It was a rainy Sunday when I stumbled across the Tostito’s Nacho Average Food Truck sitting on 4th Avenue tempting shoppers to try free samples.
I’ll be honest, I was in two minds about venturing over there. As much as I love nachos and food trucks, I was slightly put off by the corporate appropriation of such a hipster way of serving food.
After all, Tostito’s is a product of Frito-Lay, which in turn is a division of PepsiCo, the American multinational food and beverage corporation.
Nevertheless, taking a free sample off them gave me an opportunity to cost them money and enjoy some tortilla, so I sauntered over to see what they were offering.
As you can see Tostito’s had not only appropriated the food truck, but also the women of seemingly Mexican origin serving free samples.
The free samples this Sunday were Brie Bites - a crumpled tortilla chip containing a piece of brie cheese, with apricot jelly and walnut on top.
So what’s the verdict? A zesty enterprise for sure. But it could have been vastly improved if the brie had been melted. Like most things really.
Aside from the free samples, it turns out you can actually buy whole dishes at this food truck, so perhaps it’s not just for promotional purposes.
Here’s the menu:
All these options were apparently created by chef Josh Wolfe, the local chef, restaurateur and owner behind the Fresh Local Wild food truck and the upmarket Good Wolfe Yaletown restaurant.
As far as I could see though, there didn’t seem anything particularly upmarket, wild or local about the offerings here at the Tostito’s food truck.
From a purist nacho point of view, pretty much all of the menu options sound very, very wrong. But without time to try a full dish, I’ll have to reserve judgement.
It’s hard not to see this for exactly what it is - a corporate ploy by a multinational company trying to mimic its small independent rivals in a bid to undercut or just plain steal the local market.
And so it seems, Tostito’s is following the corporate pack.
Can’t get enough ethical Vancouverites to buy your mass-produced chips?
Get yourself a food truck, make a bad pun people remember from a better joke and pretend like you’re part of the local community.
You’ll have them eating out of your hand in no time.
Tostitos Food Truck
And for those of you who appreciate a good nacho pun - here’s my favourite: