A good thing that’s come out of Covid is the realization that we’re all in it together.
This year’s Pride theme—and a value we plan to hold on to—rings true on so many levels, and we’re honoring it by supporting a handful of Off the Grid’s talented LGBTQIA+ businesses.
In partnership with Apple Pay, five of our best LGBQTAI+ food truck and restaurant Creators are offering a 20% discount when you pay with Apple Pay throughout the month.
Whether you’re a member of the region’s vibrant LGBTQ community or an ally, you can show your support by stopping by one of these fantastic rolling bastions of delicious food. Here’s a roundup of what they’re cooking up this month and where to find them.
What happens when you combine a former sous chef from Napa’s Bouchon by Thomas Keller, fresh (never frozen) Sonoma Valley-raised chickens and the world’s current Guinness World Record holder for the hottest pepper, the Carolina Reaper? Some of the Bay Area’s best chicken wings, that’s what!
WingMan owners Joe Trez and his husband Sean operate a food truck and a restaurant (101 E Cotati Ave, Cotati) specializing in bone-in, boneless and vegan (cauliflower-based) wings. A large order of 24 wings comes with four sauce choices, ranging from Orange Fury to Double Dog Dare U, Atomic Fireball and Lite Me Up.
For those who prefer a tamer experience, WingMan offers flavor-loaded sauces such as Honey Mustard, Teriyaki Town and Smoky Bones. Their wings are unique in that the sauces come on the side, so you can dip the crispy delights into different sauces, followed by dips into ranch or blue cheese. Wings aren’t the only things you’ll find on their menu—they make a mean plate of baby back ribs, pulled pork, salads, parmesan-dusted fries and more. Wash it all down with a craft beer from their robust list, plus wines and booze-free drinks.
How to get it: Order online for takeout, head to the restaurant for dine-in, or find its food truck roaming around wine country near Sonoma and Napa.
This award-winning food truck started on the streets of Oakland after nabbing multiple first-place awards at the Los Angeles National Grilled Cheese Invitational. This is what happens when a former R&D scientist repurposes his research skills into culinary endeavors. Founder Michael Davidson has been wowing Bay Area diners with gooey, creative, irresistible concoctions such as the French Grilled Cheese (pecorino, Gruyere, fresh mozzarella and caramelized onion), the Mechanical Turk (roasted turkey, Havarti, Swiss, organic Fuji apples and pickled red onions) and the B.C.T (bacon, cheddar and tomato). Sandwiches are customizable with add-on options like ham, avocado, burger patties and bacon.
Davidson has broadened his offerings and opened three permanent locations (some still offline due to the pandemic), plus popups and catering services. He has also launched a catering and delivery-only service called Wich Guyz.
How to get it: Order delivery via GrubHub, takeout from their Berkeley location at 1047 Murray Street, Berkeley (order ahead) or check their social media feeds for the truck schedule.
Since 2004, Derreck B. Johnson has been filling the bellies of Oakland residents and visitors with the savory/sweet marriage of succulent fried chicken served over crisp, fluffy waffles drizzled in maple syrup. This tried-and-true soul food diner serves up more than just its signature 10 or so chicken and waffle dishes—patrons dig into comfort food like black-eyed peas, red bean & rice, fried chicken smothered in gravy and onions and more, often served with a side of cornbread, mac & cheese or yams. You won’t find tiny, fussy brunch plates here, so come with your appetite.
Home of Chicken and Waffles is a black and LGBTQ-owned business that has created a dish honoring Vice President Kamala Harris called “The Kamala,” a collard greens chicken lasagna. Johnson is an active member of the Oakland community and even ran for Oakland’s City Council in 2020. (He was narrowly defeated.) Johnson also hires several ex-offenders with the belief that everyone deserves a second chance. Celebs like former Mayor Jean Quan, politicians and NBA/NFL players frequent the diner, so keep your eyes peeled if you visit.
How to get it: Stop by their retro-themed diner in Oakland at 444 Embarcadero West, Oakland or order delivery via popular delivery apps. Contact them about their catering services at 510-836-4446.
Little Green Cyclo ticks off several lists, being an Asian, women and LGBTQ-owned business headed by former investment banker Monica Wong and former webmaster Quynh Nguyen. Little Green Cyclo holds the honor of being the Bay Area’s first gourmet Vietnamese food truck, serving up delicious, healthy, made-from-scratch cuisine starting in 2010 (when the Bay Area’s food truck scene was in its infancy). Patrons have flocked to sample the innovative, unique Vietnamese street food, which has led to Little Green Cyclo being one of California’s most popular, award-winning food trucks. Clients include some of the region’s largest employers like Square, Facebook, Google, Verizon, Netflix, Apple and LucasFilm.
In addition to rolling out multiple trucks, the duo has opened a bistro in Brisbane with an expanded menu, a 5,000 square ft. commercial kitchen, a catering service and a full line of packaged ready-to-eat and drink products. Little Green Cyclo sources meats and meat substitutes from local purveyors and producers from area farms. Be sure to try their premium specialty Vietnamese coffees and matchas.
How to get it: Dine in or get curbside pickup from their Brisbane bistro at 2000 Sierra Point Pkwy, Brisbane. Currently, online ordering is on hold, but you can shop online or track down one of their food trucks and popups. They also sell packaged products in many stores around San Francisco and from their 24/7 “smart kiosks.” These intelligent vending machines sell hot and cold drinks and meals like burritos, noodles, sandwiches and even DIY cooking kits. Check their social media channels for current info.
Xingones (pronounced “ching go nez”) has multiple meanings. For local chefs Tino and Mayra there’s nothing but compliments for their unique menus at each of their pop-ups. They believe when you put your heart and soul into the food you prepare, the outcome will always be delicious.
Their menu is a mashup of traditional Mexican street food tacos (Asada, carnitas and camaron) and comfort food like Fried Chicken and Waffles. Its specialties include Taquitos de Pollo and Nachos Xingones, which are totopos tossed in red salsa with ground beef picadillo and topped with cheese, sour cream and cilantro.
How to get it: Xingones is popping up at Fort Green on 736 Washington St, in Oakland.