An irreplaceable part of Melbourne's food scene for quite a while now, it seems our loveable taco-wielding, dessert-driven rolling truckies won't be disappearing anytime soon. Practically invented for summer, there are a whole slew of food truck gatherings happening around the city this season, from St Kilda's Hank Marvin Markets to Welcome to Thornbury to the new post-apocalyptic themed Richmond Yard.
So grab some of Melbourne's best street food and chow down practically anywhere under the sun — it all depends on where they decide to anchor for mealtimes. So without further hungry ado, here are Melbourne's best food trucks and where to find them.
THE LITTLE MUSHROOM CO.
If you thought good street food only came in a greasy, deep-fried, meaty form, The Little Mushroom Co. is keen to change your perception. Despite its strictly vegetarian-only menu, the majority of Melburnians have had little trouble welcoming this particular four-wheeled friend. Serving up some of this city's best vego grub, the truck is known for its dynamic, punchy spices and succulent mushroom burgers — as you might have guessed.
What to order: The Ultra Mexican Mushroom Burger. Their bestseller, a combo of portobello and Swiss brown mushrooms with spicy chipotle, balsamic and rocket on a pillow-soft, crunchy ciabatta bun.
Dispelling the myth that all Mexican street food is a potential hazard to your stomach, Super Taco's tacos not only get the tick of approval, their humble food truck creations are some of the best in Melbourne. One of the newer trucks on the scene, the taco truck comes from the guys behind Mr Burger and Fancy Hanks. Catering to they city's curiosity for strange food, Super Taco is known for utilising special (super, even) unconventional ingredients like cactus. Look for the playfully obnoxious blue and yellow truck – we don’t think you'll have any trouble locating it.
What to order: Four-mushroom taco with Meredith goats' feta and pickled red onion.
Where to find it: The Super Taco truck is a regular at Welcome to Thornbury and Federation Square, and keeps their Twitter updated with their location.
One of Fitzroy's favourite cafes, Hammer & Tong, reached the pinnacle of good ideas when they decided to hit the streets of Melbourne. The truck is part time roamer of the Melbourne city streets, and part time resident at their Brunswick location, aptly named BCKYRD. While the guys are best known for their soft shell crab burger, the BCKYRD menu differs slightly, including smoked meats and gumbo.
What to order: Soft shell crab burger with sesame slaw, Sirarcha mayo and coriander.
Where to find it: At BCKYRD every Saturday and Sunday; at various other locations during the week — watch their Facebook and Twitter to follow their whereabouts.
From one lonely little food truck to four permanent stores and seven rolling truckies, you could say that Mr Burger has grown on Melbourne, just a bit. If there's one thing this city loves more than a good food truck, it's a food truck that sells darn good burgers. These gloriously tender meat patties are sandwiched between buns of salad-y, cheesy goodness and topped with Mr Burger's impeccable signature sauce. You might as well give up on the idea of a healthy lunch and order some crispy chips and a decadent milkshake too.
What to order: An all-out Mr Double with double of the good stuff: double beef, double cheese, double bacon, lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle and signature special trucker sauce.
Where to find it: Mr Burger have four permanent locations in Little Bourke Street, Fitzroy, Windsor and the Queen Vic Market. Plus, they have six food trucks roaming Melbourne, including one at Federation Square Wednesday to Sunday, and one on rotation at Welcome to Thornbury. For the other trucks' whereabouts, check their website.
The perfect summer refreshment coming to a (hopefully) convenient corner near you. The now-international juice brand still sells some of Melbourne's tastiest and healthiest super juice blends out of their truck in Cremorne. With a standard location on Newton Street, the van also frequently visits festivals and other Melbourne events. Look for the adorably minimalistic, whitewashed, fruity-smelling truck.
What to order: The Red Blend: raspberries, blueberries, coconut water, banana and SKIN superfood blend.
Where to find it: 3 Newton Street, Cremone, Monday to Friday; at various festivals and events on the weekend.
Shining the spotlight on the humble toastie, don't be fooled into underestimating the powers of the everyday sandwich. In the hands of TOASTA, one of Melbourne's finest food truck institutions, these toasties are some of the best things since sliced bread. Crunchy, stringy, piping hot and balanced with a king-hit of fresh herbs or veg, be warned — these cheese-filled contraptions are dangerously addictive.
What to order: The Sammi: four cheeses, blanched spring greens and dill.
Where to find it: TOASTA usually frequents the Hank Marvin Markets on Saturdays and the Welcome to Thornbury food truck park. You can track them down through Facebook and Twitter.
Just when you thought Melbourne's Vietnamese food scene couldn't get better, Lil Nom Noms rolls out. A Melbourne favourite, the truck offers tasty traditional steamed bao, rice paper rolls, banh mi sliders and herby rice noodle salads. It's fresh, light street eating that every foodie can get on board with.
What to order: Two steamed bao: one braised pork, coriander and cucumber, and one lemongrass chicken with slaw and hot sauce.
Where to find it: It doesn't have one fixed place, but you can track its movement on Twitter.
Everyone loves a good bibimbap. There's literally nothing not to like about the mixed Korean veggie bowls topped with your favourite tender meat. And, considering Melbourne's Bibimbap food truck was crowdfunded online, it's safe to say our city has more than a good appetite for the Korean dish.
What to order: Tofu bibimbap with sesame sauce.
Where to find it: The Bibimbap food truck is on rotation at Welcome to Thornbury and Chadstone Shopping Centre — you can find them via their Facebook page.
Don’t settle for artificial flavours this summer. Billy Van Creamy's handmade, natural gelato skips the colours, preservatives, emulsifiers and stabilisers all together, producing some of Melbourne’s best tasting gelato. Out of a truck. Who would've thunk it? We're not sure what the magic recipe is behind this gelato, it could have something to do with the organic milk, fresh nuts or seasonal fruit, but we're happy to indulge whenever they're around anyway.
Unlike other moveable food trucks, Grub Food Van is a permanent fixture on Moor Street. More like a cafe that happens to be in a van, dilapidated picnic chairs and tables sit outside the food truck in summer, and there's an indoor greenhouse for when the weather turns sour. The space around the back of the van houses picnic-style chairs, ping-pong tables, greenery and mismatched rugs. Not too shabby for some (supposedly) grubby food.
What to order: Charcuterie board with jamon serrano, ossocollo, calabrese, duck rillettes, pickles and grilled sourdough.
Where to find it: Permanently moored at 87-89 Moor Street, Fitzroy.