Last year’s food truck pilot project was a big hit on the streets of Montreal. People gathered and waited in line for their favourite street fare and the program was extended by about a month due to its popularity. The project has been improved upon and is back this summer with better schedules, more locations and even more trucks. If you want to know where to find Montreal’s food trucks and what they’re serving, this guide to food trucks and street food in Montreal is for you…
This year’s street food season will run from May 1 to October 5, 2014. The city has granted permits to 30 food trucks, which will be scheduled to appear at 14 pre-determined locations in and around downtown, from 7am to 10:30pm, seven days a week. A daily calendar is posted on the city of Montreal website but it’s worthy to note that the truck owners are free to make up their own schedule and may not be parked at their scheduled location all day.
Here’s a list of the 14 pre-determined locations:
Seven days a week:
- Cité du multimédia (De la Commune West corner Brennan)
- Dawson College (Atwater Avenue corner De Maisonneuve West)
- McCord Museum (Victoria corner President-Kennedy)
- Parc Médéric-Martin (De Rouen street corner Du Havre)
- Place d’Armes (Saint-Jacques street corner Saint-François-Xavier)
- Quartier de la santé (Saint-Denis street south of Viger East)
- Rue Lambert-Closse (south of Boulevard René-Lévesque West)
- Square Dorchester (Metcalfe street around the park)
- Square Phillips (Cathcart street around the park)
- Square Victoria (Saint-Antoine West, between Square-Victoria and Saint-Alexandre)
- Concordia University (Mackay street north of De Maisonneuve West)
- Mont-Royal Park (Parc Avenue, across the Sir George-Étienne Cartier monument)
- Near Parc Bellerive (Fullum street north of Notre-Dame Street East) on the days of the La Ronde fireworks (June 28, July 5, 12, 16, 19, 23 and 26 and August 2)
- Place Émilie-Gamelin, every Thursday from May 22 onward
Below is the list of the 30 food trucks with city permits with links to their websites or Facebook pages:
- Alexis Le Gourmand
- Boîte à Fromages
- Les Brigands
- Café Larue & fils
- Café mobile Dispatch
- Camion Au Pied de Cochon
- Chaud Dogs
- Le Cheese
- Dim Sum Montréal
- Fous’Truck, bar à croissants
- Le Gourmand Vagabond
- Grumman ’78
- Landry & filles
- Lucky’s Truck
- Nomade So6
- Ô sœurs volantes
- P.A. & Gargantua
- La Panthère mobile
- Pas d’cochon dans mon salon
- Phoenix 1
- Le point sans g
- Le Quai roulant
- Le Super Truck
- Le Tuktuk
As you can see, the choice and variety is wide and caters to all tastes. I still have my favourites from last year’s lot like Chaud Dogs, Nomade So6, Winneburger, Landry & filles, Grumman ’78, Monsieur Crémeuxand many more. I look forward to giving all of this year’s new trucks a try this summer but here are some that have particularly peaked my interest:
Dispatch Coffee & Café Larue et Fils: Even though both these coffee trucks were on the streets last summer, they had not gotten the city permits so I am thrilled that they have this year, which only means we will be seeing more of them and this makes me very happy since I am a big fan of their products.
Dispatch Coffee will be serving their third wave coffee made from beans aquired from Parlor, a roaster based in Brooklyn, of which they are the exclusive vendors in Montreal. Their cold brew will surely become one of your favourites on hot summer days. They will also be serving decadent, fresh pastries from Hof Kelsten, one of my favourite bakeries in town. You can also find Parlor coffee at Hof Kelsten.
Café Larue will be serving their smooth coffees, a perfect middle-of-the-road between an Italian-style coffee and a third wave one. They’ll also be delivering all-natural, made-in-Montreal popsicles from Les Pops and gourmet pastries and sandwiches. Their cute vintage blue truck is easily one of the best looking ones out there.
Europolonia: I tasted the potato and cheese pierogies with sauerkraut and sour cream from the Europolonia truck last Friday and I can attest that they are indeed delicious. Meat-stuffed varieties are also available.
CRémy Mobile: The famous Montreal pastry shop now has a food truck serving sweet and savoury “big” donuts made fresh every day and filter coffee from Toi, Moi et Café.
Geneviève Grandbois: Who doesn’t like a roaming chocolate truck that caters to your every craving, especially if those cravings include a crazy and decadent chocolate-banana sandwich?
Ta pies: The cute café/bakery selling gourmet Australian savoury pies and desserts now has its very own food truck! I test-tasted the butter chicken pie last Friday and I am now a fan and looking forward to tasting all the other flavours.
In addition to the list of 30 trucks with city permits listed above, the following ones will also be roaming the streets of Montreal and serving food in other boroughs (outside of the downtown core) as well as festivals and in and out-of-town events.
- Bagel St-Viateur
- CRémy Mobile
- Traiteur Guru
- L’assommoir mobile
- Monsieur Crémeux
- Norman luncheonnette urbaine
- Route 27
- Saigon je me souviens
- Le smoking BBQ
- Ta pies
- Meatball Montreal
- Lola’s Petits Gâteaux
- Pizza No 900
- Zeste Mobile
- Camion Queues de Castor
- Geneviève Grandbois
First Fridays: Every first Friday of the month, many food trucks gather at Montreal’s Olympic Stadium from 4 to 11pm. In addition to the trucks, there are DJs and street performers present at this “largest gathering of food trucks in Canada”.
Bouffons Montreal: The Just for Laughs festival is always a great opportunity for many of Montreal’s street food to gather up in one spot for a few days and do what they do best: feed the hungry crowd.
Les Survenants: Last year, four editions of these events happened around town. A “caravan” of food trucks along with street performers, musicians and other artists takes over a neighbourhood for a day. Watch for this year’s still unscheduled editions.
Le Marché Angus: Every Friday from June 13th to October 17th, from 3PM et 7PM, a couple of food trucks will be present at this weekly market.
The Lachine Canal: The Canal lunches were a big hit last summer. They are back this summer with two locations to start (the intersection of De La Commune and Mills and Îlot de Charlevoix) for a daily dose of food trucks. To find out which trucks will be present on any specific day, check the Association des restaurateurs de rue du Québec’s website.
The Old Port: Montreal’s Old Port is already home to a few more stationary food street food options such as the Muvbox Lobster Roll and Porchetta, Monsieur Félix & Mr. Norton and Dic Ann’s. This summer will see the addition of Café Vito, a much-needed café dispensing great Italian-style espresso and delicious iced lattés.
Projet pilote Rosemont-La Petite Patrie: A pilot project is on this summer in the Rosemont-Petite Patrie borough. Targeting the area’s lunch crowd, 5 locations have been predetermined to receive one food truck each every day of the week from 11h30AM to 2:30PM. A sixth location (right near bar Alexandraplatz in the heart of the Mile Ex) will welcome a food truck Thursday to Saturday, 5PM to 9PM. Check the schedule on the ARRQ website.
That’s a lot to remember, so let’s make this simple: here’s a Google Map of where the trucks will be this summer and my Montreal Food Trucks Twitter list (trucks usually tweet their location daily) to which you should subscribe if you are on Twitter. For reference, there’s also the Streetfood MTL Web App and finally the Association des restaurateurs de rue du Québec website and its handy monthly schedule of ARRQ events as well as the weekly schedule of the city’s pilot project .