Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Off the Grid Comes to Alameda

By Luke Tsai
Tue, May 22, 2012 at 2:28 PM

Earlier this year, What the Fork reported on Alameda’s newly-passed mobile food ordinance, which went into effect on February 6. Hailed as one of the most permissive in the Bay Area, the policy allowed food trucks to park on almost every street in the city, in addition to five approved off-street locations. Only one question remained: Would mobile food vendors find it worth their while to show up in large numbers, given the island city’s relatively sparse population?

It looks likes the answer to that question will be a resounding yes — at least on Saturdays starting next week: Today, Matt Cohen, proprietor of the wildly popular Off the Grid mobile food events, officially announced his newest market, which will launch next Saturday, June 2, at Alameda South Shore Center.

The weekly food truck event will be co-sponsored by Jamestown, the real estate and acquisition management firm that owns the shopping center, and will take place every Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., in the Alameda South Shore Center parking lot (the section fronting the intersection of Park and Otis Streets, adjacent to Petco).

The granddaddy of them all: Off the Grid at Fort Mason Center
  • The granddaddy of them all: Off the Grid at Fort Mason Center
Off the Grid currently operates 16 other weekly markets, spread across the greater Bay Area, but the Alameda event is only the second to launch in the East Bay. (The first, Off the Grid North Berkeley, takes place Wednesday nights on upper Shattuck.)

According to Cohen, the Alameda outpost of Off the Grid will feature a rotating lineup of eight to ten trucks, including CupKates, Brass Knuckle, Fivetenburger, Curry Up Now, Hapa SF, Mayo & Mustard, Dosa Republic, Señor Sisig, LIBA Falafel, Pacific Puffs, Nick’s Wheely Good Breakfast, Suzie Q’s, and Seoul on Wheels.

So far, Nick’s, Curry Up Now, CupKates, Fivetenburger, and Brass Knuckle are confirmed for the June 2 launch.

As is the case at many of the other Off the Grid markets, seating and non-amplified live music will be provided. Cohen added that because the event will be held near a less congested section of the shopping center, he doesn’t anticipate that parking will be an issue — Off the Grid visitors are welcome to park (for free!) in the Alameda South Shore Center lot.

Got tips or suggestions? Email me at Luke (dot) Tsai (at) EastBayExpress (dot) com. Otherwise, keep in touch by following me on Twitter @theluketsai, or simply by posting a comment. I'll read ‘em all.

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