Sitting on over 250 acres of pristine farmland near the Jersey Shore, Laurita Winery offers grand vistas, great vintages, and good times. Last month, Laurita Winery held an increasingly popular summer event on August 23 and 24called Food Trucks and Fire Pits, which was the perfect event to wind down the much-loved summer season.
More than 20 of the best food trucks from Philadelphia, New Jersey, and New York lined up at the Laurita Winery to serve their specialties. The different food choices were as colorful as the trucks themselves, with offerings like elk burgers, chocolate-covered bacon, pierogi, and more.
Live music, wine tastings, and free vineyard tours were provided by the winery, and drinking games like corn hole were in full swing. If this sounds like your kind of party you are in luck, because the winery is holding their food truck event one last time before the weather turns too cool on October 4 and 5. Bring a beach chair or blanket and an empty stomach.
Don’t let its size fool you. This pint-sized truck serves up some seriously tasty Korean-American Fusion. KAMI stands for Korean American Menus Inspired, so items like Korean tacos and Korean cheese steaks are made with bulgogi beef and spicy kimchi to give that Korean flair.
It’s amazing how a dish as simple as chicken on a stick with a sauce can be so good, but that’s exactly what you get from KAMI when you order their chicken skewer. Think chicken kebab with a sweet and spicy BBQ-sriracha sauce.
This truck keeps it simple and delicious with four hibachi meal choices: beef, chicken, shrimp, or tofu served with fried rice and veggies. Sounds like pretty standard hibachi fair, but the real magic is found in the choice of sauces: Ginger-soy, wasabi mayo, or sriracha. Habichi Heaven was definitely the truck with the best value dishes.
Bacon on Wheels
You get exactly what you’re expecting with this truck: bacon, bacon, and more bacon. Whether it’s fried bacon on a stick or curry corn with crispy bacon, the modus operandi here is salty, smoky, porky goodness. If you’ve ever wondered how to make bacon into a dessert, Bacon on Wheels has an answer for you: just dip it in chocolate, sprinkle it with powdered sugar and sea salt, and then dunk it in maple syrup. Repeat the last step after each bite until bacon is gone.
Pompier Catering and Cuisine
It’s a commonly accepted fact that fire fighters are, inexplicably, some of the best cooks. The guys at the Pompier truck, which is French for fire fighter, do not disappoint. When they’re not putting out fires, these guys serve refined Polish dishes like pierogi and flatbreads.
These pierogi were probably the best dish all day from any of the food trucks: Filet mignon marinated for three days and cooked slowly until it falls apart on top of handmade potato and cheese pierogi with fried onions, avocado salsa, sour cream and chipotle aioli. The best thing about the dish is being able to taste each ingredient as part of the greater, savory whole.
The Whirly Pig
They call themselves “artisanal porkmongers,” but to limit this truck to such a specific description would do injustice to the things they offer that are not pig-centric. That isn’t to say their pork offerings aren’t sublime; their sandwich “The Swine,” which includes a huge cut of crispy pork belly topped with Napa cabbage, pickled onions, and a sherry molasses glaze, is the sort of thing legends are made of. However, The Whirly Pig also makes a mean pair of duck sliders, with a duck confit that braises for 18 hours is duck fat. Yes, 18 hours!
The Cow and the Curd
This truck only serves one thing, but they do it so well they’ve won several awards, the highest honor being named Philadelphia’s Best Food Truck in 2013. They make battered fried cheese curds, which sounds a little mysterious at first, until you realize they’re essentially fancy mozzarella sticks and dive right in. Alright, so they’re not really like mozzarella sticks, but they do bear a few similarities. Both are fried to golden-brown perfection, both are hot and melty and stretch into gooey strings when you bite into them, and both are enhanced by various dipping sauces.
Five Sisters Food Co.
Upscale ingredients and expert execution come together in the form of creative and refined dishes inside the Five Sisters truck. Poutine duck fries, barbeque pulled-pork fries, sirloin burgers topped with crabmeat and sriracha tartar sauce; all are dishes that expertly straddle the divide between standard greasy food truck fare and haute cuisine. Not all the dishes were so lofty, however. Five sisters also touted their take on a couple of “fat sandwiches,” which are essentially every kind of fried and/or grilled short-order food you can imagine (think cheese steak and chicken fingers) put together on a sandwich roll, and made popular by the grease trucks at Rutgers University and Nelly’s in Long Branch, N.J.
Waffle de Lys
Dessert is best saved for last. The line for Waffle de Lys was long all day, and for good reason: homemade sweet Belgian waffles topped with everything from Reese’s peanut butter to passion fruit coulis. All the toppings sound amazing, but since they ran out of Reese’s peanut butter a compromise involving vanilla ice cream and salted caramel was made. It was an effective compromise to say the least.
Connor Wessels is a special contributor to The Daily Meal.
All photography by Connor Wessels.