Food Trucks: A Thriving Entrepreneurial Frontier
In addition to serving fast and delicious meals, food trucks have created a new market for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Easily accessible, these mobile restaurants can be found at breweries, music venues, or on a busy street corner outside of office buildings. I stopped by the Peruvian Brothers food truck parked in front of the Peruvian Consulate for a Saturday brunch tasting. The brothers, Giuseppe and Mario Lanzone, titled the experience “Gastro-Diplomacy.”
I was able to meet these hermanos and ask why they decided to trade captaining yachts (Mario) and competing on the U.S. Olympic rowing team (Giuseppe) for life in a food truck.
The brothers were separated for almost thirteen years pursuing two different careers. The food truck was a chance for them to reconnect and build a business together.
3 Reasons Why Food Trucks Are Good Business
- Low-Overhead: Food trucks require relatively less investment than a traditional kitchen which requires restaurant space, expensive appliances, and a large number of staff. For the brothers this was a selling point. Giuseppe says, “starting with a food truck allows entrepreneurs to try out their product without a huge investment but the possibility to grow.”
- Specialized Cuisine: Chefs can narrow in on one type of cuisine they enjoy cooking. Giuseppe and Mario were raised in Peru and wanted to showcase some of the authentic Peruvian flavors they grew up eating. Dishes such as pan con chicharrón, which is a pulled pork sandwich topped with sweet potato and a vinegar based criolla sauce traditionally paired with grilled meats, are among the brothers’ favorites.
- Flexibility for Customers: Giuseppe and Mario watched their father and uncle manage a small restaurant out of a boat in Peru. “Mobile eateries are in our blood,” says Giuseppe. The “mobile” part of their business gives them an advantage over traditional restaurants. Food trucks can move to their customers versus their customers coming to them.
I tasted their light and healthy quinoa salad. Giuseppe and Mario shared the recipe with me to try at home. The salad was muy delicioso!
The Peruvian Brother’s Quinoa Salad Recipe
One box of quinoa
Green, yellow, or red peppers
Sauté quinoa with olive oil, Salt and Garlic for 2-3 minutes.
Bring to a boil.
Let it cook covered for 15 minutes.
Let it stand covered to cool for 5 minutes.
When cool, add finely diced rainbow peppers, carrots, cucumbers, onions and tomatoes.
Add fresh lemon juice and olive oil.
Garnish with parsley and fresh avocado.
If you are looking for food trucks in your city, the internet and social media are two great resources for finding delicious meals on wheels. For updates on the location of your favorite food truck, follow them on social media such as Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.
Food trucks provide customers with convenience and creative eats. In addition, entrepreneurs like the Peruvian Brothers are able to showcase food they are passionate about and find success through small business.
A food enthusiast and native Georgia Peach, Haley recently graduated from Appalachian State University with a Bachelors of Science in Sustainable Development. Currently interning in the office of Congressman Sanford Bishop, she is passionate about the outdoors, improved access to quality education for all, public policy, and documenting “from stress to success in the city.” Click here to read more about and connect with Haley.
Edited by Viviana Hurtado, Ph.D.What type of food would you like to see in a food truck?