Les Premiers Vendredis or First Fridays food truck festival is a popular event in Montreal that I had always planned on going to but never made the effort to drive out to Montreal for. My parents live on the South Shore and I never planned my trip well enough to make it to the foodie festival.
This year is different, however, because I did not go to one, but two First Fridays and definitely plan on going to more! I will say though, after my first experience I have learned some reliable tricks that I definitely recommend you use next month.
If you want to know how my experience has been so far with Les Premiers Vendredis food truck festival and get a glimpse at my best tricks, keep reading.
My Initial Experience
I’m not gonna lie, I was sooo hyped for the food truck festival. Being my first year as a food blogger I really wanted to push myself to go to as many food related events as possible! I literally couldn’t contain myself when the 1st of July crept around the corner.
I took the festival as an opportunity to have some family bonding time with my dad, and without giving too much away we left that night with sore feet and aching mouths from smiling (aka we had a great time but we walked alot!).
My dad and I arrived around 7:00 pm, which as you will see, was one of the first mistakes we made. The festival was packed and it took us a long time to get from one end to the other. Our plan was simple, get a glass of white Chile wine, walk around and scope out the options, then pick a line, and wait for our food. We also decided to share everything because they are full portions and we wanted to try more than one thing and we didn’t want to order anything too ordinary like a simple poutine, burger, or hot dog.
I think its fair to say that I am a very patient person, I don’t mind lines because I know that the wait is worth it. On the other hand, my dad can become a little impatient, especially when he’s hungry. I can’t recall how many lines we waited in before we actually dedicated ourselves to one, but I remember it being over 2.
We began our food adventure with a Wagu Poutine because the food truck had the shortest line, it was also very expensive which explains the express time. The poutine was DELISH! It made me think of my childhood, and no I didn’t eat Wagu as a child. My parents used to make beef Goulash when I was younger and it has the same creamy tomato, garlic (my poor stomach), and onion flavors. Overall it was great, and I really enjoyed it, despite the price.
After moving from line to line for another hour, my dad and I landed at a Mexican fusion food truck selling pork tacos, vegan chorizo tacos, and the sadly sold out lobster tacos. My dad had his heart set on the pork tacos, and luckily we got one of the last orders! I would say we waited for about 40 minutes before ordering, and they were worth the wait!
Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures of these amazing tacos because it got too dark out, but I have cute pictures of the truck! You can take my word, they were delish. The soft shell was double layered to hold the abundance of pulled pork, mango salsa, and purple coleslaw. It was a perfect way to end the night! Yep, that’s right, we only got two things.
We left very full, but feeling slightly dissatisfied as we didn’t get to have a Cremy donut (but wait, I redeemed us the next time). Overall, I would rate my first experience at the First Fridays food truck festival a 6/10 because the lines were crazy long, the food is expensive, and parking is a bitch. But, keep reading to see how I turned that into a 9/10!
My Tips For Getting The Most Out of Les Premiers Vendredis
My first experience was not amazing, I think being there with my dad was what made it better. However, as we waited in a line for 30 minutes before giving up and moving to a taco truck, we created a list of things you should do for a better food truck experience.
1.Park Outside of The Olympic Stadium
I learned the hard way that the underground parking at the Olympic Stadium is 19$. Now, maybe I’m cheap but I feel like that is a waste of money, and an extra treat worth at the festival!
I recommend you either park on the street for free and walk a bit or park in the Botanical Garden parking. If you decide to park in the street, you might have to walk a while and you might have to feed a parking meter, but you are saving way more money. If you don’t want to walk, no problem, the Botanical Garden is across the street from the Olympic Stadium and the price to park is almost half the price!
2.Go in a Group to Get More Food in a Shorter Amount of Time
As my dad and I waited in a crazy long line we decided that a much better tactic is to go to the food festival in a group. By doing so, you can get way more food in a shorter amount of time. Think about it, if you are a group of four people, that’s four dishes acquired in the span of an hour.
By having more people and creating a game plan, you cut your waiting time and standing in line and increase the time you can sit, listen to music, drink, and most importantly, EAT!
3. Share Everything With Everyone to get More Food in Your Night Without Getting Too Full
As we waited in line, my dad explained to me that at other food festivals you get smaller dishes so that you can try more food without feeling full. Although I love that you can get a good meal out of the festival, it isn’t as great if you want to try a bunch of new food.
By sharing all of the food you get you will definitely have more room in your stomach to try even more!
4. Arrive Early
I recommend you arrive before 5:30 pm because that is when the lines begin to really fill up. If you are like me and want to scope out the options before choosing the food trucks you want to order from, this is a great way to breeze through the area. The festival get’s fairly crowded and the lines become crazy long!
My Second Experience: Following my New Tactics
My second experience with Les Premiers Vendredis food truck festival was great! I went with my mom and brother and we had a blast.
We arrived at 4:00 pm so that we wouldn’t have to wait in any crazy lines and it worked! When we entered, there was practically no one and we had all the space we needed to scope out all of the trucks. We were even able to eat from six different trucks!
We didn’t split up because we didn’t need to. Since we arrived so early there were no lines, however if you can’t arrive early you should still come in a group because the lines begin to fill up around 5:30 pm.
My family shared all of the food and by the end we were all full and very satisfied with what we got to try! Our overall experience was a solid 9/10 because the prices are still pretty expensive.
We started our food adventure with a lemonade from a vegan food truck, it was 3$ for one and not completely worth it. The lemonade was definitely homemade and that was great but there was nothing special about it. I recommend it if you like lemon water because it is not too sweet and still very refreshing, however you could just make it at home.
Our first choice of food was dessert (this is where I redeemed myself). I got the salted caramel donut from Cremy. It was SO GOOD! If you love sweets, you have to try one of their pastries. The cronut (which was huge) was dipped in salted caramel and topped with what seemed to be a salted cookie crumble thing. Whatever it was, I loved it!
Afterwards we got a chicken empanada, and it was good. I will be honest, it wasn’t my kind of flavors, but my mom and brother loved it. Take it from them, it was definitely worth the taste!
Everyone wanted mac and cheese so our next stop was a deep fried mac and cheese ball that’s wrapped in bacon! It was so good, the mac and cheese was creamy and the bacon was perfectly cooked. We dipped ours in ketchup but you could choose from regular or spicy mayo as well. Overall, I would say this was one of the most ‘food festival’ things we ate.
We were disappointed by the cone stuffed with lobster because the cone itself was stale and the stuffing had too much going on. I could see how someone else would like it, the stuffing seemed to have lobster, balsamic vinaigrette, red onions (my stomach hates them), poppy seeds (too many), and celery (a nice touch). By the end of it we wished we had gotten a simple lobster roll. It looks pretty though, and was very photogenic!
We ended the night on a great note! We got a mac and cheese poutine and it was amazing! Fries, melted cheese curds, mac and cheese sauce, smokey bacon, and cheese balls all in a recyclable wooden bowl with a fork. It was everything you hope for in a fancy poutine and took the winning prize by a landslide.
I highly recommend you go to Les Premiers Vendredis food truck festival at the Olympic Stadium at least once this year. The food is great, there is music, and if you go in with a game plan you can have a really great time!
If you have gone to the food truck festival and have tips of your own, don’t be shy, leave a comment down below and share your secrets! From one foodie to another, we can help each other out!