Words by Emilie Nielsen, Photos by Alice Pinho
Is it possible to have a great on-the-go meal from a food truck that can compete with the experience of dining at a restaurant?
We tried two food trucks, one savory and one sweet, and compared it with your average restaurant dinner experience. To help you decide between dining on the street or inside a restaurant, we rated our experiences from 1 (worst) - 10 (best) based on taste, looks, and the best bang for your buck.
First stop: Bon Me at the corner of Copley Station (near the Green Line). Bon Me has a very relaxed and informal atmosphere. Branding themselves as “bold, fresh and fun Asian cuisine,” it serves a range of sandwiches, rice dishes and noodles. Our first impression of the place was that it's messy, but has a funky, vibrant feeling. We ordered a chicken sandwich at a fairly cheap price. The chicken was amazing. Great taste and texture; I only wish there was more of it. The chicken was combined with a mixed salad of carrots, in between toasted – but not too dry – bread. With a good variety of flavors and textures, the only downside for me was the spice. I am incredibly weak when it comes to spices, so for me it was slightly overwhelming, but for others the spice will probably add an interesting kick.
So overall, our rates are:
Value for money: 8
Next stop: Zinneken’s Waffles, in front of the COM building at 640 Commonwealth Avenue. No dinner is complete without dessert, and for this reason, Zinneken was an obvious choice. Zinneken serves waffles with a variety of different toppings. Their waffles are “made with the finest ingredients imported from Europe to make the most authentic Belgian waffle outside Belgium.” We asked them to serve their best waffle from the menu card and in return got the Fruit Delight at a fair price. The serving looked great, with plenty of fruit and a nice spread of Belgian chocolate sauce. The waffle itself was fine, though it did lack the characteristic crustiness and sweetness of a traditional Belgian waffle (at least from the opinion of a European), and the strawberries were a little sour, too. The waffle was nice and fluffy, though, and the combination of bananas, strawberries, and chocolate ensured a pleasing dessert for both the mouth and eyes.
Our overall rates were:
Value for money: 6
Can these experiences compete with the experience at your average restaurant? Yes. While the food might not be Michelin-star quality, it is fast and easy – and also really tasty. You are able to get both a main course and dessert for the price of one course at an average restaurant, and that is without including tip. Dining on the street can also be a really fun experience and a way of adding some change to the normal sit-down-and-eat-structure. The quality of the food was the same as what I would have expected had I ordered it from a restaurant. If you have the time to walk around, it is a nice opportunity to try out different cuisines in one meal.
Our recommendation is: Get your food-crawl going and try out the different trucks near you instead of always sticking to the restaurant experience!