By Nikki Bayley
Vancouver’s street food scene is known as being one of the best in North America, with more than 100 trucks dotted around the city serving up a dizzying selection of cuisines from around the world. On any given day you could dine on Mexican tortilla stuffed with cactus, a Thai papaya salad, Polish homemade pierogi or even just a hot dog – Japanese-style –dressed with Teriyaki sauce and seaweed.
The delicious twist with many of the trucks you’ll find around town is that they use seasonal ingredients right from the lower mainland, so you can taste something new and local each month as the fresh harvest comes in. You’ll also see Ocean Wise stickers on many of the trucks, which means that the seafood they serve is 100% sustainable so you can chow down guilt free. Find your new favourite truck with the handy StreetFood app.
Start your day right with a super-local and sustainable breakfast from one of the city’s most distinctive trucks; you’ll find Yolk’s baby blue cart at the corner of Burrard and West Pender. Very nearly everything on their menu is organic, local or free-range. All the herbs on the dishes come from the owner’s (Steve’s) garden, and the beef short rib comes from grass-fed, local organically raised cows.
One of Vancouver’s best known trucks is Vij’s Railway Express, which won the En Route Best New Restaurant People’s Choice award back in 2013, the only time it’s ever been won by a food cart. All of their seafood is Ocean Wise and their meats are hormone and antibiotic-free from Two Rivers in North Vancouver. Vij’s Railway Express also uses local organic microgreens from Sky Harvest, Canada’s only certified Urban Organic farm, who grow their delicious produce right in the heart of the city in East Vancouver.
One of the healthiest carts around, Culver City Salads get their ingredients from Inner City Farms, a community initiative which covers some 20 farms across Vancouver, which in aggregate comprise just short of an acre of farm space within city limits. Each week Culver City Salads gets a supply of freshly-harvested produce that shifts with the seasons and packs a powerful organic punch as each of their salads features at least ten ingredients.
Fancy something spicy? Then try Le Tigre’s take on Chinese street food with a west coast edge. Le Tigre use local and organic vegetables from the Vancouver Farmers Market to keep their Miso Awesome Quinoa Salad packed with super seasonal ingredients all year round. Plus their seafood is sustainable and comes from Skipper Otto’s community supported fishery that works directly with local fishermen to support them year-round.
Dessert comes with a seasonal twist from Nice Pops and their adorable bike-driven pushcart packed with artisan popsicles made fresh in East Vancouver from local fruits. Taste your way through the summer with frosty fresh flavours such as yellow plum and black cherry, apricot and home made salt caramel, or blueberry and cream. You’ll find them at food cart festivals and farmers markets throughout the summer.