The World Cup & the World's Grub @ ESPN's Match Truck. Roy Choi & the Kogi Krew Team Up with Da Man @ ESPN to Bring U Football Food.
Food + Truck + TV = Gooaaaaalll!
I'll be straight with you. I don't care about the World Cup 2010. The reason is I don't know a thing about soccer or football. That said, I do appreciate World Cup fever and the football fanaticism that's taken over all media.
I love a good spectacle. The World Cup and everything inspired by the biggest sporting event in the world absolutely counts as a great one. One of those World Cup inspired things making its rounds is the ESPN Match Truck.
The ESPN Match Truck is a food truck. The purpose of this truck is to gather as many people around it, preferably hungry people, and have them watch the World Cup 2010 on the big HD LCD screen that is bolted down on top of the truck and tempt them to order the various items from the internationally inspired street food menu, like a carne asada burrito or a lamb gyro, then just hang out.
Watch TV and eat. Hey, I'm down with that. They could be showing a Glee marathon for all I care.
Roy Choi of Kogi & Chego dreamed up the menu based on the street foods of the various countries represented in the World Cup 2010, you know, like, bunny chow for South Africa, sliders for the US of A and huevos rancheros for Mexico. And with ESPN Match Trucks parked in LA and New York, Roy Choi's take on international street food can be enjoyed on both coasts.
We are the world.
However, just like not every team competing in this World Cup will come away a winner. Not all of the eats on the ESPN Match Truck is a gooaaaaaaaaallll!!! (Yeah, that was my lame attempt at a soccer reference. Thank you, I'll be here all week.)
The lamb gyro representing Greece was not the best. The anemic sheet of lamb flesh seemed jerky-like, dry and lacking in flavor. The generous topping of greens made this gyro more of a salad than a Greek sandwich. And appropriately enough, Greece got spanked by South Korea, 2-zilch.
This gyro's a zero.
Speaking of Korean, however, the truck's yaki mandoo dumplings made me want to blow my enthusiastic approval into a vuvuzela. The pork stuffing and spicy sauce topping was full of garlic goodness and I'd only wish I ordered the larger sized portion of 6.
I ran into fellow LA food blogger, fellow Top Chef Masters judge and soon-to-be, fellow Bizarre Foods guest, Bill Esparza of Street Gourmet LA at the ESPN Match Truck, and we decided to have some fun with a Mexico and South Africa food face off mimicking the host nation South Africa's match against heavily favored Mexico.
A tasty tie!
It was the South African chicken curry bunny chow, basically a hallowed out bread bowl with chicken curry spooned inside, versus the Mexican huevos rancheros bursting with chorizo, fried egg, refried beans and queso.
Both dishes were full of their country of culinary origin's appropriate flavors. Both heartily satisfied. Both scored points with me. Bill Esparza and I agreed that the match was a draw, as was so with the actual game between South Africa and Mexico, 1 to 1.
USA is represented twice on the menu, first with the silver-dollar pancakes and next with sliders (though in the beverage department, it was pretty much all USA).
The order of sliders came with 2 mini burgers that packed a lot of beefy satisfaction and sneaked in some surprise heat thanks to the Kogi ketchup. Maybe this was Roy Choi's food prophecy of the same surprise heat that would catch England's goalkeeper Rob Green off-guard allowing a US goal to slip by.
Oddly or smartly, Mother England wasn't manifested anywhere on the ESPN Match Truck menu as something edible. Hey, Chef Roy, might I suggest a nice black pudding or maybe some jellied eel to represent England? God, save the team?
The ESPN Match Truck with Chef Roy Choi's designed menu will be serving up World Cup inspired grub from now until JULY 11th 2010, the final day of World Cup 2010.
Click HERE for the LA truck's location and schedules.
Click HERE for the New York truck's location and schedules.