History


Joe-Jay-Weatherall-Fork-On-Road

My Story about how I got to Fork on the Road (written prior to the first Fork on the Road).

Food trucks are not really that new in Adelaide, who didn’t try a pie floater. Pie carts themselves have been around in Adelaide since the 1860s, with over a dozen operating in the 1880s, by 1958 only two remained with the last one departing in 2010.

In 2008 a new food phenomenon in the USA saw the explosive growth of gourmet foods delivered by mobile food trucks. I will never forget visiting visiting these vendors in Los Angeles and New York a few years ago and being blown away by the quality, creativity and accessibility of such great and reasonably priced food. Many vendors seemed to be using local products, while adding modern twists to classics from a variety of cultures and traditions. Their success quickly challenged both government bylaws and regulations and the more established restaurant trade.

Here in Adelaide, a few years ago, I heard from my sister and friends that some guys were selling burgers and of course I tried them and damn they are good. Even now you can’t afford to arrive too late if you are craving a Burger Theory burger because if you do arrive too late you may well find yourself salivating at the end of a very long queue. But wow! What a difference the Splash Adelaide project has made. The Adelaide City Council offered trial permits, at last count 40 mobile food vendors registered and receiving multiple calls every week from interested young entrepreneurs.

Sure they need to work out a long-term solution that is sustainable and balanced for both mobile vendors and fixed dining establishments, but right now the market has been shaken and people are voting with their feet and mouths. The type and quality of offering by the trucks, vans and bikes has created a mouth-watering buzz in Adelaide.

The other standout feature of the global Food Truck movement globally is the power of Social Media, the trucks announce via facebook and twitter where’ll they’ll be and people turn up, its amazing, just like getting your own daily invite to come and have some awesome food. The food truck craze has spawned the reality TV series the ‘Great Food Truck Race’.

On my most recent trip to the US, I experienced the food truck festival, Truckaroo in Washington DC, what a buzz all the trucks in one location, the event itself. After a bit of research I discovered these events were occurring all over the US, so when I got back and heard about the Splash Adelaide opportunities, I thought what a great chance to try and pull off Australia’s first food truck festival – Fork on the Road.

By Joe Noone