I wonder if anyone who decides to own/operate a food truck thinks it’s just a matter of “Oh hey, I’ll buy a truck, load it with food and just sell food to my heart’s content!!!!! Everyone will love it and I’ll live happily ever after!!”
Not the case. LOL. We got the truck. We drove 4 and a half hours to Bedford, VA to pick it up. It made it home perfectly. Then we realized some fluids were leaking, lights weren’t working, it’s temperamental when you take off. Or not take off–that’s probably a better description. I feel sorry for anyone behind us when we are “taking off”. Mr. Boombastic has to find the sweet spot and then he’s happy and goes.
We spent the better part of all of last week prepping. Aside from the slider buns and the tots and hot dogs, nothing is store bought. Everything is made from scratch and I LOVE IT!!!! I tossed around the idea of baking buns from scratch but remembered I also have a 40/hour a week job and there just isn’t time. Hell, I’d make my own hot dogs if I had half a clue. We hand patty the sliders, 1 oz patties each (4 go in each adult meal, so it’s like a Quarter Pounder, except they’re delicious). We roast the pork butt low and slow and hand shred it. The BBQ sauce is made from scratch and our slaw is made fresh each time we hit the road. I can’t believe how much shredded cabbage comes from one head! It’s constant prepping, totally hands on. There is no rest, that’s for sure. Luckily I’ve never been one for rest.
Then there’s the cleaning part. My truck is cleaner than any kitchen I’ve been in (I mean besides my home kitchen). When you’re the only one using your equipment there are no excuses for things not being clean. So there’s that. It’s a little bit tedious.
Having to use a commissary for all your prepping is a challenge as well. You can’t just get all your items and drop them off without forgetting something, or missing your favorite pots, pans, utensils. People actually work at the commissary, it’s their real job. And there you are…having to ask questions, or having to make sure you can use this or that for fear that they are going to have to use said item. Sharing space is a pain in the ass. I don’t like being in anyone’s way, or at anyone’s mercy. And that is how a commissary feels. I understand the concept. I’m just not a huge fan of the rule. What do you do.
We had a trial run at the house with friends we knew would provide honest feedback and recommendations and ideas. That was a breeze. Our actual first night, I’d consider it a soft opening, was at Live at the City Laundry. We were nervous. And tripping over each other and unorganized even though we’ve rehearsed it time and time again. I don’t think anything prepares you for Go Time when it’s your first time. Thankfully it was a relatively slow night and the customers were cool as shit and easy going. I forgot someone’s side of slaw, and when I remembered, they were long gone. Probably not the greatest night for 5 star reviews but it was really good for us.
Two days later we had a gig at Riverside Subaru. IT WAS AWESOME. 3 hours nonstop. And I mean we did not stop. We did forget someone’s sliders… Lucky me, it was a super awesome dude who works at BSH where I work full time and he was very patient. He really should have tossed a brick at my head to wake me up Ah, it was hella great though!!!!!!
We’ve been pounding the pavement and are booked up for the next couple of months with the exception of a Friday here and there and lemme tell you….Busy is GOOD!!! One thing that I was really naive about coming into this business was the fact that people want you to pay them to have you at their events. I always imagined it like a bar asking a band to come play at their establishment. Have you ever heard of the band paying the bar to let them come play? Me neither. But that’s not the food truck world. We have turned down a few events. It’s not just the entry fee that comes into play. It’s that, how many other trucks are going to be there, how many people will be in attendance? You sort of have to weigh all that out to make sure it’s worth all your prep time, travel time and just time in general. It’s interesting.
Most of all, it is FUN!!!!!!
That’s it for now…Looking forward to more adventures in the Food Truck world and all that it brings. If you are looking for a food truck in the New Bern or surrounding area drop us a line any time. I can’t wait to continue to share stories, tell funny customer stories and share more of our Slide It Forward reactions and our quarterly charity news.