Rebirth of the Chattanooga Food Truck Movement

The beauty of the food truck is in its mobility. Their ability to pop up any where, any time adds a little mystery and excitement. Unfortunately, for some time that wasn’t happening much for Chattanooga food trucks.

The Street Food Project on Market Street was a short lived solution never to return. Sure, there’s the regular designated events where they make appearances like Sunday’s at the Chattanooga Market, and the soon-to-start-up Friday night’s at NightFall. However, Chattanoogans appear to want more. People should be able to enjoy street eats regardless of whether or not there’s an event going on. We’ll go as far as saying having a group of food trucks congregate together on the street is an event.

The owner of Rolling J’s Mobile Bistro, Jacob D’Angelo, shares a similar point of view. A week ago he went through the proper channels to secure space on Riverside Parkway near Ross’s Landing. Jacob invited other food trucks to join in on the fun scheduled for April 16, 2016 from 10am – 2pm.

Dubbed the first Chattanooga “Food Trucks Down By The River” event, D’Angelo went about seeking other food trucks participants. The following “street eats” folks answered the call by showing up: Hillbilly Philly,  slinging their signature Philadelphia-style cheesesteaks, Spill the Beans, pouring both hot & iced gourmet coffee drinks, Tepuy, Chattanooga’s newest food truck serving Venezuelan delights, and Pops Dogs, a hot dog cart featuring all-beef dogs and sausages.

The question remained. Would anyone show up? With little promotion other than a Facebook event, people flocked to the food trucks proving there is a demand for street eats. The lines for each truck were reminiscent of food truck gatherings in large cities like Los Angeles, Miami, or Chicago.

We asked several people how they heard about the event. Every answer was Facebook. One couple drove from Dalton just to have food from Tepuy. Mostly it was locals, but there were a number of tourists who perhaps wandered over from the riverfront or Aquarium Plaza.

Chattanooga foo trucks gathering by the river

The Verdict

Feedback from attendees was highly positive. While some of the newer trucks had a hard time keeping up with orders, most people patiently enjoyed fantastic views of the river and the near perfect weather.

D’Angelo declared the event will happen again, and next time will be bigger and better with more food trucks. We say the more the merrier!

To learn more about upcoming events, restaurant openings and closings, exclusive chef/restauranteur interviews and much more, make sure to sign up for our newsletter!

Sign Up Now!