Have you noticed a food truck hanging around Brookside/Waldo lately? I’m talking about The Waffler’s truck, serving Liege style waffles at the northeast corner of Gregory and Wornall in the parking lot. I haven’t tried one yet….but I recently spoke with the owner Russell Viers and I’m making my first trip tomorrow morning!
If you love waffles like I do, the first thing to note is these are not your typical breakfast waffles. This delicacy is a Liege waffle, which Russell recreated after trying them in a Belgium train station. Developing his own recipe, he makes all the dough from scratch. He starts with a rich brioche bread dough, and adds large chunks of Belgium pearl sugar (this is a beet sugar, not cane) and his own special flavorings. Whereas the typical breakfast waffle relies on toppings to give them flavor, the Liege waffle has flavors baked in. The ‘classic’ flavor Russell serves is vanilla, along with a second choice–for example, maple bacon or fall spice. (He is currently developing a special limonchello waffle for a special event at Jasper’s). The waffle is crispy on the outside, with specks of caramelized sugar; inside is a tender bread texture with bursts of the pearl sugar. No utensils needed…your waffle is service in a handheld pouch for easy eatin’!
Russell’s ‘real’ job is a public speaker/consultant. His kids talked him into starting the food truck after he created the special ‘meggos’ (that’s the brand name for the product) for his daughter’s wedding earlier this year. He has parked the truck at First Fridays and the City Market, but gets the best response here in the Brookside/Waldo area and would like to make the Gregory and Wornall location permanent. Each waffle costs $5; however if you say the special phrase that changes daily, you’ll get $1 off. These phrases are usually quotes from old movies or TV shows (hint: Sunday’s quote relates to the Royals!). Russell is a friendly, outgoing guy who says he’s ‘never worked so hard’ getting this food truck going and although it’s not a regular source of income for him, he loves every minute he spends making the dough and chatting with customers. He especially likes to watch the reaction of someone who has taken that first bite–the taste and texture is such an unexpected delight!
Along with the waffles, Russell offers soft drinks, water and…free coffee! All ‘tips’ left are donated to a local charity which changes every month. He focuses on organizations that have low administrative costs. This month’s charity is the Kansas City Rescue Mission. He was inspired to donate after learning that 14 men staying at the shelter started running and participated in the Kansas City Marathon. He’s been amazed at how generous customers are after learning the tips go to charity.
So are you hungry for waffles now?? Stop by and see The Waffler on Halloween morning (8am-2pm) or November 1 (8am-1pm) at the Wornall and Gregory location. For that special discount phrase and to learn more about The Waffler, visit his Facebook page or website. Better stop by soon–Russell has plans to take off for Europe shortly on business. Oh…and The Waffler caters too!