How Food Trucks and Craft Beer Helped Each Other on Their Way to Helping Dallas

Categories: Chewing the Fat

Easy Slider and LDD
Imagine a nice spring day, sipping a beer mere feet from the tanks in which it was brewed -- perhaps across the table from the brewer -- devouring the remnants of a meal from a food truck just yards away. No chains. No multi-national conglomerations. Everything conceived, contrived, made and delivered by people in the community, for the community. It's like those big feasts from hundreds of years ago that brought people together, except with considerable less chance of being killed by a drunk with a morningstar.

Craft beer and food trucks are kindred spirits of sorts. Both businesses are fueled by an entrepreneurial spirit, a lot of heavy lifting and a bit of gumption. And it seems clear that locally their successes have been mutually beneficial.

See also: Michael Peticolas on the Building of a "True Craft Beer Movement" and What's in His Fridge

Scott Wooley of So-Cal Tacos was early on the Dallas food truck scene. He's traversed the metroplex, tacos in hand, for years and now has a restaurant in Grapevine.

"Food trucks and craft brews speak to a genre of culture," says Wooley. "It's the little guys doing their own thing in a world that's been dominated by the big brands. It's a perfect partnership."

It was just three years ago that food trucks began popping up in North Texas. At first, it was a bumpy road; it took cities some time to figure out how to regulate the new industry. (They could have looked to any number of progressive metro areas in the country, but that's sriracha under the bridge.) Meanwhile, both operators and customers had to figure out what worked and what didn't.

Simultaneously, the craft beer movement was burgeoning. In 2011, three new breweries opened in Dallas: Deep Ellum Brewing Co., Peticolas and Lakewood Brewing Co. Now there are more than 30 trucks operating in the metroplex and more than a dozen breweries.

Wim Bens, founder of Lakewood Brewing Co., likes what he sees.

"I think it points more to a larger cultural shift where local beer, food and products are more and more sought after," says Bens.

Aside from the great pairing, there's obviously an element of convenience. Calling a food truck for an appearance at a weekend brewery tour adds another layer to the overall local experience.

"Good beer and good food have always gone hand in hand," says Miley Holmes of Easy Slider food truck. "Craft brewers and independently owned food trucks also provide similar experiences."

There's no way to put a number on exactly how these two businesses have helped each other locally, and the beer scene remains a few steps ahead of the trucks in terms of quality. But simply recalling the number of times you've either enjoyed the two together in the same parking lot, event or street is proof of a welcome pairing.

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Luckily, I don't like either food trucks or craft beer.  Leave them in Austin or Portland where they belong.


Great article! It's definitely a culture shift for sure fueled by the influx of people moving into Dallas. It's also economics. Build it where people have the income and the lifestyle to buy it. Makes sense and a great scene overall. 


By the way, great article!  I tried to find something to be snarky about, but dammit, you covered all bases; and all points were both reasonable, and effective.  I just have one question though said, "It's like those big feasts from hundreds of years ago that brought people together, except with considerable less chance of being killed by a drunk with a morningstar".  Now my question is, why would someone try to kill another with a vegetarian black bean burger?  Wouldn't it be more effective to shoot one, with, sayyyyyyy, a chicken nugget shot out of a potato gun; or to try and bludgeon someone with an egg and sausage breakfast burrito?   I once almost got "kilt" by a man wielding an uncooked beef tenderloin, but, bravely I fought him off with both a napkin, and slice of Sal's Pizza.   Then I cooked said loin on the grill, at 350, for about 45 minutes.....whereupon I slathered that beef tenderloin with a mixture of horseradish, fajita spice and Lea and Perrins.  Sadly, the mushrooms that I sauteed in butter and garlic never made it out of the pan to compliment the beef; I ingested it with such a fury and ravenous passion, that the incident scared wildlife from Allen to Atoka. 

Beef Tenderloin and Horsey Sauce goes well with:

-sauteed mushrooms

-lightly butter and salted baby red potatoes, with a hint of rosemary and a touch of lemon juice

-a spinach salad with black olives, red onions, walnuts, feta and Greek dressing

-fresh bread from Market Street

-"dat birra", I prefer Shiner Bock with this meal-or a full bodied Cabernet; maybe a shot of tequila (room temperature) 


I've said it before and I will say it again. Go to Portland, see what is trendy, and 3-5 years later it will be in Dallas. It's like clockwork.


@P1Gunter  Portland is Portland, Dallas is Dallas. There will be countless others that want Dallas to be like countless other cities anywhere in the world. It is what it is. 



Why would I go to Poland? It's like a third world country!  Oh, Portland.  Dallas doesn't come across as a very forward thinking city.....between the bible folk, and the people that just want Dallas to stay the same, we are light years behind other cities. Hell man, even OK City is more forward thinking than Dallas.



I detect a Park Cities mom. This is the typical Dallas person that thinks all is grand in Dallas. Patio's, Tollways, Foodtrucks.....yaaaaay!   Give me a mojito.......let's go shopping. 


@kergo1spaceship @P1Gunter OKC is inhabited by the worst of all Oklahomoans, they honestly like it there.  Even though Mother Nature tries to blow them off the map a couple of times a year.

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