Food Trucks Bring Gourmet Street Food to Yonge and Gould

By on March 21, 2011

Mini Food Truck Eats
On Friday, a mini version of the popular Food Truck Eats event, formerly held in Toronto’s historic Distillery District, popped up at a new location at the corner of Yonge St. and Gould St. in downtown Toronto.

On hand to serve up some exciting and unique street eats were five food trucks including Gorilla Cheese, The Toasted Tangerine, El Gastrónomo Vagabundo, Caplansky’s and Cupcake Diner.

Spotlight Toronto founder and Food Trucks Eats organizer Suresh Doss put together the event which made use of the space formerly occupied by the Empress Hotel. Working with the owners of the land, Doss is now curating the space and hopes to bring more street food programming to it.

He revealed last week that the location could see another food truck event as soon as this Friday as well as something larger towards the Holidays.

The event started at 11:00 a.m. and continued through a better part of the afternoon feeding hungry Ryseron students, nearby office workers and dedicated street food enthusiasts who trekked in from greater distances specifically for the event.

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Crowds were steady throughout the entire event but there was a noticeable rush at lunch hour which created some long lineups and cold toes.

At the busiest point, I heard a few gripes about long wait times but for the most part people seemed happy and excited to get their hands on elusive gourmet street food here in Toronto.

Always a crowd favourite, Gorilla Cheese had a steady line of customers throughout the entire event. They make each grilled cheese sandwich to order which means waiting a few minutes for them to make your food and call your name when it’s ready. This usually creates a hungry and eager crowd huddled around their truck.

Parked next to Gorilla Cheese and making their Toronto debut was the purple and black striped Toasted Tangerine. After a successful launch event, they had a bunch of new items on their menu which saw their BBQ pulled chicken sandwich converted into slider form ($7) as well as items like a toasted caprese salad ($6), toasted ravioli ($6) and buttertarts ($3.50).

Perhaps the most unique menu of the day belonged to El Gastrónomo Vagabundo who sold out of their tempura cod tacos ($8) halfway through the lunch rush. Other interesting dishes they offered were dukkah-crumbed lamb ($7), tom yum soup ($6.50) and hot home brewed honeybush and lemon myrtle tea ($2.50).

Dragon’s den survivor Zane Caplansky was also there with Thundering Thelma serving up his deli fare. BBQ beef brisket ($8) was an early favourite and sold out at around 12:30 p.m. I also saw a lot of people opting for the smoked meat sandwich ($8) and poutine ($6) combination. Also available was a split pea soup ($4).

Parked beside Caplansky and right next to Yonge Street was the always popular Cupcake Diner who sold right out of everything before the event was even half over. I heard more than one person say they had been given strict instructions not to return to the office without cupcakes so the little pink truck saw a lot of action.

Despite the cold weather, the event had a solid turnout and the location seemed to work well in that it was able to provide enough space for a variety of trucks as well as the lineups that formed in front of them.

It was also another solid indication that Toronto is eager for access to more diverse street food options.

Make sure you don’t miss future food truck events by signing up for email updates below.

Photos courtesy Kyla Zarnardi. Follow Kyla on Twitter.


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About the Author: Mark Macdonald is the Founder of Toronto Food Trucks. He is a Toronto freelance web designer and a street food movement supporter. Get more from Mark on Twitter and Google +.

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