Dia De Los Tacos (DDLT) is a finalist in the Mobile-Cuisine.com 2014 Food Truck Taco of the Year. As of publication, DDLT was tied for first place with 895 votes, 25 percent of the total voting population.

According to Mike Walker, who owns the truck with his wife Teri Lynn, he is confident that fans of the truck will give DDLT the edge.

“It’s hard to mess with the people that consider themselves our fans. We’ve had people stand outside in negative 20 wind chills for our tacos,” Walker said. “If any of the other trucks can claim that, we’d be surprised.”

Walker said the nomination came through votes on the website.

“A friend with a food truck in Green Bay sent the link to me and we thought, ‘let’s share this and see if anything happens’,” Walker said. “Apparently, a bunch of folks nominated us in the first stage, which got us on the ballet.”

DDLT is less than a year old, at least as far as the truck goes. Starting off as a specialty business in Ore Dock Brewing Company and other travel locations in MQT, the blue food truck seen around the city rolled out for the first time in June 2013.

That food truck made history as the first restaurant to use a truck as the main sales outlet in the MQT area. With assistance through the Downtown Development Authority and Lake Superior Community Partnership, DDLT navigated the permit wasteland that allowed them to hit the streets.

Compared to the other food trucks in the competition, the youth and uniqueness of DDLT could be an advantage, according to Walker.

“The fact that we’re a new business might be helpful, in that people in Marquette might be a little excited about it still,” Walker said. “I think that our bigger advantage is that most of the other trucks on the ballet are from much larger markets, where there might be people who prefer a different truck. Here if you like a food truck, its us.”

According to Mobile-Cuisine.com, to be eligible for the title, the food truck had to be open before 2014 and must regularly serve taco dishes from their truck. There are no rules for ingredients or hard or soft shell distinctions. Any truck can be nominated from across the world.

There are 15 finalists for the title. DDLT is one of the two Michigan entries, with Happy’s Taco Shop in Boyne City also in the running.

This is the second year of the competition. The inaugural winner was El Gastronomo Vagabundo from Ontario, Canada. They are currently in fifth place with 149 votes. Happy’s is in seventh with 120.

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Voting as of 1 pm on the Mobile-Cuisine.com website.
Brice Burge is the Managing Editor of MQT Social Scene. He can be reached at briceMQT@gmail.com.

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