Toronto street food dumbness
- mogo Jan 19, 2009 01:01 PM
Street food is such a good, simple concept. Why must the city complicate it so much??
Toronto will never have a vibrant street food scene if this keeps up.
Totally agree with you. Over regulating will kill street food in Toronto. Why can't this be simple? Because this is Toronto.
That article does not mention something else which was in the Jan 10 article in the Globe and Mail.
Here is that paragraph from the G and M article:
"As well, several hopefuls questioned why all food sold on the cart must be prepared at a premises inspected by a public health agency, such as a restaurant, commercial kitchen or banquet facility, a requirement that will preclude anyone from cooking at home and then transferring their meals to the cart."
That means it NOT street food after all, just restaurant food reheated and served on the street.
If you want to read the complete article I refer to, it is here:
"food sold on the cart must be prepared at a premises inspected by a public health agency" because you do not want to kill people... that is why.. All food sold to the public must be made at an inspected location that does not mean a restarant you can get your home kitchen inspected and certified just have to meet some health department criteria.
'have to meet some health department criteria.' That's FINE by me and anyone else who might patronize a toxic taco truck. Getting a home kitchen through a clear inspection isn't easy or cheap which I find comforting. The real hitch is exorbitant municipal licensing and fees. I'd rather kill street food before it kills me, thanks.
Really not that bad actually as long as you use an electric stove they do not require a commercial hood. Biggest thing is a greese trap but they have these really small ones now that would fit under your kitchen sink... biggest is the extra handwashing sink besides a two compartment dishwashing sink. A freind just went through it...
Toronto is never going to have vibrant street food. Period. We might as well get used to it. Sure it's 'possible' to get a falafel stand or empanada stand going, provided you have deep pockets and are willing to be treated the same as a bricks and mortar establishment.
Of course that will eliminate everyone but those with the money, time and facilities. So, no crepe carts, no taco cart, no espresso cart, no smoothie cart etc. I've eaten street food in several cities, in several countries. It adds a vibrancy to the streets, colour, smells, sound. But, Toronto council is just a tad reticent to take that step. It's a big one.
As for the comments about restaurant kitchens being cleaner than home kitchens, I beg to differ. I know numerous cooks who pride themselves on a spotless and sanitary kitchen at home, and I know a few restaurants who wouldn't want you poking through their reach-ins too. And really, if someone is serving food from one of the few carts available, I suspect they'll be under such scrutiny and pressure that the last thing they'd allow to happen is bad or off food to be served.
I say bring on the carts, expand the menu and relax. We'll all enjoy it.
Aren't we talking about the same city that has been kicking around the Portlands development for some 30 odd years??
Unfortunately Commissar Miller and Cronies are further "over legislating" another aspect of life in the city. Why not take a straightforward approach and let basic economics (supply and demand) give us a result.
This reheated crap that they are proposing is absolute sillyness. They wouldn't know a good meal if it fell in their laps.