Sunday, September 30, 2012

Seoul Sausage Wins The 2012 Great Food Truck Race

The Food Network's Great Food Truck Race of 2012 aired its finale tonight from the coast of Maine, and, as it should have been, the boys from Seoul Sausage reined victorious over the spirited girls from Nonna's Kitchenette.  For the second year in a row, the Great Food Truck Race was won by a trio of Korean guys cooking up American food truck versions of Korean specialties like Korean BBQ and fried kimchi balls.  That's saying something about the culinary tastes of the growing food truck culture - and it says something about the culinary chops of these young men.  This year, the winner was never really in doubt from also the first week.  Though the boys of Seoul Sausage almost always failed to win the truck stop challenges, what really mattered in the end was the ability to consistently put out good food and draw the crowds.  That's the secret of the food truck culture, and these boys should be proud that they have made a career decision which has been validated from coast to coast in seven different cities.

The girls from Nonna's certainly have nothing to be ashamed of, though they are obviously not as polished as the boys from Seoul Sausage.  I'd bet these girls could find some backing and get enough support to make a go of it in food truck culture on their own.  Certainly, it would have been nice to have the initial investment taken care of - a fully furnished food truck and $50K is going to set the Korean lads up well for success.  However, 99.9% of people who establish successful food trucks don't win a contest and have the foundation set up for them.  So, the gals from Jersey should simply take a lesson and understand that they do have what it takes to make it in the food business.  Of course, it's worth noting that they were actually much farther behind Seoul Sausage than Tyler Florence made it seem.  While Tyler says they lost by $103, it was actually a loss by $603.  They won a challenge that gave them a huge financial bonus - and that perk doesn't exist in the business world.  So, even when Tyler said they were within five dollars of each other, it was never really that close from a business world perspective.

Regardless, this turned out to be a satisfying season for the Food Network's Great Food Truck Race.  I'll admit that when the season started, I didn't like they idea of having novices compete for their own food truck.  I wanted to see skilled food trucks duke it out.  However, the concept has grown on me, and I am thrilled that the Food Network is supporting aspiring chefs, instead of already established ones, with this format.  Even the boys from Pop-a-Waffle learned they can compete in the food truck business - and despite my criticism of their food quality and ... appearance, I hope they pursue their dream as well.

Congrats to the boys of Seoul Sausage.  You made your parents proud.  Good luck to Nonna's as well. And hats off to the Food Network for another great show.  Now, some more of Jeff the Sandwich King.  And more on healthy and quality cuisine.

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