In a little orange trailer, Ian Gray has packed all of his goat-loving culinary whiz-dom into a simple, seasonal menu. The Curious Goat is, as the name would suggest, heavily geared toward goat products, practically a showcase for nearby Singing Hills Goat Dairy. But there are plenty of other enticements: beef sliders, pork ribs, and a number of clean-eating vegetarian options.
Gray's last venture, the Gray House, was known for changing up its menu to an almost irksome degree (no dish, not even the most beloved, was too precious for the chopping block), and he promises a similar seasonal shuffle with this new venture. But if you worry you'll be annoyed with the unpredictable menu offerings, we implore you to go anyway and let this trailer, ahem, get your goat.
After shutting down the Gray House earlier this year, Ian Gray partnered with longtime front-of-house manager Kiri Anderson and sous chef Jessica Knettel to churn out street eats that pack a culinary wallop, while enjoying the low overhead of a truck trailer.
Goat was always the thematic preference for Gray, who has a particular affinity for its rich, gamey meat and distinctive milk cheeses. If you're looking for one constant in this truck trailer, you'll find it there -- at least so long as Singing Hills Dairy has enough product. Plus, Gray seems to have conceded a signature dish of sorts: the goat cheese curds, which will be a fixture on the changing menu.
These curds ($7) are soft, not gummy like some processed versions can be. They're mildly tangy, coated in an extremely thin breading, tossed with cubes of rich butternut squash and rings of spring onion, and ever-so-slightly drizzled with honey. If you want the closest thing to healthy cheese curds, these are it.
The goat sausage ($11), also a product of Singing Hills Goat Dairy, is rich and hearty, with a spicy, gamey flavor that holds fast next to the bitter caraway beer kraut. Without any sort of tangy foil -- the kraut is a mellow, supporting flavor -- this feels like a warming dish for fall, a hunker-down-by-the-fire feast totally unlike the sprightly, Vietnamese-inspired cabbage salad.
Indeed, this is probably the most appreciated aspect of the Curious Goat: Not only are you supporting local farmers when you eat from this trailer, but you enjoy equal opportunity to gorge on sausages and sliders or have a light, veg-centric meal with items like the hearty but wholesome shiitake and squash tacos ($9). From its location to its menu, the Curious Goat is embracing the open road.
The Curious Goat will run year-round, mostly at Sociable Cider Werks in Northeast. Gray also hopes to be involved in Indeed's charitable givebacks on Wednesdays, and eventually, to head to downtown Minneapolis for lunch service. For now, you can follow the trailer on Facebook or Twitter.
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