Baltimore: The Gathering (Guest Post!)
I have my sister trained really well. She knows without being told that everything ordered is to be shared. She doesn't dig in until I've finished taking pictures of each dish. And now that she's away at school, she consciously scopes out food excursions for guest blog post potential. That's my girl.
So without further ado, here's my sister's food adventure at The Gathering: Baltimore's First Food Truck Rally.
~~~ ~~~ ~~~ ~~~
When my friend asked me if I was interested in joining her at the The Gathering: Baltimore's First Food Truck Rally, I knew, as sister to an avid food blogger, I was obligated to go. A little skeptical because of lack of publicity and vague advertisements, I was completely prepared for disappointment. However, I was pleasantly surprised to see a healthy number of food trucks and foodies gathered at Fell's Point:
My philosophy is always to divide and conquer. One truck in particular caught my eye. The Gypsy Queen Cafe easily had the longest line and its menu looked promising:
A few friends and I decided to brave the line while others were sent out to forage. While most of the food wasn't very photo-worthy (burgers and wilted crepes), one friend brought back this $16 beauty from GrrChe, a "gourmet grilled cheese truck":
Not being a huge fan of either lobster or cheese, I trusted my friend when she reported that it was well worth the steep price.
I was hella hungry after waiting for thirty minutes in line. Debating between a Gypsy Cone and the specialty tacos, I ultimately settled on a cone for its sheer ginormity alone. There were about five of us in line, so I would say we still got a healthy sampling of what Gypsy's has to offer:
My friend, SC, ordered the Irish mashed potato cone with Irish cheddar ($8):
This picture should give you a better idea of its size:
The potatoes were very creamy and the cheddar was nice and sharp. It came in a waffle cone which complimented the melted cheese and butter surprisingly well.
Even though I usually don't like Mac n' Cheese (I hate cheese), the hunger kind of clouded my mind to the point where I just wanted the greasiest, most unhealthy feel-good-food I could get my hands on. I passed on the more delicate tacos for this Mac n' Cheese with Bacon Bling cone ($8):
The BBQ sauce on top was very tangy, just the way I like it. However, it was difficult to distribute the sauce evenly in a cone, so sometimes the taste of BBQ overwhelmed the more subtle flavor of the mac n' cheese. Still, very delicious and definitely worth the heart attack in fifteen years or so.
Another friend, AH, went the fancier route and opted for the Crab Cake w/ Pomme Frites cone ($12). For those non-Francophiles out there, that's crab cake with french fries:
I didn't actually try this cone, so I don't have much to say about it. I don't know if you can tell from the picture, but the crab cake perched precariously on that cone was SIZABLE. Overall, my friends enjoyed it very much.
We shared a few tacos. This was the korean BBQ taco with homemade kimchi ($7):
The order came with two tacos. The meat was juicy, the kimchi was authentic. The double layering of the tortilla soaked up the meat juices (mmm) while preventing the taco from disintegrating into a soppy mess.
Another friend was traumatized by a previous foodtruck experience in Philly. Apparently, he'd waited an hour in a line for food that was "expensive, small, and not that good". Determined not to repeat the experience, he ordered the Braised Pork Taco w/ Espresso BBQ Sauce ($7):
Apparently, these tacos redeemed food-trucks in his opinion. Usually, I hate pork because I think it's dry and tasteless. This pork was so good it could have been beef. It was juicy and flavorful -- just a little bit of fat, but not enough to leave you with greasy lips.
I'm the cheaper of the two sisters. I'm the scrimper, the Scrooge, and the Dessert-nixer. However, knowing I was on a mission for my sister, I hitched up my pants, cracked my wallet open a little wider, and bought (gasp) dessert. I'm a HUGE fan of bacon (the only pork I eat, really) so I knew I just had to try the Caramel Bacon Doughnut ($3):
I wasn't extremely impressed, but it was still good. The whipped cream on top kind of dominated the entire dessert. It wasn't fresh whipped...I'm pretty sure it came from a can. The doughnut looked and tasted like it came from a box.The bacon flavor wasn't prominent at all. All I really got from the bacon was something tough to chew on. The saving grace was the caramel. This was NOT movie theatre crap caramel syrup. This was legit, fresh-made caramel. It was not too sweet and had this subtly burnt taste that had me sopping every drop up with my doughnut. This dish could have been a lot better if the whipped cream was maybe put on the side and if the caramel was infused with bacon. Mmm.
Overall, a good experience. We spent about $12 per person and all left full and satisfied. I will definitely attend next year's rally.
The Gathering: Baltimore's First Food Truck Rally
421 Central Ave
Baltimore, MD 21202