SCV: Chicago’s never had a vegan food truck (as far as we know) what inspired you to team up with Soul Veg to bring us one?
I’ve worked for and with Soul Vegetarian for just over 14 years. I learned how to cook vegan through the Soul Vegetarian Cookbook and working in their kitchens. Soul Veg is Chicago’s oldest vegan restaurant, so it’s fitting that they are a part of Chicago’s first vegan food truck.
SCV: How long has the food truck been in the works?
Soul Veg has been operating the food truck for the past 4 years on the South Side of Chicago. I figured it was time to expand their operations.
SCV: Will the food truck be roaming every night for a while or is this just for a limited time?
The truck operates on the South Side Mon through Fri and we will be operating [in the rest of the city] Tues through Sat nights initially. If all goes well, we’ll continue to expand.
SCV: Is lunch delivery exclusively food from Soul Veg?
It will be a combination of Soul Veg favorites and new creations I have been developing.
SCV: How do you decide what you’ll be serving on any given night?
We’re still testing new entrees…Chicago will ultimately decide if they’re good or not. If they don’t sell, we know they didn’t pass the test. Of course, Soul Veg favorites like mac n cheese, greens and BBQ delights will be featured.
SCV: What are some of the dishes you’ve been offering?
We [have been] concentrat[ing] on a couple of sandwiches, a daily Soul Veg meal and Soul Veg side dishes. Also, my wife will be providing desserts like a Chocolate silk pie and pecan pie. All vegan, of course.
SCV: How has response been so far?
We have only operated 3 days, but the response has been fantastic. Chicago loves their food and the vegan community is ultra supportive of positive, healthful new ventures. We are so grateful.
SCV:Will you really go to ANY neighborhood so long as vegans create a demand?
Absolutely. The best thing about the food truck is its mobility. Chicago is so diverse and we enjoy traveling the city.
There you go Chicago, they’ll go to ANY neighborhood if you create demand! So start following them on Twitter (@stemartaen) or Facebook and let them know where you’d like to see them next. I know we’re looking forward to checking them out next time they’re roving our neighborhood, which just might be tonight, considering it’s already Tuesday!
P.S. They’re giving away a vegan pecan pie to the Name that Sandwich contest winner, plus the winning sandwich will be featured on the Food Truck’s menu!