"Truck Talk" Op-Ed: Coolhaus Not So Cool

“Truck Talk” Op-Ed: Coolhaus Not So Cool

We can’t actually tell if Mike (a) is tired of shelling out $3.50 for his Coolhaus ice cream sandos, (b) has a crush on the owners, (c) is jealous of the truck’s tar-architecture- asphalt-and- cream-laden business model, or (d) is completely and wholly spot-on, in the right, in his op-ed below regarding the Coolhaus Ice Cream Sandwich Truck duo’s failure to openly confess to a presumed Diddy Riese/UCLA collegiate inspiration at some level, having in the last few months shoved their version of the venerable Westwood institution’s non-architecturally-themed-yet-peculiarly-overly-familiar $1.50 sandos into a trendy li’l chrome truck, slapped punny architectural names onto them and tweeted them away all o’er town for $3.50 a throw, an astonishing markup in our frugal books. Who’s to say? That’s why they call it op-ed! Feel free to share your own opinions following the below tirade. The more vocal of you, g’head, send us a fully-fleshed submission for op-ed consideration on these pages (yes, Coolhaus, we’re looking directly at you for rebuttal). -ed

Above close-up of one member of Coolhaus’ $3.50 summer product line replete with edible “500 Days of Summer” wrapper courtesy intellichick (some rights reserved)

Coolhaus not so cool
By Mike

I live in Los Angeles and I eat a lot. I drink a little, too. With this highly dignified and prestigious culinary resume I’ve accumulated some opinions over the years. From time to time I will share them here. Bottoms up.

Dear Coolhaus Ice Cream Sandwich Truck Ladies,

Look, I like you ladies. Natasha and Freya – those sound like hot names. Your truck, it’s silver – that’s fucking adorable. It’s even got rims. Totally bad ass. Your sandwiches are named after one of the most overlooked professions of the modern day … architects.

That’s all well and good.

It truly is. But, I think your shenanigans have gone on long enough. It’s time we discuss the frozen white elephant in the truck.

You guys both graduated from UCLA. You both graduated from UCLA in the past few years. I know this because I read an article about your ice cream sandwich truck in Time Magazine. Yeah, Time fucking Magazine. Pretty impressive for a new business venture. But, I digress. In this Time Magazine article I kept searching for the obvious. Couldn’t find it. So I searched through other interviews. Still couldn’t find what I was looking for.

Surely, two young, bright, attractively named ladies with UC educations would have the common decency to at least acknowledge their influence. Apparently I was wrong. For those unaware of what I’m getting at: Diddy Riese has been a mainstay in Westwood Village for over 25 years. It is the UCLA late night institution. Every college has one – and with lines sometimes around the block at midnight Diddy adorns the Bruin crown. Diddy Riese really only serves one thing: ICE CREAM SANDWICHES. Its Westwood popularity is only rivaled by a handful of other LA restaurants. Maybe only Pink’s (but Diddy’s actually good), Bay Cities, Sprinkles and Mozza.

Above close-up of p.diddyriese’s $1.50 masterpiece courtesy option this (some rights reserved)

Is it possible two UCLA architecture students possibly never went into/walked by/heard of the campus mainstay? Doesn’t seem likely. Do I fault you two for capitalizing on a concept that should have been capitalized upon years ago? No, I do not. Do I find it baffling in not one interview have you even acknowledged Diddy Riese’s presence at your alma mater or possible slight influence? Yes. And, truthfully, it’s annoying.

Even fucking Starbucks admits they stole the idea of the Frappuccino from a predecessor (although they vary on whom they borrowed/bought the idea from).

If the evil empire that is Starbucks can admit a little copying why can’t you guys? Oh, that’s right … you’re totally different. You’re all about architecture and educating through your sandwiches. Sweet. Cool. Oh, wait. Education through ice cream – not such a novel idea either. Talk to a few dudes from Vermont named Ben and Jerry.

Luckily, like most predecessors, Diddy Riese is way better (and cheaper).


Diddy Riese
926 Broxton Avenue
Westwood, 90024

(P.S. Don’t get me wrong, gentleladies, I’m an avid LA food truck advocate. I love them. I check Twitter for them. People constantly tell me to shut the eff up about them. The Border Grill taco truck is the cat’s meow. Weekly I go way out of my way to “accidentally” discover the Get Shaved van. And your Milk ice cream is a summer treat. That’s for sure.

I also know about the recent street wars you all are enduring. Who knows — maybe little things like admitting influences could begin to assuage the situation. In the least … it’ll make grandma proud. And isn’t that what we all aspire for at the end of the day anyway?)