Posted 20 March 2011 - 10:49 PM
Clark was so generous with his recommendations, only some of which we were able to follow in our all-too-short trip. We did eat at Norwoods this evening, and it was easily the best meal of our trip to Vancouver Island, which included several good meals in Victoria.
At Norwoods, my husband and I shared the excellent mussels as a starter. You don't get mussels that big on the East Coast, and they were impeccably clean, in a delicious, slightly spicy, light, tomatoey sauce. Served with half glasses of a very good riesling.
My husband had a roasted game hen for his main course, perfectly cooked, very flavorful, with a wild rice risotto. No room for mistakes there, and it was just right.
I had what is listed as an appetizer course: a seafood trio consisting of Dungeness crab chowder, prawns tempura, and grilled octopus on truffled mashed potatoes. So good. Everything balanced and complementary. The truffle flavor, for example, was subtle and beautifully matched with the remarkably tender octopus. (That's not easy: recently, a professionally trained friend served a pasta that was so overwhelmed with truffle flavoring that it was unpleasant.)
Because Norwoods offers wine by the half glass and full glass as well as the bottle, the dinner was not so expensive, and as my husband said, we didn't feel stuffed and drunk when we left.
I have to say, Norwoods put Sobo to shame. We ate their last evening, and while the items were not badly cooked, none of the flavors seemed to come together. Use local ingredients at the end of winter, the salad included sprouted peas and beans, grated beets and jicama (maybe?) as well as lettuce, but the textures and tastes were just a hodgepodge. Similarly, I had some roast shrimp in a citrus butter sauce over gnocchi--so far, so good--but the dish included a roasted carrot, a floret of broccoli, and a piece of cauliflower, all nicely cooked but really out of place, I thought. It didn't help that the service was quite poor: every time the young woman who was waiting on us put something down on our table, or even asked how we were doing, she was looking at the next table over.
We had only two nights in Tofino/Ucluelet--which I can now pronounce!--and I would gladly have eaten at Norwoods twice, had I known. I would love to taste their duck ravioli, the clam sauce, their lamb, actually, everything on the menu. Oh, well!
Thanks again to Clark for all the help. I highly recommend this far corner of the world (far from Connecticut, in any case) to anyone who can get here.
Posted 27 September 2012 - 04:11 PM
Redcan Gourmet for takeout; tactofino Cantina for a foodtrucks; Spotted Bear????; Wildside Grill at the Golf Club for fish and chips; Big Daddy's Fish Fry for outdoor eating but it could be too cool; Shelter
Help if you can, many thanks.