Remember when you were a kid, and you heard that magical music of the Good Humor Ice-Cream truck coming in your neighborhood? All the kids would run home, get money from Mom and race back to stand in line for an ice-cream cone. Sadly I have to admit only a a few years back, I was still doing the same thing as an adult when my husband and I lived in Hunt Valley. (I mean how can you say no to a Firecracker!?)
(Picture provided by Koopers Chowhound Facebook Page.)
Even still, I am completely fascinated with the concept and glad to see the movement has progressed even further, especially in my own backyard. I love following new food movements and trends, and I like to observe “the new thing” as it rises, sometimes falls, or becomes the “new standard”. Like the one season on Top Chef (2 seasons ago), you could of just called it “Top Scallop”. Or the Pomegranate obsession in drinks that seems to become the new “drink special” on bar menus.
But I do have to admit another movement I love to see grow is the Eat Local and Slow Food movement, but recently the new movement I’ve seen is “Mobile Food Trucks”. Not the ones selling packaged desserts, like your Good Humor Truck, or the occasional Schwan’s Man going from home to home, (Do they even have those anymore?) but the ones selling their own made goods.
Mostly thanks to Twitter, Facebook and the Blogging World, I have been able to find, and follow moving food trucks making their way around Baltimore, and feeding the people locally made tasty treats. I’ve heard this phenomenon is more prominent out on the West Coast, and even observed Taco Stands, and Chile Wagons while visiting New Mexico. But then again that’s why they are called “MOVEments”…….
The two trucks that I know of currently are, Koppers Tavern Chowhound Burger Wagon, (@BRGRWagon) and Perfect Cupcake’s Lil’ Miss Cupcake Truck. This genre of mobile food is exciting, and quite fascinating. (Especially when they are right in your neck of the woods during lunch time.) I have even had the pleasure of having a burger or two… ok maybe five or six from the “Burger Wagon”.
(Picture provided by Koopers Chowhound Wagon Facebook page.)
I have yet to try a cupcake from Perfect Cupcake, but I have heard good things about them. I just haven’t been able to “track them down” and try it. I’m told you can find the Lil’ Miss Cupcake Truck in the Inner Harbor during the warmer season. (This just may require a day off from work for eating and drinking about the city this summer, who’s in?)
(Picture provide by perfectcupcake.com)
I’ve also seen the occasional portable Dunkin Donuts truck in the mornings at a few Light Rail stops, but of course I have already stopped for my morning coffee. Though hats off to them for thinking of those prime money-making locations. Once or twice while driving through Hunt Valley this past summer, I did see a full size bus turned into a “Vegan Cafe”. Sadly I never stopped, nor can I find anything on the internet about it, and if it will be back this coming summer.
I have also read about Curbside Cupcakes in Washington D.C., but have never heard from anyone about eating anything from them. (Curbside Cupcakes can be found on Twitter @curbsidecupcake.)
(Picture provided by washingtonian.com)
I’ve come to understand that it can be quite challenging to find a place to stop, park, and serve customers, all within the legal confines required by the city, state, county, and property owners. So if you haven’t seen a “Mobile Food Truck” in your area this may be why. This doesn’t mean you can’t ask the right people in your area to grant permission for them though! I do know the Burger Wagon will visit office parking lots for lunch time (with all legalities approved of course). This is also probably the reason we haven’t seen more of those “Mobile Food Trucks” on the East Coast- which really is a shame.
I really hope this movement progresses and we see more of them in Baltimore. I would love to see a Burrito Van, Smoothie Sedan, and a Crab-Cake Cruiser. Perhaps even a Tasty Tail-Gating Truck people could rent to serve a crowd during home games? I would think in a city that is home to several college students, and a large bar-patron population, a late night “Mobile Food Truck” would make a killing in some areas. If you have ever been to the Towson area around “closing time” than you know of the Mysterious “Cowboy Joe” selling his hot dogs from a little cart to the just slightly “over-imbibed” crowd heading home. Every night that I have seen him and his little cart, he always sells out. (Maybe I should look into this…..)
All theories aside, make sure to follow these trucks on their websites, blogs, Facebook and Twitter, and find out where they are daily. If there are any other “Mobile Food Trucks” out there in the Baltimore area that I just don’t know of, please let me know!
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