Food Pedallers – Adelaide’s Best Food Bikes
Clean, green and a lot of fun, cycling food and drink vendors are Riding a wave of success, serving up artisan coffee, fresh juices and tasty food to Adelaide’s hungry masses.
What’s on the menu? Smoothies made with freshly frozen fruit, blended using 100 percent pedal power. We make dairy and non-dairy smoothies, which are equally great. Our smoothies are all given names related to cycling: The BMX (banana and berries), The Fixie (cacao powder and vanilla beans) and The Tandem (pear and watermelon).
What’s the one thing people have to try? Coconut smoothies – they are relatively new. Give them a go!
Top speed? The blades in our blender can reach speeds of over 5000rpm.
Furthest you’ve ridden your food bike? In a solid day of pedalling smoothies I guess it would be about the equivalent of riding at least 20km.
Do people understand what Smooth Revolution is all about? Sure, and customers are encouraged to blend their own smoothie.
Are there benefits to working from a (stationary) bike? By blending their own smoothies people are involved with creating the delicious smoothie they are about to enjoy.
What’s on the menu? Vegetarian and vegan burgers, a salad and a sweet. It’s a small menu, but four kinds of burgers means it’s still hard to choose.
What’s the one thing people have to try? The most popular is the grilled haloumi and mushroom burger – you can’t beat that haloumi.
Top speed? Down King William Rd to the river – 15km/h!
Furthest you’ve ridden your food bike? St Peters or Bowden to the city, both were challenging. Windy days are not fun on the bike, whether it’s riding or trying to put lettuce on a bun.
Do people understand what Veggie Velo is all about? Nobody cares anymore about the bike, it’s all about the food. But sometimes it still surprises people. Perhaps some of our success comes from the fact that we are doing it on a bike instead of a truck.
Are there benefits to working from a bike? We like that we don’t have a barrier between us and the customers. We stand on the same level – and it makes for a bit of entertainment.
What’s on the menu? Cold brew coffee: milk mixes, straight black over ice and cold drip shots.
What’s the one thing people have to try? The almond milk with maple syrup is a killer.
Top speed? Slowly.
Furthest you’ve ridden your coffee bike? I only pull it into and out of the city. So it doesn’t ride for more than 3km or so.
Do people understand what Mischief Brew is all about? I always get a few hoots and hollers as I’m cycling through the city. The biggest issue for me is pulling up to a spot when guys are walking through a park and they’ll say “Oh man, I’d love to grab a beer” – so I have to tell them that I don’t sell beer, even though it kind of looks like it. But cold brew coffee is slowly catching on. Last summer, it was a lot of education – I still often get people come up and ask for a latte or a cappuccino, but I think we’re slowly getting there.
Are there benefits to working from a bike? Being among the people is really rad. You’re outside and among it and the chats flow. I’ve worked in bricks and mortar business before – in hospitality – for a long time and the opportunity to be outside among the people is most definitely the most addictive prospect for Mischief Brew. I like the idea that I’m out, in the park, under the sun and dealing with lots of different people.
What’s on the menu? We do any sort of coffee that you would like, along with chai, decaf – if we must – and hot chocolate. Our “dirty chai” –where we combine coffee with chai – is popular and we’re starting to do iced coffee throughout the summer season.
What’s the one thing people have to try? I’d always recommend a long macchiato.
Top speed? Very slow.
Furthest you’ve ridden your coffee bike? Well, the bike weighs close to 350kg…
Do people understand what Steampunk Coffee is all about? Yeah, but I had one lady who didn’t know what chai was. She really struggled with the idea. I ended up giving her the drink for free.
Are there benefits to working from a bike? I love working at Flinders St Market – that is a regular for me. I also love the BlenheimFest, which is in Leasingham. It’s like a compressed WOMADelaide, but very local. It’s awesome. On the bike, we use a Fracino coffee machine built in Birmingham. It’s a hand-pressed machine, there are no pumps, and it runs off LPG. It’s about 70 percent more efficient than an electric machine. Allegedly! I’m very fortunate that Kommon Grounds is my roaster, he’s also my business partner, so I have the joy of quickly getting freshly roasted beans whenever I need them.
What’s on the menu? I serve New York-style hot dogs. I wanted to bring New York-style hot dogs to Adelaide. I do Mexican dogs, I do American sauces, I try to go for that real straight-up New York-style hotdog, but maybe a little nicer than the New York ones.
What’s the one thing people have to try? Our signature best-seller is definitely the New York Special – though a lot of people want to have the New York Special simply because it has the most things on it. Top speed? 30 knots! Freefall it’s faster.
Furthest you’ve ridden your coffee bike? I try to keep it in the central city, but I have taken it a bit further. So probably Parkside or Glen Osmond.
Do people understand what Flamin’ Wieners is all about? Yeah, but for some reason people often refer to the New York Special as the “Network Special”.
Are there benefits to working from a bike? I have a lot of fun on the bike. It’s a nice bike to ride and it looks good. I ride it everywhere I go. Getting there is half the fun, and I love the chance to interact with people. It’s totally self-sufficient up to about 150 dogs. I never usually run out of dogs, but if I do sell out I’m happy. My favourite places to work are That Dapper Market and also the Summer Fridays in the East End. I even do weddings and parties.
What’s on the menu? We started off doing Cambodian rolls – a marinade with beef or chicken, which we then we put into bread rolls. Traditionally, we do it with pickled veggies, but we have intensified the flavour with the meat, so we put the fresh salad in there, so it tastes a bit more savoury.
What’s the one thing people have to try? Any of our rolls! Chicken is by far the most popular – beef is catching up though. Beef is the one we wish more people would order. Top speed? 20 – if we really try.
Furthest you’ve ridden your food bike? We used to live in Brompton and Joel [Schulz, co-owner] rode it into the city. We’ve since tweaked it a bit because the tail end used to swish side to side.
Do people understand what Phat Buddha Rolls is all about? People just kind of look at us and think “What are you selling?” So we have to go through the whole spiel and most of the time we hook them in – I think it’s the whole nostalgia. They love the bike set up.
Are there benefits to working from a bike? The bike is more interactive with customers – people are more likely to to buy from you when we’re on the bike. We won’t get rid of them forever, that’s how we started. But we are moving into bricks and mortar – we’re opening in Flinders St soon.
What’s your favourite food bike in Adelaide? Let us know in the comments below.
This article originally appeared in the eighth of Bike SA’s Love Your Ride magazine.