TGI Fridays Food Truck Coming to St. Louis, Food Trucks Officially Over

tgifridaysfoodtruck.jpg
We love a good food truck, but TGI Fridays? | Steve Truesdell

We've said it before and we'll say it again -- food trucks are the trend that just won't quit. It seems every time we turn around there is a new one, or an established restaurant is taking its food to the streets. But surely this is the trend jumping the shark. TGI Fridays apparently has a food truck that is driving across the country, and it will be in St. Louis today, June 27 and tomorrow, June 28.

See also: The Best Food Porn of Food Truck Friday

Fridays is so down with what the kids are into these days that it has "enlisted a group of talented bloggers, Instagrammers and videographers" (they're all dudes, by the way) to document the "unique stories" of the "incredible handcrafters" behind the Fridays menu.

The truck began in Minneapolis in May and has since hit Boston, Detroit, Chicago, New York, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and more before it will roll into STL. Catch the truck at the Anheuser-Busch Biergarten (Twelfth and Lynch Streets; 314-577-2626) this afternoon from 4 to 6 p.m. and the Chesterfield Wine and Jazz Festival on Saturday at the Chesterfield Amphitheater (631 Veterans Place Drive, Chesterfield) from 3 to 10 p.m.

You can get sliders, potato skins and ahi tuna crisps and drinks including peach sangria, strawberry passion fruit tea, margaritas, rum punch and Red Bull strawberry lemonade. Maybe we'll skip that last one. Fridays is actually offering the food for free, so that is kind of hard to pass up.

If you can't make it this weekend, you could just, you know, patronize one of our many delicious local food trucks, who truly do make handcrafted food. If you go, though, shoot us an e-mail -- we'd love to hear about it.

Gut Check is always hungry for tips and feedback. E-mail the author at Nancy.Stiles@RiverfrontTimes.com.

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54 comments
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Yvonne Knight
Yvonne Knight

Don't buy from a chain they will give up and quit...don't let them win once again stand our ground and buy local

Jay Hemp
Jay Hemp

Fucking hell Americans have the shortest attention spans in the world! Just because someone introduces a shitty food truck doesn't mean it's over for all food trucks! Who gives a rat's ass if TGI friday's has a food truck?! Don't buy their shitty food and they'll go away! Don't catch all of the awesome food trucks up in the same net. Of course the big shitty corporate restaurants are gonna try to get in on the action to keep their horrible food relevant, don't let them! Don't buy their product, tell others not to buy their crap, and they'll throw in the towel.

Steve Mincer
Steve Mincer

it doesn't matter as long as you put a cover sheet on your tps report.

Erica Chandler
Erica Chandler

Crappy chain restaurants don't belong in the food truck world. Why have a food truck when you have a thousand non-food truck locations in which to pedal your crappy corporate food?

Joshua Fournier
Joshua Fournier

Or it'll just mean that they won't be in business long.

Jesse Irwin
Jesse Irwin

There ought to be a truck that goes out and reviews albums that local bands release.

Kevin Rudroff
Kevin Rudroff

Do you have to have a minimal amount of "flair" to work inside a Fridays food truck?

Gary Tripp
Gary Tripp

Sell product that isn't indicative to their brand to people that aren't their demographic. They have been an irrelevant brand for the last 5+ years.

Michelle Becker
Michelle Becker

TGIF food truck is the epitome of everything the food truck culture stands against. Pre-fab food large corporations who care nothing about community and sustainability .Food trucks are about creating fabulous hand crafted food and supporting the local community,

Brian Boyd
Brian Boyd

Nothing kills a trend like Guy Fieri.

Joshua Ryan Horn
Joshua Ryan Horn

TKO DJs was out there with the food truck last night and it went over really well.

Jason M Parker
Jason M Parker

It was dead when reality tv started doing shows on them and that crappy movie Chef came out.

Eric Eyeball
Eric Eyeball

Fridays sucks mobile or stationary. Free or not, I'll pass.

Steve McIntyre
Steve McIntyre

Don't you dumbass mofos have anything else to bitch about. Food Trucks are great. Quit hatin. If you don't want some don't eat it. I have two different friends who own Food Trucks and what they do is amazing.

Ben Wade
Ben Wade

Frozen food truck Friday

Amber Patton Sullivan
Amber Patton Sullivan

Wish food trucks would come up w alternative energy to run things. Generators are so loud - takes the enjoyment out of the setting.

Shanise Terrell
Shanise Terrell

I saw TGIf truck yesterday downtown. They didn't have any foot traffic

phelly21
phelly21

Who cares if TGI Fridays has a food truck? I'm sure their food is just as good as any of the other trucks. Does a food truck, by definition, have to be run by independent, tattooed hipsters? Get over yourself RFT.

Laura Dee
Laura Dee

White Castles has a food truck. I saw on their fb page that they were having a contest recently to win a visit from the truck.

Scott Tyler
Scott Tyler

Whoa, wore down my battery just scrolling past all that.

Cory Hart
Cory Hart

What? No. Get out If here with that.

Mark Miller
Mark Miller

White castle has the Crave mobile... it was only a matter of time....

Dan Tiefenbrunner
Dan Tiefenbrunner

Maybe they're going out of style because they're so damn expensive. Perfect example - that guy that always parks his food truck in front of Off Broadway (I think it's called The Grub Tub). The food is really good, but he charges a fucking insane amount of money for the tiny amount of food you get.

Mindi Elizabeth
Mindi Elizabeth

Street food isn't a trend and real foodies don't patronize shitty chain trucks - they eat Guerrilla Street Food. Stay in your lane, RFT.

Robin Gray
Robin Gray

Has the food truck craze lost its charm? Is it just me, or has anyone else soured on this whole food truck thing? Don’t get me wrong, I love the food, the concept of a roving location, a variety of cuisines coming your way, etc. St. Louis’ food truck market has really blown up in the last few years. In the beginning, they were too far away for me to try - downtown and the medical complex in midtown is where they frequented (and still do). Early on in the food truck rage, my office was in Brentwood and one truck ventured to our lot - cupcakes! They were quickly run off by some city law against them. In fact, several locations have fought having trucks in their municipalities, claiming taxation issues, parking issues, brick and mortar restaurant complaints and a myriad of other reasons. At one point they were run out of downtown St. Louis. After many complaints to the mayor from the people wanting food trucks downtown, the city worked out the regulatory issues, fees, approved locations for vending, etc. and the trucks were back. They had similar issues at the medical campus that were also worked out as the trucks were in great demand. Then came Food Truck Fridays in Tower Grove Park. What a great concept! A multitude of cuisines to try all in one location. People flocked to the park and stood in lines that had longer waits than the best restaurants in town. You had to come with a plan and several people in order to try more than one cuisine. Divide and conquer… These events have multiplied across the city, county and beyond. The Missouri Botanical Gardens brings a truck or two inside the garden boundaries for the Whitaker Music festival. They’re on Art Hill, the History Museum and pretty much any event that draws a crowd around town. Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race even blew through town a few weekends ago. So why have I soured on them? My office moved to another location where another part of our company had been for a long time - Page and 170. My first thought was that maybe the food trucks could come there also, so I checked the city regulations and found they were allowed. I was set to start luring trucks to our location and BAM! Our HR Manager at the time stated they were a violation of our ‘no solicitation policy’ and they wouldn’t be allowed. What? They go to the main campus, where our co-workers eat from them all the time. The answer was still ‘no’. Defeated… Job changes came around and we got a new HR manager. Our director said “Let’s try one truck a month”. Off I went. Luring trucks is harder than it seems. I started following them on Facebook and Twitter (I hate Twitter, but I did it anyway just to get to the trucks). I couldn’t get anyone’s attention. One day, the truck rated the best in St. Louis and high on the list of the top 100 trucks in the country posted on Facebook that they were looking for a spot for that Friday – the day after the 4th of July. I pounced and posted my request and they came. They sold out what they brought that day – success! I started getting other trucks to come, and then employees started requesting trucks they had tried here or there. I started slipping in two a month, then three. It grew to sometimes two different trucks a week. I devoted way too much time trying to schedule trucks. Then the employees soured on the whole idea. This one was too expensive, we don’t like that, this one is our favorite, that one comes too much, and what was I thinking - crepes for this crowd? They, the crepe purveyors, barely sold five or ten meals (in my defense, they contacted me to come to my location). Sales were dropping, I was getting calls and/or emails from the trucks - where are your people? Some of them flat out told people out buying food they wouldn’t come back because they don’t sell enough food (one truck had two meat options, beef and chicken, they sold out of chicken and people didn’t go out because that’s what they wanted to order). Then the excuses began. staffing and truck issues from one truck for a date three days from now to mechanical issues and needing to get the truck fixed for Food Truck Friday (clearly understandable since that’s a huge money maker day) from another. I sweated and fretted every time a truck came, would they sell enough, would they want to come back? I’d get mad when people ordered out from another restaurant on a food truck day - didn’t they know how hard it was to get the trucks to come here? “Why aren’t you eating the food truck?” “Oh, we don’t like that one”. I finally told our director I was done - it’s far too hard and I take it to heart too much to devote this energy. I’ll schedule trucks when they contact me and only once in a while so that it’s a treat instead of a regular thing, but I’m done chasing them down and begging. I’m toast! I’m not the only one, I’ve heard other grumblings and not just from my office mates. My daughter works at the main medical campus location and doesn’t like #1 truck - “it’s always there”, she says, “I want to try something different”. I know we’re not alone… I still love the trucks and I might go to a Food Truck Friday if I can get there early enough and I really want some more of the Tinga Tacos I love, but I’m not chasing anyone down. But wait, I still have the fever…the RFT has articles about two new trucks starting up. I must try them-ack! When will it end? Do I really want it to end? Do you?

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

Oh bullshit. Food trucks are about "creating fabulous hand crafted food and supporting the local community" my ass. They are really about hipster douches who lack the work ethic to put in the hours, investment and guts to open an actual restaurant. The only thing going on here is a stupid trend where fellow hipster douchebags support them because they are being different by paying restaurant prices for a roach coach meal where they get to experience grease running down their hands.

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

Proof that the food truck fad is just another hipster craze, some idiot blathering about how she only eats 'guerilla street food'. Give me a fucking break hipster, if I pay to eat a decent meal I prefer to have a place to fucking sit.

jaco1175
jaco1175 topcommenter

You sounds really annoying and this story sucked.

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