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The seventh brick-and-mortar location was a mistake.
Tacofino Kitsilano had the audacity of opening this week. Now, I’m not one to write negative reviews (I take after our delicate food editor), but after dining at a media preview dinner last night I decided that something needed to be said. Five things, actually. I hate Tacofino Kitsilano. Here is why.
Tacofino Kitsilano is located on West 4th and Cypress. It’s central, easily accessible by transit, and way too close to my house. I do not go to the gym nearly enough to counteract how attainable nachos now are. Furthermore, Shiloh Sukkau’s design (a crisp white interior with exposed bulb lighting and a seafoam green accents) is totally ‘gram-worthy, which leads into my next taco tribulation:
Not since the Fyre Festival or IHOB has the world seen a greater tease than a good-looking taco joint. There is no way to eat a taco without looking like an absolute slob, and the only thing worse than looking like an absolute slob is your friends posting photos of it because the background matches their aesthetic. Perhaps I could make an effort to be more dainty, but let me tell you, all bets are off with the Maui Pork el Pastor taco (not the one pictured above, you’d need a high-speed camera to get a picture of mine). Can I help it if this sweet pork, pineapple salsa and cilantro sensation leaks juicy goodness all over my plate, the table, and my lap? No, I cannot. I absolve myself of all responsibility and rightfully transfer the blame Tacofino.
Okay, this isn’t a problem when the staff totally ignore your butchering of the pronunciation of “verditarita” (that’s cazadores blanco, cointreau, fresh lime, and the pineapple, jalapeno, cilantro, and mint that make up verdita). There’s nothing wrong with those laid-back, non-judgemental, surf-town vibes. But do I need another person telling me it’s chill to get a fourth drink (a delicious blood orange margarita, no less) at 7:30pm on a Wednesday night? Does the kindness know no bounds?
Yes, I live in Kitsilano, and yes, many of my friends have annoying dietary restrictions (shout out to the one who orders quinoa salad without the quinoa). The menu at Tacofino Kitsilano has all the great meaty staples—the aforementioned pork, chicken, tuna, and cod—as well as just-as-good plant-based choices, like crispy tofu, cauliflower, and corn fritters. Anyone can eat there, and everyone will. I have literally no excuse for not going there for every future birthday dinner, anniversary, and houseplant funeral reception. I cannot sustain this.
This is the big one. It’s the reason why, every time I bit into another tortilla-wrapped dream, I thought “Oh no.” I love Tacofino, and this new location will only serve to enable my taco habit. Is this contradictory? Perhaps. But like other great artists of our generation, I am not afraid of a little paradox. Plus, they have a take-out counter, allowing me to take my Maui pork mania on the road. The cruel disregard for my wallet and waistline is evident. I am outraged. I am horrified. I am very, very full.