Sunday, November 17, 2013

Barone Meatball – Anatomy of a Food Truck

Have you ever wondered why there has been such an explosion of Food Trucks across the
country? I recently had the opportunity to meet Stephen Dewey, the owner of Barone Meatball, and this is his story.

Stephen has had a lifelong love of food and was getting ready to open his own restaurant 3 years ago when his son was born.  He realized at that point that if he actually opened the restaurant it would be very expensive and he would not have much time with his new son, so he dropped his plans for the restaurant. Jump ahead two years and Stephen still wants to own his own food business.

Here is a video produced by Street Food Diaries about Barone Meatball Company.

During that time the food truck business has boomed in the Triangle and several commissaries have opened up. If your picture of a food truck is someone actually doing all the cooking on the truck then think again. Most of the food preparation is done in a commercial kitchen (commissary) that is independently owned and leased out to multiple food trucks. These kitchens and the food trucks are randomly inspected by the health department to ensure that the food is safe to eat.

While Stephen still has a dream of owning an Italian sports bar, he is learning a lot about the business by operating his Barone Meatball Company food truck. One of the major advantages for him are the flexible work hours (he chooses when and where to operate his truck) so that he can spend more time with his son and family.

I had the opportunity to help Stephen in the commissary making more meatballs than I have ever seen in my life. What impressed me was the quality of the ingredients that went into the meat balls. There was pounds of fresh ground meat, cheese, any other ingredients that you would find in your own kitchen. I helped him make over 200 of his famous “Moms Meatballs” which were some of the best Italian meatballs that I have ever tasted. He can make over 1,000 meatballs a day. You can taste the three different meats, spices and lots of parmesan and Romano cheese that goes into them. They did not even need any sauce to taste heavenly. 

Stephens menu does not stop at Italian meatball. His menu rotates daily and can contain a mix of Meat (Gyro – Lamb meatballs served with tzatziki sauce), Seafood (Crab – Our version of a traditional crab cake served with remoulade) and Vegetarian (Spinach Artichoke – Spinach and artichoke balls in a creamy alfredo sauce). To find out what is on the menu on any particular day just check out his menu for the day. To find out where his truck will be, go to his calendar.

If you have the chance, you must try his food. I give him a 5 star rating. He also does catering!

Barone Meatball Company


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