Ten food trucks to follow in Denver this summer

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Trevor Andersen
Summer heat and bountiful sunshine are bringing more food trucks to Denver's streets than ever before this year. From events like Civic Center Eats and the upcoming Best of Denver's Gourmet Street Food Tour -- and even right to your office -- thrill-seeking diners can play tourist with international cuisine or just settle down with hearty comfort food.

How to separate the cream from the crop? Our Summer Guide, which hits the streets today inside the regular issue of Westword has information on hundreds of events, as well as this list of ten trucks to follow this summer. Keep reading for our picks.

See also: Kolache Cabin setting up shop at Alameda and Santa Fe

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10) Pink Tank

Quick -- what has four wheels, smells like crispy animal meat and belches two huge towers of flame? Looking like it rumbled right out of the monster-truck arena, the Pink Tank has garnered plenty of attention locally for its brash greasy-spoon cuisine. The truck sets itself apart by selling heavy breakfasts like bananas Foster pancakes or a bacon burger in between slices of French toast. But it's the chicken and waffles that made this truck's bones -- spicy, crispy legs dusted with bacon crumbles and served with a dollop of hot-sauce ice cream.

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9) Chuey FU's Latin-Asian Grub

A recent addition to Denver's foodie fleet, Chuey FU's proves that two great styles of cuisine taste great together. The well-designed menu pits East against West and spicy against sweet. It's a lot to chew on, but whether in burrito, taco, quesadilla or bowl form, the truck's protein selections are inspired. Turns out chorizo and peanut sauce go pretty well together, as do Chuey FU's char siu pork and wasabi aioli. Who said Asian fusion was dead?

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8) Steuben's Pearl

The appeal of a free-roaming Steuben's is easy to understand: It has the comfort food and retro vibe of the Uptown favorite, but on wheels. Pearl, the dependable Steuben's food truck, has been hauling grub around since 2010, making her one of Denver's first food-truck stars. And if it ain't heavy, it ain't here: Look for bronzed fries dripping with gravy, a pulled-pork sandwich with sticky-sweet sauce, and a green-chile cheeseburger that is classic Colorado cooking.

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7) Verde

At a time when everyone with a van is trying to sell Mexican street tacos, Verde's Sonoran-style treats are a like a much-needed squirt of hot sauce in the food-truck scene. Sticking mainly to the fundamentals of Mexican desert cuisine, Verde's tacos and burritos are jammed with piquant fillings, like the spicy carnitas and the traditional Sonoran machaca beef. The slightly crispy tortillas are imported from a tortilleria close to the border, and anything can be smothered in Verde's hot green chile. This somewhat whimsical truck is a worthy successor to the taco-slinging loncheras of yore.

Keep reading for more trucks to follow this summer.

Location Info

Steuben's Food Truck

Denver metro area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Verde Food Truck

Denver metro area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Sully's Slice Truck

Denver metro area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Manna From Heaven Gourmet Food Truck

Denver metro area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Tasterie Truck

Boulder, Boulder, CO

Category: Restaurant

Quiero Arepas

, Denver / Boulder, CO

Category: Restaurant

Chuey FU's Latin-Asian Grub

Denver Metro Area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Los Molinos food truck

Denver Metro Area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

Sweet Cow Moomobile

Denver Metro Area, Denver, CO

Category: Restaurant

My Voice Nation Help
46 comments
Rona Gates
Rona Gates

Congrats!! So happy to be able to be part of your team.

afoodie4life
afoodie4life

It's nice that you do this, but does it really need to be the same trucks year after year - or trucks with storefronts?  Kudos on including newcomer Chuey Fu's - he is definitely doing new and interesting things on the streets of Denver.  However where are the other new trucks that are bringing innovation and creativity to the food truck scene in Denver?

Instead of praising those trucks that have been doing the same (wonderful) things year after year - isn't it time to recognize some of the food trucks that are busting their humps trying to re-invent street food in Denver?  There are plenty of them - Farm to Truck, The Comfortable Food Truck, East Coast Joe's, The Cilantro Truck?

Come on Westward - break away from the old and get with the new food truck scene in Denver.  It's vibrant, it's creative and most importantly it's incredibly delicious!! 

Tommy Penalver
Tommy Penalver

Se lo merecen!! Hope to catch you guys sometime soon!

Kenneth Reed Sr
Kenneth Reed Sr

You have to go to Pierres Supper Club and try my brother in law truck. GT"S ISLAND BBQ . Caribbean style barbecue.

Scott Sibbel
Scott Sibbel

Obvious choice. One of the best food trucks in the country.

Kel Bel
Kel Bel

great. now i will have to fight in an even longer line! :P

Elissa Qualls
Elissa Qualls

Courtney Lynn....you know what this means?????

theeater
theeater

Why does it matter if the $18 salad came from a place "on the street"? It's obviously insane to pay that anywhere whether it be on the street or in a restaurant. But why is there such a stigma that quality food can't come out of a food truck? Why are people willing to pay so much more for food (that is sometimes less quality) IN a restaurant than ON the street? There are some good trucks out there making quality food, and a lot of those trucks don't have storefronts or corporate backing to keep their prices low. Guess that's why people freak out over "expensive food" that's "on the street" because for some reason when people out of a food truck, they expect subpar food at low prices. Try to branch out people and support your local food trucks. They are doing some good stuff out there.

Moonie Kim
Moonie Kim

Who the hell gets an $18 bill for a salad you bought on the street and is like "yeah, that's fair."

Jennifer Garcia
Jennifer Garcia

Wong way veg is amazing and pairs a lot of the foods for the breweries they go to! Amazing food!!!

Morganne Foster
Morganne Foster

You totally don't want to miss Sons of Scullery! Nom Nom Nom.

theeater
theeater

Westword sure knows how to show love to the corporate trucks.

Jaime Coffman
Jaime Coffman

The food trucks are in the park I try and go once a week. There was a salad truck that a girl paid $18 bucks for a salad though and like $14 for a slice of pizza. But most are decent cost and great food!!

Shilo Rohlman
Shilo Rohlman

Quiero Arepas is my favorite food truck. You should try it. I used to do Civic Center Eats a lot when I worked across the street. I'm kinda over the food trucks now, but I would go with you. There is usually long lines and no seating so plan on sitting in the grass.

Andrea Askins
Andrea Askins

You forgot Ben Acton's Rocky Mountain Slices! Best za in Denver!

Vero D DeLeon
Vero D DeLeon

Phyllis Cole these are the trucks Jo was talking about. Omar Sanchez look at who is #2 on the list

Troy Fenske
Troy Fenske

Of course its number one. Its the best food truck ever

Jessi Butler
Jessi Butler

Ross and Grant and Troy! Check out number one. Crab didn't make it, though.

ashelbyp
ashelbyp

God westwords food editor is worthless... They can't compile list to save their life... Bakin bakery was #2 on a national list of food trucks to watch for and yet it doesn't even make westwords list... Also this is the magazine that said the best green chile in denver was at boones tavern so I shouldn't have gotten my expectations up

Anna Salmon
Anna Salmon

Stephen and Kenley ! They all look so yummy!

WillieStortz
WillieStortz

Stueben's is the Walmart of food trucks. 

GFTW
GFTW

Hey PBJ is pretty awesome. So is the truck that has "Andy's Fave."

Mantonat
Mantonat topcommenter

@theeater When you eat in a restaurant, you're paying for stuff like tables, chairs, plates, forks, knives, glasses, table service, a kitchen full of cooks, possibly a liquor licence, interior decor, music, lighting, air conditioning, bathrooms, etc. Street food around the world is cheap food. I can get an amazing plate of 4 tacos for around $6 at any number of old-school carts and trucks in other parts of the city (like Federal Boulevard). Food prices are a little steep in some of the newer, trendier trucks and locations, so it's easy to feel a little cheated if the food is less than fantastic. Quality food can in fact come out of a food truck, but the economics of trucks vs restaurants is completely different.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

... Yo Quiero Taco Bell !!

Mantonat
Mantonat topcommenter

@ashelbyp That national list was a "heat map" of buzzed-about food trucks and didn't necessarily represent the best. Bakin Bakery may serve good food, but it's also brand new. The folks who compile those lists look for what's new and hot. As soon as the internet buzz fades, the truck falls off the list, deserving or not. 


So, what's your favorite food truck and green chile?

beerguy
beerguy

@Mantonat @theeater Oh goodness... Let me tell you that the overhead of a food truck CAN BE just as much as a restaurant. I have friends who are food truck owners. I have friends who are restaurant owners.  First of all, food trucks can't sell liquor. Trucks don't have that huge profit margin that restaurants are getting off of their booze sales. And yeah restaurants pay for a license, but they are getting that crazy profit off of liquor that trucks will never be able to get near. Trust me, they aren't making a lot of money on bottled water. Plates, forks and knives? Restaurants use the same ones and wash them. Food trucks use paper products that they have to replace daily. And they have to pay extra if they want something environmentally-friendly. A kitchen full of cooks? Yes, a food truck has cooks, too! Maybe not as many because they aren't doing the volume restaurants do that enable them to have a kitchen FULL of cooks. And the biggest one of all... food trucks can't order in BULK! So restaurants are getting a crazy big discount off of food that they order in bulk. Food trucks can't get deliveries from the big corporations because they aren't ordering 15 cases of an item (nor do they have the storage for it). The amount of time that is wasted sourcing and shopping... time is money. And speaking of storage... you do know they have to be at a commissary, right? And that is not FREE. That costs money. Some have hourly charges for kitchen time. Some charge a monthly fee per storage shelf. Parking. Freezer space. Refrigerator space. It all adds up. And let's not forget that we are in Denver, and believe it or not, food trucks can be seasonal. Restaurants will be open year round, rain or shine. 

And let me just tell you... there is a reason those tacos are 4 for $6. I have been in a catering facility where those trucks park, and I've seen with my own eyes piles of meat sitting on a counter for hours. A pot of beans sitting on the floor. And they've been there for years, so their commissary rent is half of what new truck's are. And also, you have to drive over to Federal to get them. I would definitely pay a buck more for a taco that is right outside my office.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@Mantonat  ...Exactly!


Just like Bongsucker Billy can't seem to comprehend that all the non-essential superficial building and interior cosmetics of the Greedy Big $$ Dispensaries he reviews -- and half his review describing them in detail -- don't have fuck-all to do with the Quality or Value of the Marijuana itself.


Independent Private Caregivers / Growers have always, and will always be able to produce Better Bud at Better Prices, because they don't suffer the unnecessary massive financial overhead forced by insane "regulation".


And unlike Restaurants, the "ambiance" of a Big $$ dispensary is completely wasted $$, since customers don't -- can't legally -- linger and consume their weed inside.


The whole premise of reviewing the Dispensary instead of just the BUD itself makes about as much sense as if you wasted 1000s of words -- hey, you're getting paid anyway, right? -- on describing the Paint, Dashboard, Tires, Engine, Transmission, Griddle, Fryer and Paper Cups used by the Food Trucks.


That's probably why the prohibitionist Denver Post has been able to steal so much of Wasteword's formerly monopolized Commercial Weed advertising business.


Such a Wasted opportunity.



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