Over the past 12 months we have added a number of food trucks for brand activation to our portfolio. We also have some exciting new additions that are coming soon. These are great for corporate use such as brand activations, sales promotions etc. They take a service and add a touch of style to it, so the guests not only get free food or drink, the actual truck becomes a promotional item in its own right.
Our classic Citroen HY van was used by Birmingham Bears on a tour to promote their new strip. Which was made from Recycled coffee beans. It was partially wrapped by our friends at HG Graphics, and custom printed coffee clutches provided. We opened it at a number of locations around Birmingham and Coventry. Resulting in long queues of people waiting for their free tea and coffees.
We offer a range of different quirky trucks to choose from all of which can be branded and tailored to your specific requirements. For longer term events we can acquire and build a custom set up just for you. This could be another example of something like our HY van. Or it could be something totally quirky such as building a coffee cart on a WW2 tank. Or an ice cream dispensary on a Helicoptor fuselage!
Contact Us for details on how we can work with you.
Everyone loves a burger. Well almost, there are some people who replace the beef with patties made from green stuff. Whether that is still a ‘burger’ is open to debate.
Looking around the internet we across this monstrosity below;
Containing almost 1800lb of beef (Thats over 700 quarter pounders) this was built to get into the Guinness book of records. It needed a custom built over creating out of a shipping container to fit it in, and comes with 300 pounds of cheese, tomatoes, onions, pickles, and lettuce, sandwiched in a 250lb bun.
It is actually on the menu at Mallie’s Sports Grill & Bar in Detroit, and costs nearly $8000.
Realistically this was a one off burger. Created for a specific purpose.
But what else is out there, on regular menu’s and considered a normal burger, but comes with enough calories to shorten your lifespan for you pretty smartly. The Heart Attack Grill company make a number of burgers, with names such as triple bypass that contain upto 16000 calories. But this is a gimmicky burger joint, where the whole premise is you are eating unhealthy burgers. What about the regular chains. we are taking a look at what they place on the table;
Wendy’s Bacon Jalapeno Cheeseburger Triple 1330 Calories
Made with 3 of their famous square patties, it comes with jalapenos, crispy fried onions, cheese and bacon (though being American cheese and bacon we use those terms in the loosest possible sense) and cheese sauce, lots of it.
Weighing in at 1330 calories, it also packs a ridiculous two grams of salt, and 4.5 grams of that lovely, heart strangling trans-fat.
Carl’s Jr. Triple Western Bacon Cheeseburger 1380 Calories
Clocking in at an extra 50 calories is Carl’s Jr. offering. Famous for their adverts featuring skimpily clad models. Carl’s als have a stake in the feed your customers to death stakes. This has almost three grams of fat, though is does cut the trans-fat score down a little, yay!
Three charbroiled patties, two strips of bacon, ‘American’ cheese and crispy fries onion rings add to the experience.
Hardee’s Monster Double Thickburger 1400 Calories
Tipping the scales at 1400 calories, this again has nearly three grams of sodium, but it has upped the Trans-fat score to level with Wendy’s at 4.5 grams.
2/3 of a pound of beef, four strips of bacon, three slices of American cheese, and mayonnaise. To put it into perspective its recommended that you consume no more than 2300mg of sodium in a day, this has 2750mg.
Wendy’s Pretzel Bacon Pub Triple Cheeseburger 1520 Calories
The iconic Wendy’s square pattie makes a second entry in our list. Three patties, bacon, honey mustard, beer cheese sauce, fried onions, pickles and muenster cheese wrapped in a soft pretzel bun.
This manages to break the 1500 calorie barrier at 1520 calories, though surprisingly, the sodium comes down a little to under two grams.
Steak ‘n Shake 7×7 Steakburger 1660 Calories
We are jumping up the ladder rapidly now, with a 1660 calorie offering from Steak’n Shake. Seven beef burgers, along with seven strips of orange/yellow plastic stuff, sorry American cheese. Added to the calories are 3,800 mg sodium and a whopping six grams of trans fat.
This one just looks a mess
Whataburger Triple Meat Whataburger 1885 Calories
Climbing ever closer to the magic 2000 calorie barrier, this one looks positively clinical at the side of our last burger. Three patties, layered with the ubiquitous American cheese, topped with a bit of salad. This nudges the 1885 calorie mark, but is surprisingly low in sodium at 2080 gm and only 3 grams of trans fat. (By low we are speaking relatively. It’s low in the burger world).
As they say ‘Whataburger’!
Burger King Bacon King 2020 Calories
The first of our contenders to break the 2000 calorie barrier. Though the UK version of this is only about two thirds the size.
two ¼-pound beef patties, a hearty portion of thick-cut bacon, American cheese, ketchup, and mayonnaise on a sesame seed bun,
A full half pound of beef, thick-cut bacon, American cheese (again), ketchup, and mayo on a sesame seed bun,
Over four grams of sodium and seven of trans fat. This is a whopper indeed.
Heart Attack Grill Quadruple Bypass Burger 16000 Calories
You only have to look at it. Nearly 16000 calories. God alone knows how much sodium, trans fat etc they have. It shortens your life just looking at it.
All in all there are some real nasty heart attack burgers out there.
Rides around the world have been steadily getting bigger, faster, more daring, pulling more G’s and so on. Most countries have similar rides at carnivals and fairs, but there are some Weird and wonderful contraptions around the world. A few are listed below, we can’t see them appearing at your local fair anytime soon.
Nothin But Net
The concept behind this one is simple, take riders a 100 feet into the air, them drop them into the net below. A special harness is meant to ensure they land on their backs, but as 1 expert put it, ‘Nothing is foolproof.’
This one is probably good for the environment. Basically it is a pedal powered roller coaster. So the riders actually have to do some work to use it.
Transforming a medieval weapon into an amusement ride, is something only a truly twisted genius could find a good idea. About £60 a go, you are basically shot out of the sling towards a net. Sadly in 2002 a rider managed to miss the net and was killed.
This one actually was a ride over here many years ago. We can remember riding this at Redcar amusement park. Its a disc that everyone sits on. The disc starts to spin and gradually picks up speed, until it reaches the point where everyone is flung off.
In conclusion some of the weird and wonderful rides range from amusing to downright deranged. Would you really allow yourself to be shot out of a trebuchet and hope the net catches you?
Any England fan (football) will tell you of the years of hurt, failed dreams and fantasies of world cups that have come to naught. We seem to get so close, then lose on penalties. To be honest if I was the England manager, I would have my team training consisting of nothing but taking penalties for eight hours a day.
We had one, brief, beautiful bright spot in 1966. Hosting the tournament at home, we started a bit slow, but then hit our stride and as any fan will tell you, beat Germany in the final, which made it all the more satisfying.
What many fans won’t know is the part the fairground played in our victory.
The Charlton Boys
The linchpins of the England team were a couple of Northern lads called Charlton. Bobby and Jackie to be precise. Hailing from the mining town of Ashington, they hailed from a family with deep connection to footballing fame. Their mother Cissie, was from the Milburn family. A number of her cousins played professionally, including the legendary wor Jackie. Jackie Milburn a legend of Newcastle United and England fame.
What has any of this got to do with the fairground industry you might ask?
Well, in 1934 a certain young man named Bob Charlton wanted to marry his sweetheart. Unfortunately with times being hard in the North East he didn’t have the money for a ring. Fortunately for him he wasn’t much of a footballer, but he was a handy boxer. At that time the travelling funfairs had boxing booths, where members of the public could enter, and if they lasted three rounds would win a cash prize.
Bob managed the three rounds, won the money to buy a wedding ring, and proposed to Cissie Milburn. Bob and Cissie went on to have four boys, including Jack and Bobby, who ended up in the England team in 66, and, well the rest is world cup history.
At one time mobile catering consisted of almost entirely box shaped ‘burger vans’. Occasionally someone with a touch of flair, or perhaps just a bit mad, would put together something quirky. With the dawn of the instagram generation, boxy burger vans suddenly dropped out of vogue. To get ahead you really needed people to be sharing your set up. Sure, good food was important, but it was no longer the sole arbiter of success. Your food truck needed to look better.
We are going to be taking a look at some of the quirky, weird, wonderful and downright strange catering outlets around the world.
Shipping containers are ubiquitous throughout the world. A standardised method of transporting goods via road, rail and sea. Many of them however do find a second life as something totally different. From bars, to offices to mobile toilets. They have also found favour with catering vendors. The basic container is a strong watertight structure, that is built to accurate dimensions, and lends itself to conversions.
Happy as Larry is an Australian company that specialises in selling Napoli-style wood fired pizza. A nice touch in this container conversion is that they have replaced much of one side with huge glass pains to give a real contemporary feel to it.
Space Shuttle Cafe
If you are looking for something to convert into a food truck, the most obvious thing you could think of is an aeroplane. Probably not! This one was converted to a mobile eatery by GMC in 1976. But it started life as an actual flying machine in 1944.
Cotton Candy Jeep
One of our favourites this, take an iconic WWII off road vehicle, and shove a cotton candy (candy floss if you live this side of the pond) machine in the back. Oh and for good measure paint it all pink.
Walls Mini Ice Cream Truck
Walls ran a campaign called ‘Goodbye Serious’, where they built a miniaturised ice cream truck designed to drive into offices and dispense their best selling goodies. This is one seriously quirky little food truck. Though some of our taller staff might struggle to operate in this one.
K99 Ice Cream Cart
This one is notable, not for being a different type of food truck. But because of its target market. This sells ice creams for your canine companions. That’s right, doggy ice creams. Seems that scientists have discovered that gammon and chicken-flavored ice creams really hits the spot for our doggy friends.
These are gaining in popularity, and are being used for everything from a gin bar to a burger joint. The ironic thing is, was during the late 90’s, the fairground industry used these for staff quarters, then tended to scrap them at the end of the season. If they were scrapped, it wasn’t unknow to just remove all identifying marks and leave them in a layby for the council to dispose of. You try buying one now, I have seen them advertised for upwards of £30k.
Step Frame Food Truck
More of a Stateside set up, they have a plethora of large step fram delivery vehicles from the likes of Dodge, Ford, GMC etc. These are pretty near the size of a 7.5 tonne lorry in the UK and make an ideal blank canvas to fit out as a mobile eatery
Airstream Style Food Truck
Another option hailing from the good ole US of A. Airstreams were originally touring caravans. Till some adventurous soul decided to cut the side out and add a kitchen. They are now a fairly regular sight on the UK scene. With both the original Airstream brand and a number of both EU based and Chinese manufacturers building similar looking trucks.
A regular sight nowadays, horseboxes are easy to obtain, pretty easy to convert and very flexible, though a bit on the small side for some catering options. Prices are steadily rising, to the benefit of anyone needing to dispose of a horsebox that’s past it’s sell by date. What you once would have scrapped, you can now get a tidy few grand for.
Snow Mobile Food Truck
This one is as far as we know, pretty unique. A burrito joint on a tracked snow mobile platform. Great for last minute corporate jobs in the arctic. Bloody noisy if you need to take it down the M1 motorway to London.
London Red Bus Yoghurt Truck
An iconic British vehicle this time, an ex London Routemaster bus, turned into a yoghurt dispensary by Snog. A cool vehicle for a cool brand serving a cool product (literally)!
The Peanut Van
Occasionally there are totally custom built trucks out there. I’ve seen vehicles that look like hot dogs, doughnuts, oranges. This one is a peanut. Leaves you in no doubt what the product is.
Land Rover Ice Cream Truck
Another off road vehicle pressed into service. We have already had a Willy’s Jeep with a candyfloss machine. This one is the UK equivalent. In vehicles that is, not food. This is one cool ice cream truck.
Another ice cream van. This time shoehorned into a monster truck. Unless you are 6ft 6 you need step ladders to be served here.
Rocket Launcher Coffee Truck
A big boys toy this one. A coffee truck on a rocket launcher. Though it didn’t work out too well for two of the staff when they were arrested for causing panic on the streets of Malaysia. What’s next, doughnuts served from a Challenger tank?
Another paramilitary offering. Tapas from a tactical armoured car. It’s all starting to get a bit Mad Max.
The last couple of options were built on trucks designed to blow things up and start fires. These were designed to put them out. Popular both sides of the pond, though the US fire trucks just seem to be a lot more jazzy.
This time we are looking at what was once one of the biggest chains in America. At its peak they had over 1100 outlets. Now they are down to one. A number of factors came into play with this massive decline. One of which was the hugely controversial name.
Ostensibly the name was a contraction of two of the founders. Sam Battistone Sr. and Newell Bohnett. However the name is also one that was offensive to a large part of the population, especially with it being linked to a book written in 1897 called The Story of Little Black Sambo. Much of the interior decor drew on illustrations from the book.
Predictably the name attracted protests, criticism and petitions for change during most of its operating life. The final remaining store changing its name after the George Lloyd protests in 2020
The first store opened in Santa Barbara, California in 1957. By 1968 it had grown to operate in 98 cities across America. It also diversified operating Red Top Hamburgers, Heidi’s Pie Shop, and the Blue Ox Steak House.
In the second half of the 70’s the chain came under increasing pressure regarding its unacceptable name. They steadfastly refused to change it, though in a number of locations they branded their eateries as Jolly Tiger, usually in locations where local laws had been passed forbidding the Sambo brand, or where they were having trouble obtaining permits due to the name.
In 1979 however the company reversed course and announced that they were dropping the Jolly Tiger brand citing poor financial performance, and would revert all restaurants to Sambo’s. They also cited a study claiming that three times as many black people ate at their chain than at other restaurants.
It was to be their peak. After 79 the company spiralled into decline. How much is down to the issues around the name isn’t clear, as a number of other corporate decisions also hastened their demise. One major issue arose when they dropped their “Fraction of the Action” scheme. This had paid the managers 20% of the outlets profits, with other staff being allowed to bid for percentages of the remaining profits.
A mere two years later the chain was filing for bankruptcy. Reorganisation and a name change to “No Place Like Sam’s” failed to help. And by 1982 all except the original diner had closed their doors. The restaurants were sold off to several operates, such as Denny’s and Baker’s square. All that now remains is the original located in Santa Barbara.
Following the riots over the George Floyd case, the owner Chad Steven, grandson of one of the original founders, finally gave in to public pressure and announced a name change, finally Christening it “Chafs” in 2020.
Happy national churros day. The delightful Spanish dessert, a bit like a doughnut, but long and fluted instead of round. Traditionally served with thick chocolate, but also perfect when filled with cream, jam or a variety of sauces.
Like many of our culinary delights, churros has a bit of an uncertain history. Thought ot have been brought from China to Europe by Portuguese merchants. The dessert resembles yóuzháguǐ a traditional Chinese recipe.
Another school of thought is that Spanish shepards made it to make up for fresh baked goods. Churros paste was easy to make and fry in the mountains where they spent most of their time.
There is also a recipe in Apicius the Roman cookbook for fritters made from flour and water, very similar to modern churros.
Whatever the true origins, churros now are a definite hit in the modern dessert world. So happy national churros day.
Out of all the various catering options we offer, our favourite is the coffee service. We use quality machines, quality beans and quality grinders that are dialled in at each event to dispense perfect coffee. We serve what we like to drink ourselves.
For a long time we have had a little coffee machine in the office, from delonghi. A bean to cup machine that needed you to froth the milk yourself, but did everything else for you.
Sadly this recently became a deceased machine. In truth I had repaired it a number of times, but on this occasion I decided that after making something like 10,000 coffees it was time for a new one.
One of the issues we had, was that some of the office staff weren’t very good at frothing the milk to make latte’s and the like. So we wanted something that everyone could use. To this end we finally sourced a Siemens EQ700, fully automatic machine.
This was a pearler of a machine. Not only did it offer a full range of coffees, but for the gadget freaks in the office, it as controllable not only from a phone app, but Alexa could be asked to make a ‘Latte’ and would oblige. So the less coffee savvy amongst us could make anything.
It also had what they termed coffee world, a system where additional coffee recipes could be accessed, allowing us to try coffee from all around the world.
That staple of dessert goodness, the doughnut is round right. Everyone knows that. If a lost tribe was discovered in the Amazon jungle they would know little of modern life other than Kim Kardashian has a large posterior and doughnuts are round.
Only they aren’t as I have just discovered. Seems some adventurous blasphemers have been making them square.
Actually as it turns out, the French (It would be them) have been making something called a Beignet for quite a long time. Seems it’s made from something called Pets-de-nonne, which sounds exotic and enticing, until it is translated into the English of Nun’s Fart. Lovely, so they eat frogs, horses and nun powered flatulance.
They also spread to the new world, in some of those states with French culture such as Louisiana and New Orleans. Being French they will no doubt taste fabulous.
Actual Square Doughnuts
Like many things it is arguable who made doughnuts square. Heck, people still argue over who made them round and who added the hole. The Square Doughnut Co in Terre Haute claim that their founder Richard Comer Sr. started making them in 1967. This could be true, though no doubt their will be a plethora of other claiming to have been square first.
Another in our case studies, this time providing EY waffles and smoothies on their tour of universities around the UK.
It started last summer when we were asked to provide a smoothies cart around a small tour of universities in the Yorkshire/Lancashire regions. EY were signing uni graduates up to their scheme, and thought a giveaway would be better than the usual free pen or such. It worked so well that about a month later we did it all again, this time handing waffles on a stick out.
A couple of month later we were asked to do it a third time, However after finalising that round of waffles. We were contacted by three other EY team members. It turns out that the initial team had exceeded their targets by a massive amount. The other teams looked a bit behind so decided they wanted the same advantage.
The scheme must have worked as we are just putting together the package for another round of events. This time is isn’t EY Waffles, but EY churros.