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Portland: origin of modern food cart movement?

j
julrey Nov 15, 2011 11:39 AM

I've noticed over the past couple of years that when the subject of food carts comes up in the media, Portland seems to get a disproportionate amount of coverage, and many articles fall just short of actually crediting Portland for kickstarting the modern food cart movement.

I say "fall just short" because there doesn't seem to be any common consensus on where and when the modern trend originated. When food carts started popping up all over Austin a few years back it seemed like LA was usually pointed to as the trendsetter. It wasn't until later that I started hearing Portland come up in virtually every mention of this new phenomenon.

So I'm trying to figure out whether this is just some media construct or whether there is some actual evidence that Portland kickstarted the modern food cart movement. By "modern" I think we can agree that we're drawing the line at traditional hot dog stands and the kind of utilitarian lunch trucks traditionally found at construction sites.