Food Truck Dining & Driving North
I’m a bit of a roadside dining fanatic. Back in the day when we lived in Asia I used to love roaming the back alleys and discovering their hidden gems -> satay from a scooter in Singapore, phở from a little stand with plastic chairs in Vietnam, noodles from the street in Thailand. When I worked in Taiwan I even bought my daily lunch from the old lady at the roadstand next to my office building. I’ve always eaten the best stuff from these spots, and (thank chopsticks) I’ve always been able to stomach the results. Roadside dining, outside of hot dogs or tacos, is a newer phenomenon here in the US but it’s growing. The sub-culture of food trucks is exploding and it’s estimated that there are now over 20,000 of these little roadside nom noms across the country. Can you say lunch, please?
As you might expect we’ve done ALOT of roadside dining during our RV travels and each spot has it’s specialties. Here on the Pacific Northwest Coast the big lures are fish & chips and espresso. They may not seem like likely room-mates, but they fit the culture of the area perfectly. Plenty of fresh seafood = fish and chips. Lots of rain and grey = drive-through espresso baby. Many of the espresso spots even offer WiFi, cute little seating areas and treats for your dog! I have a dream that one day I’ll be hired to travel the entire coast and rate all the espresso stands along the way, munching my way through the fish & chips to complete the circle. I might become wired tighter than a high voltage transmission line, but it will be oh-so worth it!
Back to the RVing though. We travelled an easy 80-miles from Cape D to Westport earlier this week on what was probably one of the nicest days we’ve seen in a while. Perfect 75-degree sunny day with blue skies and just a whisper of clouds. The drive along Hwy 101 was quiet and spectacular curving through the pristine estuary of the Willapa National Wildlife Refuge and around stunning Willapa Bay. Low tide had revealed miles of mud-flats which shimmered in the sun and provided a lovely contrast with the deep green trees and blue sky.
Along the very top of the bay the drive runs through the small towns of South Bend & Raymond, WA. Thanks to a comment from blog readers Jeff and Cheryl we were tipped off to a “beast-friendly” fresh fish stop (East Point Seafood, recently bought out by Jessie’s) just north of town with (yes) an excellent little fish & chip stand. The main store had an outstanding array of fresh offerings. We picked up smoked salmon (delectable), salmon dip (to swoon for) and halibut (yummy).
Next door we sampled the fish and hand-cut fries which were made-to-order and tasted fabulous. A worthy stop! We also passed some excellent water-view RV parks which I’ve added to my “list”. I particularly liked the rustic and compact Raymond RV and Marine, only 12 sites, $20/night and right on the water. We didn’t find any “beast-friendly” espresso stands, but sometimes you can’t have everything (one day my friends, one day…)
We’re now nestled into the bustling harbor of Westport, WA at an…ermmm…OK private RV park for the big weekend. It’s a fine park really, it’s just that I’m not ready to knock coffee cups with my neighbor, and given how close we are that may just be happening. Ah well, someday I’ll get this holiday planning right. The upside however is that we’re next to another great beach and (drumroll) another great lighthouse. The latter is actually the whole reason we came here and it has not disappointed but that, my blog readers, is a tale for another post.
So how about you folks? What has been your BEST roadside eating experience? Share and drool-on below….
P.S. If I don’t get around to blogging again before July 4th, I want to wish all my US buddies a Happy Independence Day! May your RV spot be relaxed and your fireworks fabulous.