Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Food Trucks - Is Louisville Ready?

Dear Louisville,

Word on the street is that your foodies are interested in food trucks. I've read comments ranging from "If NYC can do it why can't we?" to "They can't be hygienic", and everything in between.

The food truck issue weaves a tangled web if you ask me. Wanna chat about it?

Love and mobile food,

To anyone that reads the Louisville food related message boards the topic of food trucks should be old news by now.

Food trucks seem to be taking the nation by storm. There are tv shows about them and contests involving them. Everyone seems to be talking about them, and with good reason.

If you have a few bucks and limited time for lunch, walking outside of your office building and grabbing a quick bit to eat is more than convenient, it's often necessary. They've long been a daily staple for people in big cities like New York, but have recently been embraced by cities both large and small across the country.

This widespread national embrace confuses me a bit. When I lived in Philadelphia and walked everywhere, everyday, grabbing a tasty bite as I passed by a food cart made sense. And the hubby simply couldn't live without them. If he was booked all day in back to back meetings his only option for sustenance came in the form of one of many food carts within a block of his building. Lucky for both of us, there was a lot of good food being sold off carts all over the city (Halal King...Nick misses you!).

So why are people in Louisville so desperate for food trucks? The Louisville metro area is pretty spread out. It's an entirely drive-able city. It doesn't seem like a necessity. The more I read, the more I realize that Louisville foodies don't really need them. Louisville foodies want them.

With the media frenzy surrounding these meal on wheel mobiles I can understand people's curiosity. I can also understand why Louisville doesn't want to be left out. What I can't understand is the method. The few food trucks that exist in town are seemingly always on the move. Some use twitter or facebook or google maps to tell people where they will be what day and at what time, but to me, that's an awful lot of work to go through for some grub.

I've been looking for the El Rumbon food truck in the Oxmoor area car dealerships on and off for some time now. Morels, the all vegan food truck in town has a line of question marks on their restaurant hours page. And as I write this post Li'l Cheezers, Louisville's "gourmet grilled cheesemobile" posted on it's site that it's serving it's grilled cheese sandwiches at "Jeff Exit 1 from 11-2". I know I didn't grow up here in Louisville, but what does that mean? I would like to check it out without having to ask a bunch of people or showing up in an empty parking lot.

To be fair I haven't tried any of their food yet, and I would really like to. I have the utmost respect for anyone with the gusto to follow their dreams and open a restaurant or food truck. And they seem to have a good following. If the price is right and the food is good I'll be more apt to seek them out, but there has to be a better way.

I hear through the grapevine (and have actually done some research myself) that the food truck laws in Louisville are hazy at best. Apparently the trucks have to move every so often and there are some unorthodox food safety rules that may or may not apply to these trucks. It sounds like a mess. So I DO understand why these trucks have to move around. I'm just not sold on the whole package at the moment.

I'm anxious to see where this whole food truck wave will take the Louisville food scene. I'm always looking for quality food at reasonable prices, and I adore supporting local businesses. I guess I just feel like eating good food shouldn't be hard.


  1. That means the are in Jeffersonville, around exit 1. Across the river.

  2. Come try all these food trucks (Lil' Cheezers Gourmet Grilled Cheesemobile, Morel's Vegan Food Truck, San Diego Sandwich Works, MozzaPi, El Rumbon and more at Fresh Start Growers' Supply on Saturday, June 18 from 11-3.

  3. That's the problem with you Americans ....( no points for guessing I am not one ), you are too afraid to try eclectic things in life , take that leap of faith that opens up a treasure trove of experiences that can make life a tad more spicy shall we say ? That's what's great about New York - you never know what to expect the next day or even the next moment. Louisvillians need to learn how to let go , get out of their comfort zone, experiment and in the process widen their horizons about food, culture, languages - that's the new reality . Catch up if you will or fall behind !