The second annual Mobile Food Throwdown took place this past Sunday at Austin Beerworks, with ticket holders and a panel of judges deciding who makes the best lobster roll in Austin! The competing food trucks were Dock & Roll Diner and Garbo’s Lobster Truck.
As the event began at 11:30 AM, representatives from each food truck introduced themselves before cooking started. Dock & Roll served their lobster roll with habanero vinaigrette sauce and a cucumber, blueberry, watermelon salad. Garbo’s took a basic approach to their lobster roll, with half an ear of corn on the side, covered with cheese sauce and bacon.
With more than 200 people in attendance (all tickets sold out), lines for food were long, especially at Dock & Roll. To keep the crowd entertained, event hosts Tony and Christina from FoodTrailersAustin.com provided trivia. A number of local businesses generously offered giveaways, including Austin Eats Food Tours, Passbook Austin, Bird’s Barbershop, Austin Marathon & Half Marathon, Chi’Lantro BBQ, Trucklandia and Kong Screen Printing. Kong was on site at the event, creating event t-shirts on the spot.To wash down their lobster roll and keep them refreshed, ticket holders were given one beer token as part of entry. Additional pours were available for purchase throughout the event. Austin Beerworks was a great host, offering seasonal specials and an inside area where people could sit down and cool off.
Voting ResultsWhen votes were tallied, Garbo’s won the People’s Vote by three votes! The final score was 112-109. Dock & Roll took the Judge’s Vote, though the score was close there, too. The deciding factors in the Judge’s Vote were the tenderness of Dock & Roll’s lobster meat and the originality of their side dish. Judge Andrew Chase, Contributing Blogger from Austinot.com, added that the salad was a refreshing choice for a hot day. In addition to Chase, the other judges on this year’s panel were:
- Jae Kim – Founder of Chi’lantro, winner of last year’s inaugural Mobile Food Throwdown
- John Conley – Race director, Austin Marathon
- Chikage Windler – Meteorologist, KEYE TV
- Amanda Dugan – Traffic reporter, KXAN
- Taste – Dock & Roll
- Service – Garbo’s
- Sides – Dock & Roll
- Overall Experience – Dock & Roll
- Competition – Garbo’s
As you can see, it was a 3-2 vote for Dock & Roll.
Looking to Next YearEvent host Tony Yamanaka said the major takeaway for him this year was the overwhelming community support shown for both food trucks and local business in general. Mobile Food Throwdown is already accepting food truck nominations and suggestions for next year’s event. Tony says he has some ideas in mind, but won’t announce anything until both participating food trucks are on board.
One change you may see next year is tickets being sold in “heats.” The idea is to offer food in waves, like 11:30-1 PM and 1-2:30 PM. Doing so would likely decrease the length of lines and result in happier ticket holders, but venue restrictions and food truck schedules may present a challenge to this change. This year’s event was 18 months in the making, with a slew of emails sent back and forth to get 6+ parties on the same page (including the venue, vendors and participating food trucks).
With the amount of work that went into Mobile Food Throwdown 2015, the community support and overall success of the event were gratifying to those who worked so hard to make it happen.
@theAustinot wants to know:
Have you attended a Mobile Food Throwdown? Do you have any suggestions for next year’s event?
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