Jacksonville sure has come a long way. Go back a couple years ago and the only food truck around was that creepy guy driving an ice cream truck around. You know, the guy that probably drives a windowless van and gives out puppies? Fast forward to today (or this past Saturday) and there is a whole different scene. And that’s a good thing. Below is a slide show of some pictures I took of the Jax Truckies 2013 Event.
Location: This year’s event was held in the same place as last year, the parking lot of Burrito Gallery in downtown Jacksonville. Specifically, 21 East Adams St. Parking was free, but you know how hard it can be when there is a great event like this. I parked about 4 blocks away and walked there. Great day for a stroll.
Details: I think with the success of last year and this year’s event, this has proven that Jacksonville is ready to move forward with the Food Truck scene and good food in general. The event was billed to have 20+ trucks this year but due to circumstances beyond the organizers control, some trucks canceled. To be honest, while they were missed, I think it was a bad decision on their behalf. There had to be several thousand people here….just to eat from the trucks. Their loss. Ok, back to the event. There was no fee for the event, it was just whatever you felt like purchasing. A hot day guaranteed that beer would be in big demand, and the long line at the Intuition Ale tent showed it. Of course everyone loves Intuition, next year I think they should have about 3 of these tents. The line was no fewer than 50 people deep.
The lines for the food trucks were no different, huge lines and of course everyone and their buddies were letting their friends sneak in. I have eaten at two food trucks so far in Jacksonville: Corner Taco (food was average and wait was insane) and Up in Smoke (super fast service). Add in the exceptionally long lines at this event and I decided to stay away from food and just people watch and enjoy catching up with old friends. Brad (@bradLeeUGA on twitter) even bought me a nice freezing cold beer. Thanks Buddy!
Everyone seemed to be having a good time even considering that my friend Erik had to wait 2hrs for…yeah…let me go back…yes, he waited 2hrs for some food from the Celeb Kitchen people. Sorry, I draw the line at that. It better be Wolfgang Puck making food for that kind of wait. I’m fat, I can’t plan my hunger that far in advance.
Notes: While I can’t wait in those kind of lines, I still would make this an event that you attend when they have another one. I know people are pushing to see this more than once a year, hopefully they can do that. My suggestions if you are going to attend, eat before you go. I know that sounds absurd but trust me, just do it. By doing this, you won’t be starving and waiting a little (or in some cases, a lot) and it won’t be so bad because you won’t be so hungry. Plan on going to have a good time and some drinks with friends. Maybe bring a camping chair and just hang out. It’s a really neat event.
Best BBQ – Driftwood BBQ (BBQ atop blue cheese mashed potatoes)
Best Taco – Monroe’s BBQ on the Go (spicy pulled pork with creamy slaw and Siracha)
Best Sandwich – Taste Buds Express (chicken schwarma flauta)
Most Innovative – The Happy Grilled Cheese (Crunch Melt grilled cheese with Mac ‘n cheese and tomato soup)
Sweet Tooth – On the Fly Sandwiches ‘n Stuff (chocolate peanut butter pretzel bar)
Best Overall Truck – On the Fly
People’s Choice (voted by you) – On the Fly