The Tartan Toque

The Tartan Toque is Victoria's first winghouse. The absence of a local winghouse had never affected me directly, but hey, why not. 

Located in the Old British Fish and Chip space in Stadacona Centre, the Tartan Toque features a selection of 20 housemade wings sauces, burgers, hot dogs, wraps, salads and fries.  Operated by the proprietors of the Shine Cafe, the Tartan Toque is the epitome of casual dining (busy, loud and counter service). Family friendly with cheap beer ($5/pint); I know a lot of people who will like that combination. The basic menu is well composed and very price conscious. The interior is as dark as it always has been and the seating is not especially comfortable for the buttocks, but new paint and artwork has improved the space considerably. The service was incredibly friendly, cleaner than I thought possible in this antiquated space and there were three quality checks performed during our visit. They're not slouching on the front of house side of things.

We split a beef burger with cheese and slow cooked onions ($7), fries ($2.75) and one pound of wings with BBQ sauce ($9). The burger was appropriately greasy and there was plenty of cheese and onions. I liked it. The fries were crispy and fresh. Our baby Maeve ate most of them, so she was happy. The wings were indeed served with housemade sauce. If you're used to regular BBQ sauce, you might think the scratch made type is a little light in flavour and doesn't stick to wings as well as the commercially produced variety. Yes, that's true. I liked the flavour, but they might want to work on the recipe a bit for use in the wing context. Longer cooking time and maybe a dash of cornstarch might improve the wing adhesion. To be perfectly honest, I'm a bit of a wing purest. I like hot wings, and when I'm mixing it up BBQ is as far as I go, so some of the wilder wing sauces on the Tartan Toque menu are lost on me. That said, if maple, candied bacon, coconut, pesto etc... are up your alley, this would be fun for you. All in all, I liked the wings. They were plump and juicy - that's the important part. While they do have vegetable crudités and dip on the menu, I would have liked to see some wing dips. Buffalo wings at the very least are well served with a creamy dip. I would also have liked to see a 'very hot' option for the buffalo wings. I'm not talking suicide wings, I know it's not 1989, but hot hot wings are delicious for those of us with a taste for the spicy side of things and it is a winghouse after all.

I will return for a hot dog. I didn't have room in my belly on this visit, but the bacon cheese dog is calling my name. I'm similarly interested in the onion nest...

1507 Pandora St, tel: 778 265 9464


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