On Vendr.TV, host eats his way through the country's best food trucks
Dan Delaney has one of the best jobs a food lover could hope to have. The 23-year-old travels around the country, sampling the wares of America's preeminent mobile food vendors and documenting them in short videos he posts on his website, Vendr.TV.
Since launching in mid-February, Vendr.TV has released 10 short webisodes (roughly one per week) covering everything from gargantuan hot dogs in Boston to Jamaican oxtail in Philly. Most run three to five minutes and feature one vendor, though occasional webisodes digress from the format to go on a cart crawl through Jackson Heights or explore the halal cart turf war in midtown Manhattan. Later this month, Delaney takes his act on the road with a West Coast tour that includes stops in Seattle, Portland, San Francisco and, of course, Los Angeles (June 13-19). The specific shoot dates will be published on Vendr.TV's Facebook page for anyone who wants to be in an episode.
In Los Angeles, he plans to shoot episodes with all the usual suspects: Kogi (of course), Coolhaus, Green Truck, Let's Be Frank and the Locali Icycle as well as taco truck crawls in Eagle Rock and Highland Park. "The thing that's most exciting to me about L.A. is the prospect of exploring all these taco carts to see how close they are to traditional Mexican fare," Delaney says.
It's tempting to describe Delaney as "lucky," but luck doesn't make itself. It just looks like it does.
"I was the kid who had a business card for my dog-walking business when I was 8 years old," Delaney says. "I've always had an entrepreneurial spirit. And street vendors are the epitome of fledgling or low-level entrepreneurs."
His entrepreneurial spirit seems to be paying off. Vendr.TV just signed a deal with Next New Networks, which will distribute episodes on a new Web network it plans to launch. Delaney also started a second company, BitByte, which is working on a uniquely interactive iPhone recipe app. Stay tuned.
-- Elina Shatkin