Sunday, December 30, 2012

DAYS 33-35: Denver and HOME!


FYI: These events took place in October.  After driving from Denver to Wisconsin and arriving home at the end of our trip on October 26th, 2012, we were exhausted and just wanted to enjoy being with family, celebrating my birthday with friends, deep-cleaning the filthy camper from being on the road for over a month, and packing everything up for our big move to Austin, TX the following week.  

Once we arrived in Texas, we got settled in to our new home, began working and enjoying  Austin, and I've finally found the time to write this blog entry from events that took place almost 2 months ago!  It's hard to believe we've been living in Austin that long already, but we love it and have been so busy!

From here on out, we plan to continue to document all of our food truck dining experiences to share with you, whether it be more trucks in Austin, or trucks we stop at while traveling.

Thank you again for all your support and for following our blog!!


Thursday, October 25th - Friday, October, 26th, 2012: Denver and HOME!

Luckily, when we woke up on Thursday morning in Silverthorne, CO, the snow had already begun to melt and the roads were already plowed.  We started heading to Denver around 11am.

Driving from Silverthorne to Denver.

We quickly got to Denver after a beautiful drive through the snowy mountains and into the city.  We easily found a food truck called 'Hey! PB&J' on Facebook, but with no exact address where it was located, we decided to follow directions to where Google Maps said it was.  Once we arrived, it was clear that we had been directed to the actual home of where (we were assuming) the owner of the truck lived.

Belafonte in the rearview.

We finally figured out where the food truck was parked that day and continued driving.  This took us to Auraria College Campus near downtown which is home to three universities in Denver.  It took a while to find parking, but we easily spotted the dozens of food trucks parked in the center of it all.

Driving into downtown Denver.

Auraria Campus - Denver, CO

We found 'Hey! PB&J' almost immediately with it's hard-to-miss bright purple truck.  It was a beautiful truck and you could tell the owners really took pride in it.  Speaking of the owners, they were wonderful and truly interested in our trip.  They gave us tons of advice, let us look inside the truck, and even gave us a free sandwich!

'Hey! PB&J' food truck.

Gourmet Grilled PB&J menu.

Myself with the owner and the nice guy who worked there.

It took a while to figure out what I wanted, but I finally decided on the 'Cranberry Pecan.'  Mitch was going to wait to order something from another truck that caught his eye, but the owner insisted she make him something on the house!

Cranberry Pecan Sandwich - Pecan butter, fresh and dried cranberries, white chocolate, and cream cheese.

What we got:
Cranberry Pecan Sandwich
Blackberry Jalapeño Sandwich (Sorry, for some reason we didn't take a picture of this one! :( It had homemade peanut butter, charred jalapeños, homemade blackberry jam, cream cheese, and bacon!)

Total (with tip and a free sandwich): $10

Both of the sandwich's were to DIE FOR.  Oh wow, they were so delicious!  I was stuffed after finishing mine, but Mitch still wanted to check out another truck before we left.  Thank you again to the kind owner (I wish I could remember her name!) for the free sandwich and for her hospitality and advice!

Next we stopped at a truck called the 'Pink Tank' where Mitch got to talking with the owner.  He was an very interesting guy who told us that he just decided he wanted to open a food truck one day.  His wife thought he was crazy, but he bought a truck, rebuilt it, and never looked back.

'Pink Tank'

'Pink Tank' menu.

I wish we would have asked him the meaning behind the name of the truck.  It had an eclectic menu and Mitch easily chose the chicken and waffles, which was one of his favorite menu items on the menu from his restaurant in Milwaukee.

Chicken & Waffles - 3 crispy fried chicken legs with homemade hot sauce, topped with bacon crumbles, served on a buttery, beer-battered waffle with maple syrup and hot sauce ice cream.

Enjoying his chicken & waffles.

What he got:
Chicken & Waffles
'The Benz' (The owner included this for free!)

Total (with tip and a free 'Benz'): $12

'The Benz' - a burger with grilled ham and a fried egg, topped with Havarti cheese and maple hollandaise sauce, served on a croissant.

Mitch with the 'Pink Tank' guys.

More trucks parked at the campus with the beautiful snow.

After stuffing ourselves silly, we got back in the Jeep, got some gas, and stopped at coffee shop to use the free internet so I could write the previous blog entry from Seattle.  We finally got back on the road around 4pm and decided to drive as far as we could that night.  

We wanted to drive to Wisconsin without stopping, but, at around 4am, we were exhausted.  I wanted to stop at hotel for the night instead of camping (the temperatures were in the 30s!), but Mitch insisted that we camp one last time on the very last night of our trip.  After much pouting, I gave in and decided he was right!

Last day driving.  Leaving Colorado :(

Beautiful bridge in Iowa.

After a long drive through Colorado, Nebraska, and into Iowa, we finally stopped at a KOA campground in Des Moines.  We were so cold and tired that we didn't even take any pictures to document it!

Wisconsin!  We made it!

We got going around 11am the next morning, excited about our drive home.  Looking back at our trip, it went by WAY too fast and we were so sad it was over.  What a whirlwind!  This road trip was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for us and we will remember it for the rest of our lives!  We got to see so many friends and family members that we hadn't seen in so long, we met so many wonderful and generous people along our way, and we saw some of the most beautiful corners of this country that not many people get to see unless they take the time drive through them.  

We feel so fortunate that we were able to take this trip and gain the experience necessary for the next chapter in our lives living in Austin, TX.  Our ultimate goal is to open our own catering/food truck business which is already well under-way.  Mitch has been booking catering events and we will continue to save our money to purchase the perfect truck for us without going into a huge amount of debt.

Last sunset of the trip just minutes before pulling to Mitch's parents house in Wisconsin.

Total Food Truck Spending for 4 Days: $22 (under budget)

Total Spending:
Gas: $289
Des Moines KOA Campground: $32
Coffee Shop in Denver: $4
Colorado Gift Shop: $22
Lunch on Friday: $13
Food truck food: $22

Total for 3 Days:  $382 (under budget)



We made it under our budget by $3!  We thought for sure we were going to go over $6000, but we didn't!  We weren't even trying that hard to make under during the last couple days!  

And that's our trip.  So sad it's over, but so excited for the future!

Thank you everyone for following us and supporting us!  Stay tuned for more blog entries to come documenting our continued love for food truck food in Austin!

Mitch and Laurel

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