Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Hitting the Tacofino Cantina Blue Truck for Lunch

A food truck lunch excursion had been planned between JB, MP and I, and fortunately, when the day arrived, the early spring Vancouver weather cooperated with a warm, sunny day. It was a perfect day to enjoy TacoFino in the sunshine with our shades.
Since it's not peak season (summer), Tacofino only had their Blue Burrito truck in operation at the corner of Burrard and Dunsmuir.

Originating from Tofino (one of my absolute favourite places in the world!), TacoFino started up here in Vancouver last summer and have established themselves as one of the most popular food trucks and a fan favourite. In fact, they are so popular that they'll be opening a brick-and-mortar location on East Hastings very soon! Yum. TacoFino serves Baja-style or Californian-Mexican style tacos and burritos. Their food incorporates California flavours but also injects some "Vancouver" flavour by incorporating some Japanese and Asian twists.

MP is on a gluten-free diet so I tweeted the truck ahead of time to make sure that they had corn tortillas for substitutions- they replied and let me know that they always keep corn tortillas on hand and can substitute to acommodate some dietary restrictions.

This truck is busy but the staff move things along pretty quickly. You line up at the order window to order and pay (cash only). I was disappointed that the staff at the truck told me over twitter and then initially when we ordered, that they could make the corn tortilla sub for those who eat g-free, but then retracted that. In general, service isn't as warm and friendly as the other food trucks and fact, the girl at the window didn't even crack a smile. About 10 minutes later, our names were called and we collected our orders and plenty of napkins!

MP ordered a Pork Burrito ($10) Spicy braised pork with refried black beans, seasoned basmati rice, sour cream, chipotle mayo, salsa fresca and shredded cabbage rolled in a warm 12' flour tortilla but since she's gluten-free she got them to put it in a bowl instead of the large flour tortilla. She loved it and thought the braised pork was incredibly juicy and saucy with great smoky and slight spice flavours.

Fish Taco ($4.50) with tempura battered ling cod, chipotle mayo, shredded cabbage, salsa fresca on a fire toasted tortilla. I was bringing this back for The Boss but man, o man, was I tempted to dive in. This was a decent size taco and looked really fresh and beautiful. The Boss loved this taco and commented on the crisp fish and the great balance of flavours.

Pretty tacos! JB ordered their two of their taco specials for just under 5 bucks each, The Tempura Tiger prawn tacos with papaya-lime mayo, cabbage, watercress, and chin zu pear salsa fresca. She loved this dish calling it refreshing, light and tangy with a citrus "ponzu" flavour kick. 

I ordered the Fish Burrito ($10) Tempura ling cod with refried black beans, seasoned basmati rice, chipotle mayo, salsa fresca and shredded cabbage rolled in a warm 12" flour tortilla. $10 is a bit steep to pay for a fish burrito from a food truck but it is a hefty meal and I guarantee it will fill your belly. I've only ever had their fish tacos before (LOVE THEM!) and thought I should get a burrito since I was feeling particularly famished. This burrito is generously filled with large pieces of crispy fish. The fish is lightly battered and fried, it's not greasy, but a delightfully crispy and light on the outside and moist, meaty, and flaky on the inside with a great fresh salty flavour. The fish is really the star of this burrito. I liked the chipotle mayo and salsa fresca but did find the many heavy elements of this burrito (rice and black beans) mellowed out the flavour a bit too much and I ended up adding quite a bit of hot sauce to perk up the flavour. If I could have my way, I would mess with the burrito ratio and add way more crisp crunchy coleslaw and have way less rice and beans- more crunch, less mush...or I'll just get two fish tacos instead.

**I didn't order this TacoFino menu staple on this food truck adventure but I've had this before and need to give a shout out to the CHOCOLATE DIABLO COOKIE! I'm not the world's biggest dessert person but this cookie rocks- it has giant chunks of melted chocolate, ginger, chili, sugar, and big chunks of salt. It is a delicious adventure in taste and texture and I highly recommend. 
TacoFino Cantina on Urbanspoon

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