Monday, August 22, 2011 at 8 a.m.
This week's The Great Food Race brought the trucks to Salt Lake City, Utah, a city host Tyler Florence refers to as "The SLC", which is probably just annoying to Salt Lake City residents as when we hear him referring to Orange County as "The OC."
Here are some highlights of a show that had little in the way of drama (no verbal spats for territory or breakdowns that we saw last week) but much in the way of strategy and how the popularity of The Great Food Truck Race and social media has changed the game.
The episode started with a so-called "Truck Stop" challenge, where the trucks are charged with making a sausage dish to be judged by a local chef. The dramatic music cues play up the fact that the vegan truck Seabirds are at an immediate disadvantage. One of them quips, "As a vegan, I want to throw up in my mouth a little bit." They quickly decide they'll just make a vegan sausage from garbanzo beans, but not before what seems to be a gratuitous shot of them covering their mouths with their shirts and gagging when they get to the meat store.
Meanwhile Korilla BBQ, the Korean truck from NYC, decides that because the $100 seed money is a piddling amount, they'll skip the sausage challenge and keep the raw ingredient for their own use where it counts: when they start selling. This turns out the smartest move of the entire show, and sets them up to be front runners. They later break out the pork belly they procured from the sausage factory to make samgyupsal. "We made more than $100 from the Truck Stop meat. The prize for the truck stop was $100," one Korilla member said.
The winner of the sausage taste-off was Hodge Podge, who impressed the judge by not only making a good sausage, but a flatbread from scratch. In addition to the extra $100, they're also exempted from having to move during the purposely disruptive "Speed Bump" later in the show.
When it came to actual selling, to the chagrin of the Seabirds gals, The Lime Truck not only went vegan to maximize their seed money, they secured an exclusive deal with a pet adoption event. Seabirds was eyeing to sell there. After cooperating in Vegas with The Lime Truck boys, the Seabirds gals see this as a betrayal. "I just lost a bit of respect for The Lime Truck," says Seabirds owner Stephanie Morgan.
Last week's episode established Boston's Roxy's Grilled Cheese as potential bullies. This week's episode showed that they may be in over their heads. They can't get their product made fast enough, overwhelmed by the crowds that Twitter and the show's own popularity brought to their truck. They end up narrowly avoiding elimination by less $200.
The Korilla truck, with the savvy decision they made earlier on and their lightning quick production line, finish in first with an astounding total of over $5000. Cafe Con Leche, Hodge Podge, and The Lime Truck come in second, third, and fourth, respectively. Seabirds ends up in fifth.
What will happen to OC's own Seabirds and The Lime Truck on next week's episode? Check in one week from now to see the soap opera continue. Meanwhile on last Friday's All My Children, J.R. considers getting sober and Cara disappears.