Photo: Gazebo Gardens
Gazebo Gardens, located on the northeast corner of Shields and Van Ness, is pretty unassuming during the day. At night, you might even drive right by the old fashioned wood sign and flower displays, convinced there is nothing interesting behind its weathered brick walls.
But every Thursday through Sunday, the place blossoms to life in the evening with live bands, tons of food and an exciting atmosphere you would be hard pressed to find anywhere else.
Upon first entering, the only sign of the bustling event would be the full parking lot (if you don’t want to walk a block or two make sure to get there early). It feels like a different world when the courtyard is open to guests. Flowers and different plants line the walkways with Edison lights strewn across the main foyer.
Walking a little further towards the back past the live band (make sure to take some time to listen to a song or two) you arrive at the main attraction of Gazebo Gardens: the food trucks.
Although Thursday's food truck selection was limited compared to the eight to ten trucks there on the busiest business days of Friday and Saturday, there was still plenty of food to choose from.
Making our dinner choices, fellow "Red & Blue" staff member Emmit Boyer and I went to sit at a nearby bench to wait for our food. I ordered a carne asada burrito from La Jacka, a truck with the standard selection of Mexican food: burritos, tacos, quesadillas and specialty drinks like Jamaica and horchata.
The carne asada was well made and the salsa had a real kick to it. It hit the spot gourmet food always does. I fully recommend the carne asada burrito (and the strawberry lemonade I ordered from nearby food truck Twisted Masala), although I am eager return to try the tacos.
Boyer ordered a deep fried calzone from Gramma Chele’s Kitchen. While the name might not give away much, Gramma Chele’s Kitchen is your go to stop for fresh-made Italian food like meatball subs and pasta dishes.
“With this being my first experience at Gazebo Gardens, I have to say that the calzone was a welcomed introduction,” Emmit began his review.
”Although I’ve had many throughout my life, this one was especially tasty and I believe perfectly showcased what this specific truck was attempting to convey through their dishes. I would definitely eat there again, and it will be hard to decide between something new or getting that amazing dish yet again.”
Overall it is a fun and safe activity to take part in when wanting to get out of the house for a few hours. Take some interesting food home from trucks like D & G Hot Dog or Curry on Wheels, or decide to stay and eat from trucks like Poke Shack at one of the many tables strewn throughout the courtyard to maintain comfort and social distancing requirements.
Gazebo Gardens is the perfect late night hangout spot this winter!
Check out the schedule for the food trucks here!