Food truck names: they make you you laugh, they make you cringe, but most important, they make you look.
Food trucks can tweet their arrivals to loyal followers, but they have only their wits to draw in the make-or-break traffic of passersby. Truck operators lean heavily on humor, sexual innuendo, food puns, and double entendres as they aim for a memorable, or at least eye-catching, name.
Here are some that accomplish it best–
- The Grillenium Falcon: a Star Wars-themed grilled cheese truck out of Fayetteville, Arkansas serving a sandwich called the Cheebacca
- Two dictator/food truck mashups: the San Francisco-based Chairman Bao, with steamed or baked bao and other Chinese street foods and Portland, Oregon’s Kim Jong Grillin’ serving Korean barbecue
- Coolhaus, with trucks in four states, makes ice cream sandwiches. It’s a good name made even better when you learn that the owner is a former architect partial to the designs of Rem Koolhaas
- Nashville’s I Dream of Weenie keeps it clean and clever, an all too rare combination in the world of hot dog trucks
- Austin, Texas gets its sweet and savory empanadas from MMMpanadas
- There’s rolling meat at Seattle’s burger-centric Buns on Wheels and Los Angeles’ meatball-focused Great Balls on Tires.
- A bit misleading, it’s burgers, not miso soup at LA’s MeSoHungry, but the name is still killer
And then there are the questionable choices–
- LA’s Egg Slut, where I hear the breakfasts are so much better than the name
- At Greasy Wiener, the signature deep-fried hot dog sounds as unappetizing as the name of this Tucson, Arizona truck
- If you’re not versed in Mexican slang you’ll have to trust me; Pinches Tacos, another LA food truck, does not have a very nice name
- I get it, they serve dumplings; but still, the Dump Truck? (Portland, OR)
For the food truck operator who could use a little naming help, Mobile Cuisine Magazine has a Food Truck Random Name Generator.