Saturday, October 22, 2011

food trucks III - nuit blanche

Paying $10 each to be allowed entry into a parking lot where you then line up for 30 minutes in temperatures just above freezing to pay $5 for a cheese sandwich. Is this:

a) Ceausescu's Romania

b) A terrifying glimpse of the inevitable food shortages that will follow the impending financial apocalypse 

c) The perfect way to begin a Saturday night of looking at contemporary art in the streets of Toronto

If you answered C then congratulations, you probably know all about the Toronto Food Truck craze that currently has Toronto's ageing hipster scum all abuzz. Slow off the mark, we missed the first one at the Distillery a few months ago, but made it to the second one in September where we learnt some hard & painful lessons about how best to navigate such an event. Once we heard they were coming back a third time on the evening of Nuit Blanche we descended on the site with a mixture of painstakingly planning & brute force reminiscent of operation Neptune Spear.   

Right from the off we had our eye on on Gorilla Cheese, having being scared off by the length of the queue at the last event. L got in line while J ran around, grabbing samples from other trucks for us to nibble on while we waited.

First she came back with latin style chorizo on a bun with butter poached sofrito onions & chimchurri from Supi Cucu. J loved the spicy sausage and the ever so fresh bun, but her absolute fav is the Diablo Fuelo's hot sauce on the side; it's quite hot, but the sweet of the peppers successfully battles for double billing. J would have bought the jar of sauce they were selling but with hours of Nuit Blanche on the horizon it didn't seem practical to lug condiments around TO. L is furious to be hearing about this for the first time now, as he would gladly have bore the saucy burden had he have known. 

Still 20 minutes or so from grilled cheese nirvana J had time to shoot off again, & this time she came back with tinga tostada from Agave Y Aguacate who had recently closed their Kensington kitchen to do a tour of the late summer food festivals in Ontario. By now they should be open again. It was the first ever tostada that we had tried, but it certainly won't be the last. The tostada was crisp and fresh with a lovely layer of beans and a gorgeous concoction of slow roasted chicken in a thick, rich sauce that sweetly stung. J suspected there was something special about the sour cream, it really added a lovely sourness to the dish. A challenge to eat standing up, but well worth the sticky fingers

By this time we really should have been ordering our grilled cheese but the closer we got to the window the more friends the people in the queue in front of us suddenly seemed to acquire, so J headed off on another reconaissance mission & came back with some delights from El Gastronomo Vagabundo. A tom yum soup for her & smoked albacore tuna with papaya and chili tamarind sauce for L. The soup didn't really meet with J's approval having a bit too much earthy flavour and not enough sour. However, L absolutely loved the tuna; the chili tamarind sauce being so invigorating that it was all he could do not to rip off his shirt baring his chest to the elements & howl at the moon in communion with nature.

Finally our date with destiny was upon us & we approached the window at Gorilla Cheese. J ordered the OG, in silent tribute to all her homies who didn't make it along the way. L went with the sarducci, the balsamic bread being the clincher. It was a fabulously tasty sandwich & all was right in the world, at least until J offered him a bite of her OG & he realized what a terrible, terrible mistake he had made. It suddenly becamse clear that this grilled cheese sandwich of hers was to be his Rosebud & in 60 years time, when his ageing body is slowly grinding to a halt, as he sits in his Xanadu surrounded by a bounty of treasures bestowed upon him from a lifetime spent blogging about food, he will die whispering "OG, OG", haunted by the thought of how his whole life would have been so different if only he had had the foresight to order this, (one hesitates to even demean it with the moniker "sandwich" as to describe it as a mere sandwich is as inadequate as referring to Napoleon as "a bit of a bossy boots") glorious testament to what is possible when man, bread & cheese are in holy communion with God.

Survey says - Heaven is a truck.

Agave Y Aguacate on Urbanspoon Gorilla Cheese on Urbanspoon El Gastronomo Vagabundo @ Flat Rock Cellars on Urbanspoon

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