Addendum: Tripp Gordon, the Owner and Chef at Dreamland Waffles has had to step away from being a Chef for a while to support his Son. In his absence, Tripp has handed his recipes and menu over to the wonderful chef at the Pedestrian Cafe food cart that was right next to Dreamland’s cart.
Chef Ryan at the Pedestrian Cafe will now be making all Dreamland’s menu items to the awesome standards that Tripp has set. Everything featured in this review aside from some of the specials will be available daily. Enjoy the Review!
Today, The San Marcos Food blog is overwhelmingly excited to be reviewing a very interesting and truly “One of A Kind” Food Cart. The Dreamland Waffle Company is one of the newest additions to the San Marcos Food Cart “Scene” and is fast becoming a weekly or even daily stop for many residents of San Marcos(including myself). There are so many things to love about this place. This Food Cart quite successfully filled a “niche” that had yet to be occupied in the San Marcos area before its opening.
Obviously, to have a Food Cart that is centered around Waffles, the Waffles must be something special.. And I will say right now that is the unquestionable reality.
The first time I bit into one of these, I was honestly a little shocked at how good they were. I began to sample as many menu items as I could and also ask questions to the Chef about this interesting food.
One important thing that makes these Waffles different is the fact Dreamland has taken care to develop quite a special Waffle batter. Their Chef begins by using Almond Milk as the base.
I found that this added a slight dimension of bitter-sweetness that helped the Waffles lend to both the sweet and savory items. Other ingredients include:Organic Cage-Free Eggs, real Vanilla, Pure Honey, and Pearl Sugar.
The Chef at Dreamland explained that when the batter is ready for the irons its consistency is between a batter and a dough which also makes it perfect for the Savory Dishes or the Sweeter Dishes. These Waffles are so unique and honestly in a class of their own. In taste, texture, and versatility, these Waffles deliver on every level of flavor
I was very encouraged to discover how much this Food Cart is concerned with utilizing quality, fresh ingredients in every aspect. As an aside, Dreamland offers pure Maple Syrup, none of that corn syrup substitute garbage.
The Chef at The Dreamland Waffle Company, Tripp Gordon, is one of the most genuinely enjoyable people I have met in quite some time.. He sincerely cares about diners and also the food that he makes.
He is one of those people who will without question make sure you have the best experience possible. I have been very humbled by his kindness towards his diners. Further, he is a real culinary genius.
He is always coming up with unique specials as well as making classic dishes as they should be. He has done some pretty amazing things with an already awesome Waffle.. Tripp was initially in business in the Newport Beach area of Southern California. His youngest son is a highly ranked tennis player and had the opportunity to train at the John Newcombe tennis academy in New Braunfels and so He moved the business to San Marcos and has loved the town, university, and the people. I think the feeling is mutual.
I will admit that it even took me a little while to give it a try. The credit for me trying Dreamland has to go to one of the awesome readers of this blog, Tom Campbell. Luckily, Tom informed me about how exceptional the food was and equally important, how the Dreamland Waffle Company prides itself on real customer service. He was spot on.
This is what Tom had to say: “Please do a review for Dreamland. I had the best service and most amazing food! I loved the place. The power went out twice. Instead of sending out an inferior product, they made two fresh waffles when the power came back. I had the waffle with nutella and fresh fruit. Without a doubt the best waffle I ever had!”
The Dreamland Waffle Company Food Cart is located at Mimi’s Trailer Park Eatery
at 310 N. Guadalupe Street
This Food Cart will seriously take care of you. They truly care about the 100% satisfaction of the diner and for this I am overjoyed to be able to potentially help bring them more business.
Now: onto the good part, the Food!
Savory menu and Specials..
The Savory menu items and the Specials at Dreamland are really what carry this Food Cart into an arena all its own. The Sweet Menu may seem the more obvious choice when considering a Waffle-Based Food Cart, but let me expound on why that is not necessarily the case when it comes to Dreamland.
Dreamland exclusively offers Waffle Sandwiches. The Waffle Sandwich is such a great idea.. Who does not love a great Sandwich? It is an American staple after all.. At Dreamland, not only can you get a ridiculously good Turkey, Ruben, or Monte Cristo Sandwich(among others of which I will mention further on), you get it between two authentic, amazing “Liege” Waffles instead of two ordinary, drab pieces of standard bread.
This really skyrocketed these already well-known sandwich concepts to such great heights of flavor and texture. It was quite an experience the first time I bit into one. It dawned on me very quickly that a “Waffle Sandwich” is such a novel and great idea. At that point, it cemented Dreamland as my next review.
The Dreamland “Special” – “Fried Chicken and Waffles” w/ Maple Syrup and Gravy
Chicken and Waffles is such an essentially Southern dish and I was so glad to see this as a regular menu item. I already love this dish but it was seriously brought to greater heights of flavor by Dreamland’s skilled Chef. This is the only place in San Marcos that offers this dish.
The Chicken is fried so well in a way that it is “pops” when you bite into it and it is served with the amazing Dreamland Waffle as well as Homemade Gravy and Pure Maple Syrup. This dish is the epitome of Sweet, Savory, Salty, and…. Southern.
The “Monte Cristo” Waffle Sandwich
This Waffle Sandwich consists of Black Forest Ham, melting Havarti Cheese, and a well-balanced Raspberry Preserve Glaze.
I ate this one quite fast(even by my standards). The richness of the Havarti and the semi-sweet and tangy Raspberry Glaze really worked perfectly with the salty-sweet ham and between two of the perfect Dreamland Waffles, it is just so much to love.This Waffle Sandwich is especially popular with the regulars at Dreamland.
I cannot blame them for adoring this sandwich. In fact, someone posted on my Facebook and described this as well as the Chicken and Waffles as,“absolutely to die for…”
I cannot help but agree with the sentiment. This is quite a comfort food. I have been going for several weeks straight now to try everything on the menu and to get things for friends and family and I have seen the same reaction from everyone I know..
The “Grilled Bacon and Cheese” Waffle Sandwich
This consists of Bacon and your choice of cheese( cheddar, pepper jack, provolone etc..) between two Waffles.
This caught my attention very quickly and was among the first items that I tried. I really thought that it is the perfect idea for a Waffle sandwich. This is a much quicker way to eat some basic breakfast plate components. Bacon, Cheese…between two of these Waffles and Maple Syrup?!
This is quite a sandwich and was right up my ally as far as my feelings regarding breakfast foods.. The Maple Syrup complements the bacon so well.. probably better than any other sugar could.This is due to the almost smoky, earthy quality of Maple Syrup and how it perfectly complements the smoky, salty Bacon. With the sweet, perfectly-textured Waffle to cradle these flavors, there is a lot going on there.
The “Coronado Club” Special
Black Forest Ham, Brie Cheese, Sliced Apples and a Cherry-Pomegranate-Habanero Drizzle
This Waffle Sandwich clearly demonstrates the creativity on the part of the Chef at Dreamland. this dish utilizes such an intricate layer of flavors. The Apples and Brie, a classic pair, creates the first layer with texture from the apples and contrasting sweet and salty. Meanwhile the Cherry-Pomegranate-Habanero Drizzle creates a second layer, pairing the flavors of the ham with a balanced sweet-spicy sauce. This one was quite impressive on several levels.
The “Reuben” Waffle Sandwich
This consists of Pastrami, Swiss Cheese, and a “West Coast” Sauce.
This is another great example of Dreamland taking a classic and enhancing its flavors with quality ingredients, care, and of course using the Waffles as the sandwich bread! This is not your ordinary Reuben Sandwich.. Such a rich sandwich already is further enlivened by a very creamy, balanced West Coast Sauce,the melted Cheese and and the Delicious Dreamland Waffle.
The “Turkey and Cheese” Waffle Sandwich
This consists of Turkey and Cheddar Cheese with a Cranberry Sauce between two Waffles
This is a fantastic Turkey Sandwich.. the Turkey is so moist and flavorful and the melted Cheddar is the perfect complement to both the Turkey and the Waffles. The Cranberry Sauce is a classic pairing and wonderfully executed. During my review process I ordered this several times and was always very pleased with it.
Here is another fact that caught my attention about Dreamland: This Chef LOVES Breakfast. He will be the first to tell you that.. Indeed, It is easy to see this after trying even one of his breakfast items.. I have never really been a morning person but Breakfast-based foods are so good that it does not really matter what time of day you eat them(ask anyone in my family).
My brother especially loves breakfast and actually devotes quite a bit of time to making breakfast every morning. I had him sample the following items and we both agreed that they were pretty much magical.
The “Bobcat Breakfast”
This includes Bacon, Hash Browns, and the diner’s choice of Eggs cooked in several ways..
I have to say that this is an all-around beautifully-cooked, high quality Breakfast Plate. Everything was done so well and it was also quite filling. The bacon is cooked just right, the eggs are the perfect consistency, and the hash browns are made so well and are a splendid companion to the aforementioned .. I absolutely could not get enough of this dish. As I have eluded to, this Chef knows Breakfast. I will be getting this regularly.
“Biscuits and Gravy” Special
These Biscuits and Gravy are by far the BEST in San Marcos.. They were insanely delicious with the admirably-flavorful Gravy and immaculate, fluffy Biscuits. This dish is among my absolute favorite foods to eat and I was ecstatic to discover that this is a permanent menu item!
When these were introduced I had these several days in a row and they were even better every day. I will be back quite a bit solely for this dish. I think getting this and the Bobcat Breakfast might be the best thing ever on some mornings and I know that I will be doing just that soon enough.
The “Blueberry and Pecan Waffle” Special
On the Specials menu right now, diners can get either a Blueberry Waffle, a Pecan Waffle, or a Waffle with both. I ordered the latter and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The classic tartness of the Blueberry Waffle paired with the crunchy Pecans was a real delight.
I pretty much grew up on blueberry pancakes and this Waffle takes that flavor profile much further than I have previously experienced. This is a great choice for someone who just wants a great Waffle and nothing else on it.. It honestly did not need anything on it to be delicious. The Blueberries and Pecans were in perfect proportion and paired so well with the special batter recipe at Dreamland.
Now onto The “Sweet Menu”…
The “Sweet” menu features some very novel and utterly delicious choices. It is NOT what one might assume to find. I must reiterate that nothing about this Food Cart is “normal”.
The “S’mores” Waffle
This consists of a Dreamland Waffle topped with Speculoos Spread(a caramel cookie butter), a Chocolate bar and Chocolate sauce as well as Marshmellows.
This is one of the first items that The Chef recommended to me on the Sweet Menu. Now I know why. I think that if anyone loves S’mores, than this is a must-try. It is the best recreation of a S’more that I have ever tried.
I liked this so much more than I thought I would as I am not a huge S’mores guy but I really enjoyed this. The Speculoos Caramel Cookie Spread is so richly sweet and slightly crunchy and is really quite a proper replacement for the graham cracker component. This one borders on decadent. If you are in the mood for a rich, filling dessert, than this is what you want without a doubt.
The “Nutella and Fruit” Waffle
This consists of a Dreamland Waffle with Nutella Spread, Fresh Strawberries, Blueberries, and Bananas topped with Whip Cream
This is probably the most popular item that I know of from Dreamland.. everyone that has had anything to say about this place to me usually mentioned this dish specifically. It really is a fantastic use of the Waffles. The Chef uses very fresh fruit and just the right amount of Nutella on a huge, dense Waffle.
You can even substitute Speculoos Spread for the Nutella. I highly recommend trying it both ways. I definitely have to recommend this dish to any first diners sampling the Sweet Menu. It is a very good introduction to Dreamland.
The “Orange Chocolate” Waffle
This one is so good. The nuance of the Orange marmalade and the Chocolate sauce mixture is amazingly tempered by the semi-sweet Waffle and the fresh Whip Cream. It really is like those Chocolate Oranges you can buy at the store but so much more. I used to get these for Christmas as stocking-stuffers and as a result, I have always loved the flavor profile.
The picture is not the best because I waited too long to take a picture, but when the whip cream is still holding, it looks even more delicious. This is definitely a memorable one.
I am always keeping my eyes open for places that are completely original and unique to the San Marcos area and Dreamland is both of these in spades. This Food Cart represents a host of novel food items that simply cannot be recreated anywhere else in the area.
Really, this Food Cart’s menu is so unique and approachable regardless of palette or prejudice. It features both a Savory and a Sweet Menu as well as some delicious Breakfast items and Specials. This menu layout really facilitates ANY possible craving one may have at any given time.
It must be stated that these Waffles are the best I have ever had the chance to sample. This was the same reaction that many people I have talked to experienced upon dining at Dreamland Waffle Company. The best way to describe these waffles in my mind is “Flavor-Dense”.
These waffles are seriously bursting with flavor and nuance. As mentioned, there is clearly quite a bit of thought and culinary “know-how” put into this batter recipe. This is not even close to an “average” waffle. Another important thing to understand is that the Waffles are just the door to the wonderful array of food items that are served at Dreamland.
After deciding to review this Food Cart, I stopped by almost daily for a 3-week period, I wanted to sample every menu item and get a very good feel for this Food Cart before I began writing.
As it is plain to see, Dreamland Waffle Company is the REAL DEAL. This Food Cart is serving up such creative and delicious dishes every day. Try it today!