Summer is right around the corner, y’all, and for foodies like myself, that only means one thing: food truck season is also right around the corner from us! From wacky food trucks, to ice cream food trucks, and all else in between, I think it’s pretty safe to say that Summer’s surely and absolutely full of them. But where did they start and what is a Night Lunch?
Ever wonder what people did before food trucks? Was there an earlier version of such a thing? And what exactly did they call it.
Let’s dive into the historic world of Night Lunch – the food trucks before food trucks!
Think 1890’s: in just about any area in the US, the night scenes were busy, crowded, and loud. All sorts of people roamed the streets looking for a good time. But eventually, a person’s gotta eat, right? So, where would all of these hungry people go? Well, according to the Atlas Obscura:
"“The wealthy could get their quail on toast at any hour….For everyone else, there were the night lunch wagons.”"
While the food inside the Night Lunch wagons was nothing super fancy, they sure were decorated as such to give diners quite the experience.
People stayed up late and wanted some late night eats; night shift workers wanted to grab something to eat on their way home; party-goers surely got hungry after all the drinking that they did, so think about it: literally anyone and everyone, as history would have it, would be in the Night Lunch wagons, awaiting their late night meals.
Now, the most important question of them all: what did they serve in such Night Wagons?
- Early Days – Sandwiches with ingredients, such as ham, chicken, or even cheese
- Later On – Grills were added for other items, such as Hamburgers, Hotdogs, etc.
- Drinks – Buttermilk was a popular offering, as well as various Pop(s) flavor(s)
While eventually this fad faded away and became no more, back in the 1980’s, however, there was still one left, which I believe you can still go and visit today called the OWL NIGHT LUNCH. Definitely, if you’re into such history as I am, go and check it out for sure!
What do you think of Night Lunch? Is it something you would’ve participated in? Let us know down in the comments below! Eat up, folks!