A few weeks ago, we were driving around on a really nice night. Not too much was going on, just enjoying the warm weather which is unusual in SF. As we rode, we spotted what looked like a taco truck with solar panels. We just had to stop to investigate. It really was solar powered! I think it is the first one. And it gets even better… it was a raw and vegan food truck called Sunny Vibrations! I love it!
I was lucky enough to talk to Craig, the guy who took his life savings and put it into this business. Craig explained that he took a bet with his friend that he couldn’t be a vegetarian for thirty days. After completing the bet, he felt so much healthier and energized, he decided he wanted to pursue this venture and bring affordable healthy food to more people. Restaurants have such high overhead costs that get passed on to the the customer. Using a mobile truck, nutritious food is affordable. A lot of the items at Sunny Vibrations are organic and local. Craig also wants to work with community gardens, providing food for the homeless and garden/youth advocacy groups. Perhaps all of us can look to this model to make our own adjustments to make the food we all eat a little better for everyone.
While enjoying the sun this summer in Dolores Park, stop by the truck to try the Veggie Stir Fry Taco with roasted red peppers or avocado , Fresh Organic Carrot Juice, Rasta kale Infusion w/sesame vinaigrette salad, Grilled soy cheese with tomato, Garlic fried Plantain with toasted almonds, and Raw (dehydrated) zesty crunch Kale Chips…just to name a few things off the menu.
Waiting to get lunch from a loading dock/storage unit.
We like to find new places to eat and places to go explore in the city. Kitchenette fits both. This little operation is run out of a loading dock in an historic industrial area called the Dog Patch. (I actually love this neighborhood, but that is for another post.) Their website says it best, spontaneous organic covert nourishment:
“We are a group of chefs that have worked at some of the best kitchens in the Bay Area: Chez Panisse, Incanto, Zuni Cafe, Eccolo, Bay Wolf, Ad Hoc, Betelnut , Fog City Diner etc. Our menus will be posted on our blog site (kitchenettesf.com) every day. Whatever we find that is super fresh and delicious is what we’re serving. Everything will be organic, local, street food inspired, spontaneous, affordable, handmade from scratch, and delicious (we’re eating this for lunch too!)”
Dogpatch millionaire sandwich
I am vegan. By the time we got there the veggie salad was out. Giants traffic!! Still totally worth going to check it out and treat someone special. The dogpatch millionaire, an Indian-inspired fried chicken sandwich with garam masala honey, spicy cabbage, coriander and lemon mayonnaise smelled and looked so delicious! I am drooling just typing this. I have been checking their daily menu posts and there have been tons of veggie sandwich options. So, looks like I need to try again but check for when the Giants are playing an away game! I am not sure if Kitchenette shares rent of this supply storage place, or if it their supply storage for their other restaurant. Either way, it is a genius idea to double use the space so that the money goes to ingredients and great chefs. I think this sandwich was $6.50??? Plus, being in this industrial area, many workers have an option of something really good. You could get a burger for $0.99 but what really is the cost to the environment, the people working to provide it and your health? The answer might be hard to chew on.
I love that people are finding new ways to make quality meals in new and unexpected ways. It is nice to know there are people and places making the types of food that you would want to make at home; fresh, local, wholesome and delicious, and you don’t have to pay a fortune for it. And it is fun. I am grateful to participate in such a wonderful community of food vendors.
Photos by author
3 thoughts on “Thursday in the City- Extraordinary Fast Food”
What a great post! I really am encouraged that so many restaurateurs have been striving to source fresh, seasonal ingredients, produced locally for their menus. I don't think of it as being a new movement, but a reversal to our previous relationship with food. Before food became convenienced. Before our diets became loaded with nasty preservatives, sodium and fat, in a box, bag or can. I hope more consumers become excited about truly fresh and healthy local foods, and support local restaurants who source fresh ingredients daily. We'd all be healthier for it! Next time I'm up in the City, I'll be sure to check out Kitchenette!
I have to ask for clarification. Which part of the truck is solar powered?
@ CVF: Thank you for the thoughtful comment. I think you make a very important point about our previous relationship with food. I really have to get Michael Pollan's book "Food Rules" where he lists "If your grandmother wouldn't recognize it as food, don't eat it". Every time I pick it up I chuckle…"If it is a plant, eat it. If it comes from a plant, don't". I hope you get to try something at Kitchenette! (BTW I think they are only M-F)
@ Lisa and Robb: It is my understanding that the solar energy powers the utilities and appliances for food preparation and sales. There is also a generator when needed.
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