L.A. Eats – Food Truck Odyssey

The Gastrobus & Cool Haus @ Abbot Kinney
When Howard and I came up with our first food truck crawl adventure, it was mainly for fun and an excuse to get our butts out to different parts of the city to try the old and new food trucks. I believe it was more a dare to ourselves. In the end we were tired, full from all the great food we had and had loads of fun. That was back in July. It is late September now. I just spent a whole weekend chasing food trucks in LA. Of course it wasn’t as successful as the one I did in NYC. Just the amount of time to drive from one spot to another made it impossible to try a good number of them in one day. Also most of the trucks don’t post their weekly schedule and only tweets their location half an hour before. It takes me over an hour to go anywhere from my parents’ place. So I was only able to try the trucks that I knew ahead of time where they were gonna be. Luckily, according to their schedule, Kogi, Marked5, Coolhaus and the Dosa trucks were all going to be in Venice Beach at the popular food truck stop The Brig for lunch. Then afterwards, in my schedule, I had Fish Lips Sushi at Malibu then Calbi Tacos in Santa Monica. There were few other trucks on my schedule but they were doing dinner. I felt bad for dragging my family around LA allllll day chasing trucks so I decided to do the rest on Sunday.
Please stay tune next week when I review all the trucks I visited in LA and ALSO I did some Q&As with the LA food trucks regarding the whole new food truck movement in LA. It’s gonna be good!

Sorry for the long prelude but I promise food porn soon!
Don Chow Tacos
I landed in LAX a good hour before, thanks Virgin America!. During the whole plane ride I was debating if I should head over to Venice Beach after I landed to visit Don Chow Tacos. I knew I would be super tired and I need to wake up early the next day. BUT then Venice Beach was so close to LAX and I knew I would need dinner. Tummie wins! I asked my sister to drive out to Venice to meet the guys from Don Chow Tacos. In the end I was SUPER glad that I went those guys are awesome!
On early Saturday morning I went to all of the food trucks’ website to double check on their schedule. Soooooooooo I found that Kogi had changed the locations for all of their trucks and Marked5 had email me that they were no longer at The Brig but in Eagle Rock. Oh and Fish Lips Sushi had to cancel their Saturday lunch because of truck problems. So then I had to think of a new route. Marked5 was expecting me and I REALLY wanted to try Kogi just because its popular. So then my new plan was to go to Kogi in West LA, drive a short distance to Let’s Be Frank and drive up to Eagle Rock before 3:45pm for Marked5. Then on Sunday drive to Los Feliz Village for The Gastrobus and Mandoline Grill at the Verdogu Bar. On my way to West LA I kept checking Twitter to see any new updates from the trucks but nothing. I got worried because Kogi would tweet their schedule and it was already 11:45am. I drove to the designated spot for one of the Kogi trucks and found nothing! The address that Kogi had put up on their site for the West LA spot was a residential area and there was no way a food truck would park there. I drove around the area just in case but it was already noon and still no updates from Kogi. So THANKS Kogi.
We were relatively close to Abbot Kinney in Venice Beach so I drove there. As we drove by The Brig we noticed The Gastrobus was there. Heeeeyyyyy. Amazingly, I found a parking and we walked to The Brig. I was expecting to find other trucks parked in the parking lot but it was just The Gastrobus. I am going to post about the trucks and the food I ate in later posts, sorry!! We ordered, ate the food and chatted a bit with Lana and Antonio, owners of The Gastrobus. Nicest people ever. While eating our food Barbie’s Q pulled in and parked on the street in front of The Brig. I didn’t feel like having bbq so I skipped it BUT Coolhaus pulled in around the same time. They serve ice cream sandwiches and we each had one.
Let's Be FrankMarked5 @ Eagle Rock
Then we made a quick stop at Let’s Be Frank and I found out where Father’s Office was, nice. After that I drove all the way Eagle Rock, mostly stuck in traffic but we made it on time. My friends that were suppose to meet up for the earlier trucks decided to join me at Marked5 since it was later in the day. That was it for Saturday.
The Gastrobus @ Los Feliz Farmers Mkt
And Sunday I went to check out The Gastrobus’s Sunday farmer’s market menu with a friend. I have never been to Los Feliz Village but after circling around the block I just parked and walked to the farmer’s market. It was nice to chat more with Lana and Antonio from The Gastrobus and I even bought a loaf of rye bread at the market.
Like I said before this attempt to try all the trucks failed at the very beginning since I couldn’t really hunt the trucks down using Twitter. LA is just impossible to spontaneously go from one spot to another. You just gotta get lucky that the trucks are close enough to you or that all of them post their schedules. Next time I have to stay longer than three days so I can hit the trucks during lunch time.
I feel food trucking in LA works better than here in NYC. Streets in NYC aren’t big enough for trucks. In LA you have big streets and big parking lots. Makes more sense for the trucks to actually visit different spots because it’s harder for people to drive far within an hour for lunch. In NYC I can hop on a train from work and be in Brooklyn within 20mins. And I haven’t heard any new trucks rolling out in NYC but there are loads coming out in LA.
This whole truck movement, in LA and NYC, has been great! Food trucks owner can’t hide from the public in their kitchen. Even if they want to hide I don’t think they can and should because everything about food trucks are so personal. It’s like a young band trying to make it big. You gotta do what you can to reach the fans and you mostly play small venues which can be quite intimate. I have met lots of nice people while doing this whole food truck thing. Some exciting news, I’ll be shooting photos of Schniztel & Things at the Vendy Award this Saturday. How cool is that?? Sorta their personal photog. Hopefully I’ll get more chances to shoot photos of food and food related things. Yay for food!

Don Chow TacosTwitter
The GastrobusTwitter
CoolhausTwitter
Let’s Be FrankTwitter
Marked5Twitter
Schnitzel & ThingsTwitter

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