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Food trucks: Just a step on the way to restaurant-hood?

October 6, 2011 |  1:33 pm

Komodo Are food trucks an end in themselves? Or are they just an intermediate step for cooks who eventually hope to open a restaurant? Tiffany Hsu says that in many cases, it's the latter. Of course, there's the example of Roy Choi, who helped spawn the trend with his Kogi truck selling Korean tacos. He's now helped open two brick-and-mortar places, A-Frame and Chego. 

But there are other examples as well. Simply put, in a day when the dream of opening a restaurant is closed to all but the most well-heeled, a truck is a great way to get your food -- and your name -- in front of an audience.

"We had $1,500, no job, a career of self-doubt, and no one watching or caring what we did," Choi said. "There is no way we could have gone a traditional route with all the bells and whistles."

Other food truck tryouts Hsu cites that have either turned into restaurants or are on their way include Komodo Truck (now also Cafe Komodo ), Flying Pig, Frysmith, Gastrobus, White Rabbit and Fukuburger.

What do you think? Are your favorite food trucks more than just a rung on the ladder?


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Photo: Phil Seo takes orders from inside the Komo food truck. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times