Roundup! Food Truck Rodeo #2

NOTE: The Syracuse Food Truck Association is holding a weekly Food Truck Rodeo in the parking lot of the Cosmopolitan Building on West Fayette Street from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays. Since that’s right around the corner from my office, I plan to make this my midweek lunch plan. As a service to you, dear reader, I’ll round them up and report back.

Who was there this week?

Unity Coffee Company (left early), The Chicken Bandit, Shattuck’s Paddy Wagon, Oompa Loompyas (arrived late), PB&J Lunchbox, and Mami’s Kitchen.

Photo Apr 29, 11 32 31 AM

Who was missing from week one?

Sarita’s and Toss ‘N’ Fire Pizza.

Was there music?

For the second consecutive week, Rebel 105.9 was dropping a steady diet of classic rock.

What was new?

In no particular order: Shattuck’s fryers were fixed, so we had sriracha tots and falafel tots (more on these below), and Unity brought mobile caffeine. And there was more media.

Photo Apr 29, 11 36 00 AM

Recap it:

Stop one was Shattuck’s. I skipped this the week before as I really was not interested in the banana-shrimp quesadilla, but the owner, George Shattuck, assures me that it was a huge hit and that he sold out. George was pumped that he could get his most popular items back on the board now that his fryer was fixed. His sriracha tots are the familiar potato barrels tossed in a sriracha and cheese sauce. They looked good, but I had my eyes set on the falafel tots. 

Photo Apr 29, 11 41 44 AM

Each pair of falafel tots are hand-rolled when ordered and fried until brown. The golden chickpea balls were served with a homemade yogurt sauce over carrot-raisin salad. This weird little accoutrement was just as good as the falafel, and when is carrot-raisin salad EVER good? Right? Thumbs up here.

Photo Apr 29, 11 35 08 AM

I moved on to Mami’s Kitchen. Last week, they did not open until after I left. I was primed and ready to wolf down an empanada and pernil slider or two. And I was denied again. The $1.50 slider and $4 empanada was very affordable, but Mami’s has a $10 minimum for credit card purchases. This discovery led me back to my old standby: The Chicken Bandit.

The food served by The Bandit is great, and I will likely stop by during my weekly trips if only because it’s very affordable. My two tacos — chicken gyro and Korean chicken BBQ — were $7.50. And they took my plastic.

Photo Apr 29, 11 44 51 AM

While my tacos were being prepped, I slid over to Unity Coffee Company. This truck may or may not be the Cafe Kubal Coffee Truck…I cannot tell. Kubal still has the site for its truck and Unity has its site, and the trucks look very similar. The bespectacled barista asked me if I had suggestions on places to set up. I recommended my front yard on Saturday to save me a trip to Starbucks. He didn’t find it as funny as I did. Anyhow, Unity brews Kubal’s coffee and my iced coffee was quite nice. 

I took my tacos and coffee back to the office.

Words of compliment and/or grievance?

Photo Apr 29, 11 40 42 AM

The organizers dragged out a couple of old school cafeteria tables, equipped with the spinning stools that just barely fit a fat adolescent from the 1980s (ahem) let alone an obese 21st century adult. It was kitschy and functional, giving people a space to meander and sit.

My intention was to bring The Wife back at 4:30 p.m. so we could grab takeout and eat dinner somewhere outside (it was nice), but the trucks were largely packed up by that point in the day. So, get their early.


  • Greg B says:

    Why do they go until 6 if by 4:30 most of them are packed up and gone already? Some of us can’t get there before 5 and it would be nice to know we could get something from them until 6 as advertised.

    • jaredpaventi says:

      I don’t know. I think that the post-lunch slowdown in business with no potential of a post-work crowd sends people packing.

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