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Wok Star offers quick Asian cuisine

For people looking for a quick, convenient lunch, the Wok Star food cart in downtown Medford offers freshly cooked Asian dishes.

Wok Star is one of several food carts operating on a former car lot on the corner of Eighth and Fir streets. The lot is becoming a destination for the hungry lunch crowd.

During my first visit to Wok Star, I ordered the Asian tacos. Two tacos served on six-inch tortillas cost $8 for chicken or tofu and $10 for steak or pork. I was able to order one chicken taco and a steak taco for $9.

The flour tortillas came piled with thinly shredded cabbage and meat topped with Thai coconut curry and sriracha aioli, a condiment typically made with hot sriracha pepper sauce and mayonnaise. For added spice, I drizzled on more Thai red-pepper sauce out of a squeeze bottle set on a table with napkins, plastic forks and wooden chopsticks next to the food cart.

The Thai coconut curry gave a sweet, exotic flavor to the tacos, which are normally associated with Latin American cuisine. I preferred the blend of coconut curry with the chicken, but some might prefer the chewier, heartier combination of curry with beef.

I ate one taco for lunch and microwaved the second for dinner, although I worried the hot, wilted cabbage in the nuked taco would be unappetizing. However, I was surprised to find heating all the ingredients caused the flavors to blend and intensify, with the spiciness increasing as well.

On my second trip to Wok Star, I ordered the Veggie Stir Fry on the advice of a co-worker who gave it rave reviews. The vegetables-only option is $7. Add chicken or tofu for $2 or steak for $3 more.

I ordered chicken and received a hearty portion of rice topped with stir-fried slivered red bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, carrots, onions and whole green beans. The amount of chicken was somewhat skimpy, but the vegetables were of high quality and came in a slightly sweet ginger, garlic and soy sauce mixture.

The portion was enough to divide the meal over two lunches.

Both times I ordered, my food came within five minutes and was freshly put together or stir fried while I waited.

For the adventurous, Wok Star also serves kimchi fried rice, featuring Korean kimchi stir fried in sticky rice and topped with a fried egg for $7.

A more traditional teriyaki bento has marinated grilled chicken or steak served over sticky rice and topped with house-made teriyaki sauce. The dish comes with Asian slaw. The chicken version is $8 and the steak option is $10.

Canned sodas are available for $1.

The food carts are parked on the lot to form a canyon, nicely separating customers from cars rushing by on Eighth Street. Individual chairs plus tables with chairs are set out for people who want to eat outdoors.

Wok Star orders to stay are served on aluminum foil in paper tray dishes, while to-go orders come on foil inside biodegradable clam shell containers for easier carrying.

The food trucks are generally there from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays. See Wok Star's Facebook page to learn about the food cart's visits to special events around the Rogue Valley.

— Vickie Aldous

Wok Star food cart offers tasty Asian cuisine at a convenient downtown Medford location. Mail Tribune / Vickie Aldous