Evan Funke’s Porchetta Truck Finds Solid Lunchtime Home on Pennsylvania
The stories of this sandwich’s greatness have not been exaggerated. Back in December Chef Evan Funke, formerly of Rustic Canyon and Milo & Olive, launched a Porchetta Truck to hold us over until Bucato opens- his forthcoming Italian restaurant inside Helms Bakery. The truck launched on a First Friday in Venice and initially felt more like a night time thing; less lunch truck, more gourmet chef pop up. Early word was pretty great from all fronts, and the price was right ($5), but then the holidays hit and the idea of trying to chase down a porchetta truck for lunch didn’t seem as urgent as it might have 2 years ago.
Fast forward a few weeks, and the porchetta truck has become a lunchtime staple for anybody who works near the food truck alley on Pennsylvania and 26th in Santa Monica. It still roams around to various locations at night, and you’ll still want to check twitter for exact locations, but at lunchtime you can count on finding them on Pennsylvania and 26th at least 3 days a week. And find them people have… with some reports of people eating lunch at the truck 2 or 3 times in a single week.
The sandwich is now $6, and the sunny side up egg has gone from an off the menu add on for people in the know to a $2 menu extra. But the sandwich is still absolutely amazing. I was too afraid of the yolk to really dissect the sandwich and all its components, and quite frankly you don’t really need to. Just open mouth, and insert- the hype is completely warranted on every level. It’s the combination of meat and fat with that strong garlic and herb flavor you expect from the perfect porchetta, and the egg is literally the icing on the cake. And I’m not sure every sandwich comes with a tongue depressor size piece of cracklin’ inserted into the middle, but one can only hope.
I expected it to be on the small side considering the price and pedigree (you would expect this same sandwich at Milo & Olive to be at least $11) but considering how rich it is it ends up being pretty filling- especially if you add the fried egg. Bucato is shooting for a spring opening, at which point it sounds like the porchetta truck will likely come off the road- although considering how popular it will likely be by then, one can only
wonder if hope that Funke will call an audible and leave the thing running. One thing seems for sure, the porchetta sandwich won’t be on the menu when Bucato opens for dinner… but one of the guys at the truck said that they will bring it back when the restaurant opens for lunch over the summer. Sounds good to me. If this was available near my work, I’d eat it 2 or 3 times a week also.