Valley Plaza Food Truck Festival in Tempe Is a Family-Friendly Food Truck Event

The crowd at Sunday's event.EXPAND
The crowd at Sunday's event.
Arren Kimbel-Sannit

Metro Phoenix gained a new food truck roundup Sunday, in the form of the Valley Plaza Food Truck Festival. The festival took place in the parking lot of Tempe's Valley Plaza shopping center, with appearances by some established favorites (Aioli Burger and Cousins Maine Lobster) as well as some relative newcomers, including Modern Tortilla. 

Long lines snaked from the window of nearly every food truck for the entirety of the event, bumping into a crowded circle bustling with diners. Families made up the bulk of the customers on this Sunday evening, which may not be the ideal atmosphere for every food truck customer. 

By and large, the truck selection was solid.

Modern Tortilla, which has been operating only for about a month, is already a favorite.  Its menu of heavily customizable Mexican street food favorites like tacos and elote was delicious. The truck offered a couple of interesting options, including tortillas infused with chipotle and lime and cilantro, along with typical corn and flour options. Altogether, Modern Tortilla was our favorite truck at the event. 

Steak and pork tacos from Modern TortillaEXPAND
Steak and pork tacos from Modern Tortilla
Arren Kimbel-Sannit

The presence of a couple of the other trucks was puzzling, however. Bang Bang Dumpling was brought in at the last minute to replace Bites Donuts, and we weren't impressed with the truck's food. Kick's Yogurt is perhaps better known for its brick-and-mortar location in the Valley Plaza center than for its truck, which seemed to have the lowest attendance of any of the trucks present at Sunday's festival.

The festival also featured an ASU Greek life competition — the chapter that had the most students in attendance would win a catered event — that was under-attended and shoehorned into the event. 

In general, the festival had good food and a good crowd, but it did not seem to fit its environment. 

According to the organizers, the plan is to hold the food truck festival on the third Sunday of every month. 

For more information and upcoming dates, check the Valley Plaza Food Truck Festival Facebook


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