Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Flying Stove

I first read about The Flying Stove food truck in the newspaper several months ago. I was intrigued by the concept of bringing a style of food to Wichita that is predominately found in L.A. and NYC. The more I read, the more excited I became. Two brothers from California were the owners and chefs and it was going to be different than just BBQ or a sandwich/hot dog stand. I was chomping at the bits to visit. Not only could I support a local, family owned place, but I could get gourmet food for a reasonable price!  

Josh and I both had a Friday off a couple weeks later and although he was surprised when I told him where I wanted to try for lunch he ventured out with me. I understood where he was coming from.  It does seem strange in the Midwest to visit a food truck; the idea is foreign.  However, in my mind I was dreaming of a food truck like true New Yorkers go to and the ones you see on The Food Network.  The Flying Stove was exactly what I hoped for!  On our first visit I ordered fish tacos as there were no vegetarian items on the menu.  I was in love at first bite.  Tender fish, great marinade, and a surprise ingredient: mint.  I was expecting cilantro when I bit into it, but the mint was a fantastic addition.  Josh ordered a Hawaiian pork and pineapple sandwich. Although he was skeptical the entire car ride and all the way until we got in line, by the end he was hooked just like me. It was incredible! As we sat and ate and admired the truck Josh proclaimed he had a better name: The Rolling Stoves. :) The Flying Stove, The Rolling Stoves…I don’t care what you call it, it’s some of the best food I have had in Wichita.

Each week The Flying Stove posts their schedule on Facebook. While you can visit their website it is much more convenient to follow them on Facebook to see where they will be and get information on their menus.   Typically, Monday and Tuesday are off days. They do a great job moving to different locations around town to accommodate everyone. Weekdays they only serve lunch and it runs from 11-1:30, but your best bet is to get there early because they usually run out of food before 1:30. The menus changes every 2-3 weeks and each time it impresses me.  On my second visit I had a caprese salad.  It was not on the menu, but I arrived around 1:15 and they were out of the side dish I wanted to order. I asked if they could make anything on the menu without meat and he said they would make me something. I appreciated the customer service! Apparently, I wasn’t the only one inquiring about veggie items because every menu since then has had at least one vegetarian item. Woo hoo! I had an AMAZING pomegranate, goat cheese salad with a fruity vinaigrette and fresh melon. (I regret to inform you I forgot to take a pic, but this was before my blogging days. It won’t happen again) Josh came with me again for this visit and he had a hamburger and truffle fries that he very much enjoyed. 

During a more exotic menu week I tried their vegetable curry. 

Curry is one of those things I do not usually order. I like a bite or two of it, but it’s too rich/creamy for me to eat the whole bowl, but I was so excited they had a vegetarian item I went for it. It was GREAT! It was full of potatoes and spinach and very spicy; just the way I like it.  

I went last week and they had just returned from a week off in California for research. I was looking Tuesday night to see where they would be Wednesday and I about couldn’t sleep after I looked at the new menu.  They must have talked to some California vegetarians and decided to explore...drumroll please...tofu. I was so excited I was there at 11 a.m. on Wednesday. 

Best. Tofu. Ever. I am not exaggerating. Also, the most unhealthy tofu, but it was so good I'm over it.  It was fried, atop an edamame puree, sprinkled with wonton chips, cilantro, and some tomatoes and marinated mushrooms that were out of this world. I ate it in my car and was literally licking the container.    It was one of the best meals I have ever had and it cost $5.  I made myself wait at least until it was a new week, but I was back again Tuesday.  Confession time: I pigged out.  My plan was to try the potatoes with goat cheese...which I did.  As I stood in line I kept thinking about how good the tofu was and that it could be off the menu next time I come back.  Decision made, potatoes AND the tofu thank you very much.  

I want to try the calamari too!  Maybe next week...

I could write about this place for pages, but here is my review: You can’t go wrong at The Flying Stove. Everything is fresh, gourmet, and priced EXTREMELY affordable. If you took it out of the paper to-go container and placed it on a real plate in a restaurant this could sell for quadruple the price.   If you live in Wichita and haven’t made a lunch break trip to The Flying Stove start following them on Facebook here

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