Food Truck Vendors Face Off on Saturday
Members of the D.C., Maryland and Virginia Food Truck Association will face off for top awards at this year’s annual Curbside Cookoff on Sept. 12 from 11 a.m.-7 p.m. at NoMa Junction at Storey Park, 1005 First St. NE.
First held in 2010, Curbside Cookoff is back featuring food trucks, fashion trucks, local beer, an artisans market, a kids zone, the DMVFTA All Star Awards and live secret ingredient chef battles. This year’s charity partner is No Kid Hungry.
Eight of the association’s members are vying for the top breakthrough dish of the year – for the best new dish of the last year, according to DMVFTA spokeswoman Diana Oberoi. The competition helps keep menus fresh, she said.
The eight dishes in the running include:
- Tequeños from Arezpa Zone. The typical Venezuelan appetizer is queso fresco wrapped in thin dough then fried. The cheese sticks are served with a garlic-cilantro dipping sauce. They are experimenting with other combinations of fillings, including a dessert tequeño such as like chocolate-dulce de leche.
- Duck confit crepe from Crepes Parfait made with garlic sautéed spinach, black currants and herb goat cheese sauce.
- Mr. Chips Sandwich from Dirty South Deli made with chopped braised pork, bread and butter jalapeños, Manchego cheese, cilantro and citrus aioli on a brioche bun.
- The Donutwich from Goodies Frozen Custard & Treats, a red velvet cake donut stuffed with frozen custard and topped with dark chocolate and cream cheese icing.
- Taco Dada from Healthy Fool made with fresh pineapple, cucumber, cilantro, onion, tomato and spinach mixed with lime and spicy sauce wrapped in a soft tortilla.
- Black truffle steak and cheese wrap from Quick Wraps mad with Il Truffelino black summer truffle cheese melted over locally farmed and all-natural beef.
- Shrimp and grits from RockSalt made with grits and shrimp in a Cajun cream sauce with scallions, bacon and tomatoes.
- The LdV (Leonardo Dog Vinci) from Swizzler, a 100 percent, grass-fed, spriral-cut, all-beef hot dog with fresh mozzarella, cherry tomatoes and arugula drisszled with balsamic glaze and house-made pesto on a locally backed pretzel bun.
Other categories that will be awarded on Saturday include:
Chef of the Year
Awarded to a food truck chef who has achieved and set high culinary standards of excellence for the regional food truck industry.
- Ali Arellano, Arepza Zone
- Mounir Elhilali, Crepes Parfait
- Jacob Hunter, Dirty South Deli
- Karrin Jones, RockSalt
- Joe Neuman, Sloppy Mama’s
- Huy Nguyen, PhoWheels
- Alex Tsamouras, Feelin’ Crabby
Dessert Chef of the Year
Awarded to a food truck chef who has achieved and set high culinary standards of excellence for the regional food truck industry in the areas of pastries and desserts.
- Craig Barisi, That Cheesecake Truck
- Brandon Byrd, Goodies Frozen Custard & Treats
- Kirk Francis, Captain Cookie & the Milk Man
- Aaron and Sandra McNeil, Midnight Confections Cupcakery
- Sam and Kristi Whitfield, Curbside Cupcakes
Outstanding Customer Service
Awarded to a food truck that has demonstrated consistent high standards of customer service.
- Arepa Zone
- DC Slices
- Dirty South Deli
- Federal City Brothers
- Sang on Wheels
- South Meets East
Best New Food Truck
Awarded to a food truck that has opened within the last 12 months and has distinguished itself for quality of food and or customer service.
- Balkanik Taste
- Carolina Q (new ownership)
- Chix N Stix
- Dirty South Deli
- Federal City Brothers
- Mojaita Latin Flavor
- Pittsburgh Rick’s
- Quick Wraps
Food Truck Design of the Year
Awarded to a food truck for excellence in concept and execution of food truck design and décor.
- Crepes Parfait
- Lemongrass Truck
You can cast your vote in all the categories online until Sept. 10.
Other events include Chef Battles in which food truck chefs square off against each other. At 1 p.m in the Beltway Battle, Curley from Curley’s Q representing Maryland takes on Jacob Hunter from Dirty South Deli representing D.C. and Andy Smiedala of Tortuga representing Virginia. In the “I Heart Beef: Battle at 2 p.m., Gloria Saylor of Ada’s Kitchen on Wheels takes on Mounir Elhilai from Crepes Parfait using beef as the main ingredient. At 3 p.m., participants will put on a food truck costume in a race that includes flat tires, parking tickets and other hazards. At 3:15 p.m., two fans, Amber Shuman and Rocio Daza, will team up with two food truck chefs, Haidar Charaf of Muncheez and Alicia Steward of the BBQ Bus. At 4:30 p.m. the Curbside Bakeoff will pit Jacque Pitts of The Frosted Muffin, Aaron McNeild of Midnite Confections Cupcakers and Kristi Whitfield of Curbside Cupcakes in a backeoff using spent grain, the leftover malt from brewing beer. And at 5:30 p.m., the all-star awards, including Best Five Buck Bite for the truck that offers exceptions taste and vile for $5 or less and Best in Show for the truck that makes the most creative and innovative use of the space outside their truck, will be announced.
For kids, there will be a moon bounce and a chance to make their own food truck in the arts and crafts area. There will be a cooking demon with teen chef Jordan Weber at 12:30 p.m., a cooking demo from the Hill Center at 1:30 p.m., a Good Market cooking demon at 2:30 p.m. and a Beloved Kids yoga class at 3:30 p.m.
Tickets for Curbside Cookoff are $8 and available online.
Editor-in-Chief Mark Heckathorn is a journalist, movie buff and foodie. He oversees DC on Heels editorial operations as well as strategic planning and staff development. Reach him with story ideas or suggestions at dcoheditor (at) gmail (dot) com.