Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Cheap Eats 

Motor Mouth

Motor Mouth

It's a blindingly sunny Wednesday in Cleveland and Motor Mouth's metallic exterior glints in the sun as people crowd around, craning to get a better look at the menu. From the front of the truck, above a menacing grin splashed in white across the fender, a girl in a striped dress and fairy tattoos smiles as she takes orders.

In the back, feverishly assembling sandwiches, is owner Rusty Phillips, a 10-year vet of the food-service biz.

"When I first got the idea for starting a food truck, I was hoping to have better hours than the regular restaurant business," he says. "That didn't really pan out."

With his days often starting at 5 a.m. and lasting until dark, he might have had better luck with a brick-and-mortar spot. Still, Phillips stands by his choice. "I really enjoy getting to interact with the people who eat my food."

The menu varies daily, with prices ranging from $7 to $9. Phillips' favorite? That's the Chivoto sandwich: grilled steak, smoked ham, smoked provolone, fried egg, and pickled hot and sweet peppers on ciabatta.

Other menu regulars include pork taquitos — slow-roasted pork, roasted poblano pepper and sweet potato, toasted pumpkin seeds, queso fresco, and red chili mojo sauce on corn tortillas — and an Asian chicken sandwich with roasted chicken, cucumber kimchi, cilantro, jalapeños, and sweet chili sauce on a fresh baguette.

When he's not feeding the masses with his globally inspired creations, Phillips enjoys painting. It's his way to unwind.

"I'm an artist," he says, "but I don't get to do much outside of working on the truck anymore." — Justine Stump

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club


Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.


Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.


Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Latest in Cheap Eats

More by Justine Stump

Read the Digital Print Issue

November 17, 2021

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

© 2021 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation