Dos Diablos Mobile Cantina, Coulson Gardens, Chifley Drive, Maribyrnong, and many changing locations. Phone: 0413 616 771
Having left home well after the advertised opening time of 5pm, I am bemused to find no sign at all of the sexy red Dos Diablos truck.
(Confession: I did misread it badly – see comments below!)
Either they’re running awful late or I’ve completely misread the Facebook notification of tonight’s location.
After circling Coulson Gardens several times, I’m about to head home when the red beast trundles into view.
OK, I’m happy to cool my heels while get they get things rolling.
As I wait, and a few other customers drive up, I ponder the challenges of this food truck game that has made a significant impact on the westie food scene in a short span of time.
I doubt very much it’s as easy as it may appear from an outsider’s point of view.
And I wonder how scientific the various trucks get about choosing the right locations.
White Guy Cooks Thai seemed to get it just right on the night of our accidental meal with them in Seddon – a small park with heaps of shade and seating and a playground for the kids.
Coulson Gardens goes one better as it has toilets.
The Dos Diablos folk can’t do anything about the stinking hot weather, though there is a breeze coming off the river.
I know this park and the surrounding area teem with people on weekends, but I wonder how they’re going to go on a week night. All the customers I see during my visit with them arrive by car, so there are no casual, walk-up punters.
The Dos Diablos menu is tight and succinct.
All three varieties of taco cost $6 each.
My carnitas is spicy, salty and tasty, and although the pork shows few signs of the advertised “slow-roasting” it is still fine.
The vego is more humdrum. I usually love black beans, but these seem awfully boring. I love food without meat, but can quake when confronted with the horrible spectre of “vegetarian food”. This gets pretty close.
My small “papas fritas (seasoned fries)” are not my kind of deal at all. They’re chewy and heavily coated with some sort of variation of chicken salt. I can imagine some people thinking they’re crash hot, however.
The “Diablos ketchup” looks just like your regulation tomato sauce but is nicely spicy.
It’s been a satisfactory meal, but I suspect I’ve just found there are limits to food truck allure.
A serious appetite, for example, could go four of these tacos no problem – and that would start to get into significant cash output.
But I’ll continue to adore the concept and most assuredly enjoy the occasional outing with Bennie, even when the food doesn’t score top points.
After all, a sunny evening in a park, by the river or on a beach has a lot going for it all on its ownsome.