One might expect that getting any kind of substance from a food truck, popularly known as Roach Coaches in the past, would be similar to buying a hotdog from a hot dog stand – this is not the case. Have you checked out the photos above? Once we got the nerve to approach the Chow Truck, we noticed that it was jam packed with Japanese Hi-chew, rice paper candy, ginger candy, Cliff bars, Thai iced tea, and a lot of other drinks that we had never seen before. There was an abundant supply of umbrellas that I would assume would be available for their patrons’ use if indeed necessary. We were getting ready to have an urban picnic. We were ready to put the food in our hands, sit on the ground, and watch the traffic and people pass by. We were going to be like kids again – have a fun, messy time digging into the food with either a fork, chopsticks, or our fingers.
The ingredients were tasty, the food, even though it was given in little disposable plates, was presented with a bit of flair. The tacos, sliders, and salad were beautifully presented. If we were inside a restaurant and had these items served on a plate no doubt we would be charged a lot more. The menu is limited, which I believe speaks to the Chow Truck being able to successfully focus their efforts on a very niche selection.
My first guest ordered the special of the day. It was a quesadilla on tomato-basil tortilla with spicy beef and black beans. It had an aioli topping, which was like mayonnaise in consistency with a spicy flavor. He thought it was a very unique combination of Asian and Mexican food. It was nice and thick with lots of cheese and sorta reminded me of a pizza.
My second guest really enjoyed her spicy beef cilantro pesto salad; however it was not spicy, contrary to its name. On top of the salad my guest ordered a pineapple ginger pork taco, but wouldn’t recommend having that protein option on the taco – it was simply too dry. Her recommendation is to order a salad and a slider with the beef cilantro for both.
I ordered a coconut lemongrass chicken slider, and once I took a bite I was a bit bummed out that it wasn’t juicer or even just a tad bit messier. Yet, it was a perfect ratio of bun to tangy confetti of cabbage, pickles and a nice selection of other toppings. I also ordered a ginger pineapple pork slider and that had a nice warm kick to it that certainly anyone should be able to handle. However, I was disappointed that the Asian Root Chips didn’t have any lotus root in the order – that is how it was advertised and that was what I was expecting. What a shame.
The verdict: The food tasted absolutely fresh. It looked like everything was freshly prepared, too. However I did feel that meat choices were a bit dry and overcooked. The Chow Truck offers two sides/appetizers, three entrees, a great selection of drinks and other fun items. Yet, they only offer one dessert, and an interesting one at that: lemon chocolate chip cookies. I hoped that they would have created something to fit their niche since the cookie didn’t sound at all appealing to me.
I think it’s safe to say that the Chow Truck is a one of a kind place to visit even though truck venders are popping up all over the city. Is it scary to visit a food truck? Perhaps. Should you do it? I would say that you aren’t taking a very big risk when it comes to the Chow Truck. Food trucks are the craze these days across the United States – so go give one a try. I dare you!
Need a few other reasons to scope the Chow Truck out? It’s fun to learn where they are going to be when you decide to go. It’s like an elementary version of geocaching – find where it is and discover what’s there! The Chow Truck isn’t a roach coach. Nor was it greasy or gross in any way. There was a man cooking and a lady (the owner) taking orders. She was polite and helpful. The service was quick. Both employees had their hands constantly moving: restocking the beverage selection, taking note of when the wind picked up to make sure the garbage bin was right side up, or simply taking care of the steady line of customers partaking in this adventurous dining experience. Other than that, it was kinda fun to eat dinner on the curb. However, next time I am bringing my camping chair or taking the food to go.
Rating – I would be willing to return.