South Africa’s food truck capital, Cape Town, joined the global trend for mobile dining a few years ago. There are now over 30 food trucks in the Mother City, with new ones popping up each year – adding to Cape Town’s already excellent and diverse food scene. Some of the best food trucks in Cape Town are only found at events such as festivals, but many operate every week, offering their wares from weekly markets such as the ever-popular Neighbourgoods, which takes place each Saturday in Woodstock. The most scenic food truck spot in the city, however, is at Oudekraal – a roadside viewing point on the route between Camps Bay and Hout Bay where trucks park off on Wednesdays and Saturdays. On one side is the glittering Atlantic Ocean, and on the other, the dramatic Twelve Apostles mountains – it’s hard to beat that food truck view.
Follow @CTFoodTrucks on Twitter for the low down on the latest food truck movements around the city.
One of Cape Town’s first food trucks, the delightfully retro Limoncello, is run by Naples-born chef Luca Castiglione. He used to own a popular neighborhood restaurant of the same name before deciding to open up a food truck instead. As the name suggests, the delightfully retro truck serves up southern Italian fare, with seasonal dishes such as artichoke risotto, melanzane parmigiana and yellow fin tuna panini, as well as the firm favourites on offer – pizzas and calzones. You can find Luca’s truck (and the friendly Luca himself) at Oudekraal on Wednesdays and Saturdays when the weather’s good, and at different events throughout the city.
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Cafeteria Guerilla Gastronomica
This funky retro-styled converted trailer is at the Neighbourgoods Market every Saturday serving up gourmet comfort food: think warm oatmeal with stewed fruit and almonds, toasted banana bread with vanilla-yoghurt cream, Thai curry roasted butternut soup with sourdough, slow-roast leg of lamb and a vegetarian chickpea and spinach stew.
Lotus Food Truck
Tuck into tasty south-east Asian street food from this food truck, which serves up khai soi noodles with lime curry sauce from Northern Thailand, wraps filled with pickled veggies, chilli mayo and pork belly, Thai curries, noodle bowls, and bahn mi rolls from Vietnam washed down with homemade iced tea or Vietnamese coffee. The truck parks off at the newly launched Vineyard Oval Market in Newlands every Wednesday night, but you can also catch it at festivals such as Rocking the Daisies and other Cape Town events.
Get delicious thin-crust pizzas out the charcoal-and-yellow trailer of Earthfire Pizza, where the pies are baked in ceramic ovens. Toppings include Parma ham, fig and brie; chorizo, feta and peppadew (a sweet-spicy red pepper); and basil pesto and olives. The trailer is found at different food markets of the city throughout the week, and it can also be found catering at events and festivals.
Run by Bertus Basson, the award-winning chef of one of South Africa’s top rated restaurants, Die Wors-Rol serves just one thing out of a food truck named Betsie: a gourmet wors rol (that’s Afrikaans for hot dog). Expect juicy pork sausages from a local farm, a trio of sauces – Basson’s mother’s special mustard sauce, tomato sauce and cucumber relish – wrapped up in a toasted roll with thrice-fried French fries. Bestie can be found at festivals and events and can be hired for private parties.
Lady Bonin’s Tea Parlour
In 2010 Jessica Bonin converted a 1970s caravan into a boho-chic tea parlour, launching Cape Town’s first food truck, and it’s been a favorite on the festival and food market circuit ever since. Choose from a range of hot and iced brews from chilli-chai and oolong to earl grey and Moroccan mint.
Durban’s Finest Curry
The best culinary export of the coastal city of Durban, which is home to the biggest Indian population outside of the subcontinent, is undoubtedly curry. Try and authentically Durban curry at this popular food truck, which has been serving up deliciously spicy curries such as crayfish and prawn, samosas, and bunny chows (a Durban-invented dish of hollowed out bread loaf filled with curry). Catch them at events and at the City Bowl Market on Thursday evenings and Saturday mornings.
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Long before the advent of food trucks in South Africa, there have been soft serve ice cream trucks, which park next to the beaches and drive through suburbs in the summer, drawing legions of children with their catchy ice cream tunes. Now there’s a food truck that can be found at Cape Town’s events (and private parties) that offers the nostalgic soft serve ice creams of childhood but with no additives or artificial ingredients and in unusual gourmet flavors with a strong South African influence. Choose from and sweetcorn and tomato jam, moerkoffie (strong coffee) and cinnamon snaps or milk tart (a traditional South African creamy tart).
Two meisies (girls), Marli and Tracey, dish up wholesome food made with locally sourced ingredients, from pasta and salads to sandwiches and wraps at markets and events around the city. Their tasty fare, which includes Cajun chicken burgers, steak rolls with caramelised onions, and grilled halloumi and eggplant paninis, have garnered them an award – they won best food truck at this year’s Good Food and Wine Show.
The Good Life
Pick your meal from an eclectic menu that features fusion food from around the world at this black-and-yellow truck – think quesadillas with chipotle relish, crayfish braaibroodjies (sandwiches toasted on a barbecue grill), truffle-infused burger, Moroccan chicken pitta sandwich, scrambled egg, gravlax and caviar wrap or prawn tempura with aioli. Don’t miss trying their most popular meal – a cheese burger with Jack Daniels onion relish.
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The food truck offshoot of Cape Town’s hippest Mexican restaurant (of the same name) can be found at the Saturday Neighbourgoods Market in Woodstock and outside the House of Machines coffee shop in the CBD (where you can get great coffee and Bloody Marys) on Sundays for a street brunch. On the menu is Mexican street food: huevos rancheros, breakfast burritos, BBQ pulled pork tortas, courgette and chorizo tacos and churros.
On offer at this cute wooden food trailer are hearty and healthy Mediterranean dishes with some South African and Asian influences thrown in – think free-range chicken melanzane with tomato and basil salsa, chicken and coconut lentil curry, chicken frikkadel (South Africa meatballs), flame-grilled sirloin steak roll with arugula and feta, sweet-chilli chicken wrap and Greek-style lamb panini in a herbed feta-and-yoghurt sauce. The truck can be found at a variety of outdoor events, from marathons to music festivals and outside the famous Charly’s Bakery (on Canterbury Street, close to the CBD) on Thursdays and Fridays.
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