If you're thinking about moving family dinner to Berkeley's new Off the Grid, you're not alone. In fact, you will likely be swarming with like-minded families hoping to get a few tastes of the street food scene before bedtime. I tried it on week two and waited in line for about an hour before I got my family's falafel; I have other friends who have waited and just given up in frustration. Next time I go, I plan to arrive at 5pm on the dot and see if I can fare any better. I'll also pack a few snacks for hungry little ones (or pregnant ones) with no patience.
El Cerrito mom, Sunny McKay, thinks that Off the Grid with a kid is a great idea! Her son Lucas is old enough that he can hold a place in line as she scouts out other lines. They’ve been twice and here's their report:
The first time we ate at Hapa SF and the snowcone place, this last time we were in line at FiveTen Burger for their grilled cheese sandwiches, but the line wasn’t moving at all. So we hopped in line at Hapa SF. He loves the adobo chicken. We topped it off with a treat from CupKates.
Tips: if you have more than one adult, you can branch out and eat from two different places. With one adult, you have to get all the food from the same place. Also, it’s good to bring your own knife if you need to split something; sometimes the disposable knives break.
Off The Grid Berkeley is a weekly market of local food truck vendors offering prepared “gourmet street foods” based on sustainable and local business practices. In addition to the trucks, some local Gourmet Ghetto restaurant chefs (like Saul's) are offering a version of their own street food. It happens every Wed night 5-9pm as of June 1, 2011. It lives in that little triangle of the gourmet ghetto at Shattuck and Rose where the Farmer's Market lives on Thursdays.
You can follow which trucks and neighborhood chefs will be appearing each week by liking Off the Grid on Facebook, signing up for emails through the Gourmet Ghetto website, or checking out offthegridsf.com.
[photo from Sunny of Zak and Lucas happily eating from Hapa SF]