If you love gourmet street food with a side of rock’n’roll, there’s a new food truck in town with your name all over it.
Dilly’s Rolling Stove, named after 28-year-old co-founder and head chef Dhilshan Kitchilan, is striking a harmony between rock’n’roll aesthetics and their fusion, BBQ-infused menu.
This weekend, the truck will be stationed at their first major event — the Emirates Airline Dubai Jazz Festival, from February 21-23 at the Dubai Media City Amphitheatre. Concert-goers will have no trouble picking it out of a crowd — it’s the black truck with boisterous caricatures splashed on the exterior, harking back to familiar rock stars.
The inspiration behind the truck comes from a lineage of chefs and musicians in the family, said Kitchilan — his business partner and brother-in-law, Roshan De Silva, has been spotted behind the drum set of several UAE bands, including Chronicles of Khan.
“Good music and good food both stimulate the senses. Whether it’s the first time you hear a song, or the first time you taste something exquisite, it will forever be ingrained in your memory,” Kitchilan told Gulf News tabloid!.
“We came up with the concept of a rock’n’roll food truck with fusion fine dining. We want to take our customers on a world tour of food,” added De Silva.
Their menu this weekend will include the AcDc Wings (BBQ devilled chicken wings), GnR Ribs (beef ribs with satay sauce) and Queen Crab (crab cake with sweet sriracha mayo and Thai salad). There will also be a root beer float and banana pudding as their ‘Encore’ desserts.
“The menu is an ever-changing thing. We adapt depending on the venue and try to change it up every chance we get. We like to diversify, and we also do customisation to appeal to everyone,” said Kitchilan.
The truck took its first foray into the public earlier this month at Sri Lanka’s 70th Independence Day celebrations in Zabeel Park. Kitchilan, who is Sri Lankan himself, was surprised by the onslaught of customers. One even returned to send their regards to the chef and ask for a recipe.
“People came back for seconds, so the food must have been good,” said Kitchilan. “It comes down to the fact that it’s a family-run business, where the people working the truck are family and friends, so we treat our customers like family, too.”
Kitchilan was formally trained in culinary management in Canada, where he worked at a resort before moving back to the UAE. He spent several years working at the Hyatt Regency in Dubai.
Quizzed on his culinary inspirations, he cited “many hours of watching the Food Network” and his own mother and father as his main inspirations.
“My mum is by far the best chef that I know of — she’s definitely better than me. Whenever she cooks, even if I’m full, I’ll either eat the food anyway or ask her to keep me my share, so that no one else touches it,” said Kitchilan.
“My dad taught me dedication and hard work. He would always see things through no matter what time of day it is, which groomed me perfectly to be a chef.”
Kitchilan has been paying it back to them for as long as he can remember.
“Ever since I was little and could reach the stove, I would make them breakfast,” he said.