This week Chicago’s city council voted 44-1 in favor of adopting new rules for regulating food trucks in the city.
When a terrible and stifling set of outdated regulations like Chicago’s is replaced, one might expect it to be cause for celebration among those who had suffered under the old rules.
And it’s true that supporters of mobile vending in Chicago are pleased the new regulations will allow trucks to extend their operating hours and will finally legalize the preparation of fresh food on trucks—something the previous rules did not. This had meant all food had to be prepared in advance and kept warm on the trucks. This was not only difficult and challenging from a culinary perspective but was a legally mandated food-safety nightmare waiting to happen.
But if the ugly old rules are dead, prepare to meet their zombie successors.
These nefarious new regulations mandate that food trucks stay at least 200 feet away from restaurants—a near impossibility in downtown Chicago, as the handy graphic above produced by the Institute for Justice illustrates.
“Our map showed the Loop, Chicago’s downtown area, where there are hardly any slivers that are safely 200 feet away from a restaurant,” says Beth Kregor, director of the Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship at the University of Chicago Law School, which provides free legal advocacy and assistance for low-income entrepreneurs in Chicago—including many food truck owners and operators. “The chance of finding a legal parking spot in one of those slivers is almost non-existent.”
The new rules also require food trucks to submit to constant GPS monitoring. Violations of the proximity restriction or other rules carry harsh fines of up to $2,000—a staggering fine for a small business.
Food truck owners and supporters are angered.
“While it will be great that I can now put salsa on my bao tacos or even cook on board, what good does cooking do for me if I don’t have anywhere to park and sell my food,” wonders Amy Le, co-owner of the DucknRoll food truck and co-founder of the new Illinois Food Truck Association.
“At the end of the day, I just want to sell my banh mi and tacos without fear that I’m going to be slammed with a $2,000 ticket for parking 195 feet from a restaurant,” says Le. “And I don’t appreciate that the city feels the need to put an ankle bracelet on us with their GPS requirement.”
“I love the fact that the city is now allowing truck owners to cook on board and operate longer hours,” says Richard Myrick, the Chicago-based editor of Mobile Cuisine Magazine and author of the forthcoming book Running a Food Truck for Dummies, “but with the added location restrictions, GPS requirements and increased fines, I am concerned that truck owners are going to find it more difficult to make a profit from day to day.”
“Chicago’s new ordinance that allows cooking on trucks is a step in the right direction,” says Matt Geller, who leads the Southern California Mobile Food Vendors Association and who is one of the leading authorities nationwide on mobile vending regulations. “Unfortunately, their 200 foot prohibition harms both the consumer and the burgeoning industry Chicago is trying [to] support.”
Find the entire article by Baylen Linnekin at Reason.com here
Joaquin’s Curb Cuisine has stopped serving food until it can find a new base for its operations, said co-owner Patrick Helmick.
“We’re hoping it will not be for very long,” Helmick said.
Since early March, the food truck has been selling tacos at various locations in Winston-Salem, including Krankies Coffee, Washington Perk and Provision Co., the corner of Sixth and Trade streets and various corporate clients’ sites. The business’s base, or commissary, was in the former Cumberland Café building at 4665 Brownsboro Road.
Helmick, who owns Joaquin’s with his business partner Thomas Wilson, said the Forsyth County Health Department had found deficiencies in the building during an inspection.
The business partners believed their landlord should make repairs to the building, but the two parties were unable to come to an agreement, so the partners closed Joaquin’s, Helmick said.
“We really had no choice because the health department was not going to allow us to operate out of that building,” he said.
Sheryl Emory, the food and lodging program supervisor for the health department, said that when Joaquin’s decided to go into the former space that Cumberland Café operated as a restaurant, Cumberland Café’s permit was still active. As a result, Joaquin’s was issued a transitional permit.
Emory said it is the responsibility of the new permit holder or the transitional permit holder to bring everything into compliance with state rules.
“Whatever agreements are made between the tenant and the landlord is strictly between the tenant and the landlord,” Emory said.
The health department required that Joaquin’s complete floor, wall, ceiling and equipment repairs and increase lighting levels in the building.
Emory said Joaquin’s has 180 days from the day its permit was issued on Feb. 13 to bring noncompliant items up to standard to receive a regular operations permit. Joaquin’s transitional permit expires Aug. 11.
Helmick said he and Wilson are looking diligently for new space and talking to many parties.
“We’re not looking for charity,” he said. “We’re certainly looking to pay rent to have a commissary.”
Joaquin’s received one proposal to join a catering company in Kernersville, Helmick said, but he wants to stay in Winston-Salem or close by.
“We don’t have anything concrete yet,” he said. “If we did, we’d certainly be very quick to make that public. Right now, we’re just looking for a new home.”
Our neighbors to the north and south, as well as across the country, have food cart lots – places where mobile restaurants flock so that diners can mingle and graze. Not that we’re bitter about that or anything.
That Tacoma has no such thing struck Alyson Jones as not only odd, but she also thought it created a real hole in our dining landscape. She thought she could fix that, if only temporarily. Her solution was Moveable Feast, an event she created to erect a mobile food lot, if only for a day, noon-7 p.m. Sunday July 29 at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma. It’s believed to be the city’s first meet-up organized just for food carts.
Jones, director of media and events for the Tacoma Rainiers, is an avid foodie who enjoys the culture of mobile dining. When Jones met Odette D’Aniello, owner of Tacoma’s Celebrity Cake Studio, at a fundraiser, the two started discussing D’Aniello’s new venture: the Cake Mobile, a lavender cupcake truck that delivers treats throughout the region. That conversation led to co-creating Moveable Feast.
D’Aniello and Jones started slowly, booking just a few trucks, but in recent weeks they have been surprised to see their list grow to 18 South Sound trucks. That’s a surprising improvement from when they first started with mostly Seattle trucks and few locals.
“We have a lot of trucks, but we don’t have a culture here,” said Jones, explaining why local carts were so slow to sign on. Her hope is that the event will cement the idea of a mobile food pod, as they’re called in different parts of the country, that would become permanent. Alternately, she said, Moveable Feast has the potential to become a semi-regular meet-up at Cheney Stadium. For the inaugural event, Jones is estimating attendance at 5,000-7,000 diners. Food sold will be everything from Southern to Filipino, from Greek to Mexican, from fried meat pies to fry bread, from ice pops to cupcakes.
“I think it is going to be awesome to showcase all of these genius, gourmet mobile kitchens and see the foodies of the South Sound come out and enjoy,” wrote Jones in an email. “I know we’ll be seeing a little of everything: authentic lumpia and pancit, shrimp and oyster po’ boys, poutine, organic ice pops, homemade ice cream.”
She’s arranging the trucks in a semi-circle so diners will be able to see every choice with a single turn. Carts will be grouped into categories of savory and sweet. Seating will be in the middle.
Think of the event as a festival of sorts with live music, a skate demo, bouncy houses provided by Mary Bridge Children’s Hospital (the beneficiary of the event), Forza coffee and Pepsi will provide root beer floats and Celebrity Cake Studio will sponsor a children’s area for cupcake decorating. South Sound breweries Harmon, 7 Seas and Silver City will serve in a beer garden.
The event is free – except for the cost of food – and so is parking. Vendors will set their own pricing for food. Those attending should bring cash because not every vendor will accept debit or credit cards. Jones has this warning: “We are expecting large crowds so there are bound to be lines for some, if not all, of the trucks. These guys are used to working fast but are sure to be popular so bear with them.”
CHECK BACK: Sunday, I’ll file a live report from the festival in the early afternoon. Looking at the vendor list, I can guarantee that a cupcake from the Cake Mobile will be on my dining list, as will Firehouse Grill Extreme Burgers, an Olympia food truck getting a lot of attention for its stellar burgers. Fleischkuechle is that truck that always sells its fried meat pies outside the Puyallup Fair – you can bet I’ll be eating one of those.
From hot dogs to tacos and fried meat pies, here are the locals and other trucks that are booked:
South Sound mobile trucks, catering stands and local restaurants: Barriga Llena (Mexican), Burrito Boy (Mexican, owned by Josefina’s), Celebrity Cake Studio’s Cakemobile (desserts), Choripan (Argentina), Firehouse Grill’s Extreme Burgers (burgers), Fleischkuechle (fried meat pies, of Puyallup Fair fame), Hello Cupcake (dessert), Hilltop Pop Shop (frozen treats), Ice Cream Social (dessert), Island Comfort Food (Island style barbecue), Jamaican Sensation, Jay Dogs (hot dogs), Kinetic Kitchens (American food), Lumpia World (Filipino), Pampeana Empanadas (turnovers/empanadas), Pull My Ear, Ricardo’s Wood Fired Pizza, Rico’s Tacos.
Seattle area vendors: Skillet Street Food (upscale American), Maximus Minimus (the kitschy truck shaped like a pig serving pulled pork sandwiches), Where Ya At, Matt (Cajun and soul food), Athena’s (Mediterranean), Big Food Mobile (flatbread sandwiches), The Jerk Station (Caribbean), Street Treats (desserts), Off the Rez (fry bread), Contigo (modern Mexican), Fusion on the Run (island food/banh mi), I Want Curry Now (Indian), The Box on Wheels (Asian fusion), Raney Brothers BBQ and Kaosamai Thai.
Tacoma Moveable Feast
When: noon-7 p.m. Sunday July 29, 2012
Cost: Free, other than the cost of food at the trucks. Free parking.
VIP entry: 11 a.m.-noon; $10 buys an hour early access and a festival T-shirt. VIP tickets are the only way to get the shirt.
In case you missed my story last month, here’s my guide to 14 South Sound taco trucks.
After a stunning debut, the Vendy Awards are returning to Philadelphia. On July 28th, at The Lot @39th and Market, we’ll determine the best street food vendor in Philadelphia while raising money for The Food Trust.
THE VENDYS ARE:
- An intense cook-off between the best sidewalks chefs in the city.
- A festival of respect and gratitude for all vendors and everything they provide us–from your morning coffee (half-and-half, two sugars) to the $2 umbrella when you get caught in the thunderstorm.
- A fundraiser for The Food Trust, a non-profit organization that strives to make healthy food available to all.
This Year’s Finalists:
TACOS DON MEMO
Chef/Owner: Leo Saavedra
Where are you from: Guerrero, MX
What kind of food do you serve?: authentic Mexican
Specialties: tacos and burritos, al pastor
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know:I came to the USA in 1998 with my father and went to culinary school in New York. In 2000 I came to Philadelphia to work at a Japanese restaurant. In 2007 I opened my cart-it was hard, but right away the people came because they loved the food. I have built a following; I have customers who eat my food 3 times a week.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: The food I make is different –it is authentic, it isn’t tex-mex–I create the same flavors that I grew up with and share them with Philadelphia. My food is delicious, fresh, and full of flavor.
LIL DAN’S GOURMET
Owners/Chef: Laura Owens Dan Pennachietti/Nate Pennachietti
Where are you from: Philadelphia
What kind of food do you serve?: Italian and American
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know:we opened the Business in memory of Our son (Lil Dan) after he passed away September 21st 2005
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: We are dedicated to making our customers happy! Nothing else.
Owners: Verna Swerdlow/ David Jurkofsky
Where are you from: We are both from Philadelphia suburbs
What kind of food do you serve?: Eclectic comfort foods
Specialties: Pulled pork grilled cheese- Banh mi
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: We should win the Vendy Award based on the whole package. We have great food, great customer service, and we are team players with our compadres. Ultimately we are not competitive with others, only with ourselves. We have a goal of providing fresh classic comfort foods, with a smile. I’m also thinking that we are the only mobile food vendors in Philly that can get our fans to sing, dance, do stupid human tricks and deliver jokes on cue.
THE SMOKE TRUCK
Chef/Owners: Mark A Coates, Chef/Co-owner; Chris Martino, Co-owner
Where are you from: Central Mississippi
What kind of food do you serve: Traditional Southern BBQ and soul food
Specialties: Carolina Chopped Pork BBQ
What I want the world to know: That they can get world class BBQ right off a truck in Philadelphia, PA!!
Why should we win the Vendy Award:Because we are the best…..
Chef/Owner(s): Siu-Lien Fung/ Carlos Perez
Where are you from: Venezuela
What kind of food do you serve?: Arepas and Venezuelan food
Specialties: Arepas: Corn flour patty split and filled with deliciousness and Choripan: Spicy Chorizo sandwich with sweet platains and caramelized onions.
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know:We love Venezuelan food and we want everyone to love it as well. Our arepas are gluten free and we offer a wide variety of fillings including vegetarian.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award? Because we love what we do. Our food is healthy, unique and delicious.
THE KING OF FALAFEL
Chef/Owners: Nabil Hined Akkeh
Where are you from: Syria
What kind of food do you serve?: Middle Eastern Food
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know:We were both electrical engineers back in Syria.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: We helped introduce Philadelphia to Middle Eastern food. When we started we were one of the very few serving this kind of food, now it is everywhere—on the streets and in restaurants—but our customers keep coming back to us. They come back because we serve healthy and affordable food made from good ingredients. We soak and grind our chickpeas to make our falafel and hummus—we don’t use mixes or pre-made food, everything is made by us from high quality, fresh ingredients—that is our tradition and you can taste the difference.
Chef/Owners: George Pan
Where are you from: Philadelphia
What kind of food do you serve?: Asian Inspired hand-held creations called Foowiches
Specialties: Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai,
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: Foo Truck is changing the way Asian foods (Taiwanese, Vietnamese, Thai) are consumed. From our Vietnamese-inspired Lemongrass Chicken to our Thai-inspired Green Curry Quinoa, no chopsticks or plastic forks required! Our Asian Inspired Hand-Held creations have modified traditional Asian foods into true Philly “STREET FOO.”
Chef/Owner(s): Elaine Belmont Andrew Tantisunthorn
Where are you from: Elaine is from Huntsville, Alabama and Andrew is from Washington, D.C.
What kind of food do you serve?: We serve a locally sourced seasonal menu influenced by Southern, Mexican and
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know: The art of cooking is our means of connecting to the community. Our food enables a conversation between the growers and crafts people who supply our ingredients and the customers who enjoy them.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: Our menu is small but our skills and our ideas are broad and exciting. we offer enticing meals and coupled with our commitment to fair food and farming, we help create a new normal for what people can expect from a food truck.
LIL POP SHOP
Chef/Owners: Jeanne Chang, Chef owner and Vince Tseng, owner
Where are you from: Jeanne comes to Philadelphia via California and Durham. Vince currently lives in London and is also from California.
What kind of food do you serve?: Delicious Popsicles
Specialties: Popsicles featuring the best local produce and dairy from the Philadelphia area in unique flavor combinations. Currently on our menu: Cantaloupe Rose, Goat Cheese with Black Raspberries and Honey, Chocolate with Salted Caramel Brownie. In the works: Creamy Corn with Creme Fraiche, Creamy Plum with Lavender and Honey, White Nectarine and Ginger, Mango with Lemon Verbena and Curry, and Blue cheese with Spodee soaked figs.
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know: Lil’ Pop Shop is bringing popsicles back from the dark side. No artificial dyes or syrups are used. Our pops are made with seasonal local produce and hormone free local dairy. Our flavors change weekly with the farmers’ market bounty.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendys? We believe that popsicles can be better and strive to make the best popsicle for all to enjoy. Whether you are a child and want something more straight forward like Raspberry Yogurt, a health enthusiast searching for a cool healthy treat, or a foodie thrill seeker, we have a flavor waiting for you. Regardless of your palate’s preferences, your popsicle will be hand made using only the best ingredients.
Chef/Owners: John Suh, Franklin Shen, Dan Tang (chef)
Where are you from: Philadelphia
What kind of food do you serve?: Desserts (“Gourmet”)
Specialties: French Macarons
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know:Our food truck Sheila was once a mail postal truck outside the World Trade Center
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: French Macarons, enough said.
LITTLE BABY’S ICE CREAM
Chef/Owner: Pete Angevine, Martin Brown, Jeffrey Ziga
Name of business: Little Baby’s Ice Cream
Years in business: 1
Where are you from: East Kensington, Philadelphia
What kind of food do you serve?: Small-Batch, Hand-Made, Super-Premium Ice Cream Non-Dairy Frozen Desserts!
Specialties: Imagination! Humor! Craft!
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know: Ice Cream is a Feeling.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: Little Baby’s recognizes Ice Cream as a universal catalyst for joyful diversion and a stoked local community. We are happy to connect with the rich Ice Cream history in Philadelphia and link it with our unique vision for the future. This is a special time.
Chef/Owners: Gretchen Fantini
Name of business: Sweet Box
Where are you from: Philadelphia
What kind of food do you serve?: Premium ingredient cupcakes…and more.
Specialties: Every single cupcake is special because they truly are Made with Love, but the favorite is my Southern Red Velvet. It is a cocoa buttermilk cake made with a Madagascar bourbon vanilla cream cheese frosting.
Tell us something about you or your business that you want the world to know: Before starting my sweets-to-the-streets business, my previous profession was in the legal field. Don’t wait any longer, follow your heart and make it a reality.
Why do you deserve to win the Vendy Award?: I might not be able to win us the Super Bowl but I can make Philadelphians happy by creating modern desserts that not only look good but taste just as good. I am committed to bring that high standard that they look for in every single dessert that I make.
On July 20, Dearborn will join the popular mobile food trend when the first ever Food Truck Rally comes to west downtown.
The Dearborn Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the West Dearborn Downtown Development Authority and the Michigan Mobile Food Vendor’s Association, is hosting the first of three such events in the west Dearborn parking lot behind PizzaPapalis.
The event will run from 5-9 p.m., and will bring nine vendors to the area to sell a variety of foods from mobile units–including ice cream, gourmet hot dogs, tacos and more.
Subsequent Food Truck Rallies will be held in Dearborn on Aug. 24 and Sept. 21 at the lot between the West Village Parking Decks, and the parking lot behind the Double Olive, respectively.
“It’s like an ice cream truck,” explained chamber President Jennifer Giering. “All self-sustaining trucks literally throw up side of their truck and each one has a specialty gourmet menu.”
For example, Jacques Tacos will bring their braised rib and roasted pork tacos; Treat Dreams will sell their handmade ice cream; and Franks Anatra will have upscale hot dog offerings.
Live music will accompany the event, and families are encouraged.
Giering said the idea came together quickly, thanks to the MMFVA’s network of local mobile food vendors. The chamber placed a call to the association, and soon had a slew of vendors on board.
She added that in her talks with other groups that have brought the event to Royal Oak, Ferndale and other cities, the event has not only been fun for attendees, but helpful for local businesses.
“We don’t want to create an event that will take business away from restaurants,” Giering explained. “We know for a fact that 700 people walked away from the event in Ferndale and went to local businesses.“
And for those who have never tried it, she thinks it will be a surprisingly fun, new experience for Dearborn.
“It’s kind of kitschy,” she said. “It’s edgy and cool and urban. We think this is going to be fun.”
Learn more about the vendors at www.mmfva.org.
WATERFORD, MI - Fans of street food will have something to look forward to when a band of local food truck companies will join to feed mobile food fans and help raise funds for a worthy cause.
The Waterford/Pontiac Elks Lodge No. 810, in conjunction with the Michigan Mobile Food Vendor Association, will host a gathering of food trucks to help benefit the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life. The event, which is scheduled from 4-9 p.m. Wednesday, July 11, on the Elks lodge’s 18-acre property at 2100 Scott Lake Road in Waterford, hopes to draw many patrons.
With a portion of the proceeds from the event going to Relay For Life, James Mastrangel, owner of Jacques Tacos and vice president of the Michigan Mobile Food Vendor’s Association, is hoping for a large turnout all for a great cause.
“It’s always great to roll off the pavement and onto the grass and it’s going toward a worthy cause,” said Mastrangel.
Food trucks featured during Wednesday’s rally include:
- Big R BBQ
- Concrete Cuisine
- Franks Anatra
- Downtown Trailer of Flavor
- Dago Joes
- Jacques’ Tacos
- Treat Dreams
In addition to the food truck rally a beer tent will also be available. Up In The Air Disc Golf will be providing disc golf demonstrations on a 9-hole course set up on the Elks Lodge grounds and live music will be provided by local band, The Vintage. The Waterford Elks Lodge is located at 2100 Scott Lake Road, Waterford Township.
For more information on the rally, including an up-to-date list of food trucks participating, visit the Michigan Mobile Food Vendor Association’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/mmfva. For more information on the Pontiac Waterford Elks Club visit their website at www.elks810.com. For more information on Relay For Life, visit www.relayforlife.org.
Let’s face it: the summer internship isn’t the best route for all students.
For those with entrepreneurial instincts and a business-savvy mindset, more is desired. These type of students seek to be their own boss one day. Unlike internships and summer jobs, these businesses put the student in charge and give them the additional experience that will make any future investor, MBA admissions officer, or employer understand the student’s dedication.
Here are ten low-cost starter businesses that college students can begin:
1. Food Cart: There are only three things you need to create a food cart: a cart/kiosk, a license to sell, and food to cook. Sites like GigMasters.com offer food carts for rent across the U.S., or you could set up your own table. The key is to finding a good location, such as near a college campus or shopping area. Permits range depending on the location. For instance, a permit in Philadelphia is $150, while a permit for New York City is $200. Hot dogs, baked goods, and tacos sell well due to low-cost supplies and minimal labor.
2. Avon Sales Rep: If you’re good with sales and you want to be your own boss without the added costs of starting your own business, being a sales rep for Avon is a good bet. With just $10, you’re on the way to getting things started, and unlike other direct sales companies, the starter kit is included in this fee. Set your own hours, a space for yourself in your house, and run your business as you please.
3. SAT Tutoring: No one is more qualified to tutor prospective college students on the SATs than a college student who did well on it. SAT prep books cost between $20-30. Set aside money for advertising in your local paper, and put up your own ads in public places. Set your hourly rate at a reasonable price. TestMagic charges $85 per hour, while others go as high as $200 per hour.
4. Start A T-Shirt Company: Raymond Lei, creator of ooShirts, created his own custom t-shirt business while in college. If you’ve got a funny sense of humor or great design style, starting your own t-shirt company is a great venture. After you’ve drafted a few ideas, the next step is to find a printer. Depending on how many shirts you’re printing, costs can run high, but as long as the demand is even higher, you’ll continue to be profitable.
5. Moving Service: All you need to begin your own moving services is a moving truck, a valid license, and the manual labor. U-Haul trucks can be between $20-40 per day, plus mileage, and most movers charge about $200-400 for a local move. Advertise your service on Craigslist and in local areas.
6. Childcare: Starting your own babysitting services or daycare center can be easy, as long as you invest in the proper resources and become qualified. First, obtain a childcare license, which can cost up to $100. You should be First Aid and CPR trained, and these certificates cost about $50 (thought there are some places that offer this for free, such as Red Cross). Make sure that your home is childproof and have toys to keep kids occupied. Advertise your service locally, or on trusted babysitter websites, such as Sittercity.com and Care.com.
7. Sell Your Arts Crafts: If you’re an artist, selling your work can be the perfect entrepreneurial venture for you. You can set up a profile on Etsy and sell your work there, as well as at arts and crafts festivals and school campuses. It might be helpful to have a web site you can direct people to for photos of your work and contact information.
8. Pure Romance Consultant: Pure Romance is one of the fasted growing direct-sales businesses. Unfazed by sexuality, women become consultants to make a difference in the lives of other women by hosting in-house parties and bringing fun and awareness to sexual health and products such as lubricants, performance enhancers, arousal creams, and more. Start off by purchasing a starting kit for as low as $199 (lower if you catch it on sale), and you’re on your way to turning a profit. Consultants can make between $100-$500 per party. These are perfect for bachelorette parties, but you can also create your own party themes, such as “Wine Chocolate Party” or “Back On The Market Party.”
9. Web site Design: Everyone wants to start a website but they don’t know where to start. Fortunately, if you’ve got some graphic design experience, you can freelance your work for a hefty profit. Logos can be sold for over $300, especially if you are designing for a small business. Set packages for yourself, where you offer web design and other website services for a flat fee.
10. Take Advantage Of College Colors: These days, students are making money off of school colors and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be able to capitalize off this trend. Buying shoelaces, sweatpants, bracelets, etc., in bulk with your school colors will we easy to sell—especially during sporting events.
HONOLULU, HI - The owner of the popular Hawaii food trucks Xtreme Tacos and Fairycakes is getting into the wedding cake business.
Wendy Awai-Dakroub, who also owns a restaurant chain in the Middle East, has purchased Frosted, an established business specializing in custom wedding cakes and cupcakes, from Melissa Char, who sold the business to pursue a master’s degree in education.
Awai-Dakroub is best known in Hawaii for her colorful food trucks that draw long lines at locations around Oahu.
The mustard-yellow Xtreme Tacos truck, which is often seen in Kakaako and around Windward Oahu, sells Mexican food with spicy sauces.
It is accompanied by Fairycakes, a bright purple van named “Lola,” which serves up whoopie pies, brownies, cupcakes, and gooey bars made from scratch.
Fairycakes’ sales took off, and Awai-Dakroub became flooded with requests for wedding and specialty cakes.
“I couldn’t meet these people’s demands with my van, and thought why not,” Awai-Dakroub said. “So we had our consultants put out a notice that we were looking to buy a wedding company, and, well, here we are.”
Awai-Dakroub intends to keep the Frosted brand, but will call her new business Frosted by Fairycakes. She is looking to hire five people.
Find the entire article from bizjournals.com here
Honolulu’s fun, fab and fresh mobile cakery!
It’s not quite Fancy Food Truck Friday, but here at Altadena Patch we are happy to preview any community event that involves food trucks, and add in the fireworks and the nice venue and this one should be a winner.
For those who have not already heard, the event is being hosted by the Altadena Chamber of Commerce at the parking lot of the Altadena Golf Course at 1456 E. Mendocino Drive from 6 to 10 p.m. on Monday. A portion of proceeds from food sales goes to the Chamber’s scholarship fund.
Though in actual fact there is no previous event to compare this food truck line-up to, we’ll do our usual format of which trucks are new to town and which are old favorites, comparing the event to past Fancy Food Truck Friday events.
So without further ado, let’s go to the line-up.
New to Town
- Slammin Sliders – This truck features not just the traditional slider (little tiny burgers) but also pulled pork, lobster roll, shrimp-po boy sliders and more. Also, smoothies salads, various fry options and slaw.
- The Greasy Wiener - It wouldn’t be the 4th of July without hot dogs, so this truck should be a hit. The truck sells ’Jersey Style Fried Dogs’ and since I’m from Jersey, I’m very eager to see exactly what that entails (I’m not sure if I missed out on an important part of my heritage or if Jersey-style hot dogs are not actually a real thing). In any case, I’ve skipped these guys at past events, but this might be the venue where I try them out.
- A Rockin Ice - Another very American-themed truck, A Rockin Ice features mammoth-sized shaved ice atop vanilla ice cream. The truck’s very friendly owner was looking for a place to park during the Town and Country fireworks display last year, so this year he is getting his chance.
- Komodo - This truck was at Fancy Food Truck Friday last month. They serve Asian-themed tacos, one of several trucks that do this. I’ve tried their shrimp tacos, which I found very spicy, but good. They actually have a physical restaurant location in West L.A.
- Sweet Arleen’s - An entrant on the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars program, this truck has cupcakes, bread pudding, and other sweets. They were in Altadena at September’s Food Truck event.
- All American Gourmet Grill - Not much information out there on this truck -it appears to only have a Facebook page, rather than a full website with menu, but they do say they feature gourmet grilled cheese. They were at FFTF in October but I did not eat there.
- Rosa’s Bella Cucina – Mobile Italian food. It’s good – the items are pretty standard, the kind of sandwiches you find at an upscale pizzeria. I have tried the pesto caprese and the chicken parm and I would recommend both. They also have salads and desserts.
With the mobile food industry continuing to grow we are constantly on the look out to assist both the owner operators as well as the customers of these rolling bistros. From time to time we run polls to gain industry information that truck owners can use to help better their customer service and the options that they provide to the communities that they serve. Other times our polls are set to find out general information “we” want to know.
This week’s poll centers around menu pricing. We want to know what your menu’s average entree price is. This number should only include the price of your full sized menu entree items. If you have package deals for multiple items (ie.. 2 tacos for $3) feel free to include those in your average. Let us know, so we can share our findings with our readers.
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