Last Friday, the 19th, there was a small food truck rally in Carrollwood from 6 til 9. Since we live nearby, we had to check it out. We got there about 6:15. Graffeaties, The Dude & His Food, PAO, and Cuppin Cakes were set up. The Dude & His Food is mostly prime rib, which I wasn’t in the mood for (and Hubby doesn’t eat). I had tried most of Graffeaties’ offerings previously. We decided to get our dinner from PAO since we’ve had it before and both really like it.
From PAO we got:
-turkey lumpia ($5): “Hand rolled spring rolls that are filled with our blend of turkey, aromatic vegetables, and spices. Fried until golden brown and served with a side of Atcharra” (which is “our signature pickled papaya side”).
-two orders of sisig ($7 each): “Seasoned pork fried, chopped, Paoed, and sizzled to perfection. Citrusy, crunchy, chopped up deliciousness served over a bed of rice.”
-one tocsilog ($8): “Our signature marinated pork cooked to perfection and a fried egg served over garlic rice.” They’ll make the egg however you like it, though (we got it over medium so the yolk would be runny and mix with the pork and rice).
-one chicken on a stick ($6): “Two skewers of marinated chicken thighs served over rice with a side of Atcharra. This is Filipino BBQ!!!”
-one pancit ($8) with one order of tocino (the chopped pork) and one chicken skewer ($2 extra for each meat item): “Rice noodles and egg noodles combined with only the freshest vegetables available to create a vegetarian favorite” (unless you get it with double meat like we did).
-one single PAO ($8.50): “6 oz. USDA beef burger on our signature POA bun, topped with a slice of cheddar, lettuce, and tomato. Served with a side of shrimp chips.” (Shrimp chips: “Shrimp turned into fried chips topped with garlic aioli and green onions.”)
-one mango turon (basically the lumpia wrapper filled with fresh mango and some honey and deep fried–don’t recall the price)
-one banana turon (same as the mango but with banana instead)
I’ve seen Cuppin Cakes at a couple other rallies but by the time we got to those most of their cupcakes were gone, so we hadn’t tried any yet. Well, we made up for lost time. We got eight: two s’mores, one cookies & cream, one peanut butter & jelly, one choc-o-nutter, two key lime, and one dark chocolate with Biscoff (vegan).
After some chatting with Jeremy, one of the Cuppin Cake owners, and the PAO guys, we took our haul home.
I’ve had the sisig and tocsilog before. I prefer the sisig a little more because it’s sweeter. I don’t know what they do to their rice but it’s AWESOME. Sticky and delicious. The pancit was good but I wouldn’t get it again because the flavor of the sauce just isn’t for me. Hubby loved it. I didn’t try the chicken skewer. The lumpia was really good. But the PAO burger was OMG a revelation. First of all, the patty itself was sooooo good. Juicy and tasty and just a really, really good burger. But the thing that took this burger to the next level was the bun. It’s basically the same dough they make steamed pork buns with but they fry it on the griddle. It’s like the best blini you ever had on a massive scale. My mouth is watering thinking about it. Then I tried each of the turon. The banana was good but the mango was amazing. I would get a whole order of the mango for myself next time.
I didn’t try any cupcakes that night but Hubby ate a key lime and a s’more. He loved them.
The next night Mom and I tried some cupcakes. We each had some of the key lime, the choc-o-nutter, and the vegan dark chocolate. Both of us liked the key lime the best. The lime tasted so fresh and the cupcakes were a beautiful lime green color. The choc-o-nutter was good but I think I’d skip it next time. I definitely think the vegan cupcake was a work of art. The difference in texture between the vegan and non-vegan cupcakes was almost imperceptible. I don’t think you could have said which was vegan if you didn’t know. Very impressive. Sadly, I never got around to trying the other flavors. Oops, guess my eyes were bigger than my stomach. Next time!
I definitely recommend both food trucks. Super friendly people and great food.