Curious if my experience was unique to one Colorado location or representative of a corporate-wide level of GF awareness, I contacted the headquarters office. They responded promptly via email (“Yes indeed we have options for our gluten free friends!”) and attached an Excel spreadsheet highlighting the GF menu items. It did contain one error (it listed GF menu items that were cooked in a fryer shared with gluten-containing menu items), but the spreadsheet readily acknowledged this with a red asterisk and a clear explanation. Otherwise, the menu offered a wide range of tasty meals, including Bowl #8 – the Wahoo Bowl.
Driving around Colorado’s Front Range, it always seemed that Kelli, Marin and I were bumping into a Wahoo’s Fish Taco. With a dozen locations here in the state, it’s no wonder why. (Wahoo’s in total has more than 50 locations in California, Colorado, Texas and Hawaii. Why those four non-contiguous states in particular? I haven’t a clue…) Finally, we decided to stop in for lunch.
The restaurant chain has an interesting back story: It was founded in 1988 by three brothers who grew up in Brazil. Their parents owned a Chinese restaurant in Sao Paolo, and in the mid 1970s, the family moved to Orange County, California. The brothers, all three of them passionate surfers, often traveled south to Baja California, Mexico to surf…and to enjoy charbroiled fish with salsa and tortillas. These myriad influences ultimately became Wahoo’s Fish Taco.
Of course, our main focus was the food. We dined at the location in Broomfield (after Kelli had first scouted the place and eaten lunch there with Marin previously). I was immediately impressed with the staff’s knowledge of gluten-free issues, and they were able to easily guide me to the gluten-free menu items. I opted for the Wahoo Bowl – it consisted of charbroiled Wahoo fish, served with rice, salsa, and at our request, a side of fresh corn tortillas. Holy Moly the food was delicious. The fish was cooked to perfection…charbroiled on the outside, deliciously moist on the inside. The meal was deeply satisfying.
In short, I’ll definitely return…both for the tasty food, and for the very positive GF dining experience I had while eating at Wahoo’s.