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Trailer Treasure: Not Your Mama's Food Truck

Mike Sutter
Ron Chadwick opened Not Your Mama's Food Truck on East Cesar Chavez Street after a job at Uchiko didn't pan out.

Ron Chadwick's trip through the Austin food scene was supposed to go through Uchiko. Instead, he wound up with his own trailer in East Austin doing dishes as diverse as barbecued beef tongue, Korean fried chicken and pierogies with roasted tomato.

Chadwick, who trained at the Johnson & Wales culinary school in Rhode Island, had been hired at the new sister location of Austin's acclaimed Uchi, but Uchiko adjusted its staffing and he never got to start. So in September, he opened Not Your Mama's Food Truck.

Uchiko's loss is our gain. For $6, Chadwick turns out three pieces of fried chicken with a crunchy crust — the product of a double-frying technique — that seems to float above meat that's perfectly moist, drizzled with sweet glaze. It might come in a paper boat from a plain white trailer the size of a D-list dressing room, but this chicken would stand up to its more glamorous counterpart at Uchiko.

The same can be said for beef tongue, sliced thin and seared brittle-sweet with pickled onions and sticky rice for $5. It's a tricky cut of meat, a font of bad jokes and queasy texture possibilities, but here it's tender and smoky like brisket. Chadwick also brings crisp, shoestring-thin fries with housemade aïoli for $3.50, and chicken sliders made with steambuns or steak sliders with nuggets of chicken-fried gravy for $4.

Chadwick's already talking about moving his trailer from the fledgling East Side Food Park, possibly to be part of the bar scene on East Sixth Street. I'll follow that fried chicken wherever it lands.

Not Your Mama's Food Truck. 2209 E. Cesar Chavez St. in the East Side Food Park. Check for updates on the truck's Facebook page: on.fb.me/nymamas . Open 5 to 10 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays, noon to 10 p.m. Saturdays-Sundays.