’s in St. Geo! Happy eating people! All the best to each entrant! :-)

    • Between de lines says:

      I agree. A personal choice. Just like a beauty pageant…. some of the most beautiful people have never entered.

  5. Bill says:

    Woody’s is de best for sure!!! I see Art Mels decided to drop out, i wonder why??

    • Rosie Marangiello says:

      Last few weeks tried them all, east to west and in between, our vote … Woody’s by far … and offered us choice of snapper, wahoo or rockfish, who else does that? We happily waited while having cold drink and service was excellent … FRESH fish on raisin bread … delicious and deletable, no frills, purest here, savored every bite, anyone wants photo, give a shout on FB.

    • Kathy says:

      Art Mels was not in this competition.

  6. Rhonda says:

    they are having a competitions,…to get us out spending money..nothing to do with the taste of a sandwich……

    • And to divert us from tourist numbers down and a $100,000 bonus reward and money dont grow on trees.
      WTF

  7. Love me some fish says:

    What’s the deal with Art Mel’s business hours in St. Georges? Went there for lunch and it was closed…

    • Susan White says:

      We took the ferry from Dockyard to St. George in July just for an Art Mel’s fish sandwich. There was all this “hype” in the Boston Globe newspaper about this being the best fish sandwich. We were shocked that it was closed on Mondays in July!!! The height of tourist season!!!! Had to have lunch somewhere else.

    • Judes says:

      Doesn’t open on Sundays and Mondays

      • Serious Though says:

        That’s why this competition creates options…

    • Cow Polly says:

      Closed lunchtime on Saturdays as well!!!!!!!

  8. Pastor Syl says:

    I wanna know who makes the fish sandwich with the bacon and banana! That one looked so more-ish, I plan to visit that place as soon as I can!

  9. Art Mels Won says:

    I’m going to say Art Mel’s won….by majority vote. They may not say but of they were among this group we already know. Everyone for sure is 2nd place

  10. Eve says:

    This contest was a waste of time and money reading the COMMENTS proves that. Doesn’t Bermuda deserve better from the BTA???????????

  11. Shawn says:

    art mels taste well. best bang for buck. most places r just rippin you off with the outrageous pricing. like somebody said its personal preference. if ANYBODY is using bermuda fish ( ya right) they aint doin it right ,cause ive “fished” around and quite frankly ,art mels is the only fish place ive eaten from in this millennium and not wanted to go back n throw the sandwich at em.
    but…..personal preference

  12. Libby says:

    Sheesh to the naysayers…seriously give it a rest…you whine about money being spent overseas on tourism and here it is, directed at the local community, and you still whine!!! This is a fantastic promotion for local restaurants…I’m quite sure those restaurants in the running enjoyed a lift in sales over the past few weeks and many received lots of free advertising and public awareness….which can provide benefits well beyond this competition. Thrilled to see my fav made it to the finals…go TRK!!!!

    • BermyL says:

      Well said… Bermudian’s are really really good at complaining. Wish all the energy spent complaining could be directed at more useful efforts.

  13. N / A says:

    I think a great idea would have been to provide a picture on Bernews of the top restaurants along with the address, so people who don’t know where the restaurants are, could have taken part in trying out more locations. Many of the restaurants in the competition, I wasn’t sure where they were, but with a pic and address, I think a lot more people would have taken part. Just an idea for next time they have it : )

  14. Northshore says:

    Seems nobody knows the difference between a fish sandwich and a fish burger!

  15. Clare says:

    I ate fish sandwiches all last week to try out some different creative versions and all I can say is, GO WOODIES!!

  16. ABC says:

    Mama Angie’s plain and simple visit and ull be happy

    fresh from de ocean

  17. Ameboa says:

    Interesting comments by all. Looking at the bigger picture, this competition may benefit everyone simply because of a few things. 1. exposure, 2. restaurants might do their best to support local fisherman,3. It will stimulate economy. One person said it perfectly. Have a photo of the named restaurant location because a lot of these eateries are tucked away and one will pass by and not even know that they are there. Woodys is my favorite fish sandwich place after making my own at home.

  18. Tom says:

    Great to see my favourite place Seaside Grill on the top 5….

  19. Deep Diver says:

    SEASIDE YAY

  20. Reality Check says:

    Glad we are finally hearing from some realists . Art Mel’s is crap!! All the way with Mama Angie’s !

  21. A Dingo says:

    Any fish sandwich made using tilapia, basa or swai imported from the Far East is to be avoided at all costs. Places use it because it’s cheap, but THERE’S A REASON IT’S CHEAP. The fish farming methods used to produce it are environmentally damaging, unethical and completely unsustainable. The chemicals used to keep disease at bay in the massively overcrowded fish farms are really not something you’d want in your body, either.

  22. AS YOU ARE says:

    Guess the fisherman are enjoying these fish sales! Or maybe not all that trash between some bread.

  23. Make a new plan Stan says:

    It’s sad that in order to elevate the sandwich they like so many people have to put other sandwiches down. It’s making this competition bitter sweet.

    Why not just say which sandwich you like and why, where it can be found and what you like on yours?

    Reading the comments has my mouth watering though……..

  24. tree climber says:

    Went to Art Mels for first time other day. Was a very good sandwich. Also went to one of the places listed in top 5 above. It was good but not as good as the Art Mels one.

  25. ron,b says:

    a bermuda fish sandwich without bermuda fish is not bermudian,
    its not a Bermuda fish sandwich,this competition is a joke,

  26. TMI says:

    I never realised there were so many Bermudians that do not like Art Mel’s. I guess it really is personal choice and where you prefer to venture to get a fish sandwich. I actually do not mind non local fish bc sometimes thicker meat can be too dry…sort of like a Keel part of a chicken.

    • ron,b says:

      because Bermudians know better

    • ron,b says:

      and what does that marcus guy at hamilton princess know about a bermuda fish sandwich,,who is he

  27. Grow a pair of onions and jut say thank you!!!
    Stop all the b%&ching!!!
    Yall make me tired bai!’!!!

  28. Forethebest says:

    Dale Butler makes the best fish sandwich since Aunt Nel’s closed.

  29. Jurist says:

    I only eat Bermuda fish sandwiches. Any fish that comes into Bermuda’s Territorial waters by way of swimming or on a ship,gets status.Hence,All our fish consumed here is Bermuda fish!

  30. stunned... says:

    some of those sandwiches just look like plates of confusion. the fries should be incidental to the sandwich yet are prominently featured. only sandwiches should be on the plate to facilitate comparison and judging.

  31. Spotty says:

    You lot should try Marcus’ restaurant of a fish sammich. Dey b reel gwut umm umm mmmm hmmm

  32. BermudaGirl says:

    I love the fish at Ocean View! Yum!