Tag Archives: Chicago food trucks

Pockets of delight

Yesterday, my husband was nearly late for work because he carefully chopped and packed me a salad for lunch.

I didn’t eat it.

Not because I didn’t appreciate the kind gesture or because it didn’t look delicious (it did). But because the 5411 Empanadas truck was parked in front of my office, and I have no willpower when it comes to these pockets of delight.

Just look at this menu. They’re out-of-control good.

I told myself I’d get one or two empanadas to eat with my salad.

I bought four (and ate no salad): Ham and cheese, spinach and cheese, sweet corn and carmelized onion. Dipped in chimichurri sauce. Perfection. I managed to save one empanada, which I ended up eating as a snack because I worked late.

Well this wasn’t my first rodeo with 5411 Empanadas and it certainly won’t be my last. Especially since the truck insists on parking in front of the Leo Burnett building nearly every week.

In other words,  look for this truck and purchase empanadas immediately. You won’t regret it. Or stalk them on Twitter like I do.

Side note: Isn’t their branding and packaging super chic and some of the best you’ve seen in Chicago food trucks?

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Lunch truck challenge!

Looks like the Chicago food-truck trend has stuck.

And while it seems like a new truck offering a new type of grub hits the streets weekly, I’ve barely tried any. Except for the cupcake trucks, namely Flirty Cupcakes and More, which were both winners.

However, a few co-workers and I did recently hit up The Southern Mac truck. For those not in the know, The Southern Mac sells mac n cheese.  Not the Kraft variety. Amazing, delicious, gourmet mac ‘n cheeses, such as sun-dried-tomato-carmelized-onions-cheddar. Or Italian-sausage-giardinara-mozzerella. The menu rotates daily. Swoon.

The day we visited The Southern Mac truck, parked neatly at the Merchandise Mart, I opted for the bacon, mushroom and bleu cheese mac ‘n cheese. It was one of the most delicious, if not healthiest thing I’ve eaten.

Because I tend to be lazy and unimaginative when it comes to lunch (read: canned soup or boring salad from home), I vow to mix it up and try as many food trucks as possible.

Here is my must-eat list, in no particular order:

  1. Gaztro-wagon—Mouthwatering naanwiches filled with everything from venison to pheasant to lobster to roasted veggies. Bonus: they “serve local farmers and purveyors, when possible.”
  2. Meatyballs Mobile—All kinds of meatballs served on baguette bread. I’m not even a meatball fan, but the “Thai’d Balls ” with turkey, coconut milk, thai chili Sauce and sweet peppers sounds too good to pass up. I once had a “Salty Chocolate Ball” (what name) a co-worker brought back. Amaze-balls. And yeah, I just said “balls” six times (seven).
  3. Happy Bodega—The name of the truck sums up the concept behind it: foods you might find at a bodega. The truck is known to featured “Happy Pockets” sandwiches, homemade soups, grab-and-go snacks and even flowers on occasion. Happiness, indeed.
  4. Simple Sandwich—Making a sandwich and making it well. This truck looks like it’s parked for the winter, but says it will hit the streets again in the spring (tis now, no?).
  5. 5411 Empanadas—This truck “founded by three Argentine friends” bakes, not fries, their flaky, South American, savory pockets. Good mix of meat and vegetarian options, too. I’m drooling over the spinach and cheese and sweet corn empanadas shown here.

I give myself two months to try all five  trucks. Who else is up for the challenge?

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