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we dont just let the food do the talkin'...

  • Writer's pictureFeast Tofino

The Globe guide to summer food (and drink!) festivals

Feast Tofino, Tofino, B.C.

The Globe & Mail | May 4, 2017

With just 1,800 year-round residents, the tiny town of Tofino on the west coast of Vancouver Island isn't big enough to have traffic lights. Yet it's becoming known for its extraordinary food culture that draws inspiration from the ocean and old-growth forests of surrounding Clayoquot Sound.

Every spring, a strong community of chefs, growers, brewers, butchers, foragers and fishermen gets together to celebrate, with 2 1/2 weeks of demos, tastings, collaboration dinners and kitchen takeovers at Feast Tofino. Locals and visitors alike come here to fish, forage and cook on the beach. Canadian chefs like Lora Kirk, Nicole Gomes, Anita Lo showed up to last year's Feast, as did Amanda Cohen of Dirt Candy in New York.

This year, Vancouver is sending chefs Lee Cooper from L'Abattoir, Stefan Hartmann from the Bauhaus, and Joel Watanabe from Bao Bei and Kissa Tanto. They'll be eating, teaching and collaborating on boat-to-table menus with Tofinian chefs including Lisa Ahier of SoBo, Nick Nutting of Wolf in the Fog, Warren Barr of the Pointe Restaurant in the Wickaninnish Inn and Ian Riddick of Long Beach Lodge.

The Boat to Tailgate Party is the family-friendly anchor event, raising money for local salmon research while offering an opportunity to catch your own food along with local chefs and fishing guides. The Dirty Gourmet invites guests to camp overnight at Mussel Beach in the Barkley Sound and combines adventure biking with a gourmet lunch in the backcountry. And on Victoria Day weekend, the party wraps up with the Tofino Dock Festival, an afternoon of tasting and hobnobbing in the inner harbour on Tofino's working 4th Street dock. $20 to $120. May 5 to 22 Julie van Rosendaal

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