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« Dogs of a certain age | Main | Good start »

Jun 20, 2012


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Azteca truck will be at Fun Fourth this year! Corner of Friendly and Elm. Come on out!


I was reading something where a city has it where once a month on a weekend they have all the food trucks parked together to show off their culinary skills to the masses. It would be great to see Greensboro think aboutaybe once a month in downtown Gboro


Portland, OR has some downtown parking spaces reserved exclusively for food trucks which remain their permanently. (In other words, they close up after lunch but stay in the space.)

And then there is this coming up.


Try that again. Food Truck Rally


Great food truck "scene" in Asheville and Durham. I'd love to see something similar in Greensboro, but I'm not at all shocked we're late to the dance. There's plenty of space in and around downtown. I wonder what, if any resistance there'd be from downtown restauranteurs about the possibility of food trucks being able to utilize space downtown during the day or into the evening? A hot dog kiosk is one thing, but a lot of food trucks serve-up quality grub at very reasonable prices. Dining downtown isn't always a cheap affair.

Billy Jones

Best Tex-Mex food I've ever eaten was off the back of an old Chevy pick-up truck at the gates to the Port of Houston. Coolers of food packed with ice and a gas grill on the tailgate. The only wording on the truck was "Mama's" and the sweet Hispanic woman who cooked and served all the food looked very much like someone's mama. Before 9-11 she used to come inside the port but after 9-11 they made her park just outside the gate. Which meant, security had to recheck everyone who walked out to Mama's truck to get breakfast and lumch.

Billy Jones

When the hotdog vendors first came to downtown the downtown restaurant owners did everything short of running over their hot dog carts to keep them out. To this day, hotdog vendors have to pay local restaurants for the right to work in Greensboro.


Maybe we should ban the restaurants from downtown and only allow food trucks! Those evil resteraunteurs pay taxes,pay rent for downtown real estate which contributes to the downtown property values, hire people and contribute quality goods and services to the community. They do this under the endless regulation of the government and they must comply or be driven out of business. Most of them endure 16 hour days and always greet their customers with gratitude and a smile. They do all this with hope of retaining a 10-15 percent profit margin at the end of every month which hopefully will be enough to provide for the welfare of their families. Thanks but I have no interest in eating off the back of Julio's truck that has no sanitary oversight or even a bathroom for people to wash their hands. This must be what class warfare is all about.

Ed Cone

Restaurant owners and operators deserve some consideration here, no doubt. So do free-market competition and customer wants and needs.

At least some of the trucks are restaurant-owned. The ones I've seen are clean and I'd guess subject to inspection. Also, are downtown restaurants really making 15% profit margins? If so, that's way above industry averages and thus a pretty good argument for more competition.

Ian McDowell

Sittinginthemiddle, if you're too much of a priss to enjoy some the good honest American street food, that's your candy-ass problem, but don't go defaming honest vendors selling good, tasty and cheap vittles, you crazy ranting hose-beast.

Sure, some restaurant owners use their profit margins to support their families. But then there are the ones that put it all up their nose. There are a lot more asshole cokeheads running restaurants than owning food trucks. Cokehead Owner Syndrome has been responsible for the demise of close to half of the restaurants that have gone out of business in Greensboro. It's what killed just about every single establishment that opened in what's now the Tate Street Sushi Republic location before Sean and Jin (whom I should add are NOT cokeheads and DO work hard to support their families) finally broke that curse. It's what kills many of the restaurants that close downtown each year and many of those that close all across the country (as Anthony Bourdain describes in his chapter on why restaurants fail in KITCHEN CONFIDENTIAL).

Is it fair to call all "resteraunteurs" coke-snorting tax-dodging douchebags? Of course not, plenty of good people own restaurants. But plenty of good hard-working tax-paying people own food trucks. I have a friend who owns one. She saved enough money bartending and waiting tables to purchase a classic short bus, fixed it up, refitted it, and went into her business for herself. She pays taxes. She keeps her vehicle scrupulously clean. She complies with all regulations. How dare you defame her, you loony bint, how dare you! Anybody who describes her profession in those terms to my face has earned himself a punch in the snoot.


Outside of the rent and real estate taxes I'd say you probably described Food Truck operators as well within your rant.

So government intervention into certain business models is OK with you?

WHo said anything about "no sanitary oversight"? Besides you of course. I dont think The Guilford County Helath Dept is known for "no sanitary oversight". Ive often heard quite the opposite and you ebven touch on it in your rant.

If you think the subject matter here is "eating off the back of Julio's truck" then you are ignorant of the actual subject matter. And I suspect willfully so.

I am guessing you have burned a lot of energy deciding which Bentley to drive today.

Your weak rant here is obviously a simple attempt to be "anti Cone". Your schtick grows old.

Ian McDowell

Then there's whole implied disparagement of Them Dirty Immigrants. Even if one ignores the fact a lot of food truck owners and operators, like The Ice Queen or the Chirba Chirba Dumpling people, are neither immigrant nor Latino (well, Christine is from Jersey), the whole "off the back of Julio's truck" thing is pretty appalling.

It also ignores reality. Are there some wildcat taco trucks that are unlicensed and whose owners don't pay taxes or obey sanitation codes? Probably. Are they going to be planting themselves downtown, in clear sight of the restaurant owners who would turn them in and the politicians who want to regulate them? That's the stupidest thing I've heard since the Waspafarian Mickey Marxist at the coffeeshop this morning was ranting about Karl Rove was behind 9/11.

And does sitting have any idea how much somebody like The Ice Queen pays in taxes? Call her up; she'll happily tell you, and show you the paperwork to prove it.

Michael Pope

"Christine is from Jersey" . . Hilarious.


David Wharton

I think sittinginthemiddle is a moby.


" The ones I've seen are clean and I'd guess subject to inspection. Also, are downtown restaurants really making 15% profit margins? If so, that's way above industry averages and thus a pretty good argument for more competition."- Ed

Ed, did you check inside the coolers and under the cooking equipment, or did you just notice the truck has a cool wrap around it and great graphics? The downtown restaurants go through quarterly sanitation inspections by the guilford county health dept and recieve that nifty little sanitation grade that is posted at the entrance. Ever ask Julio what his sanitation grade was? You honestly believe that people invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in restaurants in the hope of netting three percent? Are you really that ___, never mind I know the answer to that. Besides we wouldn't want anyone who invested their life savings and who works 70 hours a week to make a lot of money, would we? That would definitely call for some government regulation.

Ed Cone

Sitting, you introduced a worthwhile idea into this thread -- what consideration, if any, is due to fixed-location restaurants?

I have not checked food-truck kitchens, any more than I've checked the kitchens in most restaurants. But I do think they are inspected. Also, the truck in the linked article belongs to a pretty nice restaurant.

The point about margins is that just that your estimate seems very high, based on my limited knowledge of that business and also the data in the article I referenced. In any case, I'd be happy for my friends in the trade downtown to make good margins, but it's not government's job to keep out the competition, rolling or otherwise.

I wonder if more options might lead to more people coming downtown, which would be good for all restaurateurs, and for those of us who work and eat downtown.

Given the trend, I'd be surprised if this issue didn't gain some wider traction soon.

Ian McDowell

Yes, they get inspected. Every food truck gets inspected just as regularly as restaurants, as do their commissaries -- every truck has to have a fully licensed kitchen as a home base.

The fact that this conversation began as one about a specific food truck that's OWNED AND OPERATING BY A WELL-REGARDED LOCAL RESTAURANT seems to be lost on Ms. Middle. Plus, her description of the poor beleaguered downtown restauranteurs who are just trying to scrape by and support their families seems at odds with her dismissal, in another thread, of downtown as a "cesspool" into which she would never deign to set foot. Why does she care, then? Other than the fact that food trucks are something her bêtes noires like Ed Cone and Tony Wilkins are against. I mean, John freakin' Hammer approves of food trucks, for Bob's sake -- it's not like this is some hot-button progressive issue.

Ian McDowell

Obviously, I shouldn't be posting this late (that's someone's cue to reply "or at all!"). My penultimate sentence above (which I suppose is technically a sentence fragment) should have been:

"Other than the fact that food trucks are something her bêtes noires like Ed Cone and Tony Wilkins are fond of" rather than "are against."

To quote Yakko Warner, "good night, everybody."

David Hoggard

Should anyone be fer ANYTHING, he/she will be agin' it. It's her schtick. Moniker ought to be "sittingintheopposite".

The only subject that might not offend his/her fragile sensibilities would be a wide-ranging discussion on the merits of the Bentley W-12 engine versus the more practical L Series.

But even that might cause the vapors to arise in him/her should Cone come down on the side of the W-12.

I think Wharton got it right above.

Billy Jones

You gotta love how idiots like sittingintheshit like to play the issues as if the vendors using trucks have no expenses when the trucks they use cost close to 70K per copy and fuel is over $3 per gallon on an 8 MPG truck plus the cost of LPG to operate the warmers and cookers. Not to mention higher insurance rates. Not to mention that trucks not owned by a local restaurant have to pay a local restaurant for the right to work in Greensboro. Not to mention that most of the operators are not owners but are in fact employees who have to be paid at least minimum wage unlike waitresses whose minimum wage is less than half of the regular minimum wage.

I think Wharton gives sittingintheshit too much credit.


As do I.


Lets be fair to sittinginthemiddle, he has a right to state his feelings. I see the point he makes about food carts not paying what restaurants pay and he/she is right. I like to say that food carts have good food and I also respect their right to the american dream. I hope some sort of solution is possible for all because I do miss my hotdog food carts.


Anyone has a right to state their feelings. Doesnt mean their facts are correct. And, no one has a right from rebuttal.

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