Saturday, March 14, 2015

Bamboo Wheel- Los Angeles (University Park), CA

Bamboo Wheel Food Truck- Los Angeles (University Park), CA

Alongside the Chinese Food Truck, the University Park neighborhood now has another authentic Chinese food truck-- Bamboo Wheel. Bamboo Wheel is actually a food truck version of Bamboo Creek,which is located Monterey Park, CA, and offers a regular menu of entrees and rice dishes (curry, beef stew, pork stir fries), noodles, a chinese burrito (aka jian bing), homemade wontons, and stewed eggs and preserved vegetables. Like the Chinese Food Truck, the menu is mostly written in Chinese, with smaller English subtitles.

Daily specials are also offered by the food truck, although these are only written in Mandarin (ask the employees for the translation)--these change, but items like da pan ji (spicy chicken), dou hua yu (tofu fish), hui guo rou (twice cooked pork), and stir fried rice cakes have been featured when I've visited in the past.

Apt for the primarily USC student customer base, payment can be done by cash, but also credit card through their Square application. For frequent visitors, punch cards (buy 10 get one item free) are also available!

Bamboo Wheel Food Truck- Los Angeles (University Park), CA: Bell Pepper Pork Stir Fry

Enough about logistics--the food at Bamboo Wheel is quite tasty as well! For 8 USD (and additional tax), one can get a very filling meal at Bamboo Wheel. Their bell pepper and bamboo with pork stir fry (#2 on the menu) with rice is plentiful with vegetables and meat! A friend complained that the pork should be leaner in the dish, but otherwise the flavors were simple and on point--savory, and the peppers enough to improve their flavor, but still retain a snap. The rice, moreover, was fragrant. I just wish there was more of the cabbage stir fry in their meals--they usually provide a small amount in these rice bowls.

Occasionally (usually on holidays), they also provide small additional gifts. I've gotten the candy above in the photo, as well as an interesting, plastic vacuum packaged piece of chicken feet...



Bamboo Wheel Food Truck- Los Angeles (University Park), CA: Wonton Soup

A lighter option on their menu is their wontons (7 USD). As the employee warned when I was ordering this item, this dish is not as filling as the main entrees they offer. Instead, these wontons simply have pliable, chewy, smooth wrappers, are scantly filled with a smooth, wine-accented pork filling, and are simply garnished with green onions and placed inside a hot broth. It makes do for a light lunch, but I would definitely prefer more filling in the wontons. The plastic bowl was also of issue for me, given the hot temperature of the broth.

Bamboo Wheel Food Truck- Los Angeles (University Park), CA: Hui Guo Rou (Twice Cooked Pork)

If daily specials happen to be available, those are definitely items to try. This hui guo rou (twice cooked pork belly) was spicy, with plenty of pork belly mixed with onions, cabbage, bell peppers in a sauce accented with chili oil.

Bamboo Wheel Food Truck- Los Angeles (University Park), CA: Dou Hwa Yu (Spicy Tofu Fish Filet)

And extremely popular at Bamboo Wheel, when available, is the dou hua yu (spicy tofu fish fillet), which comes with lots of silken tofu and meaty pieces of fish fillets in a spicy sauce. The sauce was great, with sichuan peppercorn accents and a hint of chili oil. I liked that they poured additional sauce on the rice, which provided some extra heat to the overall dish.

Overall, Bamboo Wheel is a solid option for lunch during the weekdays if you happen to be nearby the University Park neighborhood/ University of Southern California. It's a popular option amongst students, and serves as one of few authentic Chinese options around the area.



Bamboo Wheel Food Truck
Typical location on weekdays: Jefferson Blvd., next to Cardinal Gardens Apartments (across the street from the University of Southern California University Park Campus), alongside all the other food trucks. Intersection of McClintock Ave. and Jefferson Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90089
Twitter: BambooWheel1

Bamboo Wheel on Urbanspoon

No comments: