Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Top 10 Food Trucks You Can't Afford to Miss

Food trucks have taken Los Angeles cuisine by storm while redefining what fast food really means. These trucks offer gourmet options on a fast food budget and deliver creative and unique, yet satisfying, meals. The haute cuisine of Los Angeles has always had a unique flair to it, but now food trucks have made these delicious experimentations appeal to the masses.

How to Find Food Trucks in Los Angeles

You don't have to go on a wild goose hunt, hoping that you find a food truck in Los Angeles. Not only do each food truck have a Twitter page and a website, but also there are comprehensive websites and Twitter accounts that make it easy to know where a food truck will be before it arrives.

@FoodTruckLA is a centralized Twitter page with up to the minute alerts of the current and future locations of the trucks. Their system is to re-tweet any tweets regarding food truck locations in Los Angeles.  Similar websites include Roaming Hunger and Find LA Food Trucks. There is also an iPhone app which is called Road Stoves GPS, a GPS-enabled food truck finder.

When in doubt, just visit the most popular destinations of the LA food trucks.
  1. College campuses: UCLA and USC host a lot of food trucks. Why not? College students love cheap, filling, satisfying eats. Don't be afraid to search on campus. At UCLA, food trucks are known to go in the quad on south campus.
  2. Miracle Mile (Wilshire): A hot spot for people who work over there, this location is where trucks are known to line up and serve the suit-and-tie masses.
  3. West LA: Try along the intersection of Tennessee and Butler. Again, is a lot of activity over there - perfect for a food truck.
  4. Santa Monica: Anywhere east of 26th street is known to have a lot of food trucks. There is less competition over here and more of their target audiences.
The Best Food Trucks in Los Angeles

Desert Melt - Grilled Cheese Truck
The Grilled Cheese Truck: If you are a grilled cheese fanatic, like everybody else, you will enjoy the Grilled Cheese Truck. From the classic American cheese on French bread slathered with butter, to the seemingly insane Cheesey Mac and Rib (mac and cheese with barbecue pork and grilled onions inside a grilled cheese sandwich), to the delicious Desert Melt (pureed bananas with marshmallows and nutella), the Grilled Cheese Truck takes grilled cheese for an unusual, yet delicious spin.

The Green Truck: Not all to-go truck food has to be bad for your health. The Green Truck specializes in healthy, fresh gourmet food while taking care of the environment at the same time. They use "only certified, organic ingredients" and "buy local products whenever possible." Try the lettuce chicken wraps or the banana pancakes for a healthy and satisfying meal.

India Jones Chow Truck: Sumant Pardal was turned on to food trucks when trying the Kogi BBQ truck. He says that "within 10 days, I was on the road with my truck." He serves mostly North Indian regional food with different curries and Mumbai street foods. He specializes in frankies which is served with cilantro, tamarind, chutney, chopped onion, egg, and lamb or chicken wrapped in a flat bread. Try the butter chicken curry or the lamb frankie.

Sliders - Kogi BBQ
Kogi BBQ: You can smell the scent of delicious meat from miles around when the Kogi BBQ truck is in town. Delicious meats mixed with the chef's specials make Kogi BBQ one of the most successful and popular food trucks in Los Angeles. Try the spicy pork tacos, kimchi quesadillas, or short rib sliders. Kogi BBQ mixes the delight of Korean BBQ cuisine with half the cost and half the work.

Nom Nom Truck: A female-ran truck which specializes in Vietnames "Bahn Mi" sandwiches, the Nom Nom Truck. They serve tasty and affordable sandwiches with savory hot meats and cold crisp vegetables. Misa and Jen (owners) say that "nom nom" (which means "oh so tasty" according to Urban Dictionary) perfectly describes their food. Try the grilled pork Bahn Mi or the lemongrass chicken tacos. The sandwiches are 12 inches and only cost $5.

Phamish: Another truck specializing Vietnamese cuisine, Phamish is known for the rare steak pho and the delicious fresh mint soda. All of the recipes are Lisa Le's personal recipes. She uses fresh produce and freshly baked baquettes and spends 4-6 hours cooking her signature pho.

Chili Cheese Fries - Frysmith
Frysmith: Who doesn't like French fries? Frysmith makes it apparent that a menu based solely on French fries is quite a crowd-pleaser. You would think that putting a ton of toppings on French fries and calling it a meal would not be a revolutionary idea, but Erik Cho makes French fries a gourmet art form. The chili cheese fries are perfectly balanced and dishes like the Rajas Fries (complete with steak and jack cheese) or the Poutine (fries drowned in brown gravy and cheese curds) are unique and give a stick-to-your-ribs satisfying feeling.

Border Grill Truck: Southern California loves Mexican food, especially Mexican food on the go. The Border Grill Truck makes simple Mexican dishes and turns them into gourmet, yet still quick, lunch options. The churro tots are their signature dishes with covered in cinnamon-sugar and whipped cream. Also try their green corn tamal in a paper cone.

Louks Greek Gourmet To Go: Classic Greek to go. Louks Greek Gourmet To Go makes delightful classic Greek dishes as well as unique fusion food appeal to the masses. Try the honey feta fries for a sweet, tangy treat, or the classic beef gyro. For a more familiar food form, try the burrito gyro - one of Louk's favorites, himself.

Hawaiian Bread French Toast Sticks -
The Buttermilk Truck
The Buttermilk Truck: Breakfast is good at any time of the day, or night, around the clock, in any setting. The Buttermilk Truck specializes in breakfast classics and invents new sweet and savory creations. Their special ingredient (buttermilk) is in almost all of their menu items and their goal is to provide breakfast to people who cannot make it themselves, or people who are just craving breakfast after a long night. Try their Hawaiian bread French toast sticks or their special red velvet pancakes which have celebrated a year being served to the masses. Everything they have is made from scratch and gives a homestyle flair to unique and modern breakfast treats.


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