Food Truck Fridays continued with KB and AM. For his second pick, AM discovered Mangal Kiss at the corner of Howe and West Georgia, by the curb of the Vancouver Art Gallery plaza. We went through some diner reviews beforehand and realized that the waiting time could be an issue; nonetheless, we decided to give it a try.
Turns out the wait is a norm. The kebabs are being grilled fresh, and they only cook a few at a time. That would explain the wait line by the truck. We got there just around noon and we were told to wait about 20 minutes for our food.
With our grumbling tummies, we got our first kebab 18 minutes later, with the third one getting to our hands exactly 20 minutes later. AM ordered the featured kebab, which is the Peace River Lamb Kebab wrapped in thin pita.
Wanting the same thing, but was also intrigued by the phrase “tradition Iranian flat bread” on the regular menu, I kindly asked the staff if I can order my Peace River Lamb Kebab on Taftoon. And thankfully, they said yes! Judging by the looks of it, the taftoon and pita are fairly similar. Pita seems thicker and more coarse in texture, whereas taftoon reminds me of East Indian naan bread – thin and airy inside.
And it was a healthy, yet hearty wrap! I was very surprised by how much vegetables they’ve put inside the wrap. Love the texture contrast between leafy greens and crunchy cucumbers, radish and daikons. It was very refreshing. Don’t misunderstand, they didn’t cheap out on the meat either. The lamb kebab filled the wrap end-to-end. The lamb kebab is less juicy than Vij’s, but they’ve used mint in the seasoning of the lamb, which is a very good combination of flavours. I was expecting this to be a bit spicy but the heat level was rather mild. It was a decent size wrap for just $8.
KB chose the Fraser Valley Beef Shish Kabob Shishliks, one of the regular items. According to KB, the beef was cooked medium, which is a safe choice for meat doneness, but he personally would’ve preferred medium rare. That said, the meat was seasoned well, and he too was impressed by the amount of veggies in the wrap. This was an even better deal at $7.
At first I didn’t believe in their estimate of wait time, thinking that it wouldn’t take 20 minutes to cook a few kebabs. It turns out they have got this down to a tee, and are able to estimate wait time based on the number of orders. I did appreciate the fact that they forewarn you about the wait time before confirming the order and receiving your payment, so you know what to expect and know to be patient while waiting for your order.
If the wait time is not an issue for you, give this a try. It’s definitely one of the cheaper options in the ethnic food truck category, while delivering decent portion and good quality of food.
Mangal Kiss Mid East BBQ (Food Cart)
Art Gallery on Georgia Street, Vancouver