by Brian Clarey
It started as a conversation with my cousin Mary Kate and her gentleman caller friend over Christmas; they had recently returned from France and we were talking about food — specifically escargot, which everybody knows is snails, right?
Not everybody like the slimy little buggers, but I do, especially when prepared with a thick brown sauce with lots of garlic.
“I order them every time I see them on a menu,” my Uncle Tom said.
“They have them everywhere in France,” Mary Kate told us. “There was even a guy making them in a booth at a farmers market we went to.”
And that’s when inspiration struck.
We’ve got food trucks with crepes and dumplings. We’ve got taco trucks and ice cream trucks and sandwich trucks. I’m hard-pressed to find an open niche in the sector.
But I’m pretty sure there are no food trucks in the entire state of North Carolina serving an escargot-based menu.
Snails are an extremely versatile foodstuff, high in protein and completely boneless; they pop right out of their shells, which can also be collected. And I’m reasonable certain they are plentiful in the Old North State.
And the best part about it is the name, based on an old joke that describes a snail buying a Cadillac and demanding the dealership paint a giant letter S on the hood and the doors, setting up the punchline.
“I want everybody to say, ‘Look at that S car go!’”