"People who love to eat are always the best people," American chef/author Julia Child once said, which is an accurate description of vegan and vegetarian Melbourne hanging out at The Food Truck Park in Preston earlier this month. The mobile street food phenomenon has hit Melbourne in recent years and many vendors are trucking their way around the city successfully. Many of Melbourne's mobile food businesses have since attracted cult followings, and I know that I’ve personally curated my list of vegan food truck vendors that I’ve grown to love, trust and befriend. When The Food Truck Park announced its second vegan and vegetarian special event weekend in Preston for this year, I was there.
The Food Truck Park in Preston hosted vegan Melburnians in a cosy, central spot where vegan and vegetarian food trucks can pull in to feed them. It was a delicious chance to support newly discovered businesses spruiking quick and tasty vegan meals. It was even a great chance to catch up with friends, like those operating Woking Amazing who were handing out dumpling upon dumpling, not to mention their fast and tasty mock meat creations. They are, as the name confirms, amazing.
The space outdoors held a variety of vegetarian and vegan food truck vendors, all offering a grand range of lunch-time options. Wooden tables and benches filled much of the sitting space, allowing hungry vegans to sit under the shade of a beach umbrella and enjoy their newfound favourites. Friends ran into one another and enjoyed each other's company as Melbourne's occasional winter sunshine helped for a delicious Sunday eating session. A mobile bar towards the back sold drinks such as craft beers and ciders, and non-alcoholic choices for those feeling a little thirsty.
What's a bonus to the breezy layout of The Food Truck Park in Preston is the warehouse at the end of the site where there’s more seating and food vendors. Those businesses who don't operate from a truck or van can easily set up at their own trestle stall, such as Von's Vegan Bakehouse. So many choices were available; delectable vegan cakes like Humming Bird, Strawberry or Cookies and Cream. Von's is another vegan food business I love to support, which can also be called on to make cakes to order. Generously-cut slabs were found, perfect for a post-lunch sweet treat. Von was cooking around the clock over the vegan and vegetarian weekend just to keep up with the demand. A true sign that The Food Truck Park in Preston is on to a good thing when it decides to host niche weekends like these. And, Melbourne's vegans are celebrating as a result.
While it was tempting to start with dessert, I gave in to my lunchtime hunger and tried out a couple of new meals. Like, vegan serves of Indian curries and rice topped with coconut raita found at The Vegan Collective. On the side, crispy tofu triangles with a portion of soy sauce to dip them in were gobbled up intently by my husband in tow. To finish, it was back to my favourite vegan cake vendor – Von's Vegan Bakehouse – to try her gluten free strawberry cake; thickly dressed with a sweet and gooey strawberry icing and garnished by fresh strawberries; "all for the love of [vegan] street food", of course!
The Food Truck Park runs vegan and vegetarian weekends as special events throughout the year. Entry is free and food/drink prices are as marked by each vendor.
518 High Street, Preston Victoria, Australia 3072.
The next vegan and vegetarian weekend will be held from Friday November 4 to Sunday November 6.
Lock this into your calendar, now!
Justine de Jonge at Fire & Tea paid for all food items herself for the purpose of this review and attended the Sunday of the August vegan and vegetarian weekend.