Decades before food trucks became a serious trend on Mainland, USA, the creative culinary enterprises were a common sight all through St. Thomas.
To this day, everything from local favorites such as beef and salt fish pâté to classic barbecue ribs and chicken is readily available for pick-up at strategically-positioned, kitchen-fitted vehicles around the island. But one particularly intriguing truck stands in a category all its own — PlantTastic.
Aptly named, the PlantTastic food truck rolled up by the water’s edge at Gregerie Channel behind Frenchtown in the summer of 2020. It began offering plant-based alternative menu options — a fresh angle on typical truck fare. Despite being situated off the beaten path, PlantTastic instantly took a tasty slice of the spotlight.
PlantTastic was established by Alex Treml. Many islanders got to know the seasoned chef/ entrepreneur when he owned Alexander’s in Frenchtown. His landmark eatery operated from 1981 to 2005. After selling the namesake restaurant, Alex maintained a catering service in the territory while traveling regularly between St. Thomas and Austria — his native land.
Two years ago, inspired by his newfound appreciation for healthier eating and coupled with the desire to spend more quality time in the tropics, he created PlantTastic.
Just recently, the Coconut Post discovered the brightly-colored food truck is under new management and now specializes in poke bowls.
“I think we are the best of both worlds,” said proprietor Patrick Cieniewicz.
Well said. After all, seafood and vegetables earn top honors when it comes to healthy ingredients. That’s why, in addition to vegan offerings, PlantTastic, has reinvented itself to include tastes from the sea.
In Hawaiian culinary circles, “poke” literally means “to cut something.” Typically, the chef slices marinated seafood, mixes it with chunks of veggies, and drizzles a savory sauce on top.
At PlantTastic, you can create your own custom poke bowl or try the weekly specials. Take your food to go, or sit at a table under the spacious canvas tent by the water’s edge and listen to waves lapping gently over the rocks. How relaxing!
How do you get there? Driving through Frenchtown, turn left at French Quarter Bistro and make an immediate right. When you get to the fork in the road stay left. At the end of that road, turn left and make another left. You’ll see the Radio One tower ahead and the food truck parked in the gravel lot. Click HERE to view on Google Maps.
PlantTastic is open Tuesday-Saturday 3:30 to 8 p.m.
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