The Civic Center Eats Outdoor Cafe returned to Civic Center Park today for its weekly run through the summer, and what was once a somewhat half-hearted farmers' market has fully morphed into an orgy of gourmet mobile food vendors.
The Biscuit Bus, Biker Jim, Gastro Cart and many more were on hand, and all of them brought their addicted followers to the park. And although construction is ongoing at the Greek Theater in the park, it didn't seem to dissuade a hungry lunchtime crowd - out for the first time after several days of rain -- from gorging on reindeer hot dogs, pork sliders, fancy cupcakes and ice cream made from liquid nitrogen.
Civic Center EATS, presented by the Civic Center Conservancy, will run every Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. through August 31.
Here is some of what was available.
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The guys from Gastro Cart were serving lamb gyros and spicy chicken tacos made with kim chee, 1000 Island dressing and caraway on corn tortillas. The Steuben's crew made their debut in the restaurant's new food truck, which should have regular hours at Civic Center Park at some point this summer. They were dishing hamburgers, cheeseburgers and Steube Snacks (Stooby Snacks) -- a rich mix of braised chucks of tender pork topped with powdered sugar. Steuben's will eventually serve them in a cone, street-food style. What tastes like ice cream, only better? Ice cream made with liquid nitrogen, with which the Crushery was delighting the crowd in the park. Try the strawberry rosemary. Biker Jim always commands an audience, especially when he gets those onions cooking in Coca-Cola. Moe's was in the house with its BBQ sandwiches. By noon, there was a line outside the Biscuit Bus.