Food trucks are elusive operations by their very nature. Without the intransience of a brick and mortar frontage, they run the risk of little to no exposure. Drawing from her extensive experience in the US, blogger Jess Pryles (aka BurgerMary), conceived the idea of a permanent home that brings together almost all of Melbourne’s food trucks.
Enter Trailer Park, an outdoor food court running every weekend, where patrons can experience the food truck phenomenon in a single location with the creature comforts of seating, undercover booths, gas heating, festoon lighting and a full bar with a sprawling beer selection – just like in Austin where it all began. Kicking off on the first weekend of August, the inaugural Trailer Park is planting itself at Village Melbourne (formerly the Belgian Beer Cafe).
Trucks will rotate on a monthly basis, with the first roster featuring Beatbox Kitchen, Cornutopia, Gumbo Kitchen, The Curry Truck and new kid on the block, The Brûlée Cart. Come September, you can expect the likes of White Guy Cooks Thai, Chingon Taco Truck, Souvlaki Cart, Mutter Krause and Rue de Crêperie.
Broadsheet speaks with the first four vendors about how to stand out in the trailer park.
For Raph Rashid, the concept behind his beloved mobile boombox is an approving nod to the tape deck culture of his youth. “I like vintage radios and ghetto blasters,” he says. “The 80s and 90s references give the food context – nothing about Beatbox Kitchen is subtle.” And who better to help him pioneer his vision than his wife, illustrator, designer and all-round craftsperson, Beci Orpin. Roll up for your burger with stereo sauce.
The Curry Truck
If the aromas of their curries aren’t enough to pique your interest, The Curry Truck will be unveiling specially made signage lights at Trailer Park to brighten your dining experience. “The 3D lights are a bit of a first,” enthuses owner Ibi Youssef. “They’re not your average boxed sign.”
With an eco-minded approach that champions sustainability and organic, locally sourced ingredients, it was fitting that head ‘corn’ Ellie Marin looked to Brunswick artist Andy Murphy when it came time to design a younger sister van. Making its maiden voyage at Trailer Park, the entirely hand-drawn artwork has revived its trademark sunrays in a corn-centric homage to Our Lady of Guadalupe and will offer patrons authentic Mexican street-style fare.
The Brûlée Cart
After cutting their teeth at music, food and wine festivals with their Belgian Waffle stall, brothers Jack and Bart White have mastered the art of the travelling dessert. Crowd-funded through Pozible, The Brûlée Cart is the pair’s most polished truck to date. With Ballarat cream and Tahitian vanilla beans the focus for now, the cart’s artwork will be completed later down the track by local artist Callum Noonan. “We’re thinking a cool 1950s housewife armed with a blow torch,” says Jack.
The Trailer park gathers every Saturday and Sunday from August 3 at Village Melbourne.
557 St Kilda Road, Melbourne (enter Moubray Street)
Saturdays and Sundays noon-8pm.