1180 Pacific Rim Hwy, Tofino BC (located in the Live to Surf Plaza)
250 725 WILD
You really only need to know one thing: they have the best pork carnitas I have ever had anywhere. That includes California, Texas, and Mexico. I don’t know how they do it. Well… I have a good idea. First, they cram on more avocadoes than you think would be physically possible and then they still manage to find room for fresh salsa, lettuce, cheese, cilantro, onions, and maybe a second type of salsa. I DO know how they master the fish dishes (gumbo, tacos, burgers, panko crusted, etc.); it’s because the fish was probably caught that morning. Seriously fresh.
Now the worst part about this place is finding it. Wildside is outside of Tofino. About a five minute drive, a fifteen minute bike, it’s probably 3.5 kilometers from Campbell street’s “busy” area up by Storm.
When you’re driving along the Pacific Rim Highway and you see this:
TURN RIGHT! That’s the turnoff!
Are you still lost? Here is a real map that is clearly marked for your eating pleasure:
How you get to Tofino in the first place is a whole other matter. You’ll probably need a boat.
Anyway, I’ve gotten a bit off track. If you find yourself in Tofino go eat at the Wildside Grill!
Their menu is great with most stuff hitting the $10-15 area. Very affordable for a basket full of delicious goodness. The focus at the Grill is mostly burgers, fish ‘n’ chips, and tacos. And by fish ‘n’ chips I mean: halibut, oysters, ling cod, salmon, or wild shrimp. Uh, yeah, it’s as good as it sounds. Better. Because they make the tartar sauce and coleslaw on site and they also will give you chili mayo if you want it. And, you do want it. I know, because I usually hate mayo – but I love this stuff.
I hear you, you’re saying – “but $12 is too much for just a burger!” Quit whining. It’s not too much when it’s a SUPER burger. This isn’t discount ground beef with some wilted iceburg. We’re talking tuna, salmon, bison, pulled pork, oyster. Yeah – they have an oyster burger! Get it! Ok some people don’t like eating fish. If you’re scared of fish get the bison burger. It’s like beef but not as fatty and more flavorful. Yummmmmmmmmm! And then your tasty tasty burger is topped with lettuce, tomato, onion, and other stupendous things… like, smoked tomato relish, wasabi, apple coleslaw, or some other amazing flavor sensation you had no idea was coming. Plus, you also get a side of fries. And if you are STILL thinking that $12 is too much, then may god have mercy on your soul because you have lost your way.
Now, I know you probably won’t just be swinging by ’cause you’re bored. But if you find yourself driving into or out of tofino STOP and get a carnita or oyster burger. Or a huge breakfast ciabatta (HUGE! It has 2 eggs and chorizo and cheese and veggies). They have something for all times of day and it will be delicious.
The staff are friendly and knowledgeable. They will randomly add something amazing to the menu. It might be a seafood won ton soup or a scallop burger, or whatever other tasty morsel they may have caught fishing that morning. Yeah – it’s fresh and funky all at the same time. Plus they use all local ingredients year round. You can’t go wrong. Especially since they have other goodies, like cookies. And outdoor seating which is great (unless it’s pouring).
I’m sorry I don’t have any pictures of the food. I have no self control when it comes to fish tacos. So it doesn’t last long enough for me to take a photo. Seriously, have you ever tried photographing all your delicious food before you eat it? It’s torturous!
Here’s the best I could do. I searched both fish and taco and this is what I got.