Nothing goes better together than Instagrammers and food, or at least that’s what restaurateur Brian Ingram is banking on with his new endeavor. Seventh Street Truck Park in St. Paul, Minnesota is an eclectic dining venue that was dreamt up to entice social media savvy diners. It really is an Instagrammers paradise! Ingram recently sat down with the Star Tribune to dish about his bold new venture and how he hopes this new generation of tech-crazed diners can make it a success.
The restaurant is an open floor concept with actual trucks lining the walls with a bar in the center. There are six trucks all together: an ice cream shop, a pizza joint, a taco shop, another bar, a chicken and rib shack, and a stage. “Everything you can do here is an Instagrammable moment,” said Ingram. “And we really designed it that way. We wanted it to be a social media check-in. That’s why, for me, having authentic food trucks [and not food truck cutouts as some other spaces have] was so important.”
While the atmosphere is important to Instagram fanatics (after all, what’s the point of taking a selfie if the background isn’t as cute as the subject of the selfie?), it’s the food that they’re really coming for. So how does that check out? It checks out pretty darn well! The food is just as unique and slightly wacky as the location. There are Kool-Aid cocktails, S’mores beer, rattlesnake and rabbit pizza, and even a 20-pound ice cream sandwich, which will set you back a cool $99.
There’s also the more conventional food truck options, like fried chicken, pork carnitas tacos, and sausage and pepperoni pizza. “It’s a fine line because you don’t want to be too kitschy,” Ingram said. Seventh Street Truck Park manages to ride that fine line, offering its diners a food experience they won’t be able to get anywhere else, while also staying true to the types of food that made food trucks so popular in the first place.
Already, Ingram is seeing the advantages of courting Instagrammers as his main clientele. As it turns out, having people post pictures of their delicious meals on the internet has a way of driving business. “This [Truck Park] has gotten more PR than any restaurant I’ve ever done,” he said. “And I’ve done hundreds. People want to be somewhere hip and cool, and these days you have to give them that.” Ingram is now planning on expanding his food truck park to other locations, but so far it’s just one location in Lake Calhoun, Minnesota. If the idea really takes off, don’t be surprised if you see one pop up at a location near you, and get ready to see people go even crazier trying to take the perfect picture of their food.