First Look: Urban Smoke Fusion BBQ, Toronto’s new southern-style food truck
By David Ort
Where there's smoke, there's barbecue (Images: David Ort)
A food truck’s greatest strength is the freedom to go where a restaurant cannot. For the Urban Smoke Fusion BBQ truck, that means a windswept parking lot on Cherry Street in Toronto’s Port Lands district. From there, the truck has established a steady business with local workers and those attending the nearby Cirque du Soleil performances. It will be there for the rest of October.
After witnessing California’s thriving food truck scene, Martin Buckingham and Scott Danyshyn, owners of the longstanding barbecue catering business The Gourmet Group, decided to add a truck to their roster. The Urban Smoke Fusion BBQ truck (it’s a retired Purolator truck) was launched earlier this summer.
The food is drawn from southern barbecue, and is given comfortably popular presentations. The Dirty Bob ($8) is a thick-sliced brisket/grilled cheese sandwich that is made with sautéed onions, mushrooms and Swiss cheese. That brisket — which cook Aldi Dzilums proudly declares is ”smoked for 10 hours over hickory” — appears again in the poutine ($8).
On the pork side, apple wood is used to smoke both the St. Louis-style side ribs ($10 for a half rack; $20 for a full rack) and the pulled pork ($8 for a sandwich with sauce and slaw). “Rib guy” Mark Hannan heats the ribs with maple lump charcoal in a smoker trailer set up behind the truck.
“Our motto is that when you take a bite of one of our sandwiches, something should definitely fall out the other side,” says Samantha Lock, the group’s social media manager.
Serviettes are highly recommended.
For customers with a sweet tooth, there is a dessert grilled cheese sandwich ($4) that, naturally, stars Nutella and mascarpone. Some items on the menu rotate in or out: dessert could feature drunken banana pudding or Georgia-style peach crisp, and the ribs are not an everyday offering.
This week, and for the rest of October, the truck will be in the parking lot on the west side of Cherry Street, just south of Commissioners Street, from 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Days and times may vary due to other bookings, but a daily schedule is posted online.
Urban Smoke Fusion BBQ, @UrbanSmokeTruck