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El Gastronomo Vagabundo – Food Truck Profile

The side design on the El Gastronomo Vagabundo food truck.

Ontario’s first food truck, nearly two years ago, was El Gastronomo Vagabundo. No surprise, though, that the food truck whose chef appeared in his gotchies for a recent spread in the Grid goes by El Gastro for short. That attitude Adam obviously gets that a food truck meal should be a three-minute Ramones song, not a symphony by Bach.

Last night they hosted a party to celebrate (and view) their appearance on Food Network’s Eat St.

I know Adam and Tamara (El Gastro’s operations manager) personally, I spent a day working on their truck and wrote an article for Spotlight Toronto about it. This is a profile (not a review) but take that into account when you read the sections that shade towards opinion.

  • El Gastronomo Vagabundo a.k.a. El Gastro
  • Hometown: St. Catharines, ON
  • Adam prepared these battered and fried cod in a pineapple-habanero-coconut sauce for the Eat St. viewing party.

    Adam prepared these battered and fried cod in a pineapple-habanero-coconut sauce for the Eat St. viewing party.

    Most-Talked-About, Signature Dish: It’s been a while since their once standard pork belly steamed buns appeared on a menu that I ate from. These days tacos seem to be the mainstay. Before Buster’s Sea Cove launched this was the most seafood-heavy truck in our area.

  • Lamb's tongue is one of El Gastro's most noteworthy and frequent ingredients. Another remarkably delicious treat from the Eat St. party.

    Lamb's tongue is one of El Gastro's most noteworthy and frequent ingredients. Another remarkably delicious treat from the Eat St. party.

    Try If You Get the Chance: El Gastro is the perfect place for applying the “order whichever item seems least delicious” rule. The pork nachos (no tortilla chips here, just deep-fried pig skin) and thinly-sliced and fried until crispy pigs’ ears were home runs.

  • Lunch Location and Hours: No regular weekday location at this point but frequent appearances at U of T and various Food Truck Eats events throughout the summer.
  • Time to Place Order: Event-only so variable and not comparable to other truck profiles but they tend to have one of the longest lines.
  • Time to Get Food After Placing Order: As above but as one of Toronto’s most experienced truck crews the post-order wait is one of the shortest.
  • Established: July 2010
  • The Added Touches: Adam has one of the deepest, most gourmet play books amongst Toronto food truck chefs. Flavours are just as likely to be influenced by southeast Asia and Australia as they are Mexico or the Middle East.
  • Web site: www.elgastro.com.
  • Social Media:@elgastronomo and Facebook.

To see my methodology and description of each of these categories as well as all of my Toronto food trucks profiles visit the Food With Legs food trucks page.

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