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hot dog contest

The mobile food industry is chugging along and gourmet food trucks have been a big part of the recent uptick in its growth. With that said, prior to the launch of the Kogi BBQ truck in 2008, there have been plenty of street vendors making a living by selling on of the most beloved street foods in the US…HOT DOGS!!!

Encased meats have been part of Americana since their invention. There is a long history of hot dogs and a lot of disputed “facts” about their origin. Never disputed has been the love Americans have for them. No matter what region of the country or what style you prefer your doggies…hot dogs are one of the most eaten foods in America.

The hot dog has many connotations: an American classic with a squiggle of yellow mustard, a “dirty water dog” at an NYC street stand and the savior and bane of parents with picky eaters. Nowadays, it also rivals the hamburger as a canvas for chef-driven experiments in comfort food. And the results are delicious.

Because of this, we are starting a contest to find out which food truck or cart is serving our readers favorite hot dog.

Like all of our other contests, this contest will open today and will be run in two stages. For the next two weeks (we will accept emails submitted by 12 PM Central Time on Friday April 18, 2014)  we will give our readers to submit their choices via email at: contest@mobile-cuisine.com, and once the data is collected, we will open a poll (Monday April 21, 2014) to allow voting from the top 10 email submissions.


To be eligible for the final poll, the vendor needs to have opened before January 2014 and must regularly serve hot dogs from their truck, cart or trailer (sorry hot dog stands are not eligible). The ingredients of the hot dog or the condiments served on them can be any combination of flavors, or cuisine and the hot dog can be served in or out of a bun. The vendors can be located in any country so feel free to submit choices from outside of North America.

We look forward to receiving your submissions. Hot dog vendors are free to submit their own carts or trucks for consideration and voters may vote as often as you wish. The only request we have is that you submit one entry at a time and include the name of the vendor, as well as the city  or area the they operate in.

So let the voting begin. And remember, vote early and vote often.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Your Message

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lloyd taco truck buffalo

Today, we’ll take a deeper look into the 2014 Food Truck Taco Of The Year Winner that is Lloyd.

Childhood friends, Chris Dorsaneo and Pete Cimino knew they wanted to create something big and exciting.  Neither of them had any inkling that it would be Lloyd.

While Chris studied at the University of Hawaii Kapiolani Community College receiving two Associates in Science for Culinary and Pastry Arts, his passion was ignited for food creation.  Culinary inspirations like David Chang and Jose Andres and culinary school mentors like Chefs Ernst Hiltbrand and Alan Tsuchiyama coached and molded him into the professional he is today.

Pete’s mathematics background has served him well in this partnership.  Thankfully, he realized soon that the teaching gig out of college wasn’t his thing and turned to his life of “serial entrepreneurship.”  While dabbling in several ventures, he visited Chris in Hawaii and made a point to visit Giovanni’s Original shrimp truck.  “Little did I know that this unassuming, unofficial state institution was about to change our lives! Standing in line I had much time to ponder.” The idea of waiting in line was ridiculous, but Pete was taken by the “unique social atmosphere, the one that only occurs outside a food truck.”  This experience made him feel connected to the food in a way he’d never experienced.

Years later, when Chris returned to Buffalo, food trucks had started to explode.  The timing was right and they went to work.  The concept of “Lloyd” was born.

“Lloyd,” is a 4th degree sash in the fine art of Taco Kune Do, a farmer that Pete worked for, a gnome found behind Chris’ grandmother’s garage, a flavor scientist that teaches at MIT, and a sage that left them his recipe Bible from his world travels.  In reality, Lloyd is a figment of Pete’s imagination.  The company needed a name and a personality.  Pete’s sister Nina Barone was not only instrumental in helping them launch the truck, but boldly suggested the name “Lloyd.”  Lloyd’s mission is “street food on the edge.”  This means REAL food using the best ingredients one block at a time.

After launching OG Lloyd in 2010, Lloyd dos and Lloyd the III came on in 2012 and 2013 respectively.  Lloyd will cater your events with their Drop Off service or Truck On Site options.  With Lloyd’s growth, Chef Chris brought in CIA graduate Teddy Bryant.  Both have won the Nickel City Chef contest, a local Iron Chef-style competition.

“Quite a spectacular taco!” boasts one Yelper.  “The truck is full of incredibly friendly workers ready to serve up some taco goodness,” claims another. Lloyd’s customers are among the most loyal in the country.  They are rewarded with incredible food after waiting in line, even in the heart of winter…  Lloyd is thankful for the support they received from the Buffalo area, especially in the winter.

Lloyd offers taqueria-style street food with a Lloyd “spin.”  Their favorites sound so yummy, we may have to take a quick trip to Buffalo to try them all.  One favorite is the Dirty South, which is filled with Southern-style fried chicken thighs (arguably the best part of the chicken, IMHO), bacon aioli, maple syrup, baby kale, and crispy waffle chips made in Chris’ grandma’s pizzelle machine.  Their other favorite is the Hombre taco made with Mexican-style chorizo, fried potatoes, fresh onion, cilantro, avocado crema and a wedge of lime. They even have a play on the infamous Big Mac, albeit a much healthier version.  If it’s got the Lloyd spin, I’m IN!

It seems as if the Lloyd team has built a recipe of hard-working, fun deliciousness.  They are excited every day to meet their customers and find new places to serve them.  The keys to their success is KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid, adaptability, and being active in their food truck community.

We asked them where they might be in the future.  They were a bit tight-lipped on their future plans, but something tells me they will continue to serve the Buffalo area and evolve and grow into something huge.  Honestly, we can’t wait to see the future of Lloyd!

After their first day in operation, Pete’s friend looked at him and said, “Man, do you realize this truck is gonna be epic?” What a feeling!  What a feeling, indeed!

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With nearly 25,000 votes between our poll and individual email submissions it took us a little more time to tally things up than we originally planned.But now that the hard part is over, we are pleased to announce our winner…

llyod taco truck

Congratulations to the Lloyd Taco Truck in Buffalo, New York on winning the Mobile Cuisine 2014 Food Truck Taco of the Year Contest!  We’re super excited to tell you a little about them.

Childhood friends Chris Dorsaneo and Peter Cimino wanted to create a business concept that would take Buffalo by storm.  Chef Chris and self-proclaimed, “serial entrepreneur” Peter dreamt up the concept that is Lloyd.  Lloyd is so many things, but to the lucky and devoted folks of Buffalo, “he” is the purveyor of authentic, creative and delicious Mexican street food.  Whether you’re dining from OG Lloyd, Lloyd dos, or Lloyd the III, you’re bound to get tasty tacos, nachos and more!

Hungry for more?

We’ll take a deeper dive into Lloyd in our feature article tomorrow…<here>

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Seafood, Korean, and traditional tacos being served from a food truck were the bulk of the nearly 2,000 votes cast in part 1 of our 2014 best food truck taco contest started 2 weeks ago. And today we are proud to announce our Top 15 and opening up part two.

food truck tacos

We received votes from around the world, but for this poll we could only select the food trucks with the 15 most votes submitted. We will be running this poll for the next two weeks and will close it out on Friday, March 14st at 12 PM (midnight) Central Time. The winning truck will be profiled here at Mobile Cuisine and will hold the title of Best Food Truck Taco for 2014.

This years contestants are:

Baja Taco Truck – Boston, MA @BajaTacoTruck

BC Tacos – Broward County, FL @BCTaco

Box of Chacos – Ft. Lauderdale, FL @boxofchacos

Dia de los Tacos – Marquette, MI @tacosmqt

El Gastronomo Vagabundo – St Catharines, Ontario @elgastronomo

Fat Cactus – Austin, TX @fatcactusatx

Happy’s Taco Shop – Boyne City, MI @happystacoshop

Indios Carbonsitos – Kansas City, KS @indioscrbnstos

Jefe’s Original Fish Taco and Burger – Miami, FL @jefesoriginal

Lloyd Taco Truck – Buffalo, NY @whereslloyd

Taceaux Loceaux - New Orleans, LA @TLNola

Taco Lassi – Indianapolis, IN @tacolassi

What The Fork – Scranton, PA @WTForkTruck

Woody’s Taco Island – Baltimore, MD @WoddysTacos

Yayo’s OMG – Nashville, TN @yayosomg

Poll is closed!

Please note, if you have issues voting with the polling software, you can submit your vote to contest@mobile-cuisine.com. We will only allow one vote per individual and from time to time, the software can block users from voting based on their ip address.

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It’s hard to believe that the mobile food industry has been on the national stage for nearly six years now. When a young LA chef named Roy Choi came up with the idea of taking the the traditional taco and combining it with flavors from Korea. Choi’s Kogi truck became an instant success and since then has sparked many young culinary entrepreneurs to attempt to match this success around the world.

El Gastro Vagabundo

Taco trucks are typically the first type of food truck to enter a market when its laws are modified to allow food trucks to operate on their streets. Besides the traditional Mexican style, there have been many types of fusion styled tacos attempted, some have failed, but many more have succeeded.

Because of this, we started a contest last year to find out which food truck was serving our readers favorite taco.

We had many complaints that some areas of the country famous for their tacos because there were no food trucks represented in the final 10. Ultimately that was not our choice, but our readers (and why the first stage of our contests are always so important). When the dust cleared and the votes were counted the El Gastronomo Vagabundo from Ontario, Canada was declared our winner.

So today we are starting our search for the best in 2014.

This contest will open today and will be run in two stages. For the next two weeks (we will accept emails submitted by 12 PM Central Time on Friday February 21, 2014)  we will give our readers to submit their choices via email at: contest@mobile-cuisine.com, and once the data is collected, we will open a poll (Monday February 24, 2014) to allow voting from the top 10 email submissions.


To be eligible for the final poll, the food truck needs to have opened before January 2014 and must regularly serve the taco dish from their truck, cart or trailer. The ingredients of the taco can be any combination of flavors (traditional or fusion), or cuisine and the taco can be served in a hard or soft shell. The trucks can be located in any country so feel free to submit choices from outside of North America.

We look forward to receiving your submissions. Food truck owners are free to submit their own trucks for consideration and voters may vote as often as you wish. The only request we have is that you submit one entry at a time and include the name of the truck, the taco name as well as the city  or area the food truck operates in.

So let the voting begin. And remember, vote early and vote often.

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Your Message

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Congratulations to the Saucy ‘Stache as Mobile Cuisine’s 2013 Rookie Food Truck of the Year!

2013 rookie of the year food truck

New to the Miami food truck scene, they’re already making their saucy mark on south Florida.  The Saucy ‘Stache was conceived by sisters Nichole and Michelle.  While Nichole attended the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, she learned early on she had a knack for creating yummy sauces.  Upon returning to south Florida, she and sister Michelle, a marketing professional, decided to open a truck.

We’re so happy they did.

To aid in the kitchen, Michelle’s husband Anthony was trained while their folks round out the Saucy ‘Stache support team.  With a tight-knit group in place, the sisters love going to work every day.  Nichole takes great pleasure in creating dishes where customers order seconds for their next meals.  Michelle’s strengths are outside of the kitchen, basically keeping the engine running.  Outside of truck responsibilities, Michelle also runs an online marketing agency and coordinates catering events for food trucks.

The sisters offer a couple of tips for food truck owners, especially those just starting out.  When you think you have all of your bases covered with permits and licenses, another requirement will always come up.  Be flexible and prepared.  Once you’re on the road, know your audience.  The Saucy ‘Stache has many options and the sisters tailor the menu for the day’s or event’s audience.  If they are serving at a brewery, they “bring foods that are a hit with drunk people.  Our fried macaroni balls seem to make them very happy,” says Michelle.  If they go to a wellness event, they “load up on salad and brown rice.”

Whatever the event or menu offering the Saucy ‘Stache has combinations that will tempt you to lick your bowl clean.  Nichole’s favorite is the latest special — sautéed steak in the ninja garlic sauce over brown rice with mandarin teriyaki sauce.  Michelle likes the maple bacon bourbon sauce (um, I personally believe everything is good with bourbon sauce) with their truffled sweet potato mash side.  We’re drooling here.

The Saucy ‘Stache sisters are having fun meeting their customers and creating fun, tasty dishes for them.  They are going to be fun to watch as they grow and evolve.  What’s next on their to-do list?  World domination.  If it’s covered in maple bacon bourbon sauce, we can’t wait!

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Hey Austin! Burton Casting (www.burtoncasting.com) is casting duos for Food Network’s new competition show Food Truck Faceoff! Win a 1 year lease on your very own food truck! We are casting in Austin February 5th so apply asap!

Food Truck Face Off Logo

Have you ever dreamed of owning and operating your very own Food Truck? Do you have the passion, talent and the drive? Do you wish you just had the means to finally do it? Do you have a great idea for a food truck in your area and the best recipes to make it a success? This could be your chance to finally make your dreams come true.

FOOD TRUCK FACE OFF puts 4 teams of 2 in a head-to-head battle to win their own FOOD TRUCK! The winner of each episode will win a one-year lease of their very first food truck!! We are looking for teams of two from all walks of life who haven’t owned a food truck or a restaurant before. We’re looking for home chefs, line cooks, prep cooks, foodies, bakers, recent culinary grads, etc. The teams should be duos with great chemistry and a shared desire to co-own their very first food truck. FOOD TRUCK NEWBIES ONLY!!!! 

Austin Auditions will be on February 5th, 2014.

To apply, please visit www.foodtruckfaceofftv.com

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It has been a long year, and many things have happened over the course of the last 12 months. In the mobile food industry we saw the same type of growth around the world as we have seen since it’s rebirth in 2008.

2013 Rookie of the Year

For the third year in a row, we are conducting a contest to find out who our readers feel is the food truck rookie of the year. Last year’s contest was won by the the Crazy Good Burgers out of Morristown, TN. This year we had numerous submissions from around the country, and today, we are opening the the voting to help us determine who will be the Mobile Cuisine 2013 Food Truck Rookie of the Year.

We would like to thank all of those who voted for their choice of rookie food truck of the year. Voting will remain open until Friday, 1/24/2014 at midnight Central time.

Once the poll is closed, the truck with the most votes will be declared our winner.

Good luck to the contestants…and let the voting begin!!!

THIS POLL HAS CLOSED. The results will be announced shortly.

NOTE: Because we have had some issues with our polling system and individuals not being able to submit votes, we will provide the form below or email us at: contest@mobile-cuisine.com to allow you to submit your choice. We are only accepting 1 vote per ip address, so we will be monitoring the results and only count a single vote per submission from the polling system or through email.


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Food trucks have been popping up all around the country (for that matter all across the world). Since our inception in 2010, we have tried to keep an eye on the trucks surfacing on the streets and to our surprise, there has not been much of a slowdown of trucks or cities around the country that have spawned new trucks (we have seen an average of at least a half dozen new trucks every week).

2013 Rookie of the Year

For the third year in a row, we are we want to ask our readers to share their favorites with us. We are asking you to submit your choice for the 2013 Food Truck Rookie of the Year. You may submit your choice via the the form below or email us at: contest@mobile-cuisine.com

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)


Your Message

We will collect your submissions through Friday, January 10th, and the following week we will present a poll of the top ten trucks or carts submitted, so that you may help us choose the Rookie of the Year. You may submit as many trucks or carts from your area as you like, but they must be submitted separately to be included. There are no requirements to the location (hint hint to Canadian and overseas food truck owners), type or style of food this mobile vendor sells, so feel free to submit a new savory food vendor, dessert truck or even a mobile hot dog vendor.

The only stipulation is that they opened for business before November 31st of 2013.

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2013 Dessert Truck of the Year

Earlier this month we began polling our readers to help us determine their favorite dessert food truck. Our final poll had 10 dessert trucks to select from:

  • 3 Girls Cupcakes – Kansas City, MO
  • Big Gay Ice Cream – NYC
  • A Cupcake Social – Minneapolis, MN
  • Custom Confections – Houston, TX
  • Flirty Cupcakes – Chicago, IL
  • Goodies Frozen Custards & Treats – Washington DC
  • Homemade – South Florida
  • Kickass Cupcakes – Boston, MA
  • Saweet Cupcakes – San Antonio, TX
  • The Sweet Hearth – Buffalo, NY

Voting was very busy for the first week but slowed down a bit during the second week of voting but we still had a lot of folks visit the site to vote for their favorite. After counting the 3,500+ votes, Mobile Cuisine is proud to announce the 2013 Dessert Food Truck of the Year winner. With nearly 43 percent of the overall vote Custom Confections of Houston, TX has claimed the title.

We would like to congratulate the crew from Custom Confections and thank our readers for helping us with this poll.

You can follow Custom Confections on Twitter: @CustomDesserts

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