Remember the golden days of social media, when you could call a tweetup for no good reason at all and the best and brightest would just show up and hang out? Well, they're back. It's lunchtime in America and the economy's turning a corner. People with jobs are willing to take a long lunch on a Spring day to visit food trucks. I think @StevenL57 started it, I coined the hashtag #TruckUp, and @JeffCutler called in the elite twitterati. We met up at Mei Mei Street Kitchen in Copley Square by the BPL.
Thanks to JeffCutler for the pics above. Estimable guests included @wdipilato, @hybernaut, @HenryDuLaurence, @khopper, @marrsipan, @iamreff, @linji, @BostonFoodFan, and probably others I missed. Notable noshows included @tangyslice. Enough celebrity spotting, let's talk about the host of honor: the Mei Mei Street Kitchen. Run by three siblings, Mei Mei serves "creative Chinese-American cuisine made from locally sourced, sustainable ingredients." [side note and shameless plug: local and sustainable food is what Sprout Lenders are all about, and they just opened their summer round of loan applications]
Most Truckers ate from the top half of the menu, the scallion pancake sandwich melts. Using a scallion pancake like a tortilla or roti is a serious bit of genius in my book. I had the Porko Rosso at least in part because that's also (almost) the title of a Miyazaki film. The sandwich is pulled pork, brie from vermont, and cranberry sauce. Sounds pretty local, and it's also pretty delicious. The pork was savory and super tender, the cranberry sauce sweet but not too much so, the brie held it all togehter. My only nit would be that there was some runoff from the sauce that made the whole thing a little hard to eat by hand. You also get a side of siracha ketchup.
On the side, I got a deep fried braised beef and rice ball, sort of like an arancini. Super crispy on the outside with lots of salt, and almost melting inside. I also heard good things about the double awesome sandwich, the black and blue, and the sichuan spring asparagus. My tab came to a reasonable for a Boston food truck $10 with a bottle of water. The #TruckUp rolled on to other Copley trucks but I had to get back to the office. Check the other guests' streams for more truckery.
Mei Mei also wins at operations. I was a little worried when I saw five people in the truck, but they worked together admirably and processed orders efficiently and apparently were really enjoying themselves doing it. Lots of food trucks are on twitter but I've never seen one use the medium like Mei Mei. They picked up on the #TruckUp during the planning last week and tweeted their excitement about it. They replied and retweeted, and thanked us all for coming to the #TruckUp. But the icing on the social cake is this: they put the tag - and many of our handles - on their board on the truck. Maybe I'm easily impressed, but that seems like a serious real-time marketing win.
It was an honor but also sort of uncanny to see my twitter handle in print - or at least in chalk - in the real world. When I placed my order I gave my name as limeduck and got a hearty greeting and somebody said, "that's a good name for a sandwich!" Stay tuned.