When the nation’s best food truck is serving up delicious eats (somewhat) close to your neighborhood, at a time that is convenient for you and your toddler, on a day when your hungry husband (who won’t let you go without him) can join you, you go check it out.
Marination is, arguably, Seattle’s most gabbed about food truck. It has won every local award under the foodie sun, made us drool all over Seattle Magazine’s April cover, and has become infamous for it’s long lines at Mobile Chowdown. I figured there had to be a reason for all of this hype. But sometimes in Seattle hype is a tossup—you could wrap a flax tortilla around a hemp sausage and people might never stop raving about it. We are, after all, the same folk who wore nothing but flannel and socks with sandals not so long ago.
Just kidding. I trust in your taste in food, Seattle. Even you hippies. Who still wear socks with sandals.
We meandered our way down to Columbia City to an empty bank parking lot where the truck was stationed for the lunch hour. I was too curious not to.
Actual size of toddler. Actual size of Marination Mobile. She later tried to dive head first into that yellow trash can.
The menu is small—tacos, fried rice, sliders, and a quesadilla. I’m assuming it’s a byproduct of Marination’s tiny mobile kitchen, but I also think that a limited menu is the mark of a good restaurant in general. It usually means that they know what they do well and what their customers like.
First up: the Aloha slider. Shredded pork, slaw and creamy sauce on a toasted sweet Hawaiian roll. This is likely Marination’s signature dish, and it didn’t disappoint. The pork was slightly sweet and tender, the slaw crisp and tangy, and the sauce melded nicely with the sweet roll. I only wish I had ordered more of them.
Next on our tasting menu was the Kimchi Quesadilla. Melty cheese, the same sweet, tender pork, slathered in that same delicious sauce. I didn’t think it was amazing, but as far as creative quesadillas go, this one was top notch.
Husband wolfed down two tiny tacos: one kalbi beef and one spicy pork. The beef was sweet (sensing a pattern here?) and garlicy, and the pork was gently spicy and super moist. These were the true stars of Marination for our hungry clan. Next round, when I manage to track this truck down again, I’ll load up on these babies. They also offer a miso ginger chicken taco, which I am anxious to try, and I also want to dig into the Kimchi Rice Bowl, which our friend Linda happily noshed on.
Hype, in this case, was completely deserved. Hunt down this truck, eat lunch, and be happy, Seattle. And if you wear socks with sandals whilst doing so, I won’t tell.