Review – Posted June 18, 2011
Written by Editors Scott, Adina, Amanda, Kris, Develon & Nate
With over 10,000 people and 55 food trucks in attendance, our IE Food Truck Fest
2011 review and pics/photos capture only a small portion of the edible fun that encompassed the Ontario Citizens Business Bank Arena on Saturday, June 18, 2011.
Nom Nom Truck
The setup was impressive- the parking lot adjacent to the Inland Empire’s largest arena became a playground for foodies and food truck alike, with the other lots packed with cars driven in from around the Inland Empire (and Arizona, according to one poster on Facebook). At 10 a.m., the VIP entrance began, allowing those who forked out a few extra bucks to enter the festival. The perks included no lines at the trucks, a shaded tent with plenty of tables and chairs as well as a bag of goodies that included many generous coupons to neighboring businesses. By 10:30 a.m., the line to enter the festival at 11 .m. for those with general admission tickets had already stretched around the venue.
Crowd from inside The Boba Truck
Once the general admission tickets (only $10) were allowed in, the lines began to form, which is no surprise as this is exactly what you’ll find in LA or OC when these popular trucks pull up. It was indeed a not-surprisingly hot June day in the Inland Empire, making the cooler items in hot demand.
While I’m sure you can read plenty of reviews of the popular trucks, like the Non Nom Truck, White Rabbit, Slapfish, Tropical Shaved Ice, etc., below are some of our favorite up and coming trucks that made their appearance at this event:
- Bool BBQ – “traditional” Mexican-Asian fusion food truck specializes in the ultra-popular “Bool” gogi. Try their beef tacos, probably their most popular, and certainly quite tasty, with that sweet bool gogi flavor.
- Suite 106 Cupcakery – this IE based truck won the award for best desert at the food truck fest and was featured on Food Network.
Stella Pierre's – The only food truck in the Inland Empire
- Stella Pierre’s – The only food truck based in the Inland Empire-Yes, you read this right, the IE has it’s own food truck, despite the prohibition (I’m guessing this claim comes despite Suite 106, since they only serve desert and cook elsewhere). Keep in mind that food trucks are perfectly legal, but they must be on private property. This truck has a full assortment of mobile favorites, though our favorite was the German Mutt, a bacon wrapped wrapped hot dog with pastrami, sauerkraut, mustard and onions. For someone who doesn’t even like non-grilled onions, I liked this dog. If you have an event in the IE, definitely call these folks up!
- Tapaboy – This LA based Filipino food claims to be the only authentic (non-fusion) truck in this genre, and they do a great job at it! We tried the popular Tapa Bowl (Tapsilog), which includes beef Tapa (thinly sliced beef tenderloin with vividly authentic flavors) served with an egg on the top and a kickin’ vinegar sauce.
India Jones Chow Truck
– We tried the butter chicken curry over Basmati rice, which was probably better than most Indian restaurants that charge twice the price.
- Indian food- We tried the Tikka Masala, which was covered in a mint chutney that added a kick found no where else. The cuisine has flavor that is far more complex and spicy than anything we’ve tried.
Vizzi’s Visionary Cuisine
– We tried each of their sliders. The braised chicken was cooked perfectly and the waygu beef slider was excellent as well. Vizzi’s organic chickpea slider was also a great vegetarian option. The truck had a very hip vibe with music and a tv entertaining customers while they waited.
White Rabbit 6 lb Burrito Eating Contest
No Jodas Kitchen
- A good representative of Cuban cuisine, as seen in the classic medianoche sandwich.
Great Balls on Tires
– Not your average meatball! The “Incrediball” was, well, truly incredible. This kobe beef ball, wrapped in bacon melted in your mouth. The “Ballywood” was a unique take on Indian cuisine and was very flavorful. Try the “Ballywood” and sides for a delicious meal.
- Bacon Mania – When in need of dessert, what better than chocolate and bacon? Bacon mania serves up bacon, bacon and more bacon. We went for the brownie bites, perfectly prepared brownies, drizzled in chocolate and wrapped in bacon. You could taste the bacon in every bite, but it didn’t overpower the brownie, making for a very tasty dessert.
- Pogi Boy – Filipino food, pork, chicken and rice tacos, along with a foot long lumpia (Filipino egg roll).
Grilled Cheese Truck
With all of the offerings, the toughest part of the day was deciding which trucks to choose. The key is to go with a friend so you’ll have a buddy to chat with in line and someone to split the food with so you can try more offerings.
Given that we are mostly young reviewers familiar with the food truck culture, we had little expectation of seats at an event like this. Though, when we came home and checked the Facebook page for the event, we found several folks complaining about the lack of tables at the event. All that we spotted was some unneeded possessiveness by those who staked out their claim on certain tables. We’re quite certain that the organizers “get it” and will have more tables next time.
Overall, this was a great event and we look forward to the next! Our vote is for a once a month food truck fest, perhaps in the evening given our inland heat. Kudos to all those who worked so hard to make this event happen!
Categories: Casual Dining & Fast Food, Dessert, Entertainment, Food, Food Trucks, Ontario, The Inland Empire Citizens Business Bank ArenafestivalJuneOntario
Preview- Posted April 12, 2011. Updated May 5, 2011.
If you thought food trucks were only an LA (and OC) phenomenon, think again. The IE Food Truck Fest
will be bringing this So Cal rage to the Inland Empire on Saturday, June 18, 2011 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Citizens Business Bank Arena
in Ontario, a one day overthrow of the regulations in the Inland Empire that have kept these trucks from roaming the streets.
The 54 food trucks will include:
The event now features music throughout the day, including:
MUSIC LINEUP SCHEDULE
The promoters also promise an Active Ride Shop skateboard demo and giveaways as well as live local music and DJs. In case you want to bring the youngin’ along, there is a children’s activity zone as well.
The one-day event is expected to bring an attendance of 8,000 to 10,000 people. The audience will range from families and food enthusiasts to young 20-somethings and social media advocates. Parking is free.
Tickets will be $10 for general admission starting at 11 a.m. and $25 for VIP admission, which opens at 10 a.m. Tickets are now on sale at Ticketmaster and that the Citizen’s Business Bank Arena.
This event comes on the heals of a similar event in Chino on April 9, 2011. The question is whether food trucks will catch on in the IE so they are on every corner, like they are in LA. Only time will tell!