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Food Glorious Food . . .(Trucks)

photo 3 The Chicago Food Truck Rally, held on October 11th , turned Daley Plaza into a parking lot of patisserie perfection. Whether your tastes were for Jamaican jerk chicken from the Jerk “truck” http://www.jerk312.com/  (my favorite), or a Bridgeport Pasty http://bridgeportpasty.com/  for your own hand-held pot pie the result was delicious either way. Mind you, Chicago’s food truck scene has exploded over the past few years and rivals those of New York, L.A. and Miami. You can truly grab anything your little hearts desire right in front of your office or crowded street corner.

  photo 5Let’s start with the Jerk Jamaican Grill truck. First, this $7.00 meal is composed of chicken that is perfectly marinated in a combination of Jamaican spices that thrill the palate (that’s fancy talk for your mouth). A mild concoction designed to light up your taste buds. You can choose from several warm sauces-I went with the Jamaican Jerk BBQ sauce which added some additional “heat”, but then I crave spicy foods. It’s served with a piece of bread (on the bottom) and a home-made corn fritter or “hush-puppies”. This afternoon they were serving warmed All Spice Apple Cider-$3.00- which was perfect for this delightful autumn afternoon in the Windy City. I also stopped by my other favorite The Tamale Spaceship http://www.thetamalespaceship.com/  (the chef wears a variety of Mexican wrestling masks so don’t be scared off) and enjoyed a pork tamale along with a pugnaciously hot habanera sauce. Perfect. I would have hit more of the trucks, but unfortunately the lines were way too long. Now, you don’t have to wait for a “rally” to dive into Chicago’s food truck culture. Just try one of several handy “food truck finder” on the web (I like the “Chicago Food Truck Finder” http://www.chicagofoodtruckfinder.com/ ) for ease of selection and location.

photo 9But there’s something else about the food truck scene that goes beyond just satisfying mid-afternoon hunger pangs. Instead of anonymously grabbing some sack of food and heading back to your cubicle you are thrust into and forced to meet our larger urban society. Your meal has gone from the boring, lonely cookie-cutter experience to one standing outside with your fellow Chicagoans sharing what really amounts to a communal meal. You talk to each other, admire what the other person is having, ask questions and make new connections. Frankly, it’s very refreshing. So go out their and enjoy some truck grub-before the long, gray winterish weather sets in with gusto, lest you have to wait until the Chicago Spring arrives….in June. Enjoy.

Anthony McMahon

24/7 City Secrets Contributor

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