anyone tried gaztro wagon (naanwich)?
I guess I'm replying to my own question. Today, the Gaztro Wagon made it downtown near the financial district so a bunch of co-workers and I made the trek to Merchandise Mart to check it out. We arrived and quickly there were 50-70 people in line (we were in the middle of the line). When we got our sandwiches and left there were still that many people in line.
Today, they were serving up the pork shoulder, wild boar belly, short rib, slow roasted lamb, and the portobello. I ordered a boar belly and split a lamb.
As for the food, I would say it's a change of pace and there is a novelty factor, but I can't recommend it highly. I assume it's a Chicago regulatory/licensing thing, but there is still no cooking involved on the food truck. All the sandwiches are prepared off-site and loaded onto warmers/ovens on the truck. This makes for fast service. I didn't really like the texture of the naan. I don't know if it is because it sat in the warmers steaming or if it's poor execution on the naan making (oven not hot enough). All the food was salty (and that's saying a lot for me because I love salt).
We went last weekend to the store in Edgewater. It's a tiny store front. There are probably 12 seats and it's tight. No matter.
They were sold out of the boar belly. We had the short ribs ($8) and the lamb gyro ($7) and an order of plantain chips ($2). The chips and drinks ($2 each) came up first. The plantain chips with chimichurri sauce were very tasty, light and not oily at all. The only complaint with the chips was how they're served. In a huge bag, actually I think it's the type of brown paper bag that's lined with a little film that's used to "you grind it" coffee at the grocery stores. A very sturdy bag, but it seemed like wasteful packaging to us.
The naan it's really naan, it's more like chapati maybe? Chewier than naan I'd say. Tasty, but not authentic naan. The first thing that we noticed was the discrepancy in size. My short rib sandwich was much larger than the lamb gyro. The short rib was served with tomato, raw onions and some flat leaf parsley (which was billed as and "herb salad" on the menu). There was also some kind of mayo-y sauce, that was good.The short ribs were really flavorful. The onion was a little strong for me, so I took them off. The lamb gyro came with "gyro fixings", but that didn't seem to happen. There was a little tomato & raw onion and that's it. No tahini or sauce of any kind, no feta, nothing. It was tasty, but the beef was much better.
We wrapped it up with fudge pies ($4 for 2) from Fritz Pastry. Again with the coffee bags, excessive packaging. Oh, these fudge pies were divine. Remember Little Debbie Oatmeal Cream pies? We'll that's the idea here, but with chewy chocolate cookies and chocolate butter creme filling. The cookies are moist and chewy with a pretty large crumb. Dense and chocolatey without being too sweet. Just enough salt to notice. Very good!
Overall, it was tasty, but nothing spectacular. The store front is pretty dim, no atmosphere at all. Our dinner ended up being $30 and my poor friend was still hungry (of course, he's ALWAYS hungry). I taught it was a little overpriced.
I had lunch from gaztro wagon a couple weeks ago when they were by my office in Ravenswood. We got there around 12:15 and there wasn't much of a wait, but they had already run out of one of their sandwiches. That day they had three different sandwiches, plus a vegetarian sandwich. They also have plantain chips and desserts. A co-worker and I split two naanwiches and they were super yummy!