Maiale Di Volo

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Maiale Di Volo

Maiale Di Volo

Location: Roaming & Uptown Market in Beaverton on weeekends
Hours: Varies, Uptown Market, Thurs-Sat, 12-8pm

The Story: I’ve seen a wood fired oven inside a food cart before, yet not on the back of a 1937 Dodge Truck. Maiale Di Volo, otherwise known as “The Flying Pig” is one of the newest pizza slingers to bring us the goods.

Maiale Di Volo

Maiale Di Volo

Brett Tuft took a vintage flatbed truck and over the back axle built a wood fired oven to cook his pies. He’s the chef, the owner and the Pizzaiolo at the truck. Over the summer, he had taken the truck to different events throughout the city, but on the weekends you could find him set up at Uptown Market on Scholl’s Ferry, a bottle shop and taproom. What’s better than wood fired pizza and a cold beer? Brett looks to source locally first when he can which includes the freshest organic produce, small farm artisanal cheeses, and high quality multi-grain organic flours from Bob’s Red Mill. You can taste it in the end product. After 20 years working in the food service industry including attending Le Cordon Blue WCI, Brett has fulfilled his lifelong journey to bring healthy, great tasting pizza to the people.

Margarita Pizza from Maiale Di Volo

Margarita Pizza from Maiale Di Volo

Wood fired pizza is really a treat. Using different hardwoods including red and white oak, cherry and alder, the scent from the wood infuses into the pizza ever so slightly. Brett has even sourced some Russian red oak used for packing from a local shipyard. Each pie only takes about 5 minutes to make – 2 minutes to create from scratch, then 2 minutes in the oven. For me, the ever so flavorful Margarita was the pizza of the day. Tomato sauce, fresh basil and fresh mozzarella make up one of the simplest yet amazing pizzas one can order. The crust was charred just right and paired with a local IPA, we dove in and didn’t look back. A 10″ pie is enough for 1 or great to share.

Maiale Di Volo is a passion. You can tell by the choice of truck Brett used to the quality of the pie he produces. Find him on the weekends at Uptown Market or during the week at different events. You can have him at your event also. Drop on by for a pie and let “The Flying Pig” know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

10″ Pies made fresh to order

  • Margarita – $9
  • Quatro Fromaggi – olive oil, garlic, oregano, fontina, provolone, parmesan, FCC mozzarella – $10
  • Spicy Hungarian Sausage – tomato sauce, roasted potatoes, caramelized onions, fresh mozzarella – $11
  • Amore di Maiale – tomato sauce, guanciale, capicola, pancetta, prosciutto, mozzarella – $13
  • Caesar Salad – $5

Website: MaialedivoloPizza.com
Facebook
: Maiale Di Volo
Twitter: 
@Maialedivolo

Eggrollin’!

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Eggrollin’!

Location: Shelton, WA
Hours: Mon-Fri, 11am-7pm

The Story: Dark, a bit of fog and the need to stop for smoked salmon in Taylor Towne off HWY 101 brought us to Eggrollin’! the other night. We were getting back on the highway when we spotted the sign – Got Lumpia? We didn’t, so we stopped.

Rojo from Eggrollin'!

Rojo from Eggrollin’!

Rojo Castillo stood there in the brightly lit cart on this dark night in the middle of what we would call nowhere. In the daytime, one would see he is parked next to the local drive-in movie theater which provides him steady summer business. Rojo’s story is similar to those I hear from many food cart owners. Having spent many years in another industry, he came to open the cart after a change in jobs which afforded him the opportunity to chase a lifelong dream. When he and his wife married twenty some odd years ago, he remembers talking about opening a Filipino restaurant. Twenty years later his dream came true and my belly was happy he did.

At Eggrollin’, Rojo offers lumpias, pancit bowls and chicken adobo over rice. I’m always up for trying everything, so we picked up a combo with all three items along with a veggie-tofu lumpia. A lumpia is a fried spring roll with influences from Asia but also colonial Spanish. The combo was huge, with more than I could eat in once sitting. Luckily, snacktime arrived only a couple hours later and I could finish it all off. The chicken, moist and flavorful over sticky rice. The lumpia – I could eat those for hours. Every bite was enjoyable. I wish he were closer to Portland.

Rojo has been serving up his Filipino dishes in and around the Shelton and O-Lumpia area now for a couple of years, so if you’re from there, you should seek him out for your next event or catering gig. A great guy with a welcoming smile and a hearty laugh. Next time you’re on a road trip to the Olympics, take a detour off 101 and pay him a visit. Let Rojo know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Lumpia – $1 – beef, chicken, veggie-tofu or Lumpia Shanghai
  • Pancit Bowl – $5
  • Chicken Adobo over Rice – $5
  • Turon – $1
  • Combo plates range from $6-8

Phone: 360 463 9266
Facebook: Eggrollin’!

The Mighty Bowl

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The Mighty Bowl

The Mighty Bowl

Location: Vancouver, WA – check TheMightyBowl.com for current location
Hours: lunchtime, Mon-Fri

The Story:

Took a field trip north to visit a new food truck roaming the streets of Vancouver. Serving up tasty rice and bean bowls, The Mighty Bowl has captured the eater’s hearts as displayed by the line at 1pm.

The Mighty Bowl is the first food truck to roam the streets of Vancouver, a city that has not followed Portland’s model of food carts and is known for some challenging regulations. Owner Steve Valenta, his wife, Sherilee, and their longtime friend, Kevin DeGraw banded together to design and build one good looking truck and work through the city’s regulations. With the simple idea of healthy rice and bean bowls, they’ve been serving regularly at multiple locations since spring.

Rice bowls for me date back a decade or more. Over the years, I’ve eaten my share of bowls and keep coming back. At The Mighty Bowl, there are different options to add dynamic flavor, but the dish is simply brown rice, black beans, cheddar cheese, olives, salsa, avocado, sour cream, cilantro and sauce. If you do all those single ingredients well with a killer sauce, you create an awesomely healthy dish. The Kiggins bowl comes with spicy chipotle sauce generously distributed throughout so you don’t spill trying to mix it all together. While there was spice to the sauce, the smokiness of the chipotle was the most memorable. Every bite, every spoonful included at least four of the ingredients making the entire meal an enjoyable eating event. All dishes are gluten free and some are nut and egg free in addition.

The Mighty Bowl is one of those food trucks you see on TV with an amazing wrap presenting their logo. Downtown Vancouver isn’t that large, so if you’re driving around, you may happen upon them one day. Or, if you want to seek them out, they post their daily schedule on their website – TheMightyBowl.com. If you live and work in Vancouver, you should venture out and enjoy one of their bowls or wraps. If you’re in Portland, take a field trip north, it isn’t too far away. Let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

Regular bowl, $6; Large, $6.50 and all bowls can be made into wraps for $7.25

  • Mighty Bowl – brown rice, black beans, avocado, cheddar cheese, sour cream, cilantro, olives, salsa with a tangy house sauce
  • Kiggins Bowl – spicy chipotle sauce
  • Peanut Bowl – peanut sauce

Website: TheMightyBowl.com
Twitter: @Mightybowl
Facebook: The Mighty Bowl

Pirate Fish and Chips

Brett Burmeister
Pirate Fish and Chips

Pirate Fish and Chips

Location: 1137 Tucker Rd, Hood River, OR
Hours: Mon-Fri, 10-4pm

The Story:

Every so often I get the itch to leave the city and see where the car will take me and hope that I’ll find something awesome to eat when I get to wherever I’m going. A few weeks ago, that itch and a Zipcar took me to Hood River where my friend and I enjoyed some of what Pirate Fish and Chips has to offer.

Hood River, a gem in the middle of the Columbia Gorge, is one of those cities I have visited more times than I can count. As a kid we would stop there for ice cream or Pizza at Pietro’s on our way to camp on the Washington side of the Columbia up by Goldendale. Since then, Hood River became the wind-surfing capital of the world and turned into one awesome little town. These days, while there are amazing outdoor activities available, I visit for the breweries and the food. Like many small towns, Hood River now has some food carts that are making inroads and Pirate Fish and Chips is one of them.

[Read more...]

A Cajun Life

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A Cajun Life

A Cajun Life

Location: 14530 SE 202nd Ave, Damascus
Hours: Fridays 11am-7pm; Sat, 10am-2pm at Gresham Farmers Market

The Story:

I grew up in deep SE Portland. We actually lived in unincorporated east Multnomah county, a mysterious rural land between Portland and Gresham. I raised pigs that usually went to “pig camp” while I was at summer camp. Food options in the area consisted of jojo’s at the local market or Subway or Dairy Queen. What I would give to have have been able to eat at A Cajun Life while a kid. It would have been childhood favorite.

A Cajun Life is the work of Chris Fontenot and his wife Hillary. Chris, a Louisiana native who ended up moving around the nation a bit before landing in Damascus, discovered the one thing he truly missed about home was the food. A common theme heard when talking with transplants to our fine town. Luckily for us, they chased this dream down and opened the cart named Roux down off HWY 212 and SE 202nd right in the heart of Damascus. It wasn’t easy. Damascus is a new city with little or no regulations regarding mobile vendors, so Clackamas County became the final arbiter. They too are new to mobile vending, so in the end, everyone has been on a learning curve trying to support this small business, get them open and keep them open.

Bayou Boogie and Crawfish Etoufee

Bayou Boogie and Crawfish étouffée

A Cajun Life’s menu features all the dishes I have fell in love with during my numerous trips to New Orleans. While everything on the menu looked simply amazing, I asked Chris for his specialty and he put together a combo of his Bayou Boogie and crawfish étouffée. Normally, this quantity of food would give me pause, but after that first bite of hot sausage and rice with a bit of chicken, I couldn’t put the fork down. The hot of the sausage was so different than what I’ve had, I couldn’t get enough. I quickly realized I had picked out most of the sausage and left everything else there. I felt like a kid separating items on the plate. The difference here was that the rest of the dish was amazing even though I had already ate the sausage. The crawfish étouffée, crawfish tails smothered in sauce, was equally flavorful and a treat. I asked Chris about a crawfish boil and he stated it may end up on the menu in the future. Mmmm, crawfish!

A Cajun Life, located in Damascus, may be a bit far for many of our readers here, but it is on the way to and from Mt. Hood and elsewhere east. Take a different route next time you’re out for a hike and drop on by. Their hours are weekend focused open on Friday at the cart and Saturday at the Gresham Farmers Market. If you’re a Timbers fan, you can check them out at Saturday, September 29th’s match against DC United. I’m happy to see mobile vendors succeeding beyond Portland but close enough to visit. Drop on by if you’re in the area and let them know Food Carts Portland sent ya.

Sample Menu:

  • Authentic Cajun Gumbo: chicken, sausage, Tasso served with potatoes in roux based sauce over rice – $8
  • Crawfish étouffée: crawfish tails smothered in sauce served over rice – $8
  • Bayou Boogie: chicken, sausage and Tasso gravy served over rice – $8
  • Crawfish Pistolettes: French bread stuffed with crawfish cheese sauce – $3.50 each

Hours: Thurs, 3:30-7:30, Fridays 11am-7pm; Sat, 10am-2pm
Website: ACajunLife.com
Facebook: A Cajun Life

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