Fresh Local Wild (food cart at Burrard and West Hastings)
Headed by Chef Josh Wolfe, someone I absolutely love and adore, not only because he is an excellent chef but also because of his good soul, light-hearted nature and overall amazing personality, Fresh Local Wild is the epitome of what good, inexpensive and no-frills local, organic and sustainable eating should look like. Yeah, inexpensive and high in the sustainability scale, sounds a bit of a contradiction.
Boasting what could possibly be the ONLY mobile food outlet with a patio, Fresh Local Wild offers innovative variations on seafood-based culinary traditions. Your usual, rather vapid fish and chips (an English traditional dish) becomes a succulent fresh salmon with chips. The salmon melts in your mouth with an extremely refined flavor that reminds me a bit of the fish cooked in the South of France. I almost felt bad about eating my salmon and chips, it was so pretty.
As a starter, Chef Wolfe gave Mom and I a taste of his albacore tuna melt. You know I hate cheese, right? I did not even notice the cheese. The tuna is so finely melted along fragrant and tasty spices that it’s almost impossible to detect the
A couple of bits of Chef Wolfe’s sourcing philosophy and commitment to sustainability, in his own words:
Where available, our products are sourced from local Fishermen, ethical farms and sustainable wild harvest of seasonal bounty.
By converting a high efficiency diesel generator to operate using 100% VEG oil (SVO) Fresh Local Wild is able to power the electrical components of the restaurant using waste biomass thus offsetting the consumption of propane for cooking.
I had an opportunity to chat with Chef Josh Wolfe in detail about his approach to food, and he was an absolute delight to talk to. His commitment is to provide the same high level of service to each and every one of his customers. While I visited him on a media trip, I was able to notice how he paid EXACTLY the same high level of attention to detail both to his customers and to the food. And on top of that, he kept coming to talk to us and entertain us.
Fresh | Local | Wild has its mobile restaurant on the corner of Hastings and Burrard; the stainless steel trailer features, as I showed above, an on-board four seat patio, and frankly one of the freshest menus of all dining carts in the city. Chef Josh Wolfe is also renowned for building some of Vancouver’s most popular menus, and from what people tell me, for hunting and fishing (himself) for much of the food he has prepared in his meteoric career
My good friends Minna Van and Cassandra Anderton, both people I consider foodies, have eaten at Fresh Local Wild and definitely vouch for the quality of the food AND the level of service. As do I, quite frankly! And an additional endorsement is that my good friend Tony Nicalo (Foodtree) eats at Fresh Local Wild. He wouldn’t eat there if he didn’t believe in Chef Wolfe’s commitment to sustainability (and I do too!)
A bit more information about Chef Wolfe
Wolfe was traditionally trained extensively in Toronto. He began a fouryear apprenticeship at the Centro Grill and Wine Bar in Toronto, where he acquired the skills necessary to cater fine dining to upwards of 300 guests. One of his mentors was the accomplished European Chef Marc Thuet. Wolfe worked as Executive
Chef at Coast Restaurant in Yaletown. Coast restaurant, with its seafood-heavy menu, allowed Wolfe to work with the types of food he loves. His training in fine French cuisine and having Chef Marc Thuet as his mentor helped him develop his skills but it’s his experience and exposure to the wild that have played the biggest
role in shaping him into the chef he is today. Today, Wolfe enjoys foraging and harvesting seasonal and regional delicacies. He brings fresh, locally sourced food to the streets with cooking skills that stem from classical training practices mixed with contemporary beliefs. Although his background plays some role in his cooking style, it is the products and seasons that mainly inspire the style of Wolfe’s cooking.
Having met Chef Thuet in person and witnessed his skills (and tasted his food), no wonder I’m a fan of Chef Wolfe. He was Chef Thuet’s mentee! Overall, an amazing experience and thanks Alex Lee-Behan and Chef Josh Wolfe for inviting me and my Mom for lunch. We will be back, as Schwarzenegger said.
Disclosure: My and my Mom’s lunch complimentary courtesy of Chef Wolfe and Fresh Local Wild. While this time our lunch was complimentary, I’ll be back paying on my own dime. Several of my friends who have eaten there (and paid on their own) love it, so I trust their judgement too.
- Wild Rice (Gastown/Crosstown)
- Fresh Bowl (Gastown)
- Wild Garlic Bistro (Robson and Denman, West End)
- Fresh Start Recycling and Disposal Ltd.
- The 100 Mile Diet – eat local, source local