A list of Melbourne’s best food trucks
The words ‘meals on wheels’ didn’t make Melburnians hungry until a couple of years ago, when food trucks started hitting our streets. While there are thousands of food trucks in the U-S-of-A, Melbourne’s food truck scene is still in its infancy. Even so, the number of portable offerings is on the rise, and these days you’ll find everything from tacos and Thai to frozen yoghurt and Rogan Josh cruising around our city. The best way to keep track of food trucks in Melbourne is by following them on Twitter and Facebook, or checking wherethetruck.at for a summary. For now, here’s a list of the most reputable food trucks in Melbourne with a little bit of extra information to make your mouth water.
If you’ve never tried a po’boy before (those delicious sub sandwiches stuffed with deep-fried goodness, hailing from the deep American south), this is the place to try them. Gumbo Kitchen serves traditional Cajun and Creole food from New Orleans. Aside from their legendary shrimp po’boy (ideal to kick that hangover), they also serve a sloppy ‘beef debris’ version, as well as red beans on rice, gumbos (chicken and sausage, sweet corn with hush puppies and seafood), and desserts such as their lemon ice box pie.
Image courtesy of avlxyz
White Guy Cooks Thai
The idea behind the White Guy Cooks Thai food truck is pretty simple: it’s a white guy cooking Thai. This food truck challenges the ‘Asian-restaurants-full-of-Asians-must-be-good-rule’, with a self-proclaimed honky running the joint. White Guy started up his Thai truck after traveling and cooking all over Asia. Now, he’s bringing Asian street food to Melbourne, food truck-style. Everything on the menu is seasonal, local and fresh, with gluten-free and vegie options. There are your classic bahn mi rolls, as well as your not-so-classic chicken and water chestnut gyoza. Try the beef bulgogi and traditional curries if they’re on offer when you visit.
“Mr Burger sells burgers. From a food truck in Melbourne.” That’s what it says on Mr Burger’s Facebook page. They get around town, as burger trucks tend to do these days, but their home base is inside a warehouse in Therry Street, down a lane opposite the Victoria Market Deli. At the moment, there’s Mr Burger (a classic burger) and Mr Meat (a burger with bacon, BBQ sauce and onion). Vegie options are on the way. Keep an eye out for their white and orange truck and the smell of patties on the grill.
You’ve probably heard of Beatbox Kitchen, one of Melbourne’s original food trucks and definitely its original burger truck. You may have spotted it at an intersection, parked on the curb, or at your favourite music festival. Hell, they even do weddings. It’s pretty hard to miss, seeing as it’s painted to look like a giant stereo. The menu is short and sweet. There are two burgers: the Ralph Burger with grass fed beef, lettuce, cheese, tomato, onion and ‘stereo sauce’, and the Shroom Burger, which replaces the meat with a big fat portabello mushroom. Would you like fries with that? Of course you would. How about the crispy shoestring variety served in a cone with your choice of mayo, tomato relish (spicy or not spicy) or stereo sauce? Sold.
Image courtesy of avlxyz
A curry truck? Sure, why not? The Dhaba Food Truck is an offshoot of Kyneton’s Dhaba at the Mill. Their food is so tasty they recently opened an Indian restaurant in North Fitzroy called Horn Please to meet demand. The small food truck menu is fresh and local. The beef is from Bendigo, the lamb is from Kyenton and the chicken is free range. Expect about six rotating curries and a bunch of entrees when you hunt down the Dhaba Truck. Keep in mind that about 50 per cent of the menu is vegetarian-friendly and almost all of it gluten free. Try the butter chicken with Indian flat bread if it’s available, and save room for the authentic Indian desserts.
Us Melburnians love our fro’ yo’ almost as much as we love out food trucks, so it makes sense that Yogurddiction decided to marry the two. Their yogurt is fat free, cholesterol free, gluten free and kosher. There are no preservatives. There’s nothing artificial. It’s hard to believe that something so healthy can taste so good. Flavours change every day, but you’ll always have a choice of at least three, as well as 25 toppings to spruce things up. Yogurddiction listen to their fans, so if you want their truck in your hood, give them a shout out on Facebook.
Taco Truck is one of Melbourne’s food truck veterans, but you’ll still line up to get your mouth around their tacos. For $12 bucks you get two soft shell tacos and some tortilla chips in a box. Choose from fish (our favourite), potato or chicken. If the tortilla chips are more your thing, order some nachos. Just be prepared to wait in line. As the saying goes, ‘patience is a virtue, virtue is a grace, put them both together and you’ll get to eat tacos’… or something like that.
Image courtesy of eMeow
According to the description on their Facebook page, “Jakob's Kitchen is a custom designed, purpose built pop up kitchen that serves up delicious gourmet sausages at events, festivals and private functions”. But it’s on wheels. So it’s made it into this list of Melbourne food trucks. Jakob’s Kitchen serve European skinless sausages called chevapi as well as snags that are similar to the dogs over at Phat Brats. We recommend chowing down on some chevapi, but be warned: the chevapi has a tendency to sell out.
Gidget's Beach Cantina
Gidget’s Beach Cantina is a taco truck that sticks to Melbourne’s far South East and Peninsula region. They’ve hit a gap in the market with their 1960s-style beach van and they offer tasty Mexican and South American grub. It’s a little bit gourmet, especially with tacos such as the smoky slow cooked, spice rubbed beef topped with chipotle mayo and homemade pico de gallo, or the chicken achiote tacos with pineapple salsa. Brilliant for Baysiders.
Smokin’ Barry’s is the specialist in slow cooked BBQ. That means Smoky ribs, pork, chicken and some motherflippin’ tasty sides, such as appleslaw with ranch dressing and potato salad. Basically, it’s a carnivore’s wet dream. Their motto? “low, slow and smokey”. They use special rubs to marinate their meat, which they mop during cooking so it stays moist. My goodness, that’s a lot of ‘M’s. But all you really need to know is that it’s delicious. Just look at that pulled pork.
You’re drunk. You need a souvlaki. Imagine if it could come to you? Well, technically it can, because the Souvlaki Cart is a food van. The food comes from a line of authentic, Cypriot family recipes. There’s lamb, chicken, haloumi and other souvlaki options, all served with lettuce, tomato, cucumber, onion, homemade tzatziki, and wrapped in a grilled pita. Can’t decide? Get the tasting plate with a little bit of everything. Keep an eye out for their homemade dips too.
If you had to describe Cornutopia in five words, it would be “vegetarian Tex Mex on wheels”. It’s more of a caravan than a truck, and their motto ‘tacos and sweet corn’ is painted proudly on the side. Corn is served off the cob in a cardboard dish, flavoured with butter, mayo, cayenne pepper, parmesan and lemon. The tacos are parcels of heaven. Choose from either beans or chicken with shredded lettuce, sour cream, salsa and coriander and chipotle sauce. If you’re up early, head to Preston Market where they have a regular gig (but check they are definitely there first!) and wake up with the heuvos rancheros: spicy kidney beans, red peppers and guacamole with a fried egg on a soft flour tortilla.