Roaming Dragon brings a whole new era of quality gourmet food to Vancouver’s streets. This unique mobile restaurant serves beloved Pan-Asian favourites including fried rice, short ribs, and steamed pork buns. Disregard address, this is a mobile truck.
I was thinking about trying Roaming Dragon for quite some time after reading about them as the street cart food to try, but didn't know when I'd make it out to Kits beach in the summer to check them out. Imagine my delight to see them at one of the Vancouver Farmer's Markets! I also had a Groupon for $10 worth of food, so we were able to try 2 items each and we ended up ordering almost all the popular items on their menu: Fried Rice Balls, Korean Shortrib Tacos, Chicken Karaage, and the Pork Belly Sliders! All very unique and presented nicely. We enjoyed the Fried Rice Ball the most and you get 4 balls! There's no where to sit to eat, so we had to find a makeshift table at the side of the market by some kind of cement barrier. Oh well, I love street food so it was easy for us to keep eating and walk through the market. We also enjoyed the basil lychee iced tea, very yummy and refreshing. My favorite street cart food place so far. =)
Ambiance? Well, it was nice the day we tried it, but obviously being a roaming truck, it's really hit and miss.
Service? Yup, there's a girl standing outside to help us, very friendly, very helpful. And my, was the service ever FAST. Faster than JapaDog.
Okay, so let's get to the food. I had the pork belly sliders and the duck confit salad. Duck was a touch on the salty side for my liking, but otherwise pretty good, reasonably innovative. The pork belly sliders fared even better. Excellent taste, pork belly was done very tender, but not falling apart. Juicy, but not too fatty. And the buns they used, nice. Much better than the char siu bao at most dim sum places. Texture and taste was way better than any buns at dim sum.
The price? $6 a dish or $10 for two of 'em. And there in lies a dilemma. It's street food, it's off the side of a truck. I'm expecting cheeeeap and considering the size of the dish, $6 is not cheeeeaaap. The pork belly sliders are smaller than A&W mini sirloin burgers, yet a whole lot more expensive (sure they are better, but still). I think if I had these in a restaurant, on a plate, at say Cactus or Earl's or whatever, I wouldn't complain too much
To be fair, come on, most hot dog stand charges at least $3-5 for just hot dogs, so in light of that, maybe it isn't so bad.
Yeah, it might actually the best quality street food ever (word is the guy behind it used to be the chef for Opus/Elixir?), but I just can't wrap my head around the "street food" thing and $6 for what is a relatively small portion.
Maybe it's the price to be paid for being the first "gourmet" street food truck or maybe it's just me.
Okay, I would actually recommend it for a try, since they are serving good food, good ingredients and reasonably inventive about the few items they have. Just once though. Unless you're rolling in dough or you're sick of your staple diet of street hot dogs.
I actually went to their stand at PNE and was extremely excited to try their food since I heard a lot of hype about it. I figured if it was featured on Eat St., its gotta be good...I was REALLY wrong.
First off, the prices were really high and I thought it would be a lot cheaper from a food truck. Although at that moment, I figured the portions must make up for why it was so pricey. I ordered a Chicken Dragon Sub, a Taco (don't remember which kind) and also a Lychee Lemonade. It was about $18...and I thought it was that was quite steep.
Second, when we finally got our food (after a really long wait), we were EXTREMELY disappointed with the taco. It was literally ONE super tiny taco and for $4...we were pretty shocked. The Dragon Sub was actually full sized and looked like it would be filling...but for $8?! I could get the exact same sized sub at Au Petit for $4.75 (and taste 10x better). The lemonade was alright, I liked the first few sips but after that..it started tasting really funny.
Third, the actual TASTE...my boyfriend ate his taco in less than 20 seconds and then told me that it wasn't anything special and he was indifferent about how it tasted. However he was really upset that it costed him $4 for a bite of average quality food. I started getting into my sub when I realized that a huge part of the bread was burnt...and burnt very badly, I had to flake off all the black burnt areas before I could try a bite. My first bite was all bread and a full mouth of raw onions...I really wasn't impressed. I took another bite and got another mouthful of raw onions...now I was really mad. I unwrapped the sub and looked inside and realized I was staring at what looked like almost half of a raw onion in the sub with very little chicken! I started picking out allllllll the onions as it was so overwhelming it was almost impossible to believe.
At the end of my onion sub, I was left feeling cheated, hungry and had onion breath....good thing I was at the PNE and there were 20+ stands of other foods I could eat (and that were actually tasty).
Sorry Roaming Dragon...you have been slayed from my list.
I tried this out, after they offered a great deal on the Groupon website (too bad I only bought one).
Their menu is $6.00 per item or $10.00 for 2 and $15.00 for 3 items. Items are small, tapa size, so one item just doesn't cut it for the hungry person. Two is a good size... and if you have the cash.. go for 3! I had the deep fried rice balls (comes in 4). Rice with bbq pork (and I can't recall what else), breaded and deep fried and topped with a curry sauce.... love this! I could eat another order of these right now! The breading was light, the rice wasn't oily (surprisingly) and of course was delicious. The other item I had was the rib taco's (2 per order). This was okay.... strange that I can't recall what I don't like about it, just that I didn't love it. They lychee and basil drink was yummy and refreshing. The staff was very friendly and helpful, despite the line up of other people all holding a print out from Groupon.
they don't have an extensive menu but hey, it's a food cart, not a full service restaurant. And their prices ($10.00 is not on the cheap side) but hey you're in downtown Vancouver... it's expected. So I think I will be going back to try other items on their menu even without the Groupon.