Winner Spotlight: Fuego Old Town Eatery

Winner Spotlight: Fuego Old Town Eatery

Fuego Old Town Eatery is Victoria’s must-try Mexican-inspired brunch eatery known for mixing savoury and sweet with a Latino twist! Fuego was voted by Tasting Victoria readers as one of the Best Mexican restaurants in Victoria in our 2022 Best Restaurant Awards, presented by Portofino Bakery. Customers can enjoy the upbeat, casual, and colourful inside dining atmosphere, or enjoy brunch out on its patio under the morning sun overlooking Market Square. What makes this restaurant friendly is its menu which includes separate sections for vegan and gluten-free dietary restrictions. 

Mexican Magic at Fuego

Are you ready to take your tastebuds on a trip to Mexico? Of course, they serve Mexican classics like chimichangas, enchiladas, and tacos, but the brunch menu is where things get avant-garde and creative. The sweet and savoury creations like pulled pork and caramelized apples together on a benny or fried chicken on cornbread french toast provide the most creative Mexican-style brunch to ever dance the salsa on your taste buds.  

A sweet and refreshing option is the mama mango pancakes, made with mango, fresh mint, and blueberry coulis on 5 mini pancakes for a fruity taste of Mexico’s culture.

mango mama pancakes

Their most popular Benny is the El Porco Benny, made with juicy slow-roasted pulled pork paired with sweet caramelized apples on two crispy papas patties (similar to a potato fritter) with eggs and smoky chipotle hollandaise as the cherry on top. Or better yet, try the benny and the cakes dish incorporating a choice of any of the pancakes paired with any benny, hash browns, bacon or avocado! 

Other popular menu items include Mexican flavours highlighted in Huevos Divorciados, a breakfast dish including two sunny side eggs on grilled tortillas topped with salsas, beans, crema, and tortilla strips with a choice of bacon, avocado or both! 

The Conquistador includes two sunny-side-up eggs, chorizo sausage, arugula and pickled onions on two crispy potato pancakes with salsa and hot sauce. This dish can be served vegetarian by subbing the chorizo sausage for avocado! Just ask your server.

Their Breakfast Chimichanga gives the chimichanga eggcitement as it includes two scrambled eggs, guacamole, green onions, and cheese in a crispy tortilla topped with both enchilada sauce and pico de gallo alongside some breakfast hashbrowns. 

The Chilaquiles Skillet brings breakfast and Mexican flavours mixed into one dish with tortilla chips, refried beans, melted cheese, salsa Roja (a spicy tomato sauce), and egg baked in a skillet topped with cilantro, guacamole, queso fresco (white cheese), pico de gallo (salsa), and your choice of chorizo sausage or pulled pork!

The churros might bring you to the streets of Mexico from the sweet coating of cinnamon and sugar alongside caramelized apples to bring a twist to this traditional taste that can be ordered in a pancake version! 

The owners have added a Cantina in the restaurant, a type of bar common in Latin America and Spain, and they serve Victoria classic brunch favourites like mimosas, prosecco, shafts, or a caesar, to boozy Mexican beers like Corona, Modelo Especial, and the Mexican must-try a Michelada, made of beer, assorted sauces, spices, and chili peppers.

Fuego’s creative Mexican cuisine dishes are made by Armanda de Torres, who is from Portugal and who used to cook for Cafe Mexico. Although both Cafe Mexico and Fuego use original recipes, they are each unique spaces with their own creative menus. Cafe Mexico is focused on dinner foods and alcoholic drinks, as it hosts one of the largest Mezcal/Taquila bars in Canada, while Fuego serves Latin-inspired all-day breakfast/brunch and Mexican staple dishes alongside coffee and alcoholic beverages

16 Gluten-free options

The restaurant has an extensive menu dedicated to this dietary restriction. Whether you’re celiac or gluten sensitive, Fuego’s got you feasting! 

Gluten-free options at Fuego include:

  • Avocado toast
  • Market breakfast
  • Harvest breakfast
  • Huevos divorciados
  • Breakfast burrito bowl
  • Breakfast enchiladas 
  • Benny bowl
  • Rice and bean skillet
  • Veggie omelette
  • Spanish omelette 
  • Veggie tacos
  • Off the hook tacos
  • Mexicana tacos
  • Roasted pork tacos
  • Enchiladas

6 vegan options

You may think Mexico’s cheese and beefy trends keep Mexican cuisine from being vegan but the beans and corn tortillas make up for it! The vegan menu has both meals and sides for any Mexican cuisine lover to enjoy a meal with no animal products! 

The vegan options include:

  • Panfries
  • Churros 
  • Vegan Bowl
  • Vegan Tacos
  • Vegan Enchiladas 

Fuego Old Town Owners

Owners Brad and Hilda Olberg opened this Mexican-styled brunch restaurant as a spin-off in 2015, after Brad’s local Mexican grill and cantina, Cafe Mexico, suffered a devastating fire, hence the name “Fuego”. The couple met in 1997 when Brad had been running Cafe Mexico for over 10 years. Brad believed ethnic food would never go out of style and was inspired after taking a cooking course on Mexican Cuisine by food icon Diane Kennedy, an English author who wrote 8 books after fifty years of learning about Mexican cuisine. Cafe Mexico opened in 1896, but in 2015 when the building caught on fire from an accidental left on stove, the couple was in disbelief but had a positive outlook and saw the opportunity to open up a restaurant they’ve always wanted to incorporate into Cafe Mexico: the breakfast side of Latino cuisine. In 2016 Cafe Mexico was rebuilt and ever since then, the couple stands together creating, inspiring, and teleporting/serving customers like their other two restaurants, Cafe Mexico and Fuego Old Town Eatery. 

With no line-up and a great amount of seating, Fuego Old Town Eatery is open Wednesday to Sunday from 9am to 2pm.  

Fuego Old Town Eatery
1435 Store Street

Written by

Annika Olson

Intern at Tasting Victoria