A guide to the best possible Food Truck Tuesday experience in Buffalo
How to get the most bang for your truck
Food Truck Tuesday is a growing part of the Buffalo brand, right up there with snow-day cancellations and viral tailgate videos.
Tuesday night marked the beginning of food truck season at Larkinville, a sure sign of summer. From 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., 28 food trucks parked at 745 Seneca St. and Flying Bison Brewing Company on 840 Seneca St. New additions included Carnivorous: A Meat Lovers Food Truck and The Great Aussie Bite.
Despite its popular appeal, Food Truck Tuesday is not without its hiccups for first-timers; unforeseen crowds, pricing and parking to name just a few. Here are a few suggestions to maximize the food truck experience from an embarrassingly seasoned pro:
Assemble a group of food truck-goers that will be down to share
In other words, you might not want to go with your friend who’s always on a diet or your boyfriend who can’t conceptualize “portion-sizes.” To get the most out of the night, having a few bites from several places is the way to go, but be warned: the average menu item runs around $9. Prepare to share to get the most diversity out of the experience.
Arrive early and dress for the weather
The nicer the weather, the worse parking will be. It’s best to arrive as close to 5 p.m. as possible and to dress for the weather, too. All the action is outdoors and you may wind up with drizzly 55-degree weather. That Taffy’s milkshake will taste a lot better with a jacket on.
Take a break from stuffing your face
Be sure to check out the live music on the pavilion. A different local band is set to play each week. Opening week featured the rock-ska-reggae group, The Rockaz, who got things buzzing with their upbeat, bluesy Bob Marley covers and soulful hits.
Try a classic, then go for something new
You want to leave satisfied, so maybe that means getting your favorite falafel wrap from Amy’s Place Truck, or a carnitas taco from Lloyd. But there are amazing tastes lurking outside your comfort zone. A good place to start: The Dirty Bird. It’s fried chicken smothered with buttery bourbon maple syrup between two belgian-style waffles, what could go wrong?
Get your drink on
For the 21 and up crowd, there are three breweries within walking distance, all worth checking out. Flying Bison Brewing Company is a convenient choice, as they host half the food trucks in their parking lot. They welcome people to bring food into their brewery to enjoy. Hydraulic Hearth, located directly across the street from Larkin Square, extends a similar welcome.
If you’re not of legal drinking age, there are plenty of other delicious options including Tuk Tea. Tuk Tea, new this year to the Larkinville entourage, sells hot and cold teas including its refreshingly tart strawberry lemonade.
Take a lap before you decide on one thing
There are roughly 30 trucks, each with sizeable menus. Get a chance to see everything that’s there before you get in line for the mac ’n’ cheese truck. As stated above, visits to various trucks can add up quickly, so you want to be selective. People-watch, roam around, grab a drink. There’s no rush.
And don’t forget there are two lots; the original located at 745 Seneca St. and another at Flying Bison Brewing Company, 840 Seneca St., just a walk down the street from Larkin Square.
Don’t forget dessert
This should really be implied, but just to be safe: do not leave without grabbing dessert. The question isn’t if you should get dessert but where you should get it from. One option is Rolling Cannoli, whose award-winning sponge candy specialty fails to disappoint.
If cannolis aren’t your style, The Sweet Hearth, Western New York’s first dessert food truck, offers other options like cookies, cupcakes and pies. Their hummingbird cake is a delicious choice, if you can handle the cream cheese frosting’s richness.
Sarah Crowley is the senior features editor and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org