Former army base food truck Food2Go brings gyros to campus

Stephen Acevedo

While students argue over whether Halal Guys or Halal Bros is superior, a new food truck called Food2Go has quietly slipped into the West Campus gyro game. 

Owner Zafer Layik initially started Food2Go as a food truck to operate exclusively on army bases. The truck would allow people living on a base to get quality meals without having to endure a long wait. After successfully expanding his business to six different trucks on army bases in Texas, Arizona and Oklahoma, Layik decided it was time to open a truck in a normal metropolitan area. 

“We started out to try and serve good food the fastest way we can because people in the army have a limited time to be served and eat,” Layik said. “They usually only have one hour, so we got our serving down to three to five minutes maximum.”

“We wanted to do one in Austin, and we chose the location specific to our operation because students are similar to people on army bases,” Layik said. “They don’t really have much time, so they can come and get something quick to eat here.”

Though Layik has kept a small menu at his army base locations for the sake of convenience, he said wants to give UT students something a little different. Right off the bat, Food2Go’s $8–$9.50 price range seems higher than surplus cost. But once you take into account their sizable fries, soft drinks and entrees, you’ll feel like you’re at an army surplus store. 

The menu is pretty brief for the sake of expediting the ordering process, but Layik said he tried to make the selection at his Austin truck a little more robust for the students. 

“On army bases we usually serve chicken, beef and lamb,” Layik said. “Here in the city, we wanted to do a few more different things for the students like a vegan option.”

Though hot cooked meals packed with plastic cutlery is Food2Go’s specialty, Layik doesn’t think the speed means he’s sacrificing flavor and freshness — he makes everything from the sauce to the bread in-house daily.

“We don’t serve anything that we don’t feel like eating ourselves,” Layik said. “I want customers to have what I would want to have if I went out to a restaurant.”

In particular, the gyro has a lot of great flavor. The meat is well-seasoned, the veggies are fresh and the creamy dressing adds a nice little bit of extra spice. The wrap itself is closer to a tortilla than pita bread, so it tastes kind of like a
gyro burrito. 

The chicken wrap is also very tasty with juicy marinated chicken. The chicken is grilled in chunks as opposed to shawarma style, which may be unideal for some people, but it results in much larger pieces of chicken in the wrap. 

The sides are limited to french fries, although the french fries at the truck are quite good. They’re basic crinkle cut fries sprinkled with paprika, and they do their job of complementing the seasoned meat wonderfully. 

Though nothing on Food2Go’s menu will be blowing minds, the dishes work as a filling and affordable lunch for students going to or from campus. It has the potential to become a go-to gyro spot for West Campus residents in a hurry.