More photos. Fewer adjectives.

Toronto Eats Up Food Trucks

Since early June, I’d been looking forward to the Food Truck Eats event that Suresh Doss from had put together. As the weeks went by, there seemed to cheapest viagra in uk'>cheapest viagra in uk be a lot of pickup in the media and online, and I knew: this was going to be a busy event. So my feet were on Distillery grounds a full 20 minutes early. With my eating-pants on and my tupperware and chopsticks in-hand, I was ready to go.

Update (2011.08.18): Food Truck Eats 2 of 3 is on August 20th, 2011. Here are my tips for making the most of your time there!

Since I was early, I felt that pouncing on the vendors that were still setting up seemed a little uncouth. But the trucks didn’t seem to have this issue – they were all ready to go! So I hit up El Gastronomo Vagabundo, mostly because I was standing right there and there was a line already forming, all before the official 11am start-time. After a 10-minute wait (and a slightly odd look from the kitchen staff when I presented my Tupperware for them to “plate” in), I scored my first food truck eat of womans levitra'>womans levitra the day.

The Giuseppe Taco (oven-dried tomato, basil, pesto, arugula, parmesean on a 100% corn tortilla), was a decent morning starter. A little salty, with crunch from the taco shell, and lots of green. The Buddha Belly (five-spiced pork belly, steamed buns, chili jam, cucumber, and coriander) I felt was too much bread and I wanted a thicker cut of pork belly. The Kim Jong Illin’ (Korean BBQ chicken wings, sesame, coriander), which I love for its name alone, was decent. I didn’t like my first wing as much as my second wing, so I’m somewhat undecided about it. I also snagged their Home Brew of cucumber pineapple lemonade. Really refreshing and not too sweet.

This Cajun Fish Taco from Simple Fish And Chips was quite a tasty bite. I say bite, because I had to share. They also had Wasabi Lobster Rolls, which I hear were really good as well.

Apple and Rhubarb pies were found at the Baker Street truck… van.

Cava had several things on very good site cialis discount their menu. I quite liked their Kingfish Ceviche (“Acapulco style”) with the fresh pop of peas. And between the two tamales, I enjoyed the mushroom and i use it rx viagra corn one (on the right) over the how to get levitra in canada shrimp one (centre). The mushrooms were buttery and the corn sweet, so I happily hogged this to myself.

Xococava also had fresh churro (with star anise cinnamon) on their frozen yogurt with Ontario strawberry sauce. The churro, fresh and crispy from the fryer, was pretty darn good with the sauce. Having had my fill of the frozen yogurt a couple weeks before, I wish I had thought to ask for just two churros instead!

From Chef Hopgood came the tastiest thing I ate during Food Truck Eats: the smoked chicken croquettes. These creamy croquettes had a lot of flavour and worked really well dressed up in hot sauce, radish, jalapeno, kewpie mayo, and green onions. Also not to be missed was their delicious rhubarb slushie: tangy, sweet, and icy. Can’t wait to see what Chef Hopgood will do when he opens his own place.

Joshana Maharaj’s cardamom-strawberry kulfi was located next to Chef Hopgood’s booth.

And right next to Joshana, was Tiffinday. I wasn’t able to sneak in a menu shot.

Gorilla Cheese, before their insaneo line-up.

Though I meant to get back to Augie’s Gourmet Ice Pops, I never did. With yummy-sounding options like fresh Ontario strawberry, blackberry, watermelon, and honeydew (with cucumber, lime, basil), I will have to cialis soft generic try harder next time. Also will have to try harder to get to that cotton candy man to the right. I’m a sucker for that stuff.

Buster Rhino’s was in attendance, but I decided to pass on them, since I already know their very tasty product and I think my sister has some of their brisket in the freezer, even. I missed the fact that they had sweet tea on offer though! I heard later they were giving the tea away for free after they ran out of cialis discounts'>cialis discounts meat.

The folks at Distillery Restaurant Corp were doling out Mekong Subs (for $5!?). On an early pass, I had seen ketchup and mustard on the table, which confused me given that Vietnamese subs don’t usually sport those condiments. The mystery was solved when I later noticed they were also grilling hot dogs. My food-snob DEFCON-3 alert was subsequently downgraded.

Marben had a table with lemonade and their fudgey chocolate ice cream sandwiches. I read on twitter that there was chocolate sauce involved with the sammy at some point, but it was definitely messy and wow)) cheap cheap viagra tasty enough without it!

Chef Rossy Earle’s Supi Cucu had: Empanadas de Carne, Chorpian, Panamanian Tamales, and Salsa de Fuego Hot Sauce. Had pondered buying hot sauce for home later, but again – didn’t get back to them due to the mess of people.

I couldn’t resist the novelty of The Cupcake Diner. They had seven flavours to choose from: Classic Vanilla, Cookies ‘n’ Cream, Chocolate Banana, Caramel Apple Pie, Red Velvet, Strawberry Shortcake, and Peanut Butter Chocolate. I bought a half-dozen, skipping the vanilla. The frosting is American buttercream and bases are varied. I like that they didn’t get lazy and have only chocolate/vanilla bases. I thought the peanut butter, apple pie, and strawberry cupcakes were pretty good flavours, but I think this remains just a novelty for me.

So how busy was it? By the time 12:30pm rolled around El Gastronomo Vagabundo had a 2-hour wait and the wood-fired pizza truck from Bonfire Catering, Buster Rhino’s, and Simple Fish ‘n’ Chips also had hour-long lines. Even under the threat of thunderstorms, people came out in droves and patiently waited for their turn at the front of the truck (or tent). And eventually, many places sold out of food. Toronto seems to cialis online'>cialis online love this whole food truck thing.

I had a lot of fun at Food Truck Eats, but there were only a handful of trucks and some improvements should be made on the line-up situation – less about the levitra discount prices wait-time and more on the placement. Some tents and trucks were obfuscated by people lining up for other places and walking around in general was difficult, even solo. Nevermind those with strollers! Everything was centered around the stage, but I wonder if it would be possible to take over more of the main thoroughfare toward the gates to help ease the congestion next time.

And next time is just try! cheap viagra no prescription soon! Suresh has already posted that part 2 of Food Truck Eats will be Saturday, August 20th, 2011, once again at the Distillery, with more trucks (yay!), more food, and, he wrote, more surprises.

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More at Food Truck Eats

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8 Responses to “Toronto Eats Up Food Trucks”

  1. Dereke

    Since you’re such an expert at streetfood events, you should try organizing one yourself.

  2. Jen

    Nah, I’m much happier tossing out constructive criticism from the side-lines!

  3. Spatula Geek

    I honestly didn’t expect those lines only 1/2 hr after the event opened. We just gave up on gastro and gorilla cheese. How did you managed to get all the food there? You must have some backstage pass. :) What was your fave food there? Why did you go to take the shot of the churro indoors?

    Some of Augie’s pops was a hit and miss. The lemon one was so tart it some people said it tasted like lemon concentrate. The mango and corriander was good but the strawberry was even better.

    Those are great vendor shots. Like you said, we had a hard time trying to finding the kulfi or the ice pops. Maybe they should split the savory and the sweets to have their own sections. It was pretty crazy and people kept pouring even at 1pm. How are they going to fit even more vendors in that small court yard? They should take out the stage or move the event to the surrounding streets. Speaking with another person in line a better idea would be to have it at the EX before it opens. I’m a bit surprised that Caplansky’s and Smoke’s Poutine didn’t show up at the party. They must have been doing rounds elsewhere.

  4. Jen

    I basically had a divide-and-conquer tactic. While I did most of the lining up, there were items that other people got (ceviche, fish taco, shrimp tamale). And really, being there at 10:40 helped a lot. Because the longest I waited in line (for Vagabundo) was about 15 minutes, tops, I was able to cover a lot of the booths. The other thing was that when I did go out to get something, I was on my own, so I could dart in-and-out of the crowds, homing in on booths with almost no lines – roughly 3 people in front of me or so, like Marben, xococava/cava, and the Cupcake Diner. We wrapped up at 12:30.

    Really, Food Trucks’ success in numbers definitely was a minus for pedestrian traffic-flow. I think next time that the stage will be gone (that was for Jazz festival) and hopefully, they’ll spread things out more. I mostly experienced line-issues through other friends who waited an hour for Vagabundo and a long time (maybe 20-30 minutes) at other booths. I’d read later that the wait for Vagabundo had increased to 2 hours! Personally, I just found it hard to get to-and-fro because you had to cut the line somewhere to get from one area to cialis no perscription non generic another. Reading on twitter and forums, people had complained about how difficult it was finding the end of the line. And if that was the correct line. Not sure what they can do there unless they start doing Canada’s Wonderland style wait lines… which would detract, I think. Plus, you’d need way more staff.

    I think that Caplansky’s and Smoke’s were out at Pride events. Though they’d up the truck-count, I don’t think I’d bother with them, as I visit Smoke’s frequently enough and like Buster Rhino’s, I’ve eaten at Caplansky’s. Unless they offer something different! Then I’ll reconsider :)

    Fave item of the day was definitely the click here brand name levitra Chicken Croquettes from hopgood. That rhubarb slushie was next. Other yummy items were the mushroom tamale, the fish taco, and the churro. The churro was taken outside too, just under the tent. I might have to bump the lighting up on that one. :)

  5. Jen

    Not sure – don’t think they’ve announced it, but I assume it will be in September sometime.

  6. alyssa

    I’m really interested in attending the final food truck event. If someone could please let me know what date this is that would be amazing!!!!


    • Jen

      October 1st! From twitter:

      Onwards and upwards, full details on #foodtruckeats Part 3 will be revealed this week. Mark Oct 1st on your calendars. Keep the night free

      The night!?! OOOOooh…


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