The concept of gourmet food trucks is big in the United States and in Japan, it’s starting to grow but there is one caveat… space.
Not many spaces in metro cities in Japan for these vehicles to park.
Where you can follow a gourmet food truck in Los Angeles or San Francisco and learn in advance of where they will be that day on Twitter or Facebook and where they will be serving their delicious meals, in Japan, you would often find them near stadiums and in my experience, the majority I have seen them is near the Tokyo International Forum in Yurakucho in an area called Neo Stall Village and the other in front of the Sankei Building. And also areas that have Farmer’s Markets and where summer outdoor concerts are being held.
While we call them food trucks, in Japan, they are called “Catering Cars” or “Kitchen Cars” and quite often, you are part of an association like the JCCA (Japan Catering Car Association) or Workstore TokyoDo.
Similar to food trucks in the United States, you can get good meals for under a 1000 yen. The lines aren’t so packed, partly because there are restaurants everywhere around the areas where the food trucks are located.
You’ll find a variety of kitchen cars such as those serving ramen, paninis, BBQ, Brazilian food, crepes, tacos, kebabs and more.
The photos above are in Yurakocho during lunch time but you can find other happening locations in Japan by visiting the following site (Idouhanbai Navi).
Here are a few Facebook pages and sites of Kitchen Cars in Japan:
Photos by Dennis A. Amith and Antonio Airoso