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LET'S EAT: Find fabulous fare at Newmarket's food trucks

Newmarket food trucks serve up more than just burgers and fries, from cooked-before-you breakfast pizza and authentic Philly cheesesteak to loaded tots and lobster rolls

Not a brick-and-mortar location, but not a really a food truck: Mulberry’s Oven is in a bit of a grey area.

“Complicated and grey areas... (it’s) the combination that keeps life interesting,” said longtime Newmarket resident Tim McClure with a laugh. McClure owns Mulberry’s Oven with Ketty Berton. 

Mulberry’s Oven creates pizzas in a 5,000-pound mobile oven, which gets set up alongside a tent that houses a complete outdoor kitchen.

“The oven is unique and is the showstopper at golf, corporate and private events,” McClure said. They have between six and eight people working each shift, with the oven able to produce about 400 pizzas during an event. 

What’s also unique about their mobile oven is that they offer their customers, including those who come out to the Newmarket Farmers’ Market every Saturday until October, an opportunity to watch their pizza being made. This includes Mulberry’s Oven breakfast pizza, which is often sold out at the market before 10 a.m.

“With our setup, customers and guests can watch their pizza being made from start to finish, right in front of them,” McClure said. “They see the dough being kneaded and flipped, their toppings going on, it going into the oven, watch it cook, and see it coming out, ready to eat.

“Seeing this process happen is a big deal for customers, and we think a competitive advantage over a standard food truck. That said, (our oven) is a lot more work — set up, tear down — than a food truck.” 

According to the Government of Canada, Canadians have embraced food trucks and the diversity of foods found at them. Locations that have a food truck see an increase in visibility and safety, while their customers are able to discover affordable and convenient food options. 

And despite a rocky start — many municipalities, worried about the potential impact food trucks would have on local businesses including brick-and-mortar restaurants, imposed regulations that limited where they could park — food trucks have taken a hold.

In Toronto, for example, the city went from 14 to 56 food trucks between 2014 and 2016, which is a 400 per cent increase.

Newmarket has a number of food trucks that can be found at events and festivals in town and outside of it, with foods that go beyond burgers and fries.

Irv & Co.

Newmarket’s Regan Irvine is the founder and operator of Irv & Co. Hospitality Group that includes the Irv & Co. food truck, which can be found at events in Newmarket, including on Main Street, as well private and corporate events. Some of their clients include Scotiabank, the Town of Newmarket, Toronto Blue Jays Baseball Club (post game meals for staff and players), Toronto Raptors and the National Hockey League, among others. Irvine, who wants Irv & Co. to be considered “York Region’s premium food truck” said people chose their food truck because of their high-quality “product, service and reliability.”

From mac and cheese to loaded tots and lobster rolls, food is made fresh using local ingredients, Irvine said.

Irv & Co. Hospitality Group includes Irv at the George in the George Brewery on Main Street and the company’s latest venture, Irv at the Banjo in Uxbridge. They also have a line of sauces, spices and cocktail mixes, root beer and cream soda.

Philthy Philly’s 

Newmarket’s Danny Kotsopoulos is the CEO and founder of Philthy Philly’s, which brings the flavour of Philadelphia right to food lovers in town. Kotsopoulos’ food truck can be found at events and festivals in Newmarket and beyond, where he serves up authentic Philly cheesesteak — served on hoagie rolls, a key ingredient in a true Philly Cheesesteak sandwich and imported from Philadelphia — as well as Philthy Poutinerie, pulled pork sandwiches and salads. Kotsopoulos said what he loves about the food truck is the variety of people and events he meets. Kotsopoulos is the founder of Philthy Brands, which includes franchise locations throughout Ontario and Canada and into the United States. 

A’s Pizza Truck

Featured last month in Let’s Eat, Akos and Erika Pataki, owners of A’s Pizza Truck, serves authentic Neapolitan pizzas, sourdough bread and sourdough scones.