If you happen to spot the Belgian waffle truck flying around the city, take pause and note that there are real Belgians aboard. And if you thought for one minute that the people of Belgian do not eat their overly stuffed waffles, think again. This isn’t some wacky fairground idea to sell griddled dough stacked with fresh fruits, chocolate and whipped cream. Waffles are part of the daily diet of Belgians near and far according to the Belgian Waffle Company food truck owners Frank Coucke and Ingrid Gysel.
I hunted the duo down yesterday at the Cedars Food Truck Park that is located in the historic Dallas Heritage Village. There I found a mass of trucks circled like wagons facing off Indians, including the Waffle Company. This is the same truck you would find tooling around Austin, but most recently relocated to Dallas due to its growing scene and lack of competition. Plus, they simply like Dallas.
“We started out wanting to open a brick and mortar restaurant when we moved to the United States. But the food truck was a great way to start the business as it is flexible and the overhead is very low. It is a start for us to plan what we want in brick and mortar,” said Couke.
The pair of truck owners brought in a real live chef to help expand the menu that up until recently was comprised mostly of dessert items. This left most of the purchase decisions until after truck mavens plowed through a handful of tacos and sliders. Enter local chef Lee Ewing. Ewing is a CIA grad and has worked at many fine dining establishments, including the Mansion on Turtle Creek under Dean Fearing. Ewing was actually looking at starting his own truck when he ran across the Waffle Company. They decided to go in together and made a perfect uinion.
“For now we are bringing two new sandwiches to the menu, each made with waffles. One is a Po Boy made with pulled pork and homemade pickles. The other is a traditional Belgian dish called Vol Au Vent. This is a chicken dish made with a cream sauce and mushrooms,” said Ewing.
As the crowds assembled Ewing sprang into action, frying up pounds of bacon for his special take on the BLT. The sandwich is lush and meaty and those who ordered had obvious smiles as they took their first bite.
In just a few months you will see the menu grow to match what the Belgian people are eating during that particular season, but waffle-centric. Look for more from the Belgian Waffle Company as they are discussing opening waffle shops in many Colorado ski areas.