Fancy Lunches at Casual Venues

Jon’s Street Eats has rolled into Oakland, offering upscale street food to whomever can find the roaming truck (see Twitter for location updates). “For about the same price as a lunch at McDonald’s, you can walk away full of Jon’s special brand of ‘Slow food done kinda fast,’” says Marauder44.

The BLAT (bacon/lettuce/avocado/tomato) is excellent, Marauder44 says, with house-smoked bacon on a fluffy toasted bun slathered with aioli, plus crisp romaine lettuce and an avocado–heirloom tomato relish. Grilled-to-order corn is topped with lime aioli, chile flakes, and grated parmesan. A house-made watermelon and cucumber agua fresca is refreshing, filled with chunks of watermelon and cucumber. And the fresh mint and cocoa nibs ice cream, “incredibly creamy and rich,” is a fab ending to the meal.

But Mola reports a completely different experience with almost the same meal: miniscule sandwich and only half an ear of corn, no fruit in the agua fresca, and a long wait for food that didn’t fill him up much.

Venturing farther into the menu, 10foot5 says “scrapple” with grilled greens is excellent, mostly because of the greens. “Cooked briefly on the grill with a dousing of lemon-thyme butter and salt, they took on a wonderful, smoky flavor.” Then they get topped with shaved parmesan. “The ‘scrapple’ seemed to me basically a polenta cake with bits of bacon and fresh white corn kernels. Good, but the greens made the dish.”

Also good: mozzarella panini, gazpacho, and deviled egg.

In the Mission, Pal’s Take Away is a takeout counter serving up fantastic sandwiches, says lmarie, like a BLT jazzed up with perfectly roasted, subtly delicious Columbia River salmon. The applewood smoked bacon, red and yellow tomatoes, mesclun, and herbed mayo aren’t shabby either. There is also a BLT with meatloaf that’s just as good, and a delicious tuna sandwich. But lmarie has special love for the vegetarian sandwiches, like Acme seeded whole-wheat bread, smeared with a purée of heirloom shell beans flavored with coriander seeds and other spices. Then there were slices of mozzarella, lightly roasted rapini and Romano green beans, heirloom tomatoes, cucumber, and baby lettuce dressed in a basil-infused vinaigrette.

Jon’s Street Eats truck [East Bay]
Find location on Twitter

Pal’s Take Away [Mission]
2751 Hampshire Street, San Francisco

Board Links: Jon’s Street Eats - Oakland

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