Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Acai & Lemongrass

Second day out after a miss yesterday and a near miss today, but I was able to find the new truck Mighty Dog & Acai at Farragut Square earlier to grab an order of their namesake dog.  Really pleasant folks who are very interested in doing their best to accommodate you, but there are a couple things I don't understand here.  The only menu they have (which did appear to be magnetic, so it could be attached to the side of the truck) was being physically held up by a woman standing on the SW corner of the square.  She came over to the truck and stood kind of near it when I wanted to place my order, but even then, trying to show it off to other folks, it swayed and moved, making it difficult to read the fairly small print.  I get she was probably there to generate some foot traffic for the unknown truck, but they desperately need a menu actually attached to the truck that you can look at when ordering.  Buzz needs to be generated another way or with a second sign.

Next, I don't get the price.  It was good with some unique flavors, but $7 for a condimented-up Nathan's hot dog (with cheese in the case of my Mighty Dog) seems pretty steep, especially considering other trucks are serving homemade or artisanal sausages for the same price.  The bread was quite nice and the package of goodies (mashed potato spread and our special “Mighty” sauce, topped with  pico de gallo vinaigrette, ketchup/mustard, kernel corn, Brazilian soft cheese and crowned with tiny fried potato sticks) was pressed to serve.  All the photos came out really poorly, but at least you can get the gist of what to expect, including the amount of filling.  2 for $12, which was also being offered, is closer to a fair price, even with the understanding it is coming from a gourmet food truck, but I'd be challenged to pay $7 again despite enjoying my Mighty Dog.  (Note, other menu options had an additional protein topping the hot dog, so perhaps those should be priced higher than the 'Brazilian Mighty'.)  I'd give them 3.5 honks, but the price really bothers me, so....

As an update to a prior post about Lemongrass truck and my very "chilled" chicken, I was able to catch up with them during a re-visit to National Geographic last week for a pork salad.  The meat was juicy and warm, tasting like tender BBQ pork but without the sauce.  Just a lovely salad, especially that awesome homemade lemongrass dressing that I can't wait to buy in a bottle.  3.5 honks, right where they should be.  And it sounds like we'll be seeing more of them with their second truck starting in DC.

Meanwhile, my love affair with Cirque Cuisine continues, that is when they actually visit Farragut Square for which I had to make a special request to make it happen this week.  So today I grabbed two of the three offerings: Spice rubbed pork tenderloin with cabbage & jicama slaw and a shrimp-grilled pineapple salad.  Both came along side saffron rice, black beans, and a fruit-based salsa, which all certainly pleased, but what remains so impressive about this truck besides quality is value.  While $12 and $14 may seem on the steep side (particularly just after my rant about Mighty Dog) but the pork dish came with 1/2 of a whole tenderloin and the shrimp dish had 6 HUGE shrimp.  Plus we know Chef Jess is using local, organic ingredients.  It's a matter of perspective and frankly, I get it at Cirque Cuisine but don't with the hot dog at Mighty Dog.  Sorry guys.

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