One of Houston’s hottest food trucks was once in a prime location for Montrose bar goers to make their way to Westheimer Road to fill up on greasy eats after a night of drinking.
Rollin Phatties now calls a parking lot near the corner of West 18th Street and North Shepherd Drive home, and it’s made a bustling corridor full of culinary delights all the more worth visiting. It describes itself as “fusion food in its truest sense,” which is inarguable, based on its simple and efficient South Asian menu.
I’ve always been rather picky when it comes to food trucks. The novelty of the experience quickly wore off for me, as it usually meant being surrounded by noise, unprotected from the elements, and usually without a good place to sit. Increasingly, entree prices from food trucks are rivaling that of some of the more expensive brick-and-mortar spots.
But there are some for which I am willing to make exceptions, and Rollin Phatties makes the cut.
The Pakistani food truck still proudly sports a depiction of former Houston Rockets star James Harden wearing a turban and eating a Phattie, or a paratha roll, the truck’s signature dish.
Paratha, the flaky flatbread made of layers of fried dough, envelops your choice of chicken, beef or potatoes. The protein (or starch) is then topped with cilantro, onions that have been pickled and then fried, and seasoned with garlic mayonnaise and a spicy homemade “Phat sauce.”
I ordered both the chicken and beef Phatties, which cost $7.50 each.
Rollin Phatties has recently adapted its menu, meaning you now have more ways to eat the heartily-seasoned meat and potatoes, including a lettuce wrap ($8), a quesadilla ($8) and a rice plate ($11). For an additional $3, you can order both a drink and an order of Masala fries.
I was disappointed the truck was out of Masala fries on the day I went to try them. However, I was so eager to try the Phatties based on the smell alone that I nearly ate them in the parking lot before taking them home.
The aforementioned paratha was buttery and thick, but had a crispy texture on its outer layer. It was practically a tossup for me to determine whether the chicken or beef Phattie was superior, but I gave the beef a slight edge because I preferred the way it interacted with the flavor profile of the sauce and spice blend.
Rollin Phatties is already a known commodity on the Houston food truck scene, and its recent menu additions and move to a more accessible, high-traffic location should be reason enough to add it to your Heights foodie bucket list.
Address: 1818 N. Shepherd Drive
Dining Options: Takeout, delivery
Hours: noon-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday, noon-midnight Friday-Saturday, noon-9 p.m. Sunday
Entrée prices: $7.50-$11
Senior discount: No
Healthy options: Potato lettuce wrap ($8)
Star of the show: Beef Phattie Roll
Rating: 4 out of 5 bites