Archive for ‘Uncategorized’

December 13, 2010

le truc Open in SOMA!

Hugh and I are proud to announce that le truc is officially open in SOMA at 470 Brannan Street (4th & Brannan).  We are open for lunch between the hours of 11:30am-2:30pm Monday-Friday.  Later this week we will add a breakfast service from 7:00am-9:30am.  So far lunch has been a blast and we have been selling out almost every day!  If you want to taste our famous organic chicken meatball sandwich and extreme gingerbread cookies you better come see us before 1:00pm.   

We have also launched the first version of eatletruc.com.  The website features links to all of our social media as well information as to how to find our location and book le truc for private parties and events.  Please go check it out and let us know what you think.  As soon as our POS (point-of-sale) is finished we will be adding a link that will allow you to order directly from the website.  

Over the Thanksgiving holidays we were finally able to get the bus painted black.  It has been a long time coming and we are stoked about the way that it turned out.  The bus has a beautiful vintage feel and the color combo goes perfectly with the inside copper and bronze.  Please visit our website for finished pictures of the interior and exterior of the bus.

Thank you SOMA for the warm welcome over the past two weeks.  We will work hard to continue to provide a variety of great food options at reasonable prices.  We appreciate your support and look forward to meeting everyone that comes to visit le truc.

September 14, 2010

le truc Now Open!

le truc is finally open for business! Our grand opening at Eat Real went as well as we could have hoped – even with the bus still painted yellow. The turnout at the festival was huge, it was great to see so many Bay Area residents showing up in support of street food. We were lucky to get a great spot at the event and sold close to 1,000 meals in 2 days.

We have also been participating in Matt Cohen’s Off The Grid events. These weekly street truck and cart events draw thousands of people to the Upper Haight and Fort Mason while providing a great opportunity for venders to proove that restaurant quality food can in fact come from a street truck kitchen. The word is out and people are flocking to see what’s next.

A new era of street food has begun. Come visit us this Thursday and Friday at Off The Grid to see for yourself – if you want the full experience come sample our five course chef’s menu in le truc’s private dining room. Visit our Facebook page for booking information. We hope to see all of you there!

July 27, 2010

The stainless steel wings!

The mulititalented “jeweler at large” gary anthony, my high school roommate and known most recently for his stunning beach glass pieces, will be fabricating the stainless steel wings for our side emblems (yes, this will be more than a 2D biz-card graphic: we will have these mounted on the side of the bus!)

July 20, 2010

Street food made simple with twitter!

San Francisco street food can be made simple with twitter. If your feeling hungry just log into twitter and check out the location of your favorite street food vendor.  Eat Le Truc is on twitter follow us @eatletruc, you will be able to find our location and specials all on twitter. If you are a street food fan here is an article with some more information on street food vendors on twitter – http://current.newsweek.com/budgettravel/2010/01/san_francisco_street_food_made.html

Hope you enjoy! See you at Le Truc in August!

July 9, 2010

Second Annual Eat Real Street Food Festival in Oakland, CA!

Attention Bay Area Foodies – check-out the following article for more information on the Eat Real Street Food Festival.  le truc wants to thank the dedicated team at Eat Real for putting together such an important event!  Creating sustainable healthy food choices is the wave of the future and le truc’s mission!  You can’t live a healthy lifestyle without access to affordable healthy food choices.

http://www.foodfirst.org/en/node/2967

July 8, 2010

Le Truc’s Construction in Full Swing! (posted by Blake Tally)

le truc construction is in full swing!  Hugh and I spent the first part of this week working hand-in-hand with our manufacturer, Armenco, down in LA.  Armenco is one of the premier custom truck builders on the West Coast and we are confident that the truck is going to look amazing when completed.  Imagine our grand opening at the Eat Real Street Food Festival – 34 box van taco trucks with our beautiful bus looming over them.  Which food truck would entice you more?

Armenco is currently installing the sub-frame to support all of the kitchen equipment.  The interior skeleton, built out of steel tube, is required as the exterior skin of the truck is not designed to sustain the weight that we are adding to the frame.  This is a time consuming project but they are making great strides and hope to be able to start installing the steam table, refrigerators, fryer and griddle early next week.  Royal Range is supplying the equipment and through a partnership with Hugh have designed a professional grade series that is specifically designed for street food trucks – an industry first.

We also met with Albert Lara, one of LA’s premier custom interior installers, who showed us leather samples and a few mock-ups of what the interior will look like.  The finish out in our truck is going to be a mixture of wood and leather with flame-treated copper walls and brass accents.  le truc will be different than any other vehicle currently operating in our industry as we have interior seating to promote our customers’ ability to interact personally with our executive chef in a beautifully designed space.

We also met with our lead programmer, Jonathan Ibera, regarding our customer facing POS system.  The system that we are creating will allow our customers to quickly and efficiently order from either a touch-screen mounted to the side of the truck or from their mobile phones or personal computer.  This system will allow us to access neighboring consumers without having to move the vehicle to a new location.  The touch screen design, spearheaded by graphic design guru Bryan Pape of Red 11 Designs, is progressing quickly towards a finished product and looks amazing.

Stay tuned for more blog posts.  We look forward to seeing all of you at our Grand Opening August 27th-29th at Oakland’s Eat Real Street Food Festival!

 

 

 

June 30, 2010

Live Culture/Farm Fresh Canning Event (posted by Chef Hugh)

To be at the actual source of clean, beautiful food gives one an interminable belief that, yes, everyone CAN eat well (I love you, Andy, but Alice really is on to something life-changing).

Weirdly, the field from which beautiful peaches and apricots come looks exactly like the field from which the toxic peaches of my youth sprouted: dusty, random, and sprawling.

As the sprayer-machine drove by to wet the road to avoid dustifiying the driving machines of us city-and-country-dwellers whose education and tastes dictate a life in the city, disjunct from the food supply, but, ironically, also provide us the means and curiosity to both see from whence our food comes and to attend a canning seminar, I flinched and considered possible escape routes: I once outran a malathion helicopter in Los Angeles (or at least I hope I did). But the sprayer misted the earth with water, not insecticide. Once I was confident in this, I relaxed into the task of preparing an intricate gourmet dinner for 35 equipped with little more than a bag of mesquite charcoal and an oil drum with a grate on top.

We were prepared as can be, and the last-minute decision to swap out prik king (red thai curry paste) for achiote paste turned out to be a good call. Of course, in any situation, which involves both five-star aspirations and a rustic setting, some compromises must be made. (Hopefully no one noticed!)

The most interesting part of the event was, of course, hanging w/ the inestimable Anya Fernald and her young, energetic, committed staff. A major breakthrough occurred as a result of this event: my conversations with Anya and Eat Real administrator Susan Coss may result in our organizing one of the first ever lecture series on sustainability of the labor aspect of the restaurant industry. Who cares, which farm the endive, is from if the person preparing it for you has a miserable life?

Again, special thanks to Moyra of Capay for helping organize the event, everyone at Capay and Eat Real, and of course, everyone in attendance. I can’t possibly say enough good things about these classes: take one, everybody!

June 30, 2010

The “Secret” (posted by Blake Tally)

I have found that when you put ideas, good or bad, out there (in the universe) they seem to come back amplified.  I have always believed in karma and other golden rules like treat others as you wish to be treated.  I have never taken it as far as Rhonda Byrne’s “The Secret” but have found that the more you talk about something the more energy you create towards it.

Since deciding to leave the comfort of corporate America to go off on my own I have had a number of happy coincidences occur in my life.  While contemplating whether or not to go to culinary school or start a restaurant I met my current business partner at a local Sunday brunch spot.  Coincidence or fate?

As you can see there may be more to success than willing good things to happen.  There is no substitute for sheer hard work and perseverance.  The more that my partner and I talk about our business the more unique opportunities present themselves.  The problem, if you can call it that, is that all of these fantastic opportunities come with deadlines.  If we are going to be able to take advantage we have to move fast.

People always tell me that you can measure a man by how he performs under pressure.  I believe this to be true. Based on my calculations we have 30-60 days to raise the rest of the money before a few of these happy coincidences potentially find other ways of becoming reality.  So here goes, with fingers crossed, “please bring me qualified investors, please bring me qualified investors, . . . oh yeah, and a winning lottery ticket.”

June 30, 2010

The City of San Francisco “vs.” Street Food (posted by Blake Tally)

Today the City of San Francisco’s board of supervisors is gathering to discuss street food and the risk / reward for making it a part of our every day urban fabric. Supervisor Dufty has taken an interest in the process and asked the le truc team to participate in a focus group consisting of city planners, department of public health inspectors, street food entrepreneurs and advocates. The good news: every group involved wants to see street food in San Francisco.

My partner is a very dedicated businessman and chef. Hugh has been working on this project for over a year and has documented 1000s of hours scrutinizing every last detail of our plan. Through this process we have continued to face barriers; some created by the City, some created by fellow merchants and others by neighbors. With all of our good intent why is getting a conditional use permit so hard? Why are there so many barriers? Simple: ignorance.

Through our community outreach we have heard many unfounded concerns. Neighboring merchants yelling about unfair business practice, neighbors concerned about noise and traffic and the city’s uncertainty about how to permit and monitor a mobile business. We can address each of these concerns.

Unfair business practice? Did other merchants forget the definition of capitalism? It is true that we have lower overhead due to the cost of building a truck vs. a brick-and-mortar restaurant. However, if you compare the two business models by square foot you will see that the rent we pay on our 200 square feet is upwards of $6.25/foot vs. $4.33/foot for a brick-and-mortar establishment. We have done the math and understand both business models – we just choose to operate on a mobile platform. Any restaurant in our market area could choose to do the same – stop complaining and step-up.

Oh and by the way – what about alcohol sales? The ABC will not allow a mobile catering truck to sell alcohol due to the fact that we would not be able to restrain our patrons to a specific area since our restaurant is on the street. Brick-and-mortar restaurants do not have this problem and can use alcohol sales to prop up their revenue numbers, creating a profit even if their menu fails. This alone should be enough to strike down the “unfair” business practice argument.

le truc wants to support the community in which we operate, not detract. We have designed our bus to be an artistic expression of the community, something that embodies the community’s priority on innovation and tolerance. Noise will not be a problem as we have engineered a creative solution to address this issue – indoor seating. Our bus will contain 16 indoor seats that allow customers to enjoy their meals shielded from the outside by insulated walls and windows.

The city has to redefine its definition of a mobile food business. Permitting is a simple matter of implementing realistic regulations specific to the operators. Just like any restaurant we are governed by laws designed to protect public safety. However, these rules and regs are often lower than what is considered standard at le truc. Bring it on DPH, we’re ready for you.

If you love street food come out and support the cause. The board of supervisors is meeting at 10:30 AM at City Hall. Hugh and I will be there representing not only le truc but also the street food industry in general. There is power in numbers and it is up to the people of San Francisco to turn out and be heard on this issue. Come one, come all – together we will make sure that San Francisco continues to be tolerant of a person’s right to choose an alternative to the norm.