My wife and I try to get some form of exercise at least every other day. Usually this involves walking, because a) it’s free, and b) it’s outdoors. This past weekend, we ended up walking at a different park than we normally frequent. While there, we noticed a food truck parked in the park’s parking (say that three times fast). Its name seemed hobbit-inspired: “The Brunch Box.”
Now, walking works up an appetite, and we’d hate to get healthy all in one day, so we decided to check the truck out. Who knew, maybe they had a perfect second breakfast. One big, crumbly, delicious brownie later, I ended up chatting with the truck’s owner, Greg Vogeley. Turns out The Brunch Box is a mobile unit from Drip Café, a local coffee and sandwich shop that turned two years old this year. Greg was willing to answer some questions, and I was willing to ask them, so read on!
Q. The Drip Café, The Brunch Box’s home, has been open just over two years. How long has the Box been serving?
A. The Brunch Box opened on May 1st, 2015.
Q. How did you first get introduced to the idea of opening a brunch truck?
A. Originally, my business plan was to open a coffee & espresso truck in West Chester, PA. I was lucky enough to be able to open Drip Café in the spring of 2013. As my food business took off at the restaurant, I knew that my first mobile unit needed to reflect this side of my business.
Q. Why brunch?
A. My wife and I always loved going out for breakfast and brunch. We always had a hard time finding places that served a unique breakfast and good coffee. When the opportunity arose to purchase a cafe, we knew there was a hole in the market that we could fill. As for the truck, it was just a natural extension of our top dishes that we were already serving at the Café.
Q. What’s one Box menu item you recommend to everyone? How about one item from Drip Café?
A. I love our Rancheros Egg Rolls. I think they are just soooo much fun to eat. Our best seller off the truck is the Buffalo Cauliflower & Chickpea Tacos. At the Café, the Caramel Apple Pancakes have always reigned as the number one dish. [Insert from McCTaft: I need to try those pancakes…]
Q. Since opening, what’s been a challenge you didn’t expect?
A. With a truck, sometimes it’s hard to decipher if a spot will be a good spot or not. Every day our experiences help us make better decisions as we work through our learning curve.
Q. Food trucks have become a lot more popular on the east coast in the last four or five years, and The Brunch Box is no exception. Why do you think food trucks are suddenly a “thing”?
A. Food trucks and street food have always been around us. Lately though, entrepreneurs & chefs are starting to shed the old “roach coach” mentality by offering fresh, unique cuisine at a reasonable price. Also, because of the rarity of a truck being at your location, this adds a special notion to being able to get your favorite meal off your favorite truck.
Q. How has the mobility of The Brunch Box changed your business approach?
A. We are always on the move — looking for the next crowd or festival that we can park at. It is the opposite of the Café, where we wait for people to come to us. In The Brunch Box, we go to them!
Q. What is your favorite aspect of running The Brunch Box?
A. It’s fun, a lot of fun. All I can say is that it’s definitely a different vibe than running the cafe.
Q. What’s the hardest aspect?
A. As with any business, personal time and staffing are always the hardest parts of owning a business. The restaurant business never stops and rests.
Q. On the Drip Café website, you explain your efforts to provide locally grown, environmentally sound food to your customers. Using your Chicken Waldorf Salad as an example, where do the ingredients come from?
A. At Drip Café and The Brunch Box, we pride ourselves on making everything we can from scratch and sourcing local ingredients whenever possible. We have great relationships with Highland Orchards in North Wilmington, TA Farms in Wyoming, DE, and other various farms and co-ops throughout the Delaware Valley. We believe these relationships are an essential part of our business model.
Q. The brownie I had was pretty fantastic–care to share the recipe? 🙂
A. Thanks for the love. All of our pastries and baked goods are scratch made and baked daily at our Café. [Insert from McCTaft: I guess that means no recipe. Can’t blame him.]
Greg definitely seems to enjoy managing his brunch on wheels. If you’re in the Wilmington, DE area and need some excellent food, you should definitely check out The Brunch Box. (And if you’ve got an upcoming event, they cater.) I recommend the brownies! Just make sure to take a walk after.