Mystery Entrepreneur

September 10th, 2010  |  City: | Published in Out on the Town  |  5 Comments

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This is exciting, Folks. A new local restablishment is about to hit the Austinscape and the anticipation is building. Against the norm, I have had the privilege of watching this idea come to life before it hits the streets!  Usually, I find ideas to write about when I make a wrong turn while driving and suddenly look up to a surprise addition to our city. Or, when I hear about them from recent visitors at new locales or read about them online and they happen to strike my fancy.

For this topic, I can thank my virtual friend and fellow blogger, Charles, for introducing me to the young professional and driven gentleman who is driving (pun intended) this soon-to-be new and exciting eatery. To include you in my suspense as I eagerly await its fast-approaching arrival, I have interviewed its leader and for the purposes of this post, the Mystery Entrepreneur, to give you a tiny glimpse of what is to come.  Let me just say before I begin that it is incredible to witness and follow first-hand the dedication, process, initiative, passion, curiosity, boldness, bravery, and fearlessness that comes with opening a new restaurant or business. It’s been quite a ride so far, but it’s really just beginning…..

Rebecca: How long have you lived in Austin, Texas?
Mystery Entrepreneur:
I have lived in Austin for a little over a month.

R: Why did you move to Austin?
I chose Austin because it was one of the few cities with a stable economy.  It’s a foodie town where people embrace creativity.  Additionally, people here really support local businesses.

R: What is your favorite thing about Austin so far?
The young people.  I moved here from St. Louis which has a little bit of an older crowd.  I feel like there is a continuous migration of young people to this city.

R: What inspired you to pursue an edible venture?
I have always had a passion for food.  I majored in finance, so I wanted to marry my business background with that passion for food.  Combine both of those things with an entrepreneurial hunger and a family background in the food industry and you don’t have to look far for inspiration.

R: How long has it taken you to develop your concept?
I started developing this concept in May 2009.  I drafted a business plan, visited Austin on multiple occasions, and ran through the numbers over and over again.  It has been a very long process, but one well worth the time invested.

R: Where can we find your restaurant?
Everywhere! We’re a mobile food truck!

R: Why did you choose mobile versus a brick-and-mortar establishment?
Money.  In this economic environment, it’s difficult to raise capital.  People are really hesitant to dish out cash for any entrepreneurial venture, especially to one started by a guy who’s never done this before.  The truck allows us to test market our brand and see if it generates the type of response we expect.

R: What do you think are the biggest challenges for mobile restaurants versus stationary ones?
M: There are a multitude of challenges.  We have a very focused menu because of our lack of space in the truck.  I am working with an extremely talented chef, but he cannot utilize all of his cooking techniques because of what the truck is equipped with.  Also, food trucks are like any other cars: they break down.  I would be naive to think our food truck will not break down in the future.  Oh yea, and let’s not forget about rain.

R: Where does one even buy a food truck?
You can buy a truck off Ebay or Craiglist.  You can also buy one from the major manufacturers in L.A. who will customize a truck for you for over $100K.  There are plenty of food trucks out there, but not all of them work.

R: Is it true that you plug in a food truck for electrical power?
Yes and no.  Some food trucks are equipped with generators, so when you aren’t plugged in, you are working off your generator.  Others don’t have generators, so you can only work for so many hours away from power before you have to plug it back in.

R: What are you most excited about as you start this new journey?
Opening this business is like giving birth to a child.  I have devoted myself to this project for a long, long time and now I get to see if what I thought would work really will work.  I gave up a high paying job and did a 180 on my career path, but this is where my passion lies.  In hindsight, everyone always says “oh yea, that was obviously a good idea.”  But I promise you, it’s never that obvious in the days leading up to the launch of a new product or service.  At the end of the day, it will be nice to see the fruits of my labor.

R: What will make your food truck memorable?
Our food.  We will only go as far as our product takes us, and I truly believe we are going to deliver a great product.  In a market like Austin where there are so many food concepts, you really need to find your niche and make sure you do it well.  I think we have done that.

R: What flavor profiles does your menu include?
We focus on Southern and Asian flavor profiles.  I was born in Japan to a Chinese mother so Asian food shaped my identity early in my life.  I moved to Atlanta when I was ten, at which point I was heavily influenced by Southern cuisine.

R: When will your menu be released?
Monday.  Stay tuned!

Return to TheRebeccammendations on Monday, September 13 for the reveal of the Mystery Entrepreneur, the name of his brainchild, details about the grand opening, and the debut of the newest menu to spice up Austin!



  1. Sarah @ The Smart Kitchen says:

    September 10th, 2010 at 7:25 am (#)

    I KNOW WHO IT IS!!!!!!!!!! 😉

  2. Lisa says:

    September 10th, 2010 at 7:31 am (#)

    Cant wait for the reveal!!!!

  3. Jennifer says:

    September 10th, 2010 at 11:57 am (#)

    Asian + Southern… sounds delicious.

  4. Let’s Get Peached! says:

    September 12th, 2010 at 11:01 pm (#)

    […] by the wacky ideator, but serious-about-food Mystery Entreprenuer: Eric Silverstein. Eric hails to us from the legal profession in St. Louis, Missouri less than a […]

  5. We Got Peached. says:

    September 28th, 2010 at 7:35 am (#)

    […] photo diary post says it all. Saturday night, The Peached Tortilla, my friend and formerly Mystery Entrepreneur (hardly, now he’s leading the latest food truck venture in the ATX!), Eric, opened the […]

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