WHAT THE TRUCK 2 – Where’s the food?

The second “What the Truck?!” event was held tonight at Abby Lane Park (Jasper & 102 St). Hosted by Mack and Sharon, two of Edmonton downtown’s biggest champions.  Following a trip to SF’s Off the Grid, Mack and Sharon brought What the Truck?! to life in Edmonton. What better way (than food trucks) to 1.) get people excited, and 2.) bring people downtown at a time when most would be going the opposite direction, leaving downtown to get home – food always brings people together!

The tasty line-up of vendors included: Molly’s Eats, Drift Food Truck, Filistix, Eva Sweet Waffles, Nomad, Carnival Cravings, Lingnan, Fat Franks, and Funky Pickle. However, as I came to realize the line-ups at these trucks are long enough to leave a girl quite hungry.

The event started at 4pm and I arrived with a friend at 5:45pm to massive crowds. What was I thinking?! The 900+ people who RSVP’ed for the event on Facebook, should have been the first clue that getting there early was a must.

The crowd at What the Truck?!

South Pacific @ Filistix

By 5:45pm, the line for Molly’s Eats was already approximately 45 mins long. We quickly got in one of the shortest lines (15 mins) – Filistix, for their South Pacific. Not a moment too soon as we ended up getting the second to last South Pacific dish of the evening.The South Pacific was a warm dish of chicken thighs slow cooked in a creamy coconut curry served on top of rice. For a chilly, windy evening this was the perfect dish.

It was well seasoned with just a hint of heat and the chicken thigh was so tender, we managed to eat the full dish with two plastic spoons. The dollop of Filistix hot sauce that I added was great! Fresh with cucumbers and hot like sriracha. Went really well with the creaminess of the chicken.

Once the sign went up stating that Filistix was out of the South Pacific, we went into a bit of a panic mode and decided the best place to eat our chicken curry was in line for our next dish. Noticing more trucks running out of food (Nomad was down to one item by 5:45pm and completely out by 6:30pm), we decided to divide and conquer by lining up in separate lines.

Unfortunately, Drift was slammed as well and they sold their last sandwich to the folks who were two spots ahead of my in line. It was at that moment that I seriously regretted the calories conservation I’d done all day and wished I’d brought some snacks to munch on. It’s a little like going to a dinner party that didn’t serve enough food.

The bright side, Drift still had their wonderful fries with the house-made tomato sauce that I’m addicted to (it seriously tastes like butter chicken sauce). Also my friend managed to get a Trinidad Double and a big, soft chocolate cookie from Molly’s. Doubles are a common street food in Trinidad. Made up of two polenta cakes sandwiching a curry mixture of chick peas and vegetable. It was really tasty, albeit a bit messy.

It should be mentioned that the operators of the trucks were all great spirited despite dealing with hoards of hungry folk. Bamir from Eva’s Sweet had his trademark grin throughout the evening and my friend came back from Molly’s line beaming about how sweet the ladies were. Knowing I was supporting such great people, I was much more patient waiting in line.

And not all food trucks were sold out, when we first arrived I noticed that Funky PIckle and Fat Franks were virtually lineless amidst the long lines at the other trucks. Most of the people stopping by for pizza and hot dogs were parents with young children. As hunger set in, more and more people started admiring the hot dogs with the crazy toppings and the gooey pizza like water in a desert. I was hearing people in line-ups saying, “You know what, this hot dog with wasabi mayo is REALLY good”.

Eva Sweet Waffles had a constant line-up and besides Funky Pickle, they were the last stand to close up. In fact by the time I left at 8:15pm they still had a line-up. For good reason, Bamir at Eva Sweet and his nephew were serving up made-to-order Bacon filled Waffles along with his Vanilla Waffles with a variety of fruit sauces, caramel, maple syrup, chocolate, and fluffy whipped cream.

Bacon Waffle at Eva Sweet

That Bacon-filled Waffle was sooo good! Salty and sweet, I would periodically get a little bit of salty, smoky bacon then in the next bite get the sweet grit of the pearl sugar that is a well-known trait of Eva’s waffles.

For the most part, people in lines were quite good natured. Sure, there were grumbles waiting an hour and still leaving hungry. I also suspect some folks threw in the towel after seeing places sell out and stopped in at neighbouring restaurants. Reports on Twitter showed that Tres Carnales was crazy busy for the evening. But people lining up were generally happy to be there. Especially with Eva Sweet graciously handing out free hot chocolate to keep their customers in line warm in the chilly evening.

Another benefit of the long lines, I met a few really nice people. a friendly and sweet gal Lindsay kept me company for a bit as we waited for waffles and shared info about our favourite food places in town.

I think Mack and Sharon did a bang up job of bringing exposure to our city’s food trucks and getting people downtown to meet other food-lovers, and socialize over food & music (by DJ’s Marc Carnes & Thomas Scott). In a way they may have done too good of a job, I wish there was more food to go around… and hope the long lines won’t deter people from attending future events. Note to self: get there early.

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3 Comments on “WHAT THE TRUCK 2 – Where’s the food?”

  1. Adam Fick
    September 17, 2011 at 2:09 pm #

    I got there at 6:00 and so much stuff was sold out as I walked around so I headed to Molly’s Eats truck and got the Trinidad Doubles, they were so good and so worth the wait, unfortunately by the time I got through the Molly’s line, it was nearly an hour and by then everything else looked to be sold out 😦
    Next time I’m gonna have to go there early!

    • September 17, 2011 at 2:27 pm #

      Hey Adam, Dong mentioned you were there. Don’t know how I missed you. I agree… I don’t mind line-ups (I’m from Van after all) but only if there’s the outcome of food. Those trini-doubles were good though, as was all the food I did try.


  1. Only Here for the Food » Blog Archive » More Food, More Trucks: What the Truck?! 2 - September 26, 2011

    […] know some people were frustrated with the length of the lines, or with some of the trucks running out of food, but we hope this […]

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