Monday, August 15, 2011


Calgary's unruly weather doesn't make it the best locale for street food, but that hasn't stopped the city from jumping on the food truck bandwagon. The City of Calgary has undertaken what it's calling a pilot project, which means a few bylaws are being cajoled to allow the trucks - which are usually subject to the Traffic Safety Act - to park and serve. The official launch was this past Thursday and, judging by the long, long line-ups, the pilot is on its way to success.

Well, if you call queuing hours for what should be fast food a success. Bringing the project's trucks into downtown for lunch on a weekday is a sure way to get a crowd, and the buzz ahead of time certainly worked. By the time I got there the rock star of Calgary's food trucks, CharCut's Alley Burger, already had a huge line - some folks waited up to two hours for their burger. Jojo's BBQ has also gone mobile as we had hoped, and was representing.

Looking at the lineups and trying to gauge which truck I'd actually get through in a reasonable amount of time, I opted for the Perogy Boyz. Even though I was there at 11, I still had to endure a one-hour wait...for a sampler of four perogies and half a sausage.

For Thursday's launch, it turns out most trucks were serving samplers rather than their full menu. So, while the light fare meant I had to grab a sandwich on the way back to the office, it was a great teaser of what's in store from the Boyz.

There are a lot of questions going through my mind about these new trucks. Is this really a pilot project, considering how much these folks have spent on starting up? Why launch in mid-August, when summer is winding down? How many of these trucks will be running once the snow starts? Why are we so willing to wait so long for what should be a quick meal?

The good news: now that the trucks are on the streets, the lineups seem to be easing off. As I'm able, I'll be tracking down each of the trucks and posting more about them.

YYC Food Trucks

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