attention all eaters, the truck has arrived, repeated, the truck has arrived!
previous to this location, access to grumman78’s special brand of taco-reimaginings was limited to either chance encounters or careful planning around their highly irregular schedule, consisting essentially of a mix of outdoor festival appearances, the occasional sporadic special event/party at their st-henri headquarters, and summer weekends at a location in the mile end from midnight-3am.
but the days of following a taco van around town are over. or at least optional.
choosing the auspicious opening day of april 1st, 2012, grumman 78 has opening its “permanent” stationary location in what i would argue is the food heaven neighbourhood of montreal. sometimes referred to as “chinatown west”, the area approximately west of crescent and east of atwater has a pretty ridiculous abundance of good eats, and from all types of ethnicities. on top of this neighbourhood, their stall is located literally directly opposite the other legendary faubourg food court eatery, bangkok.
anyway fuck the background info, let’s look at the food.
banh-mi taco, $4
this is actually what i ordered and ate last- an extra taco because i am a fat bastard. this was their most popular taco last summer, and for good reason. mmmm.
curry d’agneau taco, $7
holy shit this was good. and they did not skimp on the lamb. definitely a hard time maintaining structural integrity with all the saucy goodness in there. i should have included a hand for size estimation because the portion size is quite reasonable.
completely ludicrous water in a bag, free.
okay, so grumman serves their amazing fresh juice mixes in a bag, as a kind of novelty, and its neat and all, but somehow it is completely ridiculous when you’re in a food court and you’re getting water because your saving your hard-earned dollars for more tacos. i suspect this water was wind-dried.
poulet frit, $4
to me this exemplifies everything right and everything wrong with the faubourg grumman. this is a single deep-fried drumstick on a bed of potato salad. for $4. $4!!!
now, in the past, when i’ve indulged in grumman, it has been by following their facebook updates and making a special trip to a festival location, or it’s been due to a special occasion party that they were throwing at their headquarters in st-henri. in short, these have been unique occasions where i’ve been making the trek out for unique food. furthermore, when you’re at a festival and a shitty bbqed hotdog is $6 and an awesome premium taco is $4, it’s a no-brainer. but a food court? people are used to paying less than $10 for a food court meal. and at the faubourg, we’ve got the mighty bangkok literally right across from them. so will this type of pricing work in a food court? we’re talking $20 to feel full here. i’m not knocking grumman’s quality at all- i’m just concerned that they will not succeed in this setting.
so, back to the deepfried chicken drumstick. wtf. $4 for a tiny drumstick, wtf.
and then i took a bite of it.
seriously the best fried chicken i have ever had in my life. by that measurement, $4 is a small price to pay.
update! (2012/09/26): according to the Grumman78 Facebook page, the faubourg grumman has closed down due to the well-documented cockroach problem at the faubourg. although i am sure that was a factor, i also can’t help to wonder whether their business was doing well. as i question above, food court patrons are used to pay sub-$10 for a food court meal and grumman was asking for people to pay around $20-25. so there may have been other factors. a food court like the Carrefour industrielle Alliance one under Simons and Cinéma Banque Scotia might have been a better fit, as they already have restaurants like fiore and momoyama in there that offer more expensive (and quality-commensurate) options. on the plus side, grumman have opened their st-henri headquarters as a regular restaurant venue on wed, thurs, and friday nights.