A vegan food truck review as written by a meat loving omnivore.
I only know one vegan, so when we were hanging out for the day I decided to follow in her foodie footsteps and be vegan for a day. I was going in to uncharted territory. A scary place that was void of cheese, and one that would deny me most candies. How would my taste buds cope with the lack of flavour, I feared. Judging without even trying, shame on me. But I have had a vegan dish or two that I have hated. Disliked for its its lack of smooth textures and grimaced at for its flat raw flavour. Let’s say I have had more bad vegan meals than good. I wanted more bells and maybe even some whistles, and I certainly got it here.
This is the only vegan express food truck on the streets of Vanvouver. They park in Yaletown, a constant fixture by the Roundhouse community centre. Fun fact, you can board an actual locomotive train, by donation in the community centre. There was a line to order and to be served, I explored.
The golden-yellow hue of the food truck was eye catching, that and it was the only thing parked on the sidewalk.
I feel being vegan is like being in an exclusive club. They have their own food and drinks, their own shops and stores. The community is tight, my vegan guest even knew the cart operator, the man behind our meals today. On the food truck, they list some of their their more famous members, and encourage you to join the ranks of vegan, with a free membership. They even listed reasons why you’d want to join. Albert Einstein, Ellen Degeneres, and Maggie Q did. And if you did, you too can get plenty of protein from seeds, nuts, and grains. And changing your diet to vegan is not only compassionate, but it is also economic and healthy. All good points, but I think I will be sticking to my “eat all the things” foodie diet.
It was hot, the sun was out, but we weren’t the only ones braving the need to squint for some of their all plant based burgers. A steady line was growing and only one employee behind the counter was working hard to shorten it. With all things considering, he did a good job, especially having to making our three burgers all at once. He takes a order and finishes it before accepting another customer. It guarantees that if you have to walk away, you can, without the need to ask for a refund. Though no one budged, you could even hear the crowd mention to one another how good they heard the food was. Definitely worth waiting for.
The menu is a photographic listing of five different burgers and sides. Each had a beef or chicken patty and depicted cheese running down its sides. If you didn’t read the fine print, you couldn’t tell that there was no actual meat pictured. Heck they even had vegan bacon, a burger made with teriyaki sauce and grilled pineapple; and one topped with onion rings. These were your “regular”, not fast food, but sit down and eat pub burgers.
My vegan guest suggested I try their “Crispy Chick’n Burger”, their most popular item and their best seller. The ingredients were listed as a “crispy gardein patty, chipotle mayo, guacamole, jalapeño relish, tomato, red onion, and lettuce”. The faux chicken patty delivered on its promise of being “crispy”, the breaded “Chick’n” even flaked off like a meat. As far as I was concerned this was a chicken burger, and one of the best I have had. Juicy and flavourful to the last bite.
The “Bacon cheese burger” looked spot on with its “Beef-less party, crispy fake bacon, cheese sauce, mayo, tomato, red onion, and lettuce”. The fake bacon had that ham quality in both texture and taste. Crispy on the sides and salty all the way around. The zesty mustard complimented the bacon, and together they helped back each bite as fulsome one. Another “I can’t believe it’s not meat” moment. It looked and tasted like a “regular” cheese burger.
The “Grilled mushroom cheese burger” is more what you expect from a traditional vegetarian burger. The beef-less patty had a nice charred grilled taste to it, it matched the earthy mushrooms, that were tender and done well. The mushrooms were clearly the focus of this burger, they out weighed the patty in quality and quantity, as the most dominate note. The cheese sauce, mayo, mustard, tomato, red onion, and lettuce finished things off.
A side order of cheese fries was $1 off, with the purchase of any burger. And what is a burger without fries? The cheese sauce was more a cheesy gravy. It was thick and delicious, like the type you get out of a pump at any concession stand for nachos. Shame it was wasted coating frozen fries. Fresh cut and fried potato would have made a world of difference. There was also not enough cheese, the fries left at the bottom of the cardboard dish remain undressed.
As this was food from a truck, we ate on the steps of a nearby park. The only hazard, the wind blowing away our paper towels.
Would I come back? – Yes.
Would I line up for it? – Yes.
Would I recommend it? – Yes.
Would I suggest this to someone visiting from out of town? – Yes.
This is the only vegan food truck in Vancouver, it is definitely worth making the effort down for. Vegan or not the food is delicious. As a omnivore, it was like eating “real”, “regular” burgers. I would definitely go back for more, heck if this was in my neighbourhood I could and would eat guilt free burgers every day. Shame they aren’t actually mobile, but more a tethered to and fro sort of truck. Don’t deny your cravings.