From the fundamental chuck wagon fare of stews, beans and snacks, we’ve come a long way and expect far more than the old cellophane wrapped sandwich of the 50s and 60s, together with stale coffee. Ethnic cuisines and made to order hot foods are now commonplace for harried on-the-run office employees, and we are wiling to pay top dollar for its convenience.
In the 50s, mobile canteens serviced U.S. Army troops on bases and maneuvers, but they were little more than regulation chow. Americans have come to expect far more and innovative vendors gladly answer the call. From ancient ice cream trucks into the hot dog vendors with their Vienna Beef umbrellas, thousands fall from offices, factories and shops, led to that truck down the street where they know what they’ll find and don’t mind standing in line for it. Who needs stale vending machine foods or fast food burgers when we can get new falafel packed into pita bread, a plate of nachos or an authentic fish and chips wrapped in newsprint. What has evolved from the”roach coach” of yesteryear to a place that launched the career of many executive chefs, food trucks today even cater at special events, college campuses,conferences and weddings.
Let us examine the hottest and latest offerings from such meals-on-wheels throughout the country. The Majority of these truck operators have restaurants multiple places, and many are culinary school grad and chefs:
The Grilled Cheeserie – from basic to designer grilled cheese sandwiches, Nashville
The Taco Truck – a variety of tacos and toppings, as well as burritos, Hoboken, NJ
Fukuburger Truck – the real last name of its Japanese owner, burgers feature unusual Asian toppings and sauces, Las Vegas
Mac Mart Truck – takes mac and cheese to a new level with ingredients that are creative, Philadelphia
Luke’s Lobster – lobster, crab and shrimp rolls for about $17 (obviously not for those on a budget) New York City
Kogi BBQ – inventive and diverse Korean cuisine, Los Angeles
Cinnamon Snail – vegan food for the more health-conscious and non meat-eating audience, with not a snail in sight (go figure) NYC
Oink and Moo BBQ – award-winning steak and pork BBQ with all the trimmings, NJ
If you venture into ethnic neighborhoods, like a large city Chinatown, of course you’ll find a preponderance of their native cuisines dotting the streets, but overall these are the most common menu items across the country:
In the united states, food trucks are a $1.2 billion business. Despite the obvious challenges such as lack of hot running water, strict regulations, licenses and health laws, food trucks play a significant function in our society and provide a vital service to thousands of workers everywhere. Although Bat Poop wagons may simply be nostalgia, the concept lives on. Food trucks. When you just can’t wait to eat.