Welcome back to Food Truck Friday! Each month, the good folks at Citizens Bank of Edmond are sponsor food truck reviews in advance of Heard on Hurd, which ends its 2018 run in Downtown Edmond on Oct. 20.
If there’s one kind of food truck I wouldn’t try opening it’s any kind of food truck. I’m not a chef, an entrepreneur or interested in “working.”
But, more specifically, I would not open a burger truck.
People love burgers in Oklahoma. I think they probably love them everywhere, but I know for a fact that folks in Oklahoma City are particularly enthusiastic about grilled beef patties. That breeds competition and expectation. Lots of people are fighting for those burger dollars and lots of customers can afford to be very picky with who gets their burger dollars.
Making a great burger is hard enough, but doing it on a truck is a whole other level of difficulty.
Which is to say, the people at BlueJ’s Rollin’ Grill are crazy. And, following suit, their burgers are crazy good.
If you’re having trouble finding BlueJ’s, look for the truck that might also be a tour bus. Their love of music is a throughline on their menu, which focuses on “headliners” — all but two of which are burgers.
One thing I respect about BlueJ’s is their menu shows an understanding of what customers are looking for from a rock n’ roll food truck: spectacle. Yes, you can get a plain burger (aka The Simple Man) if you so please and you’ll probably be quite happy with it. But the crowds don’t throw their panties up on stage (I’m going to need those back, btw) for plain burgers. They’re looking for something unexpected.
Enter: The SmokeyJ Burger ($9).
Some people look at a burger and thing, “That’s enough meat.” None of those people work at BlueJ’s. The SmokeyJ isn’t interested in adding a single kind of meat to its 7 oz. beef patty. You can’t just slap thick-cut bacon on a burger and pretend you’re done. So they pile on slices of smoked sausage along with cheddar, pickles and a smear of horseradish aioli.
Get the napkins. You’ll need them.
Smoked sausage can be an overwhelming flavor, but the bacon and the burger really hold their own, producing a concert of meaty harmony. The horseradish livens it up, but don’t expect any sinus-clearing heat.
I love a nice sauteed mushroom. It adds a big beefy hit to almost any dish. So I was a little confused when I got the mushroom burger ($8) and found the mushrooms were raw. Confused, but not sad.
See, mushrooms still have lots of flavor, even raw, and in this case, they have a lovely firm texture that adds substance to the burger without ever feeling slimy. BlueJ’s melts swiss cheese over the mushrooms, adhering them to the burger patty, and adds a dash of truffle oil for another hit of mushroom flavor.
Underneath are pickles, fresh spinach, shredded purple cabbage and a dijon and horseradish aioli that adds some zing without getting too intrusive and taking over the rest of the ingredients.
“But I don’t like mushrooms, Greg.”
Cool. Then you wouldn’t be ordering the mushroom burger anyway, right?
Not everybody wants a burger, which is patently false, but some people act like they don’t want burgers. Nice try, fakers.
Lucky for them that BlueJ’s is kind enough to play along and serves up a gourmet grilled cheese sandwich ($8, or $7 without meat) that has plenty of flavor to spare.
There’s no delicious beef patty here, but you do get to enjoy the smoked sausage and bacon from the SmokeyJ with the addition of mozzarella and Monterey jack cheese blended with the sharp cheddar. And instead of a bun, you get it on buttered and griddled sourdough bread.
Here, the smoked sausage really takes center stage with the crisp bacon adding a salty crunch and slight chew.
You can get it completely without meat if you want, but I don’t think you really want that. Not really.
You will, however, really want an order of truffle fries ($6). It’s a killer lineup of crinkle fries sprinkled with truffle oil, a dash of garlic salt and parsley and some nutty Parmesan cheese. It’s not a question of if you’ll love them; it’s a worry that you’ll shove them all in your mouth at once, start to choke, receive the Heimlich maneuver and accidentally spit all your fries out on the ground. Use the buddy system, guys. It’s the only safe way to enjoy them.
Speaking of buddies, BlueJ’s Rolling Grill has a sister truck, BlueJ’s Happy Wagon, which serves desserts, cocktails and beer. Keep your eyes peeled for it if you’re the kind of person who enjoys beer and desserts, aka a patriot.
Food Truck Friday reviews are brought to you by Citizens Bank of Edmond, which presents the monthly street festival, Heard on Hurd in Downtown Edmond. Heard on Hurd is an authentic block party style festival that features three dozen food trucks, a live concert with local artists and retail pop-up shops. Edmond has a special vibe of its own and Citizens Bank of Edmond provides an outlet for the Edmond community to shine. Heard on Hurd highlights the importance of supporting local eateries, artists and retailers. At the heart of Heard on Hurd is Citizens Bank of Edmond which is proud to provide the means for so many local thriving businesses.
The next Heard on Hurd is 6-10 p.m. October 20 at the corner of Broadway and Hurd in Edmond. For updates, follow @HeardonHurd on social media with hashtag #JointheHurd