One of the greatest perks of becoming a sophomore at Drexel University is being released from the freshman mandatory meal plan, thereby becoming free to enjoy the multitude of delicious food trucks on campus. Indeed, food trucks are so popular around here that various big names in the Philadelphia food scene have deemed the intersection of 33rd and Arch streets the “Food Truck Mecca.”
Students who have long been exploring their lunch options on campus know a few trucks that have proven they’ll always serve a good meal. For example, the award-winning SpOt Burgers, usually at the corner of 33rd and Arch, is known for its creative gourmet burgers. Street Food occasionally shows up on 33rd street, offering “global street food” (e.g., an insanely delicious pork-belly banh mi). Cucina Zapata, another award winner between the Main Building and the Center for Automation Technology, serves some of the best tacos, burritos and curry dishes in a Thai-Mexican style with extremely reasonable prices. Finally, if you really need a quick, cheap, and delicious (albeit highly caloric) meal, the Halal truck across the street from the Hagerty Library is your place.
However, if you’re looking to try something new, right now is a great time to do so. In the recent past, numerous new trucks have appeared on 33rd street, Market Street, and other locations.
The first to arrive of what I consider a recent wave of new trucks is Mac Mart. The brainchild of Drexel graduate Marti Lieberman, Mac Mart serves various mac-and-cheese creations, including the coveted “Mac Grilled Cheese.” Mac Mart has received numerous local and national accolades and has begun to expand its business to include catering and family-sized “Mac Trays.” I suggest the new “Creamy Mushroom and Herb Chicken Mac,” but nothing you order here will disappoint.
Often right next to Mac Mart, you’ll find the “Butter” food truck. The owner, Nicole Zalewski (another Drexel graduate), was featured in Jay-Z’s “Made in America” documentary and is one of the friendliest food truck owners and employees that I’ve ever ordered from. I’ve only been here once, but I highly recommend the sandwich I got — the Turkish beef on a baguette. I also have my eye on “The Crazy Goat” (chevre, tomato, bacon and shallot) for next time. Butter also offers catering services, so keep that in mind for your future outdoor celebrations.
Jerry’s Kitchen is perhaps the most recent addition to the line of trucks on 33rd, offering “modern twists on American classic food.” Owner Scott Kaplan (yet another Drexel graduate) dedicated his business to his grandfather, Jerry Klein, who would undoubtedly be proud of the amazing food Scott is producing. The pulled chicken tacos are my favorite item here, but I’ve had a few other items and am always impressed. Jerry’s also makes a point to offer vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options every day. Furthermore, Jerry’s caters and produces delicious granola which can be bought online.
Finally, my new favorite Mexican truck recently appeared on Market street — Dos Hermanos Tacos. The name refers to the fact that the truck is run by two brothers. Dos Hermanos creates familiar but unique tacos, burritos and nachos and allows the customer to choose their meat and sauce. I’ve had nothing but delicious meals here, but if you feel like splurging a bit, go for the incredibly tasty fish tacos.
There are many more honorable mentions, but these four trucks are at the top of my list of new trucks at Drexel. Mac Mart, Butter, Jerry’s and Dos Hermanos are foodie gems that contribute to the diversity of food trucks that make Drexel one of the best places in Philadelphia to get lunch.