I love food trucks. We’ve seen a quick rise in them on the streets of Vancouver in the past few years, and aside from an array of delicious food offered, I’m especially fond of their convenience. I get my food quickly, I don’t have to wait for my bill to come, and I can eat my food anywhere I want. But with so many trucks now on the streets, how do you know which ones to choose? Well that’s where Vancouver Foodie Tours comes into play. They offer various food-oriented tours around Vancouver that include Granville Island Market, a Guilty Pleasures Gourmet tour, and the one that I was lucky to be a part of – World’s Best Food Truck Tour.
The tour began at Japadog, one of the first food trucks that arrived in Vancouver back when only a few things could be sold from carts, one of them being hot dogs. We tasted their most popular offering on the menu, the Kurobuta Terimayo, a pork hot dog topped with fried onion, teriyaki sauce, Japanese mayo, and seaweed flakes. The hot dog is a delicious fusion of Japan and Western cuisine, a unique offering that makes it stand out and catch the curiousity of tourists and locals.
Our wonderful foodie guide, Andrew, took us down a few blocks to our next stop while also taking a couple breaks to tell us about the history of the city. Our group was a mix of locals and tourists from places such as London and New York. Even being a local, I enjoyed hearing Andrew’s knowledge about the food scene and offering tidbits about the city that I didn’t even know. He was a great and personable guide that made the experience much more enjoyable than I had anticipated.
The next cart we were about to sample was one that I have walked by countless times but never took the plunge to sample anything from there. I’ll be honest in that the truck’s design and photos never compelled me to try it. I’m visually pulled in to trying new things and it doesn’t always work out in my favour, so I’m trying to be open and follow the “don’t judge a book by its cover” mantra. Eat Chicken Wraps is located on the corner of Howe and Robson and the food offered is simply variations of its name. We tried a sample of the Hoisin Chicken Roll, a crispy Chinese pancake with five spiced chicken, greens, pickled radish, green onion, and hoisin sauce. This was tied for my favourite sample on the tour. I’m so sorry I underestimated you, Eat Chicken Wraps.
Up next and a simple jaunt across the street at Homer and Robson is a favourite of mine, Mom’s Grilled Cheese Truck! This truck has saved me on a few occasions after battling the next day from a night out. There’s nothing that cures a headache for me more than that cheesy goodness. Plus, with all the rain we see in this city sometimes a grilled cheese is all you need to perk your day up. We tried out a couple selections of her sandwiches plus a tasty cup of ginger mint lemonade. Andrew also offered a few impressive tidbits about owner, Cindy Hamilton who has had experience catering on films such as Kill Bill, Mission Impossible 3 and speaks English, French, Mandarin, and Patois!
Last stop on the tour was our guide, Andrew’s favourite and tied for my favourite sample on the tour. Now that I’m thinking about it and my mouth is salivating, I’m moving it up to my favourite. Soho Road Naan Kebab is located on the corner of West Georgia and Granville, right outside the City Centre Skytrain station. Owner Sarb Mund is extremely friendly and enthusiastic about his food. This was my first time at this cart as well and I’ve already made it a priority to visit again as soon as I can.
Everything from the cart is fresh. The chicken is marinated for at least 24 hours and cooked with the built-in tandoor oven to ensure it’s juicy goodness. The naan is also rolled out on the spot and baked, so when you get your food it’s as fresh as can be. There’s usually a fifth stop on these tours but one of them was closed that day so instead of the usual small offering from this truck, we had a half of a spicy butter chicken wrap! The juicy chicken and sauce enveloped in the pillow fresh naan, topped with fresh cucumber, tomato, and red onion was to die for. It was the most satisfying way to wrap up the tour.
The tour lasted almost two hours and was only a span of about six blocks in the downtown core. For the amount of food and drink offered, plus learning about the food cart industry, its owners, and bits of history in the city, it’s so worth it. I thought a lot of the info may be repetitive but I was delighted with our guide Andrew who made it a fun and informative experience. To purchase tickets for the food tour that piques your interest most, visit the Vancouver Food Tours official website.
Now I’m off to check the schedule for Soho Road!
Dining in Vancouver, BC