What: Fresh Rolls
Cost: $4 per order (two orders pictured)
Where: Cha Cha’s Food Truck
Cha Cha’s is a bright orange food truck that doles out onomatopoeia-worthy Asian fusion fare that’ll prompt your taste buds to shimmy and shake. While some regulars may pine for the cheese wontons or bulgogi beef fries dressed with goat cheese, cilantro and a sesame-sriracha drizzle, I get flutters when the fresh rolls are on the menu board. One bite and you’re transported to a fragrant night market on Phu Quoc Island.
Freshness is paramount when it comes to Vietnamese-style vegetarian fresh rolls. You want to feel like you’re gorging on a garden in full bloom. The rice paper needs to be pliable and soft — a dried out wrapper (fridge time is a flub that can make that happen) is the kiss of death for a fresh roll. The rainbow of veg also needs to be artfully arranged and appetizing AF. Some places overstuff, which can cause an errant julienned carrot to pierce through the roll like a shiv.
The Cha Cha’s crew sweat the fine details and have the fill-and-roll assembly process down to a one, two, cha-cha-cha. A couple minutes after placing my order I’m dipping a roll into a creamy and piquant spicy peanut sauce and reveling in the juxtaposition of sweet heat and cool, refreshing produce.
Check Cha Cha’s Facebook page (facebook.com/ChaChasFoodTruck) to find out where they’ll roll up next. They make the festival rounds but also tend to turn up at spots like Angry Fish Brewing, Columbia Craft Brewing and Curiosity Coffee Bar on the regular.