Peking Under the Hood

Written by Kay Transtrum and Craig Outhier Category: Lifestyle Issue: May 2013
Group Free

Asian food trucks let Phoenicians satisfy their noodle needs on the go.

Hao Bao
One of the newest additions to the Phoenix Street Food Coalition, Hao Bao spirits customers – or, at least, their tongues – to eastern China for a taste of authentic Mandarin cuisine. Billed as “Chinese soul food,” the Hao Bao menu includes such comfort-minded staples as dumplings, noodle soup and fragrant scallion pancakes served with a tangy ginger dipping sauce. Owner Jake Lau went on hiatus earlier this spring but expected to bring the Valley’s only Chinese food truck back by summer. Check their Facebook page to see when Hao Bao will return to venues like CO+HOOTS and Downtown Phoenix Public Market’s Food Truck Fridays.


Satay Hut
Be prepared to look back on your life and wonder how you survived without experiencing the gustatory mash-up delight of Dutch-Indonesian cuisine. Recognizing that the Valley lacked such a restaurant, owners Rik and Mayme Micola created Satay Hut to verse Phoenicians in the art of satay – fresh meats or tofu marinated in turmeric, palm sugar, garlic, soy sauce and other spices, then skewered, grilled and served with a tangy cucumber relish. It’s like a lollipop for carnivores. The Micolas plan to add more “Indo on the go” delicacies to their menu in the coming months. Join them every Wednesday at the Civic Space Park Lunchtime Concert Series (424 N. Central Ave.) from 11:45 a.m.- 1:30 p.m.


Hey Joe!
When Scottsdale Culinary Institute graduate Brian Webb first got acquainted with Filipino food in his wife Margita’s hometown of Lapu-Lapu City, little did he know that his immersion in mung beans and coconut vinegar-marinated chicken would spawn one of the Valley’s most beloved food truck traditions. Like a culinary Douglas MacArthur, Webb returned to Lapu-Lapu to master dishes like lechon kawali – pork belly braised to fall-apart perfection for 15 hours, then deep-fried and served with garlic fried rice – before launching Hey Joe! (named after the common Philippine slang for a U.S. serviceman). Enjoy a taste of the Webbs’ winsome Filipino wares every Friday from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. and every Saturday from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Phoenix Public Market.



Island Noodles
Can you say “food truck franchise”? Hale and Beverly Lake stumbled on such a winning concept with their mobile noodle booth that they farmed out exclusive Island Noodles operating rights throughout the United States. Fans of Japanese-Hawaiian street food can now stuff their faces with the Lakes’ fragrant yaki-soba noodles – wok-fired with garlic, ginger, and a medley of 21 vegetables – in nine states and more than 31 cities. In the end, however, the Lakes kept Arizona for themselves. Look for their veggie-packed Island Noodles to-go box at spring training events, seasonal food fests and other outdoor events.