SEASIDE, FL – Yvonne Rolufs didn’t know what to order as she approached the six classic airstream food trucks. She wandered from one menu to the next as her cohorts divvied up and found their niche. But when she saw The Meltdown on 30A, a gourmet grilled cheese food truck, Rolufs got in line.
“I saw the word ‘arugula,’ and I had to come here,” Rolufs said. “I’m from New Orleans, so going to a food truck isn’t normal, but it’s here.”
Meltdown is grilled cheese mecca combining thick bread with different cheeses, meats and vegetables.
“Our focus is the cheese,” manager Matthew Lansing said. “We play around with it, but we try to keep it no frills and give a quick, high-quality product.”
During Spring Break, Meltdown was packed with a line of people from their window to the street for four hours.
“We do what restaurants can’t; we get to experiment and try new things,” Lansing said.
They grill the classics of American and cheddar, but they also spice it up with combinations such as brie, bacon with cranberry walnut bread, or goat cheese, prosciutto and arugula.
“The best part about the carts is when you’re with a bunch of people, everyone can get what they want and it’s all in one spot,” Rolufs said. “I go where I see good food, whether it’s in a restaurant or a food truck.”
Rolufs is like many visitors and residents of Seaside who are intriguead by the food trucks that have gathered behind the Seaside amphitheater. It began with Jenifer Kuntz and her food truck, Raw and Juicy. Kuntz started Raw and Juicy in April 2008 to educate people about what they were eating and to bring the community together.
Raw and Juicy is an organic foods and juice bar that combines fruits, vegetables and roots into unusual, but good drinks. The Beetlejuice is an apple, beet, lime and ginger concoction that adds some color and spice to the frothy drink.
“I saw a Club Med atmosphere up and down Seaside for the tourists, but nothing for the residents,” Kuntz said. “I wanted to bring the community together, and this started as part of a health and wellness center, but Raw and Juicy just took off.”
The community began to notice Kuntz when she revived the farmers market.
“It became like an adult lemonade stand,” Kuntz said. “It became a place where people saw in each other in the community and where they could come to hang out.”
However, it was not only people flocking to Kuntz’s cart. Other food trucks began lining up behind the amphitheater as well. As airstreams followed Kuntz’s lead, Seaside soon found itself embracing a food revolution.
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