I am hoping we are on the verge of a revolution here in London. Food vans. Street food has come along with leaps and bounds in the last few years, but over the last 12 months it has jumped years into the future.
Going are the days of the cheap doner kebab vans, greasy bacon butties and bad and burnt burgers. Sad to say they are still around, just head out to any festival and you will see them, but a new breed of heroes are coming forward and showing us how it can be and should be done.
Even with all these new and exciting people selling their delights, we are still light years behind LA and New York. I read recently that no new street food licences are being issued in New York, and people are auctioning theirs for up to $70,000. Madness. But they have this tradition of food vans that we do not. Yet.
The newest guys on this rollercoaster ride of street food heaven here in London, are the Lucky Chip. This van is run by 2 friendly, cheery guys who serve up some of the best burgers I’ve tasted in a long while.
They say they use Ginger Pig meat in their burgers, but I overheard them saying the meat they were now using was holding together a lot better. So not sure if it’s from Ginger Pig now or not. But who cares, as it is bloody good.
After gazing at their short but sweet menu for an age, we both decided on the Sheen burger, a juicy fat patty with beer soaked onions, Philadelphia cheese, apple wood smoked bacon, cheddar and a lush garlic aioli. It was a monster of a burger, but oh so easily was it to eat.
The meat was well seasoned, cooked to a juicy perfection. The sweet onions mixed with the bacon and cheeses made a good change from my normal cheeseburger ordering.
Even though it was a big boy burger, there was a perfect ratio of meat to bread, unlike a few pubs in Stokie where there is so much meat the bread disappears in your hands.
The hand cut chips with a scattering of grated cheese were a true delight, which really sent me back to the Shake Shack in NYC.
I’ve not tried the Meat Wagon, so I cannot compare, but the thought of queuing up for 2 hours for anything is something I will not do. Even with a drink or two in hand.
The Lucky Chip burgers however, have been the best burgers I’ve had outside of New York, they were that good. But we are going to the next Burger Monday so we shall see.
However as these burgers were cooked in a food van in a small market in East London gives me joy for the future of street food here in London. Something that I hope to join in with something in the future. We’ll see.