This Saturday, June 14th, Maverick and I are headed to cover the 4th Annual Philadelphia Vendy Awards at Penn Treaty Park as members of the press. The Vendys are a competition to be named best of the best of the local food truck scene, the winners driving away with the coveted Vendy Cup.
I don’t know if food trucks have always been a thing and I just never noticed, but to me it seems like they’ve been multiplying like mad over the past few years and that’s a super good thing. These aren’t hot dog stands, friends: these are delicious, creative foodie adventures. Simply put, I haven’t yet met a food truck I didn’t like.
This is my second year attending the Vendys and I CAN’T WAIT. Admission includes unlimited trips to each truck (yes, all you can eat!) along with all the Sam Adams and Angry Orchards (or non-alcoholic sodas from GuS Grown Up Sodas) you need to wash it down. You also get people’s choice judging rights.
I love that the Vendy Awards raise funds for The Food Trust, a Philadelphia-based nonprofit that strives to make healthy food available to all.
Advance tickets are $55, each ticket is a tax deductible donation. Kids 8-12 are $30 for all the food your child can eat; under 6 is free! The Vendy Awards run from 2-6pm. Buy those tickets up here.
A few tips:
Get there early! Parking is always tricky in Philly, plus you don’t want any of the trucks running out of a food before you get to taste it.
Try Uber. The Vendys have partnered with Uber to offer all guests who are new to Uber a complimentary ride up to $20 using the promo code VENDYPHL. More details are on the site.
Be sun-ready. It’s a big open space, not a ton of shade. Wear your sunscreen or a hat, consider bringing your own water so you’re not waiting in line for a drink, etc.
Bring napkins. It can get messy and you don’t want to leave a line to find something to wipe your shirt with.
Go with friends and make an afternoon of it! YES, THERE WILL BE LINES. That’s not a super big deal; it gives you time to eat the food you just got from the last truck. But lines are always more fun with friends, right?
This year’s competitors:
For the Vendy Cup:
- The Cow & The Curd: Wisconsin Battered Fried Cheese Curds
- Local 215: specialties include Pork Fritters with Hoisin Sriracha BBQ, Lobster Sliders, Pork Belly Mac and Cheese
- Prime Stache: Specialties include Ron Burgundy: pulled pork, roast pork, pork belly, house made coleslaw, apple cider barbecue sauce, American cheese
- Samosa Deb: Specialties include Samosas, Pakora, Chicken Tikka Masala, Chicken Tikka Quesadilla, Saag Paneer, and Channa Masala.
- Pie Stand: Fried Pies, savory and sweet.
Rookie of the Year
- Cheese E Wagon: Gourmet grilled cheese
- Oink & Moo BBQ: Specialties are Brisket Sliders and Oink and Moo Chili
- Smokin’ Tacos: Smoked Meats, Tacos and other items.
- Heart Food Truck: local food-stuff from family-owned farms, seasonal, sustainable ingredients.
- The Whirly Pig: restaurant quality food using only local and fresh ingredients
- Bonjour Creperie: French Crepes – both sweet & savory.
- Curbside Creamery: specialties are customized ice cream cookie sandwiches and homemade waffle cones and bowls.
- Jimmie’s Cupcakes Co: Gourmet cupcakes, hand pies, brookies, and handmade ice cream sammies.
- Milk + Sugar: Cupcakes, cookies, pound cake, brownies and rice cereal treats
I’m looking forward to more curds and pretty much everything else. Mav is especially psyched about the gourmet grilled cheeses.
Which truck would you hit first? 🙂