GOODS: Vancouver’s Mobile “Juice Truck” Formulates Cold-Pressed Juice Cleanses

August 28, 2012 

A big pink (technically, it’s watermelon) truck on the corner of Abbott and Water Streets in Gastown (and sometimes Kits)

The GOODS from The Juice Truck

Vancouver, BC | It all started with a simple love of juice and its power to nourish and sustain. The Juice Truck owners, Zach Berman and Ryan Slater, were in Nepal. The juice was seabuckthorn. And from that moment and that love, The Juice Truck was born. While running The Juice Truck and drinking juice daily, they noticed a huge shift in how amazing they felt. Even better, their regular customers were noticing the same shift. From that awareness and that shift, they created The Juice Cleanse.

The new cleanses come in 3, 5 and 7-day durations. Each Juice Cleanse is designed to promote overall health, energy and happiness. These aren’t starvation cleanses. Typically someone will lose a pound or two while cleansing, but The Juice Truck formulated these cleanses with their nutritionist to support better functioning of your body’s systems, and not to get you skinny. Read more

The Juice Truck

Details

In: A big pink (technically, it’s watermelon) truck.
On: The corner of Abbott and Water Streets, Gastown. Sometimes Kits on the weekend.
When: 11:30am – 5:00pm, weekdays. Check our Twitter and Facebook for weekends.
Web: thejuicetruck.ca | Twitter | Facebook

Gallery

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The Team

Ryan Slater, Juice Tender
Zach Berman, Juice Tender

The Story

Never underestimate the power of a trek through the Himalayas to change your life. We (Zach and Ryan, Juice Tenders) tossed around ideas of going into business together for years, but it was two weeks into a Himalayan trek, snowbound in a small Nepalese village when inspiration struck.

We noticed the locals drinking a vibrant, sweet smelling, orange-coloured drink. We discovered it was made from Seabuckthorn berries and it supplied these high altitude locals with most of their nutrients. It was this juice, so essential to their health, which changed our perspective on juice and sparked a new idea.

We spent the next year travelling the world, never going very long without seeking out the nearest juice stand. How many other nutritious, Seabuckthorn-like juices and juice blends were there out there that we could bring them to Canada? Turns out, quite a few.

When we came home, The Juice Truck was born.

The Juice

Juice does some amazing things for your body and health. It’s also delicious, refreshing and hydrating, which is every bit as important. Especially the delicious part.

We make the most nutritionally complete juice possible. Our premium cold press makes juice that contains more essential vitamins, minerals and enzymes than juice made any other way. The cold press also preserves the natural flavours of the produce, which we feel makes the juice tastier.

We support local produce and organic farming practices as a way of extending our passion for healthy living beyond our cozy corner of Water and Abbott Streets. In the case of fruits and vegetables that just aren’t locally or seasonally available (mmmmm, pineapple), we take a long look at potential suppliers to verify their growing standards and practices measure up to our standards.

In 2012, we are adding The Juice Cleanse (thejuicecleanse.ca) to The Juice Truck family. It’s part two of our ongoing passion with all things juice.

DINER: Mike Carter & Alessandro Vianello Opening “Street Meet” Food Truck This Week

Chefs Alessandro Vianello (ex-Prestons) and Mike Carter (ex-Sip Lounge and The Refinery) are about to unleash Vancouver’s newest food truck, Street Meet. If all goes according to plan, it will launch tomorrow (Thursday) and bounce between Kits and Main.

The full service kitchen will focus on fine Mediterranean cuisine that has been inspired by Alessandro and Mike’s travels to France, Spain, Italy and Greece. Using the highest quality, local and sustainable ingredients, Street Meet’s menu will include such things as; Crispy Risotto Balls with Slow Braised Pork and Green Olives, and Grilled Wild BC Salmon, with Tomato and Caper Relish and Lentil and Goat Cheese Risotto. Other menu items will include savoury pies such as, Wild Mushroom Pie with Miso and Rosemary Gravy, or Beef and Ale Pie with Roasted Leeks and Pearl Onions. The truck will have many seasonal features as well that will include things like Lamb Shanks, Duck Confit, and Coq Au Vin. The entire menu can be viewed on the website, streetmeettruck.ca.

Because the Street Meet truck is equipped with a kitchen that is larger than most brick and mortar restaurants, it will be able to provide mobile full service catering including, weddings, special occasions, camping trips in the forest. Street Meet will also be launching a outdoor summer dinner and a movie series, coming soon to a park near you. Street Meet will be primarily in the Kitsilano and Main Street areas from Monday to Friday for lunch (spot TBD) and roaming the streets of Vancouver for dinner and on weekends. Street Meet will be a familiar face at most of the festivals and events around the city as well.

Besides using local ingredients, the Street Meet team is committed to helping support other local business and artists. Street Beats is the teams local music initiative, where local bands and musicians will have their work featured and played on the truck as well as Street Meet’s website. The bands will also have the opportunity to be involved in various events such as festivals that are tied to the truck. Alessandro and Mike are also involved in the Growing Chefs, Chefs for Children’s Urban Agriculture. Their goal is to support and encourage the development and growth of urban agriculture, they also create a forum for chefs, educators, growers and families to work together to further awareness of food sustainability. Alessandro and Mike will also be donating 2% of the trucks profits to the Growing Chefs as well as volunteering their time to help create awareness.

DINER: Brand New “Mom’s Grilled Cheese” Opens In Front Of The Vancouver Art Gallery

October 11, 2011 

There’s a new food truck in town! Cindy Hamilton’s Mom’s Grilled Cheese did their opening dry run yesterday (I should say wet run), selling their first gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, tomato soups and drinks from Pop Shoppe. Take a look and sneak a bite at the corner of Howe and West Georgia (across the street from Hawksworth and in front of the Art Gallery).

Awesome Thing We Ate #839: The Fish Taco From New Street Food Purveyor “Tacofino”

Once upon a summer there was a food truck in a gravel parking lot in Tofino called Tacofino. We frequented it plenty, because it was good, really good, as in awesome tacos and the best-tortilla-soup-we’d-ever-had good. Rejoice, Vancouver, for now that goodness is here among us, rocking lunches on the corner at Robson and Howe. Keep up with their movements here. Should you ever catch up to ‘em, pounce.

2011 Street Food Landscape To Be Injected With More Awesome

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Tonight we can bring you some very promising “almost” news on the Vancouver street food front. I say “almost” because none of it is official, but rather pooled together from reliable sources. I ask those journalists who are reading this to confirm what I am about to write, because I am now going to go out and celebrate for the next 72 hours…

Word is City Hall is going to vote next Thursday on increasing the number of street vendors from 80 to 140 by this summer. If all goes according to plan, applications for these new slots will be made available to the public next month. So hoorah for that, and the 15 new vendors that will then be allowed every year thereafter, until a presumably arbitrary ceiling is reached (or we all explode from over-consumption in the year 2213).

But that isn’t the especially awesome part. Are you ready for this? Read more

New “Cartel” Invades Georgia & Burrard With Korean Tacos…

by Andrew Morrison | Several months ago, Abigail’s Party owner James Iranzad (interview) teamed up with Jesse Grasso and Joel Watanabe (the two kitchen rulers at Chinatown’s Bao Bei) to create “Cartel”, a street cart serving Korean-style tacos.

They’d hoped to win one of the coveted 17 mobile food vendor slots given out in City Hall’s famously messed up pilot project lottery, but no such luck. With concept, brand and menu ready to go, they were forced to wait patiently until granted a location and an operational green light. That assent from on high came late yesterday, and today – their first day of trade – went down swimmingly on the southwest corner of Georgia and Burrard.

The first thing I noticed when I arrived during noon’s final prep was the smell. It was intoxicating. It caused hundreds of hungry passersby on their lunch break to slow down long enough to catch the quick zephyr wiffs. “What are you guys cooking?” was asked just about every ten seconds. You’d think “Korean tacos” would be the least expected answer imaginable, but no one was overheard replying “that’s crazy” or worse, “ew, gross“. The expressions on all the passing faces seemed to say “whatever it is, it smells freakin’ good”. It’s rare that a deadly fine aroma is also unfamiliar. Our brains trick us into thinking we know all smells, but when a new one comes along and it’s so rad that it makes your olfactory toot, it also quickens the pulse.

The tacos come in three guises: pork, beef and vegetarian. Both the beef and the pork are done in the Bulgogi style (a wet Korean marinade, literally “fire meat”). As mentioned, it’s very aromatic stuff. Both meats are local and organic, with the pork from Fraser Valley Farms and the beef from Two Rivers. Thinly shaven, they’re sizzled on a square flat-top before landing on corn tortillas (also local, from Burnaby’s El Comal). Once plated, they’re topped with cilantro, onion and a mild kimchi. The vegetarian version is with mushroom and tofu from Sunrise Organics, but I could give a damn about that (sorry guys).

The prices are reasonable. One double tortilla taco is $3. For two, it’s $5.75; three, $8; and four, $10. I had a pair, and I’m still thinking about them 10 hours later. I’ll talk about the taste in my column on five new and upcoming eateries in the next issue of the Westender. Some food porn above (video) and below (big photos) to tide you over until you bumrush the joint at lunch tomorrow… Read more

Guess How Many Of The 17 New Street Food Vendors Are Ready?

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It turns out I was wrong a few weeks back when I opined on City Hall’s methodology to determine who would be granted licenses for their street food pilot project. They “chose” by lottery instead of by merit. I thought that was a no good, very bad, terrible idea, writing…

The winners are required to be operational in just 22 days [that's today, folks]. In that span they’ll need to be Coastal Health approved (always fun), have a base of operations, and be ready for volume on opening day. How many of these unknowns do you think will be ready? I’d wager no more than 10.

According to the Sun, it’s just one.

Surprise! Not All Street Food Lotto Winners Ready To Operate

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When City Hall trumpeted their list of the lucky 17 who’d won a flawed lottery for spots to sell street food from mobile carts last week, we were concerned as to how many would be ready for prime time and how many had just put their names in the bingo basket for a lark. According to a story in today’s Vancouver Courier (hat tip to reader NW), it turns out that we weren’t alone in our worries.

Claudia Kurzac, acting manager for health protection, doesn’t expect all 17 new food vendors to be operational by July 31, as per the city’s goal. “It sounds like some went into the lottery without even a business plan and don’t even have an actual trailer or cart and would have to manufacture that first, never mind even find a base of operation,” Kurzac said.

Add to that the coastal health inspections and the massive fees the City is charging for parking spaces and licenses, and it looks like the City nabobs may have a problem on their hands. If they aren’t ready, the spots go to alternates (also chosen by lot). If they aren’t ready, well…the City didn’t think that far ahead.

As we’ve argued before, they could have hand selected prospective operators for their long overdue street food pilot project based on business plans and track records, but they insisted on doing it randomly in the absurd name of “fairness” (and meritocracy be damned). While I do have faith that some tasty good will come of this lottery (I’m looking at you, southern BBQ), what I’m really hoping for is that Grant Woff, acting manager of No Fun City street administration (and the fellow who backed the lotto), takes a few private moments at his desk with his palm on his forehead…

How City Hall Screwed Up Their Own Street Food Pilot Project

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When City Hall announced that it was going to overhaul its position on mobile street food vendors (previously: “we only want it if it sucks”), I was really excited. Finally, just maybe, we’d start inching toward a town like Portland, a paradise of food trucks serving a wild array of culturally diverse dishes from the curb.

Several local restaurateurs and chefs geared up to meet the new challenge (I naturally grew hungry) but when the City explained that vendors for their summer pilot project would be decided by lottery, my enthusiasm was replaced with fear and dread.

While I’m glad the city recognised that they were unqualified to choose which food businesses would suit our streets best (their track record on this is pretty bad), they could have just asked around, perhaps even called in a couple of independent consultants who knew a thing or two about food. Better yet, they could have actually interviewed the applicants to discern whether or not they were serious. I certainly would have advised them to the best of my ability for free, as would (I’m sure) other local food writers, chefs’ associations and so on…but no. In an effort to be democratic (which can be interpreted as ‘blameless’), they basically drew names from a bingo barrel as if the vendors would be selling scarves, toques and glow sticks. This, according to Grant Woff, acting manager of street administration, was “the fairest method as everyone was given the same odds”.

Big mistake. Read more

Applications For Vancouver’s New Street Food Pilot Project

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We’re hopeful that we might actually see some interesting street food this summer with City Hall’s change of heart on sidewalk vendors and food trucks. No fewer than five restaurateurs with existing businesses have passed word on the down low that they’re interested in getting mobile, and I imagine there are plenty more dreamers (who are just as keen) that we aren’t privy to. The deadline for those seeking to apply to have a mobile food truck or cart within the city limits is June 30th at 4 pm. Get the skinny after the jump… Read more

“Roaming Dragon” Set To Turn Page On Vancouver Street Food

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A new company called Gourmet Syndicate is poised to make a move on Vancouver city streets if City Hall’s mobile food truck pilot program doesn’t ruffle any No Fun feathers next month. Their first mobile catering brand is a pimped out, 25 foot pan-Asian looker called Roaming Dragon.

It’s a fully equipped kitchen on wheels, starring the consultative talents of none other than Don Letendre, formerly the long-time executive chef at the Opus Hotel. His menu showcases panko crusted Chinese sausage and shrimp stuffed rice balls; chicken karaage with passionfruit and palm sugar; hoisin pork belly slider steam buns; duck confit salads with pickled pineapple and more. I just got off the phone with company principal Jason Apple, and he promises restaurant quality food on the streets very soon. Too good to be true? Nope. It just debuted at the Richmond Night Market this week, and folks from city council have already been given a full walk-through and taste. Read more

City Hall Inching Deliciously Close To Accepting Street Food

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Arguably the most embarrassing facet of our food city is its paucity of street food. Thanks to a ruling that is now 32 years old, City Hall only permits hot dogs, chestnuts and popcorn to be sold from carts. You might be able to score some crepes at a Farmers Market, but where’s my Pad Thai and my fish tacos? Where, goddammit!

It’s been a real sore point with local foodies, many of whom look upon our barren streetscape with no small twitch of shame. In comparison, the variety of cuisines offered by the catering trucks and carts of Portland and Seattle is straight up staggering. You can score anything. While there have been feints of change from the No Fun Nabobs for a while now, it looks like there will actually be a pilot project in place by July that will bring new flavours to a curb near you. From Randy Shore in the Vancouver Sun:

The move will likely expand the menu available on city sidewalks from pre-cooked packaged foods such as hotdogs to more freshly prepared fare. The city soon will issue a call for expressions of interest seeking vendors who want to offer streetside food service, according to the acting manager of streets administration.

Grant Woff said the city is starting to implement the pilot project and looking for street locations where catering trucks or trailers can set up. The city already has 60 locations for cart-based vendors and is identifying new spaces to accommodate larger carts, Woff said.

“There a huge amount of interest in this,” said Coun. Heather Deal, who first proposed allowing fresh food and food preparation in a motion to council two years ago. “I get more e-mail about this than any other topic.”

I’m not getting my hopes up just yet. I’ll believe it when I taste it. Keep emailing her.