Chris Mariot awaits his order, thankful to only have to venture out less than a mile for dinner.
After mulling the various options at Hilltop Food Truck Park, he’s chosen Indian cuisine from Crypto grill.
“All the neighbors on the Harvest Facebook page have been raving about it,” Marriot said.
“It’s just great to see options closer. They are great people, and it’s great to see them be successful. We don’t have to worry about going into Argyle, Flower Mound or Denton.”
Bringing more food options to the Northlake area was the impetus for Trouper Arnold and his family to create the food truck park at the corner of Thompson Road and Farm-to-Market Road 407.
“Growing up here, you had to drive 30 minutes one way to go to eat or the grocery store,” Arnold said. “When we started, we wanted to bring diverse dining options here.”
Since May, the Hilltop Food Truck Park has built a following from local neighbors who have enjoyed the various trucks, with offerings of burgers, Korean barbecue, Indian cuisine, empanadas, coffee and a variety of frozen treats. Even in the triple-digit heat, patrons visited the trucks in the morning for breakfast, at lunch and dinner time.
“The summer has been our slowest time with the heat, but in the fall we expect to be busy,” Arnold said.
The lineup of trucks and the options change weekly and sometimes daily. There have been many regulars since May, including Witch Water Coffee, which provides a mid-morning caffeine rush for locals.
“Coffee is my love language,” said Rebecca Williams, the owner of Witch Water. “It brings me joy to make it and serve it. I believe customer service is becoming a lost art, but it’s something we do really well here. We want our customers to feel comfortable providing honest feedback. We are only getting started. Tons more to come, it’s just going to get better and better.”
Fernando Lezama has been bringing his 3F Premier Catering truck to Hilltop for the past few months, serving up his Columbian style empanadas made from scratch. The culinary school grad has been parking at various food truck parks and farmers markets throughout the area in the past six years, including the Truck Yard in Alliance and Keller. He’s found a home at Hilltop.
“It was really busy in the beginning. It has been a little slow because of the heat,” Lezama said. “I really like the concept. There’s different kinds of food for everyone.”
Gogi Time Korean BBQ has been a mainstay at the park in the past few months. Susan Beatty and Joe Campos use family recipes to serve up a fusion of Korean-inspired barbecue bowls, including options with spicy pork and ribeye.
Beatty said they branched out to serving the bowls, with her son operating the Mexoranfood truck in Denton, with its fusion of Mexican and Korean flavors in tacos, quesadillas and burritos.
“This has been really nice. It’s a family atmosphere,” Beatty said. “We promote each other and help each other. If someone runs out of something, we give it to them. Trouper and Tanner [Arnold] are awesome to work with.”
Trouper said it's rewarding to see cooperation between the vendors and to see them take some ownership of the park.
“There’s a lot to do day to day. They are willing to help out and take care of things,” he said. “They are willing to help each other out.”
In the fall, the Arnolds plan to open up their Ribwhipserer truck. They also plan to hold several events, including movie nights and game-watching parties for the anticipated crowds in the fall. There are also cornhole boards for added family entertainment.
Arnold hopes to continue to grow the park and attract crowds for the trucks.
“We have big goals for the future,” he said.
“This has been really nice. It’s a family atmosphere. We promote each other and help each other.” — Susan Beatty