Vito Lucco Pizza Co

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http://vitolucco.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Vito-Lucco-Pizza-co-845109742241236/
Main Location: Minneapolis, Etc?

Another year, another Pizza truck added to our mobile vendor lineup. And this one was definitely a surprise, randomly running across it to one of my now-rare trips to downtown Minneapolis. No months of ‘anticipation’ and warnings through media like was given Tru, this was a true random encounter… and on their first day too! Something I normally avoid and espouse review visits on, you don’t have a clue how consistent that performance, good or bad, will stay. But it’s a fun occurrence to be able to record, so I thought why not for once?

Vito Lucco Pizza Co has a bit of a look and name that makes one think it might be an off-shoot of a small Italian café I’ve never heard of, but it’s a full family-based operation by a few guys that wanna sling pizza on the street for a living. I got to interact a bit with Joe and Uncle Ed during my visit, not sure if we’ll see any more of the ‘team’ on board in the future but that’s for another day.

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The focus is on personal-size, yeasted-dough pizzas cooked in a classic wood-fired oven. And I don’t mean the big aluminum pizza oven where the fire is made below to heat it, I mean it’s made IN the damn oven to plast the whole pizza with heat all around, like it SHOULD be. Just look at this zoomed shot I took of it!

Though I’d say most of the focus is on ‘classic’ pizza toppings (ie red sauce, different meats, cheese, peppers, etc), there are a few more unique items and combos to choose from. Currently they offer 4 specific ‘options’ along with the ability to Build Your Own, which starts off with 3 of their toppings. Enzo’s PepperRari is a red-sauced Sausage, Pepperoni, Mushroom, and Bacon creation. The Casanova similarly has Andouille, Pepperoni, Bacon and Canadian Bacon. The Babe brings Alfredo sauce to Chicken, Bacon, Mushroom, Green Peppers and Broccoli. And finally there is the Shish Kaza, a more bare (probably garlic oiled) bread topped with ‘Tangy Chicken’ marinated in very Indian-ish flavors, sliced Onions and Peppers, Feta, and finished with Garlic-Yogurt.

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Before I continue, I would like to heavily note again that this WAS their first day out, and it is… readily apparent. One of the main reasons I don’t like reviewing on a truck’s first day, but it’s probably going to be a while before I’m back downtown and I have no clue if it’ll be easy or hard to find them again, so I dived in for once. Just note that this experience should not be assumed to be consistent through the next few months of growth; but there are certainly things to be aware of. Also, I would like to re-state, as I’ve mentioned in my ‘About the Blog’ section, that if anyone from the truck, or who’s a fan of it, thinks I should go back to give a second review, I am very well up to and interested in giving a business a second chance for a better score. But I’m not going to do it unless somebody ASKS me to, so please don’t be afraid to leave a comment.

Food: 8

                For fun’s sake, I decided to try the Shish Kaza. Though also since it didn’t LIST a sauce I figured it would automatically be the classic red… so I was wrong on that account (of course the yogurt still isn’t the main sauce, just drizzled on top). Still not sure what exactly was on the bottom, if anything; my guess is just some kind of oil, or there white sauce is the kind that sinks into the dough while cooking.

The chicken enveloped in that nice curry-like turmeric-cumin marinade was a happy surprise when mixed with the various other Mediterranean-esque toppings. Especially that poignantly tart and pungent Garlic-Yogurt, brought me back to a good Gyro or Curry platter with naan. Though classically charred on the bottom and outer rim, the dough even had this particularly stringy, doughy aspects near the middle which I absolutely LOVED with these flavors… on the first slice, when it was just a little bit. Then I had the others, and realized the truth of the matter: the dough, simply put, was undercooked, and still raw in a notable portion of the center. And though I’ll argue a little bit of this was fun in a middle-eastern way, like those sour pancakes you use to scoop up the food in Ethiopian restaurants, at this point it simply ends up as a flaw. Which is a shame, because I REALLY liked this pizza and its toppings; I’d like to go back and try some other combo again. Oh, and did I mention that this was actually the SECOND attempt, since the first pizza for me got notably burnt on one half so they had to start all over. Suffice it to say, they clearly need to learn how to use a wood-fire oven properly, and/or get their dough even THINNER before topping and cooking so that the middle has a better chance to cook through before the edges burn.

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I’m going a little easy on the score as I imagine this issue SHOULD get adjusted out rather quickly as they get more used to the oven, but note it’s still a dire effect into the savory pie as a whole, and one should be aware of the possibility in ordering while this truck is still young.

Holdability: 6

                 Of pizza styles it’s in the smaller and more portable style, though it’s nonetheless still a pizza! The kind that gets your fingers oddly tasty after eating; then one brings into play that undercooked center which makes the pull and lift not as clean as it could have been and having a few potential toppings stay on the plate.
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Price: 9

                  $7-$9 range on their pre-determined specialties, and you can build your own 3-toppinged for only $7 as well! ($1.50 to add further ingredients to it, not that you’d need) Overall the solid and good range for pizzas of this size.

Speed: 3

Well, let’s see. Not even considering the pizza that got over-cooked on one side that they needed to scrap and start over, an incident I normally wouldn’t count but since it seems to be a factor which could come up again and is a MAJOR part of pizza here it is, it can be quite a wait to get a pizza, as any restaurant-goer can attest. Every order has them taking the dough, stretching/flattening it out, loading with sauce and toppings, and waiting to go into the hearth. And not quickly mind you; time IS taken, I was actually able to leave during each pizza’s reign and go visit the guys at Outlaw for probably a 5 minute-minimum convo before heading back to re-get my pizza. Combine that with the fact that the small wood fired oven seems to only be able to do one, maybe two or three at the MOST, pizzas at a time, and one can imagine the kind of wait in the act of a palpable line of customers, let alone just one or two other orders in the window.

The TOE: 5

                  A very blank truck with simple big red letters for the name, on its own doesn’t really add much from walking up to it, for all one knows it could be a nameless BBQ or taco truck. Though I will say, something about the singularly large and red letters, the edge of the name, one DOES get that strong Italian feeling, so it actually does end up bringing something to the party. There are a few other factors in play, both helpful and not, all rather light and simple. I will say that I do love the effort to do a couple different, sort of ‘next-level’ pizzas as opposed to just sticking with plain sausage/pepperoni/veggies for everything; and it’s tasty too!

Tally: 31/50

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Final Thoughts

Definitely best for when one has plenty of time to sit down and enjoy their lunch or transport to other location, though if prepared with appropriate napkins Vitos offers probably the easiest truck-based pizzas to consume while on the go, assuming they fix the under-baked issue. If they ever start connecting with them, I could actually see this being a nice truck to have out at a brewery, when one can spend the waiting time casually and then easily plant down to enjoy a pizza and tasty beer.

As for options, we all know how personal pizza preferences are, but if it was ME I would definitely suggest starting out with the Shish Kaza for something fun or the meat lover’s Casanova to keep that classic red-sauced love.

Parkway Pizza Trolley (Quasi-Review)

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http://parkwaypizzamn.com/

Well, this should be a quick one, so figured let’s just do a quasi-review for it.

It seems Parkway Pizza has stretched out from its home base in St Anthony and Longfellow, joining the catering and street vending scene with a trailer that can be transferred to events, fairs, and catering parties. Lucky me, I got to see it 3 days after it received its official paint job, so it got all bright and snazzy; they’d already hit quite a few gigs beforehand to apparent success.

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The setup is a bit surprising at first, but understandable considering their very ‘to-go’ pizza style, as the trailer itself doesn’t have any cooking equipment inside. Counter, hand sink and other sanitary requirements, and needed storage space and equipment was about all I could pick out. As such, the pizza seems to be just transported from the restaurant in the classic carry out boxes, sliced and held waiting, warm. Orders are by the slice, which I myself hold as a rather appreciative option for when you don’t want to shell out a higher amount to get a whole pizza, even if small-ish.

As such, selection depends on whatever is there and what pizzas haven’t been fully bought out; I myself found it odd that, though it was only a bit over halfway through the day, they almost ran out by the time I visited, and the event itself wasn’t that busy. So either they refill with restaurant deliveries on longer days, or just not fully prepared yet. So all I had was a cheese, but anyone who’s had Parkway knows what it tastes like; and those who hadn’t, just imagine the typical home-delivery pizza style. It’s like that.

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Food: 5 – It’s fine. Again nothing much to say besides basic pizza style, especially after it was made some time beforehand and loses that really fresh heat and softness.

Holdability: 8.5 – Just ask a New Yorker why pizza-by-the-slice is a good grab-and-go. Or check out that skyway pizza place.

Price: 9 – Only $4 a slice, and apparently mine was unevenly cut small so they gave me an unasked dollar off, very appreciative! Wish the quality was better to really make it feel special.

Speed: 10 – Everything’s already sliced and ready to go, the main benefit here next to price.

Toe: 3 – At the end of the day it just feels like what it is, a trailer connected to an original pizza restaurant where you can grab a simple slice if you’re in the mood for it. Nothing that really drags me in much from the street if I didn’t have to do a review on them. Maybe if they had a pizza oven there to cook completely or from half-baked stage, or something nice to really keep them warm and hot at least.

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Sassy Spoon Cafe Visit

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As many have been made aware of by now, in a rather loud fashion, Sassy Spoon (for those unaware, read my review to get an idea of their theme and what my opinion of them has been so far) got themselves a little café in South Minneapolis! I finally had the opportunity to visit on a recent Sunday with the folks, and for Brunch time which seems to fit their theme and atmosphere oh so well, and check yet another local truck-staurant off my list!

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Let me start off by saying that I am very happy for them, or maybe it’s more accurate to say in REACTION to them, based on two different things. Firstly, though I really cannot comprehend how they got the popularity and capital to start up a brick-and-mortar (oh well, my opinions aren’t everyone’s, I accept that… still think there are at least other trucks that should have gotten to this point sooner), we finally have an environment that fits their food style! No more do I have to bitch about their very non-street food going on the streets, this stuff was really made to be served up on plates and eaten in a diner or café of some type, and now we can do that!

Secondly, I’m not sure when they did it (I know it wasn’t in the beginning at all), but they’ve shed their main advertising face of general “healthy and nutritious food” focus and openly narrowed their culinary focus to a “Gluten Free” façade. Now, that’s something I can get on board with! It fits, it makes sense, there’s nothing in the food to non-corroborate it, and I would bet if they used this excuse/marketing strategy since the beginning I would not have complained so much. I mean really, when you’re only offering piles of meat with either slaw, sweet potatoes, and creamy cauliflower, it’s not the kind of food that REALLY screams nutrition is it? Say what you will, no one really cares about the Atkins diet anymore… but gluten free, in a café, and the menu gels, my urges to contradict and bitch gone (well, sort of, I still have those memories…).

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Oh well, I’m shutting up now about that and getting onto the actual café! You can tell it was designed by the truck owners, the inside is just as bright, appealing, sorta-modern and welcoming as the big pink truck used to be. There’s a little wrap-around bar to the side of the order ‘window’ and dessert/drink display case. Which has some not-so-bad looking sweets in there, would be very interested in trying the Beet Cake myself one day… (gluten-free cookies scare me though)

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First up, of course, is drinks. Besides the classic morning coffees, juice and tea, one can of course find some trendy Kombucha, specialty soda, Organic Milk, and a few interesting shop coffees. This includes something called a “Maple Cream Cold Press” and a “Spiced Butter Coffee,” which my mom picked up, and I swear it smells like biscoff cookies! But sort of tangy, makes me wonder if it’s a nicely acidic coffee bean or something else added; really good and tasty, I can see the appeal of this new ‘butter in coffee’ craze, kept in control of course.

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I leaned more towards the booze of course, they having a nice little selection of wines but, more importantly, Local Beer, Cider, and Mead (which I’m only noticing now after looking through pictures, damn if only I knew before!). I myself got to try the Loon Juice; yay, another Minnesota Cider besides Sociable that I get to say I’ve had!

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Food is mainly comprised of the truck classics, the Sweet Potato Hash w/ Egg, Turkey Meatballs, Miso Pork/Tacos, and a Salad, with some notable extra options, especially during brunch. Goat Cheese-stuffed Dates, “Yucca Patties” w/ Olives and Jalapeno dipping sauce (I’ve been intrigued by this one), Wild Rice Black Bean Salad, and some eggy breakfast dishes in Omelet, Scramble, and Basic structure come together. Of course sides based off of these, breakfast, and apparently the option to buy cups of $4 broth is also available.

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A group of plates for our little party had us trying the Sassy Scramble, Yucca Flatbread, and Buckwheat Pancakes; the last being the definite highlight, just being super fluffy and flavorful, stuffed with delightful blueberries with a tasty citrusy syrup, one of those ideal modern brunch offerings we seek out nowadays after being exposed to places like Pizza Luce and Hola Arepa. Mixed with goat cheese and spinach (and onion), the scramble in comparison certainly TASTES really good, nice and healthy, but I myself have never really appreciated scrambled eggs that have gotten brown from the pan. Maybe it’s me, I know some professionals still consider the perfect omelet acceptable with some brown on it, but the texture in scrambles like that just end up too firm, not the light/fluffy or moist/silky expressions that actually show a sign of quality. And considering they’re probably using really good quality organic eggs here (they seem to stick to the local farm product theme for whatever they can), I end up feeling somewhat sad for what these proper eggs were probably turned into.

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My focus was the Flatbread, curious as to what the crust was actually like. First off, let me just start off by saying come on, let’s just call this what it is: a Pizza. I know the flatbread and pizza label are rather interchangeable these days, but we all have some impression of a flatbread, usually thick grilled or some artisan crisp dough topped with some unique sauce and/or cheese and/or garnish, really embodying a perfect appetizer for sharing. Just one look at this guy, red sauce and mozzarella with that apparent golden brown painting across the top from the hot oven, and clearly it’s nothing other than pizza; tell me that does not remind you of the frozen pizzas you bake at home (visually speaking, not quality wise, I’m not THAT much of a douche or imbecile). Why don’t we just call it pizza and get it over with?

As for flavor, as a pizza I did enjoy it in that similar manner; firm crunchy edges, a softer but still-holding and fully-cooked dough bottom, tasting red sauce and stretchy cheese. I added the pepper mix on mine, which for the price additions seems to be the only thing worth it, and was quite happy. As a gluten free pizza, the crust did a great job substituting; I’m wondering if they used something like yucca flour for it, but considering they have it elsewhere on the menu, my guess is more on the lines of mashing and using in a ‘potato flatbread’ manner. It’s not the best flatbread or pizza in the city, by far, but it fits a certain style and craving well enough.

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One big complaint and note we all had was the pricing, a lot of the items are rather pricey considering what we’re getting, which seems to be a common thing with most ‘healthy/organic/gluten-free’ based businesses. With luck the place actually delivers or provides something that IS totally awesome along with the healthy stuff and we don’t care, but in a café like this it seems to stand out even more. I mean, a BASIC breakfast on their menu is $11.50; that’s supposed to be one of the simpler, affordable options on a menu, not one of the most expensive (unless it’s one of those modern ‘deconstructed’ things, which are usually downright awesome). Not to mention a side of Bacon, which the mother got to add to the pancakes, cost $4, for TWO measly strips. We wouldn’t even normally care, you know, if we got two nice, thick-ish pieces. But even if it is from a local farm, we ended up with a barely cooked, thin, sorta fatty couple pieces that just aren’t worth it; feels a bit insulting actually. Same with the pizza topping add-ons; $0.75 for the veggies, okay, but $2 for each meat (which they only have two kinds to begin with)? It’s already $11 for just cheese and sauce man!

All that said, I’m not necessarily saying one shouldn’t go; it’s a fun and different place for the gluten-free required to find a meal in a welcoming environment! Or to grab yourself a local drink or butter coffee with a meal. Just make sure to pick the right items, I definitely suggest the buckwheat pancakes; not only have they likely been the best things I’ve had from Sassy in my trips, but they’re the best price too (Mom still says $8.50 for only two café/diner pancakes is larceny, but for special, delicious, and gluten-free affairs in a place like this, I don’t mind it). And the service and staff ARE absolutely great, nice, and fantastic and all that. I myself just won’t be going there again. Ever.

Tru Pizza

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http://www.trupizzatruck.com/
https://www.facebook.com/trupizza
Main Location: Minneapolis

Coming in with the other anticipated mid-season group of trucks mentioned in a previous review, Tru Pizza has hit the downtown Minneapolis streets to solid acclaim. It seems the business has quickly integrated itself quite well into the lineup, at least for this year, and is poised to become the first supporting column in our mobile pizza needs (true, there is another pizzeria on wheels in Minnesota’s list, but they rarely hit the streets outside of events and rare brewery visits).

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They peaked my own curiosity quite a bit too; seeing it was based out of a completely enclosed truck, as opposed to many mobile pizza places using a trailer with noted attachment on the end for their brick-oven, I very much wanted to know what appliance and system they used for their pie cookery. What an intriguing shock I got, then, when I noticed the front half of their already-small working space was crammed with yet a giant domed pizza oven, typical in style to the traditional brick oven. “How they get it in there?” my first thought read… only to be solved on my realization it is NOT a brick oven, but made of pure steel, so disassembly must be possible; I do believe it is still wood fired though, leaving a great and hot cooking source for the Neapolitan fare.

As for the fair itself, I guess I don’t need to state that Pizza is indeed the specialty; in particular, crust and toppings keep more to the Mediterranean trends favored nowadays, with crusty raised dough. Leaning towards light red and white sauces, delicate use of toppings, and ingredients like Buratta and Fennel Sausage, Tru is reminiscent of some of our favorite quality pizza places that have come into focus the past decade.

As for options, they of course start off with a classic Margherita (for those still unaware, simple pizza of fresh tomato, mozzarella, and basil), regular or a Wet option that uses Buratta (basically mozzarella cheese that is wrapped in a ball around very moist and wet curd, super delicious and delicate). Pre-set pizzas include something called “Killer” that uses pepperoni and crimini mushrooms, as well as a Highway Man that has the same meat, fennel sausage, basil and pepperocini peppers. White Pizza’s (using simply olive oil and basil) focus on ingredients like Prosciutto, Arugula, Kalamata Olives, Feta, Sun-Dried Tomatos, Kale, and fresh Garlic. One of course has customization options.

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There is of course  no good pizza place without an option for bread on the side, Tru taking this to offer a more affordable ‘Flatbread’ option. On my visit it was listed as ‘Lardo,’ a special guy that’s brushed with rendered pork fat with herbs and pecorino. Whether this is to be a constant option or they change it is unsure, but it sounds nummy to me.

Food: 9

                Trying to find a single pizza that would allow me to get a full experience of their style and the quality of various toppings used, I ordered the MRE, coming with a mix of Fennel Sausage, Crimini, Wood-roasted Onions, and Fresh Basil. I also substituted to the Buratta Mozzarella to see how it comes out.

Which, sadly, didn’t shine as much as I wanted what with the other flavors coming into play, especially with little was on the pie; that said, it still offered a very fresh, clean, great cheese on the tomato sauce, still way better than factory shredded crap, I just doubt one could differentiate it from the fresh Mozzarella that much. As for the other main components, the sauce was bright and fresh, good tomato flavor without that heaviness derived from thick paste and overly stewing. Dough was nicely thin, great charring from the oven, with a good chew texture for most of it, though I felt the slightly thicker ends a bit chewier than my taste. But to be fair Punch Pizza’s is a bit tougher still, so overall they seem to have a good and acceptable recipe.

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I love the fennel sausage, the charred and soft onions, and some nicely roasted mushrooms. The ingredients have a good level of quality and creation, and come together with the other base factors to create one of the typically ideal wood oven cooked pizzas. The one thing that stands out for me, and this somewhat ties into price, is the amount of these toppings seem a bit scant, even for the style. I wish there was a bit more on there.

Holdability: 5

               Well, it is pizza, though it’s at a small enough size with light toppings that it could allow for easy consuming without having to find stable seating. However, the dough wasn’t cut through all that cleanly, requiring effort to separate the hot pieces without a mess taking place; basically, it became a much harder experience to eat while walking.
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Price: 8

                The three most affordable pizzas are $7, $8,and $9, with the rest hanging between $10 and $11; note these are all good sized lunches, but not the ‘sharing is probably best’ behemoths from a certain other pizza truck. There are options for additions and burrata cheese switch-outs at charge, but I rarely see a particular need to do any of them. Of final and particular note, the Lardo Flatbread comes in at a very cost-effective $5, a tempting offer for future visits in my book.

Speed: 7

A little longer than average, though that’s somewhat expected considering what’s being cooked (though if I remember correctly, certain proper brick oven can cook a pizza pretty damn fast when done right).

The TOE: 8.5

                I’m gonna give them a couple extra points here than I did Little G’s, since they have the same qualities at this point, but I feel a bit more cohesion and identity, plus lack of boring cliché of just having brownie and cookie options on the side; menu and food feels somewhat similar to actual brick-oven pizza restaurants I’ve been to. Not to mention bonus on the use of pork fat in the flatbread (aka breadstick substitute); I am debating whether or not it might actually reach TOE Ring status, but I’d need to try it first (damn my skinny wallet nowadays).

Tally: 37.5/50

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Final Thoughts

If you enjoy and/or desire pizza in the style of Black Sheep and Punch, but don’t feel like going through the whole restaurant thing for lunch in Minneapolis, then Tru Pizza is an ideal stop. Also a strong possibility when looking for a filling yet delicious option at very low prices, the Lardo Flatbread is great for those who don’t mind a carb-loaded meal.

Those options I feel worth going after, at least on your first visit, are highly limited; they only put a bare amount of extra toppings on in my opinion, and then the charge for extra meat starts adding up. As such, I say grab one of the Margherita’s to enjoy the pure and simple fresh, juicy qualities of the basic pizza ingredients. If one HAS to have meat, I might suggest ignoring some of the other options and just add Fennel Sausage to the basic margherita; it’s easily gonna be a better experience than the pepperoni, and costs the same as the Killer. Speaking of which, I would also completely ignore any thoughts of substituting the Buratta; it’ll only really shine well on the Margherita, other toppings easily covering up the subtle qualities that make it amazing.

Something then tells me that the White Sauce based options probably don’t share the highlight, but the Santorini and Health menu items draw my eyes for those who desire a full, vegetarian-friendly lunch without doing the ‘boring’ tomato-mozzarella option (I’m sure there are some who may be sick of it by now). It’ll just cost more.

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A Day of Mixed Experiences

               You know what it is they say about the “Best Laid Plans?” Well, that particular kind of bad-luck situation seems to cross my path quite often; in fact, almost every time I attempt to plan a day with someone else. Heck, I once scheduled a day to take off of school (special 1-time use card privelage thing) a couple months ahead of time, and it just so happened that day ended up being the 1 day after 10 years that we closed due to Snow.

                This of course was no exception yesterday, when me and Paige from Alcohol by Volume finally met for a day of Brewery and Food Truck mingling. So, after driving all the way down to Indeed, I suddenly found out that, not only do they open at 3 as opposed to the Noon time we had planned, but the Food Truck I was looking forward to was scheduled for Saturday, not Friday (darn their confusing Calendar). Called my meeting buddy to re-think, drove to meet at Fulton… which also wasn’t open. SO we just met at a bar Downtown, since she was already walking on Nicollet.

                So, after booking it all the way from Fulton to Nicollet and 10th (I had already found this awesome 10hr Parking Meter, paid 50c for 4 hours, I’m not letting that baby go) I entered “The Local” and went about searching. For those who haven’t been, it was my first time too, they have a fun old-school bar interior, divided right in half by a long, extensive woodwork. The rest of the pub is interspersed with private cubicles, glass dividers, wood stands, and other such patchwork forms of older-styled décor, designed mainly for creating senses of privacy. It’s a really cool and fun thing to walk through… but it sucks when trying to find somebody. I circled twice, and ended up having to sit and have her find me instead.

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                Took about an hour, but finally got the day kicked off. The rest went smooth and simple. Shared some talk over a beer; being quite tired from the run, I needed a creamy Kilkenny, and to our luck we found they held a Harriet, so she went for that. After expressing the interest, the bartender decided to find a growler of their Saison and poured us each a taster.  Really had that characteristic Harriet Fruity-Hoppy complexity on the nose, though my more experienced colleague pointed out its characteristics technically weren’t along what a true “saison” should be. At the very least we agreed it still tasted good.

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                Feeling the need for a change of venue, specifically one that held food, I offered two main ideas, and we headed off towards Marquette. Since, sadly, we only found one Truck still parked, I decided to take her to option #2: Devil’s Advocate. Shockingly this was the first time she had even heard of it, so I thought it’d be a fun experience, even if Food Trucks weren’t involved.

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                A nice, complex and darker Winter Ale for her, and my first glass of Dragon’s Milk Stout, and we went for a simple order of meatball sliders. Pretzel roll double of Beef w/ Red Sauce and a Single Chicken w/ Mushroom; it was my first time trying the fries too, which I definitely give them much applause for in their perfection of soft inside and crispy outside. It was my first time seeing their dessert menu, too, and I definitely suggest your next visit include one of their seemingly simple yet slightly twisted items. The cheesecake we ordered, for instance, was made with Mascarpone instead of the typical Cream; made a bit smoother and not as heavy.

                Talks had no real common thread, ranging from the complex and storied past of Finnegan’s Brewery to the practices of separate city Brewing Clubs (of which I’m thinking I might look into for joining), between Hidden Bars and Donny Darko, and a particularly noted discussion of various food-related TV Shows.

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                The day ended at Fulton, where at least I was able to show off one of our prided Trucks, Little G’s. Inside, I had my first glass of their newer War and Peace stout. Very powerful, punchy in style, you really got the bitterness of the Malts and Hops; a fun little version of one of my favorite malt-bases. To our delight, we also found out about their recent foray into making their own sodas, and we both just had to share a glass of Juniper-Blueberry. Much like all homemade sodas, it was awesome.

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                We ordered an Italian (Sausage, Onion, Pepper), a simple heavy style to fit their thicker, doughier crust. She certainly approved, though sadly was full from our trip to Devil’s to eat more than one small square. Finishing our drinks, we called it a day and went our separate ways.

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                It was certainly a fun get-together, and I enjoyed the chance of being able to share our respective loves and interests in these two growing culinary scenes. Very much looking forward to the next little experience, hopefully I’ll actually be able to show off more than one Truck next time. Until then, we’ll both keep on tasting and trucking for your reading pleasure!

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                Oh, one final note. Since I had another hour on my meter, and was still a bit affected from the drink, decided to stop into the nearby Saffron for a little waiting snack. Sadly, they didn’t have the Lamb Brains available (could have sworn I saw it on one of their Happy Hours at one point, but apparently I was wrong), so I tried a little dish of house-cured beef called “Bastirma.” Rubbed with Turkish spices, one could really get that gentle complexity in the aroma, and the chew was nice with the clean fat and concentrated meat. Certainly a nice, simple appetizer to end the day with.

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Little G’s Mobile Pizzeria

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http://www.facebook.com/pages/Little-Gs-Mobile-Pizzeria/223022501065262

Main Location: Markets, Events, Etc

 

             As far as I can tell, besides Little G’s there is no other actual Food Truck within the state that sells Pizza (again, this is for Trucks only). Luckily, it’s pretty easy to pick out of a crowd, just look for the trailer with the giant brick oven sticking out of its back end.

 

            The first time I saw it myself, I was quite surprised (something which does not come to me easily, especially with food) and thrilled at the same time (though that always comes with the discovery of a new truck to our growing wheeled scene). Sadly, I was not destined for pizza that day, as I did not have the time nor the stomach to order.

 

            It was almost an entire year before I saw them again. (This due to a break of the street they had to take, focusing on catering)

 

            When I finally saw their post, I rushed down to the city, found a tight parking spot, and ran straight for… well, another food truck, I had another thing I wanted to eat that day. Then I got my pizza, sat down near an office, and chowed down.

 

It was worth the wait.

 

The Crust is of the thicker, chewy variety, handmade of course. The bottom is swept in that charcoal-covered toast from the oven (the good kind, not the burnt kind). The cheese is thick, gooey and full of grease and fat in all the right ways, piled on along with the rest of the ingredients. Sauce is of the stronger, thicker variety; not exactly delicate.

 pizza

            They practice a variety of topping styles, generally keeping the traditional pepperoni and sausage on top, but changing out others seasonally. Quite often you will see something on the lines of Prosciutto with Spinach Pesto, Goat Cheese, etc; something a little heavier like a Nordeast (Polish Sausage and Sauerkraut, my favorite); and others.

 

            Personally, I would suggest you avoid any toppings that seem of the more “delicate” and “lighter” variety, like the Prosciutto kind; it does not suit the pizza and crust at all. The crust is big, flavorful, and chewy, and the toppings need to be heavy to compensate. Not to mention the cheese is piled on, so that alone completely takes over any subtle flavors that a good, thin slice of cured meat is supposed to dance with.

 

Stick with the big, artery-clogging reminders of the good old days, because those are the exact types of pizzas they SHOULD be making with that crust (I did have a good blue cheese, fig and apple; the blue cheese is a strong enough flavor to make due); it just makes it so satisfying and perfect.

 

They also stock the simple canned soda, cookies and brownie desserts, which I think may be handmade. However, as are most desserts made for a catering vehicle, I doubt their exceptional quality.

 

 

Food: 9

When you do the right toppings, this is one of the best pizzas in the city. It may not be seen as technique driven, artsy, high end as opposed to other city pizzas, but the fact of the matter is it tastes DAMN GOOD; it makes you HAPPY in the purest of senses. The crust works fantastic with the brick oven. If you still haven’t had the chance for a brick oven pizza, then you haven’t had Pizza yet (there is a reason the best reviewed pizzas in the US are made in them).

I’m really hoping that sooner or later they figure out that the heavier styles of toppings are what they really need and start to focus on creating more of and perfecting those styles (I have ideas if you wanna queue me!!).

 

Holdability: 3

What can you really say, it’s a pizza, and a pretty thick and messy one at that. You can’t eat this without sitting down somewhere. I would suggest having a napkin; at the very least they wrap it up for you so it’s easy to carry. Luckily for us, they usually come out at events where finding a place to sit down isn’t too difficult.

 

Price: 8.5

Prices range from $9 to the low double digits. Since you’re getting a pizza that one could easily share with another, it’s a pretty darn good deal… though I tend to want one just to myself, so look for someone else.

 

Speed: 8

Pretty good speed for a pizza place. Then again the line is never very long the times I’m there, so can’t put effort into scoring.

 

The TOE: 7

                It is a very good food truck, but sadly it doesn’t have quite as much of an “aura” about it as others do. Now, the giant brick oven brings it up pretty far and a unique standout. Still, the only pizzeria food truck out there, so it has a lot of that moxy, but that seems about it, stops right there.

 

            Tally: 35.5/50

 

 

Final Thoughts

 

Again, get the heavier, richer toppinged pizzas; if they have the Nordeast jump on it, it is SO good. If looking for more of a deal, split the cost with a friend/family member and split it (I’d say split with a group, but you might end up stabbing someone’s hand to get at their slice…).

Also, I’ve seen them do both triangle and square cuttings, so whatever the preference I suggest you ask during the order to ensure you get what you like.