Enter: Goodness Gracious Great Balls Sliders – expected to hit the streets late next month.
- The Slider: Delicious Burger Innovation or Small, Sad Excuse for a Sandwich?
- The Maine Lobster Lady is Coming Back to Town!
- Hawaiian-Style Eats Coming Soon to a Food Truck Court Near You
Behind the wheel of this burger-based truck, which operates out of Mesa, are certified Chef De Cuisine, David Garza, and John Dixon, a recent grad of Le Cordon Blue. Both tout a commitment to local, sustainable, and real food.
The duo plans to serve “gourmet sliders that will transcend the standard cheese burger sliders.” The menu will include creative spins on the classic baby burgers such as mojo de ajo pork sliders, Greek lamb sliders, marinated Portobello mushroom sliders and sloppy joe sliders. Other mini eats will include BLTs, chicken salad on croissants, roast turkey with cranberry chutney and even mini grilled cheese sliders.
“While we cannot deny the standby sliders of cheese burger,” Garza says. “You will be able to enjoy many variations on the American classic.”
Sides will include “panko breaded rice, potato, and Mac n cheese balls” in assorted flavors. The crazy sounding creations will take influences from several culture’s cuisines including Kimchi fried rice balls with sambal (a chili-based sauce popular in Indonesia and Malaysia), Spanish rice balls with Serrano cilantro cream, and mashed potato balls served with a pan-made gravy. Also on the menu: rosemary garlic fries and sweet potato fries served with cinnamon sugar and a marshmallow cream drizzle.
, Mesa, AZ
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I love fall. Long hot days morph into short chilly ones. Sweaters and boots come out of hiding. Bourbon replaces vodka. A long novel by a roaring fire trumps a beach read under the scorching sun. Kenny Chesney finally stops touring. And comfort food finds its way back into our meals.
This fall, some seriously good comfort food happened to roll in on wheels. The squeaky clean, nicely branded, red mobile food truck — Grilled Cheese Mania — just parked itself at the south end of Harrisonburg. It serves up some mouthwateringly good sandwiches and soups.
All of the sandwiches obviously have cheese as their cornerstone (including several with fresh mozzarella), highlighted with ingredients such as spinach, bacon, pesto,Sriracha, sautéed vegetables and herbs. You can order a variety of dipping sauces to go with your sandwich, including a “shot” of tomato bisque if you want that classic grilled-cheese-and-tomato-soup combo. There are two featured soups and a side of mac and cheese available, plus sweet tea, limeade, and water.
Becca’s Tomato Bisque ($2.95) is excellent. Pureed just enough but with the occasional chunk of tomato, a bit of cream to make it pink and yummy, and topped with toasted croutons for texture. We also tried the Casey Snowcap ($6.95) made from homemade roast beef and fresh mozzarella in a light garlic-buttery baguette. Fantastic. The horseradish dipping sauce we added was heavy on the sour cream. The Triple Lindy ($4.25) blended baby spinach and three cheeses into a kind of pesto that was grilled with smoky bacon crumbles on a light sourdough bread. Also fantastic. We ordered a limeade ($2.50) which at 32 oz. was plenty to share between the two of us. An unremarkable bag of plain Lay’s potato chips came with each sandwich, and I would prefer a better chip to match the impressiveness of the grilled cheese. Or none at all — the sandwiches can certainly stand on their own. The only thing missing in this rolling haven of “simple comfort food” is something like a warm chocolate chip cookie to end the meal. The idea behind a food truck, though, is to do one thing and do it well, so perhaps some day, someone will park a cookie truck close by. Regardless, it’s oh, so good and the lines are already starting to form as word of the cheesy, melty goodness spreads.
I’m really happy to see options other than our abundance of beloved taco trucks beginning to appear on the local food truck scene. I spent some time in the midsized city of Portland, Ore., this summer where they boast more than 400 trucks — some of them with really incredible menus. Larger cities like New York cap their licenses at 4,000 trucks, and there is a waiting list. Harrisonburg now has more than a dozen licensed in the city alone. Staunton and Waynesboro have a handful between them, but I imagine the trend will continue to grow there, as several applications for licenses are currently pending. I spoke with the health department and a zoning official and all of the locations in the readership are working with the same set of codes, so there are no restrictions holding anyone back, it’s just a culture that needs to catch on.
Make the trek to Grilled Cheese Mania, and I’m certain it will.
NEWPORT, R.I. (WPRI) – Calling all gourmands!
The Newport Yachting Center is preparing for a huge crowd this Saturday as more than 20 food trucks will be participating in the Newport Food Truck Festival.
The festival will feature a variety of cuisines, a beer tent, children’s activities and live music.
A Little Compton truck, Acacia Café, is new to the festival, and will be serving up soup and sandwiches with an international flavor.
Kickass Cupcakes also makes the line-up, serving up over 10 different cupcake varieties from a Cinna Punk vegan cupcake to the Machiatto, Berry Crumbly, and everything in between.
Also from Greater Boston, is the Lobsta Love truck which will be shelling out all things lobster – quesadillas, mac ‘n cheese, bisque, rolls, sliders and even lobster BLTs…plus a classic New England Clam Chowder!
The Newport Yachting Center is located at 4 Commercial Wharf, Newport, RI 02840.
The festival will run from 11 a.m.- 4 p.m on Saturday, October 20.
The overall list of participating trucks includes:
Plouf Plouf Gastronomie
Big Moe’s MM Ribs
The Sweet Truck
Boston Super Dog
Compliments Food Truck
La Casa De Chavely
Grilled Cheese Nation
The Whoo(pie) Wagon
High Tide Gourmet
Munchies Food Truck
For more information, visit: www.foodtruckfestivalsofne.com
The Boston-New York sports rivalries have tilted a bit recently toward our obnoxious neighbor down I-95.
So what? On Saturday, Boston won where it counts: The Food Truck Throwdown.
The daylong competition pitted seven food trucks from Boston against seven food trucks from New York City as contestants vied for the title of Best Food Truck. The idea for the event came from Sara Ross, owner of Kickass Cupcakes, and was supported from the city of Boston, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, and the Boston food truck community. Ross gives a recap of the competition in this Herald video.
The festival took place in Dewey Square (most recently made famous as the site of the Occupy Boston protests.)
Boston won overall, which maybe isn’t surprising considering it was a home game for the Boston trucks.
For a schedule of where to find food trucks in Boston, consult this handy list/map from the city.
(NECN) – The Boston-New York rivalry is alive and well in Boston this weekend.
A dueling competition between the two cities is taking place in Dewey Square along the Rose Kennedy Greenway for both cities going head-to-head in the first ever “Food Truck Throw Down.”
The competition pits seven Boston food trucks against seven New York City trucks, and both sides are vying for the championship.
Some of the trucks competing include Roxy’s Grilled Cheese and Lobsta Love.
Tags: Boston, New York City, Food Trucks, dewey square, Food Truck Throw Down
GAINSVILLE, FL - A Latin food truck, La Lola Loca, recently came to UF’s campus granting students an opportunity to trade their daily routine of Chick-fil-A lines at the Hub and Broward Dining for a sultry taste of Latin America.
Though for those who enjoy the meals-on-wheels, eating Latin food day after day may become a little bland – even with some Latin spice.
In metropolitan cities like Miami, Los Angeles and New York, food trucks have become the newest trend among dining experiences. Gone are the days of FroYo and cupcake shops. Trendy Miami residents would not be caught dead in a FroYo shop but can always be found scanning their credit cards via an iPhone at a food truck merchant provides.
New York Magazine recently did a feature on “The 25 Best Food Trucks” featuring rolling falafel, dumpling, pizza and everything inbetween trucks. New York, being such a huge city, has a plethora of exciting food trucks. They have everything from waffle trucks to whoopie pie trucks. Most of the businesses have Twitters and Facebooks, so truck fans can know where the food is headed to long before the crowd rushes toward the delicious scents of Mexican or Asian food.
More food truck options on UF’s campus could allow students to try independent bakeries, restaurants and cafés that they would normally only commute to by car. A student can fall in love with a pumpkin whoopie pie and purchase them every week without ever visiting the physical location.
Students are also busy and on the go. A food truck would provide a speedy lunch stop for students who aren’t willing to wait in an unbearably long Subway line. There would be nothing like seeing a cheesesteak truck roll by right after a triple-block class.
Additionally, all humans love niche foods by nature. The food trucks in Miami, New York and LA always managed to take something simple, like a grilled cheese, and turn it into something extraordinary (think tomato, apple and bacon grilled cheese). Food trucks also allow companies to perfect its token food of choice and become all-knowing experts for its customers. For instance, we as a society are convinced that a taco truck that only has tacos must have the best tacos.
College students are the prime demographic for food trucks because not only are they constantly eating, but they are constantly craving cheap food that is not a sodium-ridden Cup Noodles. By delivering this right to high foot traffic areas, any student would stop for a food truck selling succulent french fries.
Though Gainesville is far from a metropolitan area, college students may very well become the face of the food truck industry.
College students would never turn down the opportunity to stuff their faces full of gooey chocolate chip heaven after the cookie truck came around for an afternoon parade.
Find the original article by Kelsey Meany at alligator.org here
If you love food and you hate New York, you’re going to want to head downtown this weekend for the first ever Boston vs. New York City Food Truck Throwdown.
The daylong competition pits seven food trucks from Boston against seven food trucks from New York City as contestants vie for the title of Best Food Truck. The idea for the event came from Sara Ross, owner of Kickass Cupcakes, and is supported from the city of Boston, Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, and the Boston food truck community.
In addition to the food, of course, there will be live music and celebrity judges. Admission to the event is free but sampling any of the food will cost you.
The festival will take place on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. in Dewey Square in Boston. From JP, take the orange line to Downtown Crossing and walk to the portion of the Greenway that’s opposite South Station. (Or maybe bike to burn off they calories you’ll be packing in!)
Which is your favorite food truck on the list? Tell us in the comments.
(Jeremy C. Fox for Boston.com)
Think of it as the Red Sox vs. the Yankees, only with lobster rolls and tacos instead of loaded bases and home runs.
Popular Boston food trucks such as Roxy’s Grilled Cheese, Bon Me, and Kick*ss Cupcakes will face off against competitors from New York in an epic 10-hour competition Saturday on the Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway, as the First Annual Food Truck Throwdown pits seven local kitchens-on-wheels against seven trucks run by culinary A-Rods.
The free event will run from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13, in Dewey Square, across from South Station. Live music will entertain the hungry crowd as celebrity judges, including NECN personality Jenny Johnson, crown one competitor the Best Food Truck.
Organized by Sara Ross, owner of Kick*ss Cupcakes, the event’s Boston contingent will also include Bon Me, Lobsta Love, Mei Mei Street Kitchen, Roxy’s Grilled Cheese, Staff Meal, and the Cookie Monstah. New York trucks will include Bian Dang, Big D’s Grub Truck, Fishing Shrimp, Mike ’n’ Willie’s, the Munchie Mobile, Nuchas Artisan Hand-Held Foods, and Wafels Dinges.
(Jeremy C. Fox for Boston.com)
Crêpes, grilled cheese, cookies, ice cream sandwiches, and tomatoes. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out which one does not match the others. Yet they will all be available for purchase on the streets in food trucks within the next month.
Bell Tower Foods, a new food truck officially hitting the streets of Beantown this fall, will sell groceries to Boston patrons who do not have time to do their own grocery shopping or who have limited access to a grocery store.
“Everyone has a supermarket they love,” said one of the five co-founders and only full-time BTF employee Sevan Chorluyan. “But it can be so hard to get there on a weekly basis.”
Chorluyan, a Boston University School of Public Health graduate, along with fellow SPH graduate Vijeta Limbekar and current SPH students Jeremy Mand, Natasha Neal and Andrew Stewart, who will graduate this May, first came up with this idea for a contest last year. Chorluyan and Limbekar graduated with a concentration in health policy management last May.
Along with three other students, the founders won second place for their Bell Tower Foods idea in the first annual Food for Health Business Plan Competition in April.
From there, the company has created its own website, obtained a truck, and are fresh off last week’s soft opening. According to a recent blog post, the group surveyed various locations around the city to find which times and places would garner the best responses.
Chorluyan believes the soft opening went well, saying that those who did not buy still thought it was a good idea.
“Jamaica Plain did not go well,” the team leader said. “They already have a lot of [grocery] options. They were not as supportive as places that need service.”
Now that the soft open is over, BTF looks to officially open in either October or November, with an appearance from Mayor Thomas M. Menino to promote his food initiatives.
The BTF business model consists of texting customers to come out of their houses and do their grocery shopping.
“Most people don’t walk by and decide to do their grocery shopping,” Chorluyan said, which is why they want to build a relationship with their customers and notify them via text when they will be in the area. With their soft opening, they made contacts and built relationships with possible customers to get a sense of what will work best for them.
While they are technically a food truck, BTF does not see other food trucks as their competitors.
“Why would you go to a burger place over a grocery store?” Chorluyan asked when explaining the difference between BTF and other food trucks. “Our competition is grocery stores.”
He also stated that BTF has developed relationships with organizations to let the truck park in those organizations’ locations. Among those who have agreed thus far are Dimock Health Center in Roxbury, Roxbury Crossing, Boston Medical Campus, SPH, MassArt, and the South End.
Since BTF is classified as a company that hawks and peddles, defined as “any person, either principal or agent, who goes from town to town or place to place in the same town selling or bartering, or carrying for sale or barter or exposing therfor, any goods, wares or merchandise, either on foot on or from any animal or vehicle” by the General Laws of Massachusetts, there are certain laws by which it must abide, including avoiding restricted business zones between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. These zones cover most of downtown and parts of BU and Northeastern University. According to Chorluyan, BU has not been receptive to hosting BTF on its undergraduate campus. Also on the list of no-nos for peddlers are selling artificial flowers and miniature flags.
The inspiration for Bell Tower Foods came when Chorluyan studied abroad in Geneva, Switzerland and encountered major differences between how Swiss citizens and Americans treat their grocery shopping.
“There were no middle aisles. They contained produce, cheese, and bread and it was cheaper and more accessible and generally healthier,” Chorluyan said.
Chorluyan hopes it will be one of the first programs to decrease community obesity.
Bell Tower Foods is entering into a bursting food truck culture, but it brings something slightly different from those around it. It brings hope for an increasingly health conscious city that has the ability to set health trends for the rest of the country.
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Wrapped in a black-and-white checkered fleece blanket, Anne-Marie Aigner zoomed around in her golf cart at Suffolk Downs in the early hours of a recent Saturday, barking orders at everyone and everything — including the threatening sky.
“You will cooperate,” Aigner scolded as she glanced at the gray, misting clouds.
She had been up up since 4:30 a.m., attending to the many details involved in pulling off the latest Food Truck Festivals of New England event. Aigner launched the start-up last year with her partner, Janet Prensky, and says three decades of event-planning didn’t prepare them for the complexities of food truck feasts. It’s like creating a giant gourmet food court on wheels, with too many cooks in too-small kitchens and hungry customers with seemingly insatiable appetites.
Food trucks, once a late-night indulgence — often for intoxicated college students and Twitter followers — are now dining destinations, bringing in big business across the country. The food truck phenomenon has infiltrated the suburbs, spawned reality TV shows, and created career paths for young foodie entrepreneurs.
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Food trucks show up weekly to the SOWA market in Boston and elsewhere around the state, but Aigner and Prensky have largely cornered the festival market, hosting eight so far and another planned for Saturday in Framingham. These festivals routinely attract thousands of people who easily drop $50 to wait in long lines and sample whoopie pies, lobster rolls, and grilled cheese from mobile kitchens. For those who organize such events, it can be a logistical traffic jam.
During a 14-hour day at Suffolk Downs, Aigner corralled a bunch of independent-minded cooks into precise locations on the East Boston racetrack’s grounds, coordinated health and fire inspections, directed a small army of foodie volunteers, satisfied sponsor demands, monitored food supplies, apologized for long lines, and did anything else to make sure the operation ran smoothly. She is, by all accounts, a lioness of logistics. After a bumpy start to their business, Aigner and Prensky have started a division to run private food truck affairs and plan to host events through the winter.
Wendy Maeda/Globe staff
Anne-Marie Aigner in her cart.
“God help me,” Aigner, 66, sighed as she pushed her black Converse sneakers hard onto the gas pedal of the golf cart — which she calls her chariot — and narrowly avoided “rogue people” who got in her way.
With just over an hour before the at 11 a.m. opening, Aigner and Prensky were losing patience for anything less than perfection.The women know from experience that the many moving parts of a food truck mean each event is fraught with complications.
For instance, they were criticized this summer by customers after trucks ran out of supplies halfway through a festival at the University of Massachusetts Boston. People demanded full refunds even if they had a chance to eat at five or six trucks. Then, Travelzoo, which had offered a ticket promotion on the deal site, mistakenly sent out an e-mail that Food Truck Festivals of New England was going out of business.
And when an anemic crowd showed up in the parking lot of a New Hampshire mall, Aigner and Prensky came to the conclusion that it wasn’t good business to stage a festival on black pavement in 90-degree weather on the Saturday before July Fourth.
“There’s been bumps in the road all along,” Prensky, 55, said as she paced the parking lot at Suffolk Downs trying to hunt down volunteers who had promised to show up a half hour earlier. “But we think we’ve figured out the formula now.”
Prensky finally rounded out her cadre of “front-of-the-house” volunteers, decked out in red T-shirts emblazoned with “Foodie Official.” She demanded smiles, upbeat spirits, and good math from the people selling tickets — $25 for 20 — that could be redeemed at individual trucks. Sample menus were ready to distribute to arriving customers so they could figure out how many tickets they should buy (15 for a lobster roll at Lobsta Love). During the company’s early festivals, trucks handled cash directly, which slowed down lines.
Wendy Maeda/Globe staff
Marco Cerbone, 9, of Revere enjoyed ribs during the Suffolk Downs Food Truck Festival in East Boston last month. The trucks bring in big business across the country.
Next to the race track, Aigner gathered the food truck workers and issued a short list of rules: Do not run out of food. But if you do, tell people in line so they don’t keep waiting. Find a volunteer if there’s a problem.
As the gates opened at 11 a.m., small crises were still breaking out. A health inspector detected a leak in the gas pipe for the Redbones BBQ truck. Several two-way radios were missing. Prensky couldn’t remember the password to process credit card payments. They forgot to put Roxy’s Grilled Cheese — the best-known truck — on the list of vendors.
But good things were happening, too. Roberta McGoldrick and her friends, food truck festival newbies, were drawing envious looks because of the buffet they created with samples of pulled pork tacos from Gabi’s Smoke Shack, grilled pastrami from Boston Super Dog, lobster grilled cheese and lobster mac ‘n cheese from Miss Bailey’s All American Comfort Food, a vegetable crepe from Paris Creperie, Redbones ribs, along with whoopie pies from The Whoo(pie) Wagon. They had spent about $100 on tickets.
By 1:15 p.m., the horse races were in full swing at Suffolk Downs and Lobsta Love owner Todd Saunders — also in charge of the Grilled Cheese Nation truck — was trying to maintain his energy after getting two hours of sleep. He had spent much of the night preparing more than 500 lobster sliders, 250 traditional lobster rolls, 96 pounds of bisque, and another 96 pounds of chowder.
“There’s so much effort that goes into putting this together that people have no idea when they step up to the counter,” Saunders said.
Wendy Maeda/Globe staff
Gabi’s Smoke Shack served up smoked brisket chili.
Nonetheless, these intense events appeal to food truck owners because they can usually count on large crowds in one place — instead of having to drive around to find customers. And the festivals help to attract new customers for their weekday business.
At 2 p.m., lines stretched along the racetrack as horses whizzed by at Suffolk Downs. Roxy’s Grilled Cheese, which won national acclaim after appearing on the Food Network program “The Great Food Truck Race,” was running low on food and dispatched runners to the kitchen in Jamaica Plain for more. But Roxy’s still ran out of everything except truffle fries by 4 p.m. — an hour before the festival ended.
Prensky and Aigner canvassed the grounds in the late afternoon and continued dispensing orders. After cleaning up and cashing out the trucks, they proclaimed the festival successful — and profitable. Prensky had a massage booked for the next day. Aigner, who earlier had hidden a box of lobster mac ‘n cheese in one of the ticket booths to take home, realized someone else found it first.
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