Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Vendys Victory: The Red Carpet Wrap-Up

Today I have for you a visual love letter of sorts. A collection of images gathered during the 2nd Annual Vendys, an event I got into legitmately without having to crash. An event built with folding chairs, truck-mounted generators, and cream cheese frosting. An event put together to honor the almighty food truck, the penultimate goal being to choose one which exceeds all expectations of what can possibly be served from the side of a vehicle. What does the winner go home with?

A bursting sense of pride. Possible second degree burn. Validation of their life's work. And THIS:

We got there early, to watch how the crowd patterns would emerge, and to procure desireable parking.

To appease the natural order of things, The Buttermilk Truck was the first contestent we sampled. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, even at 2pm. Especially at 2pm.

These red velvet chocolate chip pancakes with cream cheese frosting couldn't hide their affection for each other.

Things got steamy.

And then they both perished.

They were rich, cocoa-tinged, fluffy, and decadent.
I would do it all over again. Repeat offender.

In a wild act of using technology I don't claim to understand, I chose to "Live Tweet" from the event, with updates and up-to-the minute news and photographs. While I like to make it sound like hazardous broadcasting from a war zone with an iffy connection and a need to shout over loud noises, "Live Tweeting" actually looks like this.

It is a quiet and solitary activity, the kind of anti-social that only social media can make you. Silently documenting bite by bite, questioning my spelling, and ignoring my producer. 

He had a pile of hash browns and chorizo gravy with fried egg known as "The Brick" from The Buttermilk Truck, so he was OK.

Our old friend The Lime Truck- Remember what happened last time?

This time they upped their game with a Wagyu beef tar tar on cranberry walnut crostini topped with quail egg and honeyed sriracha. Two bites later, you are a different person than you were two bites ago. It's just that good.

The fork went unused. Natch.
I am my own fork.

Know what you don't see very often? Diminutive speckled quail eggs on a food truck. Feast your eyes.

It's a game-changer.

We then took our post-Wagyu tar tar selves on over to another truck I have caroused with once before. http://thefoodessfiles.blogspot.com/2011/09/quickly-please-im-in-curry.html

Butter chicken from the India Jones Chow Truck is a bowl of happy. Saucy and vibrant, spiced with reckless nasal passage opening abadon, and served over rice-this is exotic comfort food. Eating it makes you wish you had performed manual labor that day, so as to be more derving of its fulfilling and satisfying nature. In it's aromatic specialness, it is almost an implied reward. You wish you built a wall, or fixed a door, or changed a tire. So as not to shame yourself in front of this butter chicken.

They also make a tidy and delicious Frankie, which is a lamb roll-up with cilantro-tamarind chutney.

I had to tweet about it. It looked like this:

My producer ignored me back this time. It looked like this:

He had Jello with walnuts and fig paste suspended in it, so he was OK.

I made my presence known as soon as I was done live tweeting.

 I know what you're thinking. So,who won?

Let me first say, that when you can serve impeccably cooked and sauced soba noodles from a parked vehicle (The Lime Truck), and make someone want to work harder so as to deserve the technicolor shock-orange butter chicken you have made them in a kitchen no bigger than the size of one on a boat (India Jones Chow Truck), and when you can get the best red velvet pancake you've ever had, and never once have syrup cross your mind, because you have been instantly ruined by the fluff of sweet cream cheese that adorned it like an Easter hat (The Buttermilk Truck)-

When you can say all that-then people, we are ALL winners. The city of Los Angeles is a winner, because these trucks roam our streets. The people who believe you can eat something mind-blowingly delicious from a restaurant that has a different address every day, are the winners. When food like this surrounds us, every SINGLE ONE OF US is a WINNER!!!!! 

...But technically the India Jones Chow Truck is the winner.

See you next year VENDYS!!!!

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