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Mobile Cuisine is the complete online resource destination for the mobile food industry. We are dedicated to delivering our faithful readers every must-read street food, food truck, food cart and food stand story bubbling up across the Web, along with exclusive news, interviews, and amazing photos.

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SEWICKLEY PA

SEWICKLEY, PA - There will be food trucks at Friday’s final summer Night Mart after all.

But Sewickley Council President Susan Aleshire said if Night Mart organizers plan the event next year, “we don’t want just any kind of food truck.”

Council members last week rescinded a July vote to ban the popular restaurant-on-wheels concept for Night Mart events planned for July and August. Aleshire was the only council member who voted last week not to rescind the previous vote. The measure passed 8-1.

Organizer Rhonda McFarland said July’s event was disappointing because brick-and-mortar restaurants were jammed and patrons had nowhere else to go for food.

“A lot of families were very disappointed on the last Night Mart,” said McFarland, who owns Threadz Boutique and works with Sewickley Shops — a group of business owners who planned this summer’s Night Marts. “A lot of them walk in with their children and they’re not going to sit down at a restaurant, they’re not going to drink. They want a place where they can come with their children and just get a bite to eat and then walk back home. There were a lot of very disappointed residents.”

McFarland said she met with several restaurant owners — many of whom signed a petition saying they were agreeable to allowing food trucks during the event. She presented the petition to council.

Three food trucks are scheduled to be part of Friday’s final event: Oh My Grill, Fourth Street Barbeque and Food Fight.

Council banned food trucks after June’s Night Mart because organizers had not presented insurance information from food vendors, Aleshire said.

“We had decided as council and sent a letter out saying that because you did not have insurances and they were here, that was not good,” she said. “We don’t want to be held liable for that. So that’s why council said for this year, we’re not going to do that anymore.

Aleshire said she thought organizers undermined council’s previous vote “to go ahead and get the people, and that’s great that you have them and you have their insurances, but we already said not to do that.”

Find the entire article at triblive.com <here>

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New-Iberia-Main-Street

NEW IBERIA, LA - New Iberia food truck vendors will be heading to city hall next week. Vendors said they’re losing money and they have city council members to blame.

Food truck vendors Ashley Maillet and Elizabeth Shensky have been throwing out their gourmet coffee and European pastries every afternoon. Not from a lack of customers, they said, but lack of support from the city of New Iberia.

Compared with traditional restaurants that can set their own hours of operation. Food trucks in the City of New Iberia, according to an ordinance adopted last year, can only operate between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2:30 a.m.

“[The ordinance has hurt sales] tremendously. About ninety percent of sales. I’ve invested a lot of money into this business,” said Maillet.

Maillet, 24, said coffee, cups and equipment have cost her about $1,000. She began selling her gourmet coffee out of Chef Gregory’s food truck on Iberia Street last week. After three days of selling coffee and pastries before 10 a.m., she and Shensky, 19, were told to stop.

“A local business owner around here called in and he called one of the council members,” said Shensky.

It was city Councilwoman Natialie Robin, who drafted the food truck ordinance.

“I didn’t want to disrupt the regular work flow and the business people who have had businesses here forever with too many trucks being parked out here in the morning and setting up too early,” said Robin.

Councilwoman Robin said a public meeting will be held to discuss changing the ordinance and the food truck hours of operation.

The meeting will be on Sept. 2 at 5:30 p.m. on the third floor of city hall.

Find the original article with video at klfy.com <here>

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chicago food kiosk

CHICAGO, IL - When the city announced this week that a nonprofit organization had been granted permission to sell Asian kale salad and other “healthy, local food” out of repurposed newsstands downtown, Mayor Rahm Emanuel heralded the agreement as evidence of his commitment to create jobs by allowing businesses to innovate.

But an activist who has been working unsuccessfully for years to get the city to allow food carts to sell tamales and other humble snacks throughout Chicago neighborhoods greeted the business permit — granted to e.a.t. spots — as an example of the Emanuel administration playing favorites with an upstart business serving upscale food while working-class entrepreneurs can’t get City Hall to act.

Beth Kregor, director of the University of Chicago’s Institute for Justice Clinic on Entrepreneurship, said she was struck by the optics of e.a.t. spots getting the go-ahead to sell items like tofu scramble wraps and gluten-free muffins at four shuttered newsstands that the city said were “located throughout the central business district.”

If it investigated by the media I am sure we will find out its another typical Emanuel pay toplay deal. His only loyalty is to the almighty dollar. The only reason he has been against foood trucks is to protect his donors.He has given miilions of tax dollars to contributors and thats all he…

Meanwhile, Kregor said, independent cart operators in neighborhoods like Little Village still have to worry they will get ticketed or even arrested because it is illegal for them to sell corn and cut-up fruit.

“It’s astounding that this very traditional business that’s really pulsing at the heart of many of our communities remains outlawed,” Kregor said.

Ald. Roberto Maldonado, 26th, introduced an ordinance in May to license food carts, saying the vendors now found all over his Northwest Side ward are desperate to come into compliance so they don’t have to constantly worry about getting hassled by police.

“Why shouldn’t we embrace this entrepreneurship that’s been going on in Chicago for decades?” Maldonado said at the time.

Maldonado’s proposal, which would require cart operators to pay a $100 annual licensing fee and prepare food in licensed kitchens, has not received a City Council hearing. Maldonado said calling e.a.t. spots an emerging business is “a stretch,” but that he thinks it means his own plan has a good chance of success. He said he expects to get a hearing soon on his food cart ordinance soon “so that we can bring these businesses out of the shadows.”

Find the entire article at chicagotribune.com <here>

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bento box rochester

ROCHESTER, NY - There is no denying, a quick lunch from a food truck can really hit the spot. The Bento Box has set up shop in downtown Rochester for a couple of months. They say business is good.

“We work hard, everybody works hard to be where they are at. So, we’re just trying to make a living and trying to make some money,” said Mike Siharath of the Bento Box.

People who cook their food inside buildings have a problem with the food trucks.

Mikie Nash owns Cravings on Main, a small breakfast and lunch cafe in the Cascade District. Summer is Nash’s busy time, but this summer is different.

“I attribute that a lot to having a very strange weather summer and also I attribute it to the food trucks being around the corner from me,” said Nash.

A food truck parked near Nash’s business can make or break her day.

“On a given day, they can affect me $125 to $200, which I cannot afford to have happen,” added Nash.

Nash is teaming up with other downtown restaurant owners to let the city know their concerns. She gathered 400 signatures from restaurant owners and workers to show city council not everyone is welcoming food trucks.

Nash isn’t against competition in her neighborhood. She wants more restaurants and retail, just not on wheels.

“They pull up and they take our customers and then they leave,” said Nash.

Find the entire article with video at rochesterhomepage.net <here>

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tacos churros food truck

BATON ROUGE, LA - Students were greeted with more than just syllabuses and new professors on the first day of classes on Monday when Taco Churro’s food truck stayed parked near the side of Lockett Hall facing Fieldhouse Drive, giving students more on-campus food options.

Owned by Triple B’s Cajun Corner, a New Orleans-based catering company, the food truck has been a concession staple at University sporting events, and now Taco Churro’s offers Mexican cuisine on campus during the week. Taco Churro’s cashier Becky Duncan said the food truck has a contract with the University and plans to stay open five days a week from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m during the school year. A second food truck is set to open in a few weeks.

Although the food truck will be around all year, Duncan said its location is subject to change.

“Everything is just trial and error today,” Duncan said.

Though Taco Churro’s does not take Paw Points or Tiger Cash, it plans to offer those payment options later this semester.

Find the entire article at lsureveille.com <here>

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colorado state food trucks

FORT COLLINS, CO - As students roll into the newly opened Lory Student Center food court, the on-campus food trucks must rumble away.

The food court, which opened Monday, garnered mixed reviews from students. Thus far, Taco Bell, Spoons and Carl’s Jr. are among the returning establishments, and several stalls have yet to be filled.

Alex Grasso, a junior studying construction management and business, was part of the team updating the LSC over the summer. While he believes that LSC construction delays could have been prevented by the management, he views the opening of the food court as an impressive feat.

“After working on it, from what I can see, I’m surprised they could get this much open,” Grasso said.

Senior and mechanical engineering major RJ Miller liked the open and clean feeling of the building, but pointed out the lack of art on the walls.

“It’s kind of depressing,” Miller said. “I honestly feel like I’m in an airport.”

Emily Comler, a junior studying sports medicine, never felt that the previous LSC food court needed renovation. However, after seeing the changes, she appreciates them.

“It was all we had and it was so exciting  for us, because we were freshman at the time,” Comler said. “But now, looking back, we see how outdated it was.”

Though the LSC is accommodating for students, Comler said that there needs to be other food options for off-campus students beyond the new food court. She said she was disappointed that food trucks will leave campus after this week.

Find the entire article at collegian.com <here>

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Great Food Truck Race Beach Cruiser

Episode 2 of The Great Food Truck Race brought 6 contestants closer to their dream of owning their very own food truck, unfortunately, that means that one of the teams was sent home packing…who could it have been.

SPOILER ALERT AHEAD!!!

The show started with the trucks traveling from California to Tucson, AZ with hopes of making it through the tough road ahead.

The remaining 7 teams to take part of episode two of The Great Food Truck Race season 5 teams are (with Twitter accounts):

Beach Cruiser (Venice, CA)
Gourmet Graduates (Providence)
Let There Be Bacon (Cleveland)
Lone Star Chuck Wagon (Houston)
Madres Mexican Meals (Norwalk, CA)
Middle Feast (Los Angeles)
Military Moms (Fort Drum, NY)

On the trip, you get to see the inside strategies that some of the trucks were planning such as last weeks overall winner Lone Star Chuck Wagon felt that a Mexican food spin on their menu would help them retain their title.

The Let There Be Bacon truck knew that Tucson holds a bacon festival every year, so they felt that their concept would do well.

Military Moms re-planned their menu, they thought their Sloppy Joes were a bit too sloppy so they knew they had to change things up.

Host Tyler Florence put a little spin on the gifting of start up cash for the week by handing out $300 to get them started, however he stipulated that $100 of it had to be put into the marketing of their trucks. Brilliant!!!

In a bizarre twist Chef Florence made an announcement to the teams that he would be helping the winner of last weeks episode with a flag they could use to help support their marketing effort.  He then proceeded to hand out flags to the rest of the teams…not quite an advantage?

 DAY 1:

The teams immediately started brainstorming their marketing plans which lead most of them to call local news stations for exposure and using social media. The Middle Feast even went out and hired a sign spinner. Lose Star started an auction for an MP3 player. Beach Cruiser decided on keeping with their beach concept and hosted a pool party.

The teams headed out to prepare for the day by food shopping and quickly made their way into town to find a place to park their rolling restaurants.

Madres Mexican Meals choose a biker bar with hopes that it would be a fun location to draw customers. Middle Feast got a late start selling due to 30 minutes of food prep time they hadn’t considered. is The Military Moms created a sign to allow customers to have a picture taken with in front of their truck and for a dollar, the team would post it on social media and tag the individual.

The was a lot of turmoil in the Gourmet Graduates truck. A lot of arguing and very little marketing.

THE GREAT FOOD TRUCK RACE TRUCK STOP COOKING CHALLENGE:

Chef Florence had directed the teams to prepare their menus with only three items. When he calls the teams to announce the cooking challenge, he informs them to make room for a fourth: a Sonoran hot dog! The teams must stop selling their other dishes until they have created a sonoran style dog for their truck and are able to sell them…another wrench…they can only sell them for $5! The team that sells the most dogs will win $500, second place gets $200 and third place gets $100.

Madres Mexican Meals struggled with hot dog sales, so they decide to stop pushing them to focus on their own dishes.

DAY 2:

THE GREAT FOOD TRUCK RACE SPEED BUMP 1:

Tyler Florence calls the teams to inform them that there is a big folk festival going on with over 20,000 people in attendance. All seven trucks were directed to head over so they could park at the same location and face off head to head.

Each of the trucks tries to use advantages to draw the crowd over the other competitors. The Middle Feast brought back their sign spinner, so Greta from Beach Cruisers jumps out of the truck in a bikini top and mega phone. In a weird twist the Gourmet Graduates took to the streets to attract customers. The problem? All three of them left the truck with nobody left to serve any customers that may have shown up.

THE GREAT FOOD TRUCK RACE SPEED BUMP 2:

Tyler calls with the day’s second Speed Bump. Each team has 30 minutes to create a jingle for their food truck. While it may not have seemed like a real world test, it was still a lot of fun to watch as each team got on stage to sing their jingles. Some were fun…others (Beach Cruiser)…well, not so much.They will all take the stage and sing for the crowd and hope this brings in customers. No prizes, but it could bring many customers to their trucks! The teams start working on their jingles and they are all struggling.

Lesson: Build A Strong Marketing Plan To Draw Customers To Your Food Truck.

TRUCK STOP RESULTS:

  • Winner ($500) – Beach Cruisers
  • Second ($200) – Military Moms
  • Third ($100) – Middle Feast

In the final hours The Gourmet Grads close up early baffling most of the other trucks, while others stay open long enough to sell their final products.

With the teams lined up to get the results from Tyler Florence he announces their totals.

  • Beach Cruisers: $3,685 ($500 from truck stop contest)
  • Lone Star Chuck Wagon: $3,238
  • Military Moms: $2,716  ($200 from truck stop contest)
  • Let There Be Bacon: $2,376
  • Madres Mexican Meals: $2,290
  • Middle Feast: $??? ($100 from truck stop contest)
  • Gourmet Grads: $???

Ultimately only $184 separated the two bottom trucks. Unfortunately because of the amount of time they spent arguing and not marketing their truck with the addition of closing early on day 2 the Gourmet Grads were sent packing.

Next week’s stop? Austin, TX.

So what did you think of the second episode of The Great Food Truck Race? You can share your thoughts in the comment section below or share with us on Twitter or Facebook.

Join us next week on #FoodTruckChat as we live tweet during the show.

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St George Utah

ST GEORGE, UT – For a while there, it seemed as if St. George was letting the food truck craze pass it by.

Wildly popular from Los Angeles to Chicago to New York City, food trucks often add a quirky twist to a city’s cuisine options. They are so popular in cities like Portland and Austin that they have the food truck equivalent of mall food courts, where trucks, trailers and carts of all varieties gather, making it easy for loyal foodies to get their fix.

Even here in Southern Utah, there has been a small but vibrant food truck/cart scene in both Cedar City and Hurricane. Not so much in St. George — at least given its comparable size in relation to other nearby towns. There have been some, a taco truck here, a hotdog cart there. But lately it seems as if there has been a bit of a food truck explosion in Dixie.

Some of the credit may go to Jeff Patten, owner of World’s Best Corndogs, a food truck that parks at Hurst Ace Hardware on Bluff Street in St. George. Like others before him who had brought plans for a food truck business to St. George city officials, Patten was originally turned away.

“I just didn’t take no for an answer,” Patten says. “I kept being persistent.”

With that persistence he soon found allies among the city officials and determined there was nothing in the city code preventing him from opening shop. On Nov. 14, World’s Best Corndogs became St. George’s first food truck to operate from a fixed location. Next week, Patten and his son Dallas will begin operating a second truck that will move from location to location, including Cedar City.

“The public has absolutely embraced us and come around and supported us,” Patten says.

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Tallahassee Food Trucks

TALLAHASSEE, FL - Though food trucks — mobile restaurants that abide by the same health codes as permanent establishments — are nothing new, over the past dozen or so years their popularity has taken off across the country. Cities like Portland, Austin and even Orlando rally around the miniature kitchens during lunch breaks, community gatherings and festivals.

Along with craft beer and throwback mustaches, food trucks lie at the vanguard of hip culture — and you’ll find all three in Tallahassee at the newly relocated Food Truck Thursday at Lake Ella.

Between the cottages and the water, beneath a high canopy of oaks, pines and magnolias, a cheery mass of patrons lounge on blankets and in folding chairs while listening to live, local music in the early evening. They munch on specialty sandwiches, tacos, pizzas, cupcakes and more. The sense of community is palpable: children dance to folk and bluegrass standards, pets sniff and beg for a bite of their owners’ food and strangers chat with each other while waiting in line at any of the half-dozen food trucks on hand.

“The correlation between food trucks and the community can best be summarized at the weekly Food Truck Thursday event,” said Beverly Rich, vice president of the Tallahassee Food Truck Association (TFTA) and owner of the Valhalla Grill food truck. “(The event) draws hundreds of people, all of whom are there to enjoy dinner, do some shopping and enjoy great, live, local music.”

Valhalla Grill features a Viking motif, with a bearded, helmeted warrior on the side of its cream-colored truck. Rich and her crew serve up menu items such as the Blue Ox Burger delivered on a Kaiser roll and topped with blue cheese and horseradish mayo and the Curried Phoenix, which is marinated chicken wrapped in naan bread and topped with a Thai chili cream sauce.

A few steps in either direction, the culinary vibe differs wildly. Next door at Foodz Traveler, the motto is, “Some of this…some of that.” Owner Jose Ferrer dishes up an eclectic array of sandwiches, including the Memphis Traveler, featuring a tender pork cutlet pounded out wider than your head.

“It doesn’t get any better than (Food Truck Thursday),” Ferrer said. “Everyone is sitting around on blankets eating from their favorite food truck, laughing, drinking their favorite beverage, listening to the band.”

In one of the smaller tucks, MoBi (short for Mobile Bistro), owner Viet Vu hands tacos and sliders, wings and wraps through a sliding glass window. Vu and his brother have created a fusion cuisine from their “vast knowledge of Asian street food,” he said. “We design our menu around whatever inspires us: a craving, a travel show, the market, an event. It helps keep things fun, interesting and challenging.”

Alejandro Scougall, owner of Fired Up Pizza — a food truck with a wood-fire oven — spoke to the difficulty of finding consistent business. “The challenge is finding a place where people will come out and find us,” he said. “As well, the area we work in is smaller than a restaurant, so we’re limited in how much food we can make or prep.”

Find the entire article at tallahassee.com <here>

 

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