Hank Daddy’s

Hank Daddy’s is a bbq food truck here in Hamilton that does the standard barbecue fare: ribs, brisket, chicken, and pulled pork, among other things. Although I’ve been trying to lose weight, I couldn’t help but to venture off to this truck because it was parked down the street from me, and y’all know my addiction to food trucks. See here and here.

Hank Daddy’s is known for their unique pulled pork parfait, so of course I had to have it. It looks so cute, and because I was taking it home, they had the ingenious way of cutting out the bottom of a takeout container to protect the mound! Presentation really is everything because that’s what you’re really paying for. It was 10$ for two scoops of mashed potatoes, pulled pork, and some beans. The barbecue sauce alone was strange and I didn’t quite like it, but when mixed with the pulled pork and potatoes, they meshed surprisingly well.

I may be biased because I just love pulled pork, but I really enjoyed this dish, despite thinking that it’s not quite worth 10$. It was a nice small lunch, and yummy, which I think is the most important part. Next time, I’ll have to try the ribs.

 

 

Advertisements

Toronto Food Trucks II

My food truck journey never stops. It’s just such a unique feeling walking up to a food truck, and it’s kind of a treasure hunt when you get the tweet telling you the location, finding it, and then munching. I love how these gourmet food trucks are so well intertwined and interactive with online social media. This definitely caters and aligns to my modern urban lifestyle and attitudes.

Gorilla Cheese // Twitter // Facebook

So I was in Hamilton visiting family when I remembered that the famous Gorilla Cheese is stationed here all the time. So we went on a mission. On this day, they were parked at Mohawk College, Stoney Creek Campus. Lucky students.

The Lumberjack // $7.50 : Bacon, Cheddar, Apple, Maple Syrup

I dare you to read that description and not drool uncontrollably over your keyboard. Bacon? C’mon. Bacon. The apple is a surprise, but apparently a not-so-secret secret amongst grilled cheese connoisseurs. The bread was crispy, the apple — crunchy. The bacon was salty, the syrup – sweet. The sandwich of beautiful opposites attracting. And each sandwich comes with a nice tart pickle!

The Sarducci // $7.50Mozzarella, Basil, Tomato, Red Onion, Balsamic

A classic combination of ingredients, one that I absolutely adore, and molded to work in the beautiful mechanics of a grilled cheese sandwich. Like all their other sandwiches it’s an integration of the classic comfort and the exclusive gourmet. I approve. The balsamic was sweet and not overly tart. The multigrain bread had wonderful sunflower seeds and oats, which made me feel healthy.  Although the elegantly browned exterior screams oil and grease, the sandwich itself tasted wholly fresh, with the tomatos and red onions. Eating the sandwich was definitely greasy though, but that satisfying, “damn-that-was-so-worth-it” kind of greasy.

Cupcake Diner // Twitter 

The Cupcake Diner has access to my work schedule. Or so it would seem because they like to taunt me by parking a block away from my apartment, but only on days that I’m away at work. Luckily, they have a permanent store that sits on the lower floor of the Hamilton Farmer’s Market. Or as my parents call it, “Ba-nam-bay” or “3-5-7” because it’s only open on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturdays. Or that’s how it was way back when I was growing up in Hamilton. And it had been at least a decade since I’d been back to the Farmer’s Market and oh my, either I never really noticed what it looked like as a kid, or it has really undergone a totally modern renovation.

Classic Chocolate Cupcakes

Cupcake $2.75 // Cookie $1.50

So I went and had the cookie dough cupcake. It originally had a wedge of cookie on top but I was too quick to dig in and forgot to take a photo. The icing was extremely dense and almost like biting into butter. Really sweet and almost a dessert in and of itself. The cake part was equally as decadent, and I had to share some of it with my brother. Not even expensive for a cupcake, and it really goes the mile. The Rocky Road cookie was bought by my brother and it was huge! The size of my whole hand. It was thick and soft. Made of oats and raisins, I was eating so healthy today! Man, my waist is feeling smaller already! The cookie was sweet and very cinnamon-y. Nom nom nom. I only had a few bites in the car before I had to run for my bus back to Toronto.

Toasted Tangerine // Facebook // Twitter

As fate would have it, Toasted Tangerine was at Yonge-Dundas square for “One Day Without Shoes” event that was going on there. Couldn’t pass that up!

Went twice; ever-changing menu.

Toasted Ravioli $6

The filling for this was SO good. Bolded, capitalized, and italicized. That’s how you know I’m serious. It was creamy, filling, delicious, not too cheesy, light, melty-on-your-tongue. I could go on. The marinara dipping sauce was quite good as well. I loved how the container was big enough so that the ravioli can be dipped it without crushing it or turning all kinds of awkward angles. The only thing I can complain about is that it was deep-fried a little too dark for my liking so the outside was really hard and crunchy, which cut up the roof of my mouth. I’d eat it again though, which is telling of good that filling is!

Toasted Sweethearts $6

Another deep-fried ravioli, but dessert style! This suffered from the super-hard outside as well, but it took me a little while to get to them, so they did soften after a little while with that strawberry glaze. Mmm, strawberry glaze. These were so cute with their heart shape and powdered sugar. Inside was so thick with bananas, mascarpone, dulce de leche, and probably cocaine. This was so yummy!!

Sweet Rider Sliders $7

So after the one day at Toasted Tangerine, I knew I just had to go back for some more. This was at one of their regular appearances at Queen and Jarvis. The buns were nice and soft for a ciabatta, and the pulled pork bbq sauce was nice, sweet and sticky. The stand out piece of this was the pineapple mint salsa. I’m not a big fan of mint but this was absolutely wonderful. The pineapple giving a sweet & juicy tang and just a hint of mint to highlight the sweetness of the pork and bbq sauce. I ate these while walking, and it wasn’t too messy. Everything stayed rather well in the bun, nothing wasted!! Uguughghgh I want pulled pork.

This will not be the last food truck post. I think I’m obsessed. I’ve got tickets to the “Next Food Truck Event” presented by Food Truck Eats that takes place tomorrow. So prepare yourself for that as I prepare my belly for it. I’m really looking forward to trying Ninja Piggies, Rock Lobster Company, and Fidel Gastro! I want to try all the food trucks. I don’t need to worry about my belly, I just need to worry about whether I’ll have enough time to eat everything! I know I will barely be able to sleep tonight knowing that tomorrow I’ll get to stuff my face with delicious things. This truly is the life.

Food Truck Toronto

These past few weeks have been something of a mission for me. I was walking home one day when, lo and behold, there was a big white truck sitting in a parking lot. There were quite a few people lining up in front of said truck and … getting food? What sorcery is this? Looks like I stumbled upon a fabled food truck. I’ve heard so much about them, but always in other cities. Places like San Diego and Los Angeles. I had never seen one in real life before, yet here it was. Naturally, I got in line and from that first bite and conversation, I was hooked. Cue adventure time.

Image

Food Cabbie // @FoodCabbie // Facebook

Food Cabbie has been around for about 5 months now, with the chef (a very nice man!) coming from California and bringing with him American cuisine with a touch of Mexican flair. They have different sandwich specials each day, each sounding taster and tastier than the last. I can’t believe that I’ve been living a block away, yes, ONE block, and I had never seen this place until last week. Of course, to make amends, I visited them twice last week and will probably go tomorrow too. That philly cheese steak is looking extra tempting. Food Cabbie is parked on Queen St. E between Shuter and Dalhousie from Monday-Friday 11-5!

Image

Lunchtime rush!


The Ortega Cheeseburger // $6.50

Pico de gallo (my weakness), sour cream, lettuce, and secret burger sauce. The description alone is what intrigued me, I mean, who has ever put sour cream on a burger? Worth a shot. The burger was nice and juicy, basically leaking into my mouth (this is a good thing, people!). It was nice, tart, and fresh with the bun lightly toasted but soft. Filled me up quite nicely, too!

Image

The Carne Asada Burrito // $6

Smoky grilled steak with refried beans and tomatos. It’s like they channelled my soul when creating this menu. I’m a sucker for refried beans. And steak. And burrito. A proper burrito where they grill the outside as well! I can’t say how many places I’ve been to where the tortilla is just flimsy and doughy, completely ruins the whole integrity of my meal. But this, this was amazing. Enjoy my gross photo of a half eaten burrito and cry if you haven’t had a Food Cabbie burrito! Yum. :)

Image

Caplansky’s Deli Truck // @CaplanskyTruck // Website

Right next-door to the Food Cabbie is where Thunderin’ Thelma is parked. Yes, the truck’s name is Thunderin’ Thelma, named after the owner’s Nana, which I think means grandmother. Caplansky’s Deli was featured in Toronto Life’s April 2012 issue along with Food Cabbie and 8 other GTA-serving mobile eateries. As the chalk-based menu suggests, their items change up every so often with items such as the Brisket and Smoked Meat being staple.

Image

Look at this picture of their coleslaw. I love coleslaw.

Image

When you see something called Maple Beef-Bacon Donuts, you don’t just walk away. You look the man in the window in the eyes, nut up, and order these strange little creatures. At about a dollar each, depending on how many you buy, you can’t really go wrong. Unless you have blood suger problems, in which case you do what you do. The outside was nice and crispy while the inside was a bit doughy. It does give you a satisfying bite though. These balls were dense and bacon-y and sweet, dripping in a thick maple syrup. It reminded me of something like baklava and that really sweet syrupy indian dessert. Different, strange, not bad. Definitely couldn’t eat more to 3 by myself.

Image

BBQ Brisket Sandwich // $7

Let’s talk about this amazing sandwich for a second. Or five. Or forever. First of all, onion bun. AMAZING. Secondly, the brisket was nice and soft. Savoury and smokey. Not too sweet as some BBQ sandwiches tend to be. So much meat on one sandwich that it’s incredibly satisfying. What sets this sandwich apart from others for me? The super crunchy and crispy deep fried onions sitting there between the meat and the bun. Such a nice contrast between the softness of the bun and the meatiness of the brisket. So so so yummy. An incredibly dangerous sandwich. Guaranteed if you try this you’ll be coming back for more and more and more.

Image

With my appetite whet by these two food trucks, when I heard about the FoodTruckEats pop-up in Liberty Village, I just had to be there. It rained mighty hard in the morning but after my meeting, I trekked out the with my umbrella, and my hole-y flats, and my hungry hungry belly. 3 food trucks were featured that day for three hours between 11AM and 2PM: Caplansky’s Deli, Blue Donkey Streatery, and

Image

El Gastronomo Vagabundo // @ElGastronomo // Website

Unfortunately, my meeting ran late so I only had time to stand in line for one truck, and I’m so glad I chose this one. Although Blue Donkey is supposed to be mind-blowing, El Gastronomo’s feature was something I just couldn’t turn down. There were tons of people standing in line and waiting for food, and the air was electric. Or it might have just been me, but the rain had temporarily let up, food smells are wafting up in the air, the excitement was building up. I. Was. PUMPED. BRING IT ON.

Image

Biltong Belly Tacos // 2 for $8

Twice-cooked “Biltong” pork belly, jalapeno aioli, pickled daikon on corn tortillas. Is your belly crying yet? Because it should be. These things were amazing. I don’t think the above photo does it much justice because in my eyes, it looked like this. I’m pretty sure I heard an angelic choir singing somewhere. I was just going to take it on the streetcar and eat it, but no, I was too excited. Who cares if I was late for work, this was clearly more important, and it was so worth it. I sprinkled lime juice along the tacos and dug in. The pork, oh gosh the pork. Crispy. Tender. Not fatty like other servings of pork belly. Seasoned with this mysterious biltong pixie dust. I’m pretty sure I looked insane as I sat down by myself snarfing these down with a weird smile on my face. But then it was gone. How did these two tacos go by so fast? I don’t know. It was simultaneously the best moment of my life as well as the worst. Gone so fast. I was so tempted to go grab another one, but we all know where that leads us. Sitting curbside, constantly refreshing twitter, clutching onto the food truck’s bumper begging for more, draining our bank accounts, “Will dance for El Gastronomo.” Right, guys? Heh… heh..

Seriously. Amazing.

Definitely not my last food truck experience. These last few weeks have been amazing, and it’s just the beginning. I plan to try every last one of the GTA food trucks.

From what I glean, there is a bit of struggle in the city of Toronto whereby food trucks are not allowed to operate on pay-to-pay parking lots for more than 10 minutes to sell food even if they’ve bought all the necessary permits, and adhere to regulations that are even more strict than restaurants. So! Go and sign this petition so that Toronto can have more of this wonderful food, all the time! :)

THE PETITION