paired with 33 Acres Mezcal Gose
From Boomtown Burritos & Beer Garden
Looking at the carefully designed landscaping, three-tired beer garden and large outdoor area that makes up Victoria-based Boomtown Burritos & Beer Garden, it’s hard to imagine that, not so long ago, the space was home to the parking lot of a former pot shop.
Christian Barnard, who co-owns Boomtown with Patrick Lynch, says the inspiration behind the concept of the popular eatery, which specializes in Mexican street food and B.C. beers, was his extensive travels through southern California. The name, “Boomtown,” was inspired by the fact it’s located on Yates Street in Victoria’s Harris Green neighbourhood, the fastest growing community in the city.
“In California they have all of these casual outdoor beer gardens with a twist of European styling, so we went with that,” says Barnard. “We’re constantly getting feedback that people love the vibe of the place.”
Boomtown’s kitchen manager Torin Egan adds the extra-large outdoor seating area was also initially born out of the Omicron surge of 2021/2022, when customers were eager to dine out and grab a beer, but still weren’t 100 per cent comfortable eating and drinking inside.
The fact Boomtown is also family and dog-friendly means the eatery can act as a de facto gathering space for all of the new residents living in the high-rise buildings surrounding it.
“There are a lot of kids and dogs running around here,” says Egan.
He adds Boomtown’s burritos remain a top seller and stand out from the competition because they’re served with the meats’ braising liquids, which can be spooned on or used as a dip. Popular options include the Beef Birria, Green Chili Chicken Birria, Pork Chorizo, Fried Brussel Sprouts & Cauliflower, and the Black Garlic Humboldt Squid. Egan notes, with the exception of the tortillas, the kitchen is gluten free.
Egan adds other menu favourites include the loaded tots, complete with pickled onions, jalapeños, cilantro, scallions and Boom sauce, and the extremely popular Street Corn Salad loaded with charred corn, pickled onion and cabbage, Boom sauce, cilantro, scallions, cheese and lime.
Boomtown’s beer selection has been carefully selected to pair well with the spice level of the food, but Egan says 33 Acres’ Mezcal Gose is a popular choice, especially paired with the Street Corn Salad. —Sandra Thomas
• 1 cup mayo
• ½ cup sour cream
• 2 oz Valentina’s hot sauce
• 2 oz lime juice
• ½ tsp salt
Pickled Onions & Cabbage
• 2 red onions, cut in half and sliced thin
• ¼ head red cabbage, sliced thin
• 2 cups white vinegar
• 4 cups water
• 1 tbsp salt
• 1 tbsp sugar
Street Corn Salad
• 4 ears corn
• 1 oz Boom Sauce (see recipe)
• 2 oz pickled onions (see recipe)
• 2 oz pickled cabbage (see recipe)
2 oz grated cheese mix (feta, Monterey jack, mozzarella)
• ½ oz green onions, sliced
• ½ oz cilantro, chopped
• Lime wedge
1. Combine all ingredients and stir well.
Pickled Onions and Cabbage
1. Combine the vinegar, water, salt and sugar in a pot and bring to boil.
2. Pour brine over the onions and cabbage and let cool.
Street Corn Salad
1. Cook shucked ears of corn in boiling salted water until tender, shock in cold water
2. Place corn on grill or gas elements to char or cut kernels off cob and char in a very hot pan (no oil!)—alternatively you can char frozen corn in a hot pan as well. Let cool.
3. Mix corn together with Boom Sauce, pickled onions and cabbage, grated cheese, green onions and cilantro. Garnish with lime and a dusting of Tajin.