Dinner No Dishes

Please your party crowd with a food truck

When my husband requested that our favorite food truck cater his 40th birthday party, I was intrigued, but skeptical. We’ve catered parties before and I’m not the housewife who insists on making everything from scratch, showing off my culinary prowess to friends and family. But we’ve never had a giant truck park in our driveway.

It turns out that my husband had the right idea.

Barone Meatball Company rambled into our driveway, started its meal prep, and by 6 p.m., had the windows open ready to serve. With a party of approximately 100 people, I was grateful to have the crowd outside (instead of gathered around my kitchen island) while also giving them something fun to experience.

“We’ve noticed a general trend toward food truck catering in the past few years, which is growing exponentially,” says Ross Resnick, CEO and founder of Roaming Hunger, the leading provider of turn-key food truck catering.

Food trucks are taking a huge bite out of the $12 billion catering industry, especially now that they have become more available and mainstream.

“It was consumer demand that brought food trucks into the catering space. Anything from birthday parties to large corporate events, food trucks became in-demand at consumer locations,” says Resnick.

It is this demand that food trucks need to keep business going.

“When you park in the street you know there are people there, but you don’t know if they’ll come to the truck,” says Stephen Dewey, owner of Barone Meatball Company. “You know how much business you are going to do coming into it, rather than hoping for business. It’s easier to be prepared.”

When Dewey first began the business, he would book five to 10 private events per year but is now doing two to three a month. And he’s not alone.

“There are so many trucks now that I’ve never even seen, I’ve only just heard about,” he says. “The more trucks that are out there, the more people know about us. I don’t think we’ve hit that saturation point, though.” Dewey, once a Sous Chef at Bella Monica Italian Restaurant, says that while one day he hopes to have a brick and mortar location, he never wants to give up the truck. “It’s my favorite thing to see people who travel and follow [us]”.

With new companies like Roaming Hunger, it is now easier than ever to pluck a truck off of the street and park it in your front yard. Basically, you are bringing a portable commercial kitchen to your door with nothing to clean up afterwards.

“Food trucks provide a laid back, social environment that gets people out of their chairs,” says Resnick. Food trucks often became a key ingredient of the experience at an event. Essentially, food trucks bring a fun environment and delicious food to locations that traditional caterers are ill-equipped to handle.”

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