Spoon Envy

IMG_1445On our way over to our weekly Dinin’ Hall visit, I remarked to Kish — and special guest Russell — that I had a serious hankering for a brothy noodle meal with, perhaps, some pork thrown in for good measure.

Oh, did the food gods ever answer my hungry prayer!  When we arrived the Mashita Noodles cart was there, and cooking.  Their homemade Ramen noodles were exactly what I was craving.  And what intriguing options, too!  I went for the spicy noodles, the Mashita bacon broth, and the Kool-Aid pulled pork.  That’s right — Kool-Aid pulled pork.  Like every Mashita bowl, it came with a soft-boiled egg and some thin cucumber slices on top.  I had to check it out, and I was willing to run the risk that a large, sweaty, anthropomorphic beverage pitcher would come crashing through the wall while I was enjoying my meal

It was an inspired combination and stuffed to the gills with moist, fall-apart, infused-with-broth pulled pork — so good that I found myself thinking strange thoughts as I used chopsticks, and then a plastic soup spoon, to pound it down.  Thoughts like:  why can’t Dinin’ Hall provide larger plastic spoons so I can eat this even faster?  And:  why do they have to make these plastic bowls with the annoying little ridge ringing the bottom, which makes it difficult to get at every last, savory drop?

As I write this, I recognize that I’ve raved about virtually every food item I’ve consumed at Dinin’ Hall.  So be it.  Their food truck vetting process must be flawless.  I’m beginning to suspect that Dinin’ Hall is like Italy — you just can’t get a bad meal there.

Mai Chau And The Noodle Bowl Of Goodness

IMG_3817After walking through the Arts Festival yesterday, the Bus-Riding Conservative, the Unkempt Guy and I decided to hoof it over to the nearby Dinin’ Hall for lunch.  The UG had never been there, and the BRC and I decided it was high time to introduce him to the wonders of this cool Franklinton dining option.

I’m glad we stopped by, because I discovered a new and terrific Columbus food truck — Mai Chau – Eat Viet.  I decided to try the Noodle Bowl, and for $8 I was treated to a heaping bowl of vermicelli noodles, pulled pork, bean sprouts, cucumber slices, pickled carrots, daikon, cilantro, crushed peanuts, and fish sauce.  It was succulent — crunchy, delicately flavored, and filling, to boot — and I ate every bit of it.

I thought Mai Chau might be a bit of Vietnamese wordplay — a food truck with a name pronounced “my chow”? — but a little research shows that there is a region of north Vietnam called the Mai Chau Valley.  I don’t know if the proprietor of the food truck hails from there, but I hope he sticks around Columbus and becomes a regular part of the Dinin’ Hall rotation.