There are tons of new food trucks parking all over Minneapolis which are serving some excellent street foods. While there are many to choose from, I have only made it to one so far: World Street Kitchen in the “big red truck” at the corner of 5th and Nicollet in Minneapolis.
Open from 11 AM until 3 PM daily, this is a Minneapolis food truck you cannot miss. Fire engine red and located in a parking lot next to the Nicollet Ave LRT station they are serving up some really tasty dishes which draw influence from what they claim is all over the world including Morocco and Vietnam. Owned by the brothers behind Saffron, this is one food truck you should definitely not miss.
A coworker and I headed over there on Wednesday afternoon during what was a pretty steady rain. My umbrella broke moments before we headed out the door and sharing the one left between the two of us was just not going to work. Darting in and out of building overhangs brought us to the appropriate corner which was clearly marked by the red truck. As we approached I saw that the rain had driven away any lines. Co-owner Saed was standing out front and under the truck’s own awning and next to a pile of open umbrellas. As I came up to the window he handed me one and said they were learning how to operate on days like that. I was thankful for the umbrella, took some photos and placed my order.
The menu is a good one. They offer a variety of different sandwiches, dips, salads and tacos for prices that seem almost too inexpensive for downtown Minneapolis. Craving a bahn mi I ordered their curried chicken bahn mi and just to make sure I had enough food I also picked up a lamb taco with spicy cabbage. My coworker, after being assured that her choice of a kofta meatball sub scored a “2″ on the heat scale and being promised that if she took a bite and thought it was too much that they’d make her something else, ordered one up for herself. Both subs set us back a whopping $5.50 each. The taco was another $2.50. While we didn’t walk the skyway past Potbelly, I’m sure there was a line out the door and down the hall waiting to pay about $5 for something half the size and without the same ingredients.
After a wait which was literally less than two minutes I was handed both my sandwich and the lamb taco. Unable to eat outside comfortably in the rain but holding too many items which may not have made it back to work in one piece I bagged the sandwich and ate the taco while waiting for my coworker’s sandwich. The lamb taco was good. I absolutely loved the spicy cabbage. It carried some good heat which stuck with me about halfway back to my building (maybe 3.5 blocks in the skyway). Unfortunately while the spicy cabbage was nice the meat, while flavorful due to whatever they cooked it in, could have been any meat and I wouldn’t have known the difference.
After we got back to work we sat down and took a good and hard look at our sandwiches. My bahn mi was covered in fresh cilantro and either purple or cinnamon basil (I can’t tell the difference in basils–I know I’m weird). There was a single slice of fresh jalapeno inside, some cucumbers, tons of meat, some carrots, etc. The bread was slightly toasted and neither too dry nor too soft. I took a bite and immediately the curry slapped me in the face. Not spicy but instead very sweet and coconut laced. I seriously felt like I was eating one of the best chicken curries ever but on a sandwich! The vegetables were nice and while the fresh jalapeno was a plus once I got to it I would have liked to see more being that the curry didn’t carry much heat itself. I’m pretty certain they’d be accommodating of my request if I asked to make it hotter next time. My coworker’s kofta meatball sub was similarly excellent. While I only had a small piece there was also an abundance of meat, the same great bread, and it was definitely full of flavor.
Overall I was extremely impressed with World Street Kitchen and the big red truck. The prices are very reasonable, the portions are huge, and I really love the menu. If you want to make sure you’re seeing the most up-to-date offerings be sure to follow them on Twitter or at least check their daily photo of their chalk menu board.
Have you eaten at World Street Kitchen? If so what did you think? What did you order? What would you like to order in the future? Have you eaten at Saffron? Thoughts on that? What about other street foods in Minneapolis or even St. Paul? What are your favorite trucks? What would you like to see out there? Whatever you have to say about World Street Kitchen in Minneapolis or any of the food trucks around town go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.
World Street Kitchen (big red truck)
5th and Nicollet Ave
Minneapolis, MN 55402
See all the pictures from World Street Kitchen on Flickr here.