Friday, March 1, 2013
They don’t call it Sunday for no reason.
SSB’s planned Gourmet Food Truck Festival was rained out on Saturday, but the sun shined and crowds came out on Sunday and for those whodid, their taste buds were tantalized, eardrums were tickled and eyes were widened.
“We didn’t get all the trucks we wanted because they had previous commitments, but we certainly can’t complain about the turnout or the food,” said Bill Barber, who manages the SSB in Murrells Inlet.
He had secured promises from nine truck owners for Saturday, but a full day of rain forced him to reschedule the event for Sunday.
He attracted two trucks from Charleston – Refuelers Mobile Café and Cory’s Grilled Cheese – and the local mobile unit from Creek Ratz, all of which were doing a standup business, at least until chairs and tables were set out.
“Bill got in contact with us and asked us to come down,” said Sarah Stament, who with her husband, Jessie, opened Refuelers Mobile Cafe in June.
The truck offers food with an Asian touch – with one main exception, the top-selling Philly cheesesteak.
The Staments and their friends travel to business parks around Charleston for lunch, and are already building a strong client base.
“If I weren’t doing this, I’d be a stay-at-home mom,” Sarah Stament said.
Not so her husband, who had a career in the military, a background that is reflected in the menu offerings – such as the KC-135, the name of the cheesesteak.
Food is cooked to order on the premises, just like in a brick and mortar restaurant.
Ironically, it was the idea of opening a restaurant that led Cory Schwartz to open Cory’s Grilled Cheese, which is much more than slices of Velveeta slapped on white bread.
In fact, Schwatz’s offerings include 13 different cheeses on your choice of five different breads.
Of course, there are different extras, too, including avocado, friend onions, Nutella, jams and jellies, and peppers.
All the recipes are Schwartz’s own. “I try what I like,” he said.
That doesn’t mean that Schwartz won’t open his brick and mortar restaurant one day, but for now, he’s making a living with the truck.
Unlike some of the other mobile food vendors in Charleston, he plants his truck four days a week at one of the city’s “vendor boxes,” a set area that just holds one vendor truck.
As for traveling to the Inlet, Schwartz said it was a no-brainer. “I like hot rods, motorcycles and food,” he said.
The other three days, Schwartz caters or tries new events, such as the Gourmet Food Truck Festival.
Attendees got a preview taste of something that they may be finding on their own shelves soon.
Mark Sutton, the chef at Twelve in Garden City Beach, brought out 50 packages of his homemade beef jerky; within two hours they were gone.
“My girlfriend talked me into expanding this beyond my friends,” Sutton said.
“I’ve got a backer and I’m planning on making this commercially.
“No word on when it will be available.
He might have gone to the next booth over and asked Jennifer Jones, who offered tarot reading by Jennifer.
A resident of Socastee, Jones said she has been offering the readings with a spiritual slant.
“I’ve always been a Christian, and this lets me help people,” she said.
It doesn’t take a tarot reader to know that this first event may not be the last.
By Anita Crone
For The Times