By Chris Wang
In the last decade, food trucks have seemingly taken our country by storm, offering a diverse range of cuisines and tastes quickly and efficiently. Unbeknownst to many, Stanford has a rotating lineup of food trucks that operate between eleven and two, Monday to Friday, in the space behind Y2E2. There is even a calendar listing the schedule of food trucks. The food trucks are geared towards graduate students having lunch, but everyone is welcome to try them out! They offer an eclectic range of cuisines, from Chinese to Mexican, BBQ, Filipino and Mediterranean, among others. Here are some of the ones that I got a chance to try.
An offshoot of Sam’s Chowder House in Half Moon Bay (and formerly Palo Alto downtown), this truck offers lobster rolls, fried seafood and, of course, clam chowder. The lobster roll is as good as it gets, brimming with mounds of lobster in a buttery sauce with celery, on a perfectly toasted hot dog bun. I preferred this to the fried shrimp po’ boy, which was filled with odd, metallic-tasting shrimp.
The Hula Truck
Of all the trucks, this was my favorite. Offering Filipino style meats on a variety of creatively-named dishes including “Da Situation” tater tots, “Bay Rito” burritos, and rice bowls, the lechon on tater tots was a perfect combination of sweet, savory, and fatty, with a fried egg rounding out the dish with some creaminess.
Offering a selection of dim sum and Chinese dishes, I though the food at this truck had great variety, but some of the items suffered in quality. The dim sum items were hit or miss, with shrimp dumplings and shiu mai having a mealy texture. The rice bowl with steamed chicken was at once salty and bland, and the cabbage was particularly stale.
Madd Mex Cantina
Madd Mex is one of a few Mexican options on rotation and offers a variety of tacos, burritos and Mexican fusion dishes. The fish tacos are well executed, with a nice crunchy slaw, a spicy and creamy sauce and crispy fried fish. Carne asada tacos were also savory and delicious with onions, cilantro and a squirt of lime.
Paddy Wagon Sliders
Paddy Wagon Sliders offers a unique lineup of sliders and tater tots with a “prison” theme. The traditional “O.G.” sliders are exactly what you’d expect, with a nice patty, lettuce, tomato and their unique touch — a parmesan crisp. I preferred the fully flavored Korean barbecue tots with kimchi to the chicken pesto tots, which lacked pesto flavor.
Sushi on a food truck? We Sushi offers a selection of sushi rolls, burritos and rice bowls. I tried the salmon and lobster “monster” burrito, which was well rolled but had an oddly sweet flavor. It was hard to tell what the lobster actually was.
There are many more food trucks in Stanford food truck lineup. Which one will you try?
Contact Chris Wang at chrwang ‘at’ stanford.edu.