The Gourmet Syndicate which owns Roaming Dragon has been really stepping up the quality and variety of street food dishes available to the masses. With the partnership with Vikram Vij things started to heat up on the wet streets of Vancouver and now they’ve attracted Top Chef Canada talent.
The newest addition to the Gourmet Syndicate is Jimmy Stewart of Top Chef Canada Season 2 fame. Born and raised in North Vancouver, Jimmy Stewart is 23 years old and most recently was the sous chef at the Bearfoot Bistro in Whistler, BC. Jimmy completed a basic culinary degree in Vancouver at the age of 18. With a strong worth ethic, Jimmy pushed his way into some of the city’s best restaurants to eventually find a spot at Lumiere and meet his biggest culinary influence, Dale MacKay, winner of Top Chef Canada season one. Jimmy spent a year in Gordon Ramsay’s MAZE and the Ledbury in London, England and then a year in Toronto at Colborne Lane and Origin. Eventually making his way back out west to work at DB Bistro, Jimmy reunited with Dale MacKay again for a short stint. With strong beliefs in foraging and a love for Canadian products and ingredients, he is driven by modern Canadian cuisine. Jimmy is now the Chef de Cuisine on the Dragon Truck he’s bringing his inventive cooking style with a variety of daily specials on the truck.
I tried the specials on the 1st day Jimmy was working the truck publicly. The item that got my palate wet was a Spiced Duck Breast Taco. The duck was seared beautifully on the fat layer with the center still nice and pink, moist and tender is the texture of this taco. Flavor wise the addition of the green onion and homemade pickle underneath added freshness and a sour note to compliment the meaty duck breast-a winning dish that sold out early over the long weekend!
My other dish was a HIT! An Heirloom Tomato salad with Spiced Duck Confit and Seaweed Pesto. I love tomato salads especially when they feature heirloom tomatoes. The other ingredients added the necessary texture, the potatoes added some crunch and starch while the crunchy fried garlic added depth and toasty flavor notes. Everything was rounded out with the seaweed pesto that added a salty note while the yuzu/miso dressing added that beautiful sour note with the miso bringing a nice creaminess. For me the star of the salad was the spiced duck confit, meaty flavor with a melt in your mouth tenderness that would make any meat lover rejoice! I’d definitely order this again when it’s on the fresh sheet and it’s inspired me to make my own version next time I’m doing tomato salad.
With the addition of Jimmy to the Roaming Dragon things really are getting stepped up in the quality of street food available to the public and things can only get better. Look for my post with more images coming up on Friday on the Eat St Blog on FoodNetwork.ca.