By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Jul 13, 2022 at 12:02 PM

Join us on Saturday, July 23 for some lakeside munchies at the second annual OnMilwaukee Food Truck Fest. Choose from a menu of 20 trucks and enjoy the live DJ, games and entertainment. It's the biggest gathering of the best food on four wheels.

Love food trucks? So do we! So much so that OnMilwaukee partnered with Milwaukee World Festival, Inc. to bring MKE Food Truck Fest to Henry Maier Festival Park in July. Find out more here.Have a yen for empanadas? Seek out the blue and white truck that serves Lola’s Empanadas.

The truck is owned by Nicolas Ramos and Citlali Mendieta-Ramos, who are also the couple behind Antigua Latin Inspired Kitchen at 6207 W. National Ave. in West Allis.

“Our empanadas are inspired from flavors from around the world,” says Mendieta-Ramos.

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“Like our slogan says, they are big taste wrapped in a little pocket.”

We waved down the truck to ask Mendieta-Ramos more about Lola’s Empanadas, which is taking part in this year’s Milwaukee Food Truck Festival at Summerfest’s Henry Maier Festival Park on July 23.  

What is Lola’s most popular menu item?

We have two very popular empanadas.  The most popular savory empanada is our Yolanda Empanada, which is the Argentinian. It is filled with ground chuck, green olives, red bell peppers and onions. 

It is the receipe of Yolanda Costantini, a native of Argentina who was sweet enough to show us how to make this empanada in her kitchen, so we named it after her.

On the sweet side, our Guava & Cream Cheese is by far a crowd favorite, which is dusted with cinamon and sugar ... so good!

Do you offer gluten-free options?

We do! We have the comolimbian empanada which is filled with pulled pork and cheese, and we do other flavors upon requests.

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Where is Lola's Empanadas usually parked/located?

Saturday afternoons you can find Lola's Empanadas at the West Allis Farmers Market.  During the week we focus on private parties and special events such as the Milwaukee Food Truck Fest.

You can also order the empanadas online at lolasmke.com and pick up at Antigua Restaurant in West Allis.

If you could park your truck anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Right here in Milwaukee! I don't think there is a better place. However if I could, I would take the truck back to my grandmother's home town of Zimapan Hidalgo in Mexico.

My grandma's name was Lola, and this truck is a tribute to her.  Her husband left her with a young family of five, and she raise them by selling dinners at the market.   

My dad was the  youngest of the five, and he used to carry the little wooden stove she used, and would fall asleep under the table where people ate. That's how my father's love for cooking began and he became a chef and restaurateur.  

Now, I'm not only following the family tradition for the love of food, but also honoring my grandma's name and legacy by selling the empanadas at the farmer's markets.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.