It may be the turn of the year but the season for food trucks is still a couple months away, unless of course one lives in Texas or LA. Already though many are slowly getting ready for this wonderful time of year, expectations running high to delve into their local line-ups on good-meals-on-wheels, whether they’re an experience street-eater or a newbie just discovering the wonders of this food source just recently. There are new vehicles we have to hit while we can, missed older businesses to finally try and pin down, and of course dear favorites to go back to again and again.
Though the opportunities are fun for this upcoming year’s adventure, they can also be quite endless, making these ‘plans of attack’ difficult to pin down. Which ones do we actually do? Well I guess that ever-present question is why God created ‘Top 10’ lists, a staple at the end of every year’s food truck season.
Which is what we’ve decided to do today as well. These are the trucks to definitely try and find in 2016 for anyone who gets a chance, so hopefully it can help YOU put one or two distinct priorities on that to-do list of yours in case they haven’t made it there already.
To get down to it, here are 10 of the best trucks to start off this year with. In no particular order:
When you can get the Cheesesteak-loving-populace of Philadelphia to go for and love a menu filled with flavors like edamame ravioli and grilled octopus, you know you’re doing something right. Especially if you’ve also got your own bangin’ beef sandwich along with it.
This little cart made quite some noise years ago as food trucks became a thing, even gaining so much popularity for their SUPER traditional Belgian treats as to appear on Bobby Flay’s Challenge show, not to mention a few other TV appearances. The owner may have a bit of a douche-like ego, if sources I’ve heard are correct, but one can’t argue he makes some of, if not THE, best waffles in the country. No New Yorker will ever argue that.
What, waffles on the list TWICE!? That’s right, this newer truck out of Houston has pushed itself to quite the point of attention. Not because of the pure quality of the waffles, however, but with what they do with them. That is, turning them into sandwiches; sandwiches which are savory, sweet, decadent, naughty, and definitely at home in the State Fair capital of the country.
It’s hard to list top food trucks these days without getting any from one of the biggest new food capitals of the US, Portland. And over there Phat Cart has shown itself to be one of the best, now having a solid stand location as well as their mobile eats to pedal their highly authentic SE Asian cuisine in fun to-go Bento Boxes.
There are quite a few lobster roll trucks operating from state to state, and at least 2 in Los Angeles alone, but when put to a vote it seems people flock to Cousins. A big part of that is likely their dedication to traveling towards various cities around the area, not to mention their FULL line-up of fantastically-made seafood items a-la crab/shrimp rolls, lobster tator tots, deep-fried lobster-on-a-stick… you get the idea.
No top 10 list is complete without Roy Choi’s founding masterpiece that set the mobile food world ablaze. This rolling beast of Korean-fusion is still going strong today and hitting our taste buds with rich east-Asian flavors all wrapped in tight Latin packaging.
Grilled Cheese will ALWAYS make the top of the grade in the street scene; plenty of cities throughout the country are seeing popular modern pressed-cheese-sandwich trucks and/or cafes popping up to much success. Not only does Ms. Cheezious do this style well, but they do it well enough to consistently make it to the top of truck rating lists on a regular basis it seems.
Getting noted attention the year before, 2015 has found this Native American-themed wagon topping the lists in their Arizona scene, offering delicious Latin and Native cuisines in a unique and traditional fry bread package.
2014 saw a bit of national interest in this truck, but just like Emerson they’ve completely exploded with attention during the last year. Operation is completely different than the main competition, as the menu changes almost completely every single week, the only standard being that it’s all based on American Comfort Food, done damn well. Both of these of course stemming from their use of extremely fresh, hormone-free and thus rather seasonal product.
Finally we have a represent of one of the king foods within this world, the Empanada wagon. Handing out little fried pockets of to-go goodness, these trucks have cemented success from state to state just like taco, grilled cheese, and burger trucks have. With their variety of traditional and unique creations, D.C. Empanadas makes sure to fill our mouths with deliciously hot food whenever we’re lucky enough to find them on the street.