If you’ve seen the move Chef, you’ll recognize the euphoric spirit of Feel Good Food Truck. Having worked at a local pub for over a decade, Christian Schaumann and his wife, Molly, thought: What the heck? Let’s do a food truck! They found one nearby, bought it, spiffed it up, and in a short time they were serving extraordinary meals unlike any other place in town. They describe their cuisine as “Comfort food with a twist.”
The original menu featured all kinds of creative sandwiches, but as Chef Jim Darby recently came on board, it is now more focused on creative grilled cheese and hamburgers. The creativity is dazzling, but before getting to that, let’s look at the burgers themselves. They are glamorous patties of beef, grilled juice-oozy and crunch-edged — great all by by themselves, with or without condiments. The house special burger adds rich pimento cheese and a plenitude of thick-cut bacon plus, of course, lettuce, tomato, and onion: a magnificent package. If beef is not your taste, consider a handsome grilled salmon patty — moist and sweet-ocean flavored with a crisp crust, bunned with yogurt dressing and pickled onions. I’ve had salmon burgers coast to coast; none are so scrumptious as this. Another great choice is the chorizo sausage-spiced patty topped with PBR fondue, peppers, and onions. It’s a sensational combination of spicy-hot and creamy comfort food. Best of all, in my book, is the burger known as Sucker Punch: blackened beef, blue cheese, tobacco onions, aioli, lettuce, tomato, onions, and balsamic reduction.
French fries are a must. The regular ones are great; the beer battered ones are even better, with their crisp, golden coat that is a taste thrill in and of itself, enveloping creamy potato logs.
Although this place is a food truck, it does not serve fast food. It can take a while to wait in line before your turn comes to place an order, then to wait for the food to be cooked. It is all prepared in an impossibly tiny kitchen where dozens of things happen simultaneously. For all the seeming chaos, the staff are happy and cheerful and extraordinarily helpful when they discuss the menu. Miraculously, one of them always has time to actually step out of the kitchen to deliver food to customers sitting at the al fresco picnic tables or inside the air conditioned commissary / game room. One day when Christian made one such excursion to deliver a meal, I asked him if the heavy work load bothered him. “I love it!” he responded, spinning around and fairly leaping back into the kitchen to tend the grill.
Note: the Feel Good Food truck is located at 1031 Richland Ave. but sometimes appears elsewhere in town. Check social media to find out where. Note also that indoor seating has been added for rain days or when it’s just too hot to be outside. It shares its commissary with two other on-premises, Roadfood-recommended eateries, Smokin Guns BBQ and Aiken Ice Cream.