Another reason to look forward to spring: The Recreation and Parks Department has approved La Cocina and Blue Bottle Coffee to operate long-term food carts both in Dolores Park and Justin Herman Plaza. Caleb Zigas at La Cocina proposed introducing four carts in Dolores Park, one at each corner, but the city so far has only approved two on weekends and one on weekdays, which will operate alongside a Blue Bottle cart, likely near the middle spine of the park. Gone are the days of having to hoof it to over to Bi-Rite when those late afternoon munchies strike!
Food carts have been clogging the perimeter of the park in nice weather for a while now (not to mention renegade vendors on foot, of both drug-infused and non-drug-infused treats), but this is the first we know of a city-sanctioned, permanent invitation into the center of the park.
Being a restaurant and street food incubator, La Cocina will be rotating their 24 current vendors through the spots, but along with your brown-bagged beer and wine you may soon be noshing on pupusas by Estrellita's Snacks, Japanese rice-ball snacks from Onigilly, fried chicken from Zella's Soulful Kitchen, and organic, chocolate-covered baked goods from Kika's Treats.
The plan still needs to go before the Recreation & Parks Department Commission on February 18th, but according to department staffer Nick Kinsey, approval is all but certain. "We have a selection committee that makes a recommendation to the full commission," Kinsey said, "and it's only in rare instances that the commission would reject a recommendation." Zigas expects to have La Cocina's carts in place just in time for the April sun on Hipster Hill.
Earlier: Food Carts Clog Dolores Park [Grub Street]