Cruzn Cafe

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www.cruzncafemn.com/

https://twitter.com/CruznCafe

Main Location: Events?

            A phoenix rising from its flames, Cruzn Café returned to the streets last year with new, unique food items and special drinks. Starting out in the Downtown Minneapolis area, Cruzn left their main haunting ground after the first year, switching their focus to special local events. The sudden disappearance puzzled me, depriving me of my favorite Mexican Cocoa for which I cuddled in the cold Minneapolis mornings on my way to class.

            Highlighting themselves with a focus on drinks, Cruzn advertises Italian espressos, Smoothies, and Mexican Cocoa (a wonderfully sinful blend of cocoa, cinnamon, and ancho chiles). With their recent menu change, Lemon/Lime-aids and Sun Brewed Ice Tea join the team as refreshing additions in our hot summer days.

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            The change mostly deals with additions, so most other previously served items still remain. These involve a few simple options of oven roasted pulled pork/chicken, a couple hot dogs, and nachos, some of which also have pulled pork or chicken (your choice) on top.

            Though I haven’t seen or tried the new menu myself, rumors and pictures showcase the use of smoked and other meats. Dishes include a spring roll, some sort of corn dog (I wanna try), tacos, and garlic roast beef to name a few. What I CAN tell, in regards of flavor, is that every picture I’ve seen looks scrumptious.

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            Note: the rating that follows is purely based around my experience with the truck before the change, with slight consideration to what I have heard. I plan on, and can’t wait to find the truck again this coming year to fully sample and understand their new approach. Upon which I shall make any changes necessary.

Food: 8

            I’ll level with you; the ballpark-style food they serve is decent, but it’s only mediocre in the wide variety of Food Truck-offered selections. The new menu is quite set to change this, though, so expect a possible upgrade in the near future.

            Again, the real focus here are the drinks. All well done, the smoothies are delightful, the espresso is dark and rich, and the Mexican Cocoa… ohhhhhhhh the Mexican Cocoa… I still have dreams about this. So rich, with that drier, really COCOA flavor (not chocolate, cocoa, there’s a difference), sliding down your tongue with those noticeable hints of spices dancing along with it.

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            You will have an option to have it made with water or milk; DON’T DO MILK!! This is a very traditional drink, and should be enjoyed that way, with hot water. You can have a milky-creamy hot chocolate from any old pre-made powder, treat this one special. Oh, and don’t do whipped cream on the top unless you’ve already had it plain and want a little more fun on the second or third go-round.

Holdability: 7.5-9.5

            This is a bit of a change for me (guess I’m being influenced by the truck, haha), and this is probably the only time I’ll ever put a score like this. I was originally thinking of scoring this higher; drinks are quite obviously one of the easiest walk n’ enjoy items, and any food they serve only needs two hands with little mess. But then I realized that, for those going that full experience, it can be hard to get food without getting any of their drinks, and vice versa (especially now with the new menu additions). As such, finding a place to sit can be imperative; if you’re lucky to get two items that both require only one hand, you’re made, but those are much limited.

            Because this is the only truck where both drinks and food are such an integral part to the experience, I’m placing a small score range instead of the usual. The final score then is dependent on how you yourself would order from here.

Price: 10

            Very good prices, the food range from $2.50-$7 options, and all drinks will be only $4 at the very most, and those are for the large (which I still haven’t had much of a need to get anyways). Cost-friendly is a definite.

Speed: 8.5

            It’s only one person behind the window, so be wary of crowds, but all-in all orders don’t take too long. Food items are the simple kind and made quickly, while most good drinks need a minute or so to create. Many of the newer good ones are easy-pour, though.

The TOE: 8

            For me, ballpark food just never really screamed “Food Truck” in that special sense. Very good street food it can be, but there’s that slight generic-ness that can bring the special feeling a bit down (unless of course one’s able to really unique-it out). Word of the new Change gives me a lot of hope, though, and a lot of props I think should go to Cruzn Café for continuing to try and improve and grow. There are many Food Trucks that just stick to the same menu items and dishes since they’re successful and have no “need” to keep striving for new; it’s a little refreshing to see one making new risks like this.

           I might have scored this a little lower, but Cruzn really does have quite a Toe Ring on their feet, that Mexican Cocoa. Always worth a visit.

                         Tally: 42-44/50

Final Thoughts

            Always get one of their drinks when you visit, especially the Mexican Cocoa. Do that on your first trip there, then if you want to sample others, save its purchase for the cooler months. Of their older menu items, I would simply just avoid as-is, though the Dirty Dog and Nachos look like they could be quite fun, especially if you’re looking for that ballpark-type lunch item with a twist.

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            Definitely try the new menu; a lot of good things that I’ve seen and heard, and I need more feedback as it is, haha.

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2 thoughts on “Cruzn Cafe

  1. Pingback: Street Food and Cacao Beans | Reviews on Wheels

  2. Pingback: Those Lost, 2013 | Reviews on Wheels

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