Take five with Spencer ~ above the Go’s chief Laurent Katgely, ~ above His Upcoming Debut ~ above the Food Network


In a sign of just how significant and common the revved-up food truck craze has actually grown, the Food Network debuts a brand-new show Aug. 15 that will pit seven food trucks against one another in all manner of zany food challenges.

You are watching: Spencer on the go

Get all set for the “Great Food van Race,’’ which will function Austin day-to-day Press (Austin, Texas); Crepes Bonaparte (Fullerton, Calif.); Grill ‘Em every (Los Angeles); Nana majesties (Culver City, Calif.); Nom Nom truck (Los Angeles); Ragin’ Cajun (Hermosa Beach, Calif.); and the just Area’s own, Spencer on the go (San Francisco).

Which truck will certainly be left standing to success the compensation of $50,000? tune in to see.

Chef Laurent Katgely, 47, that Chez Spencer Restaurant & Bar, began his renowned Spencer ~ above the walk truck (at seventh at Folsom streets) in April 2009 to offer take-away French fare, such together escargot lollipops and also braised lamb cheek sandwiches.

A indigenous of the French Alps that started food preparation when that was only 14 year old, Katgely apprenticed in ~ the esteemed Alain Chapel in France, prior to working at Lespinasse in new York, Pastis in Los Angeles, Boulevard in san Francisco, and Foreign Cinema in mountain Francisco. He opened up Chez Spencer through his mam in 2002. The restaurant is called for their 10-year son.


Q: with your standard training and also impressive background, go you ever think sooner or later that you will do be control a taco truck approximately America on national TV?

A: No! (laughs) It’s sort of funny. But I choose doing brand-new things. I’ll try anything.

Q: how did you get involved with the show?

A: I acquired a contact last October, climate talked to the Food Network more about it in March. That sounded kind of interesting. I believed it would be great for the restaurant, too. I figured it couldn’t hurt.

Q: did you feel extra press being the only truck native the just Area?

A: there is pressure, yet I just try to go v the flow. Gift in the service 27 years, i think the pressure just disappears. You just go and cook, and see what happens.

I’m quite competitive. I play soccer. Plus, with work, we’re type of competitive, but we choose to have actually fun, too. It was a great excuse because that me to acquire out the the restaurant. I had to walk to gift away 4 to 6 weeks because that the present this past spring.

Q: were the food challenges difficult?

A: They were different and fun. Through our menu here, we’re supplied to adjusting. So, i think we had actually an advantage in the we’re maybe to adapt easily. It is where endure comes in. In the kitchen, we’re used to reasoning fast.

Q: are you a fan of various other reality food shows such together “Top Chef’’ or “Iron chief America’’?

A: I run a restaurant, so ns don’t have time to watch a many TV. To it is in honest, when I met the host of this show, Tyler Florence, i didn’t also know who he was.

The just time i watched “Top Chef’’ was when Erik Hopfinger of mountain Francisco competed, because I recognize him.

If I carry out watch TV, it’s commonly the exploration Channel v my son.

Q: What surprised friend most about doing this show?

A: The an option of the trucks. Five out of 7 came native Los Angeles. I intended a truck from every solitary corner that the country. Favor Chicago and also Seattle have actually amazing trucks. I think there were much better trucks roughly to it is in chosen. I discovered the an option kind the strange.

Q: What perform you think you acquired from law the show?

A: ns did learn something somewhere, i’m sure. Ah, i know! i know just how to drive much better now. (laughs)

Q: You got the idea to perform your own truck, Spencer’s top top the Go, from see a taco van parked regularly near your restaurant?

A: that a taco truck around a fifty percent block away. As soon as we’re as well busy to do lunch, we go there to eat. We ended up being friends through the guys there. Us joked that we’d open up up one beside them. And also the an ext we talked around it, the much more we obtained into it.

In Stockton, there were a lot of taco trucks serving the building and construction workers. However that slowed down with the recession. They were gaining rid that a most the trucks. So ns went there and also bought one because that $15,000. It was just going to it is in a side project. I didn’t expect it to carry out that well. However we opened at the best time, what through the recession. And also people it seems ~ to like the bohemian feeling of eating outside.


Q: perform you still work on the truck?

A: Two world man that on the streets. If it’s supplied for a private event, us add an ext people to help.

I functioned on the van for four months. Now, I greatly do the personal events. And I prep the food in the restaurant kitchen prior to the truck goes out.

Q: room you amazed in ~ the success of the truck?

A: ns think we’ve rotate on a lot of of human being to escargot who had actually never tried it before.

The van is only seven block from the restaurant, so civilization will avoid by the truck for escargot because that a snack, then walk come the restaurant because that dinner. Us will call in bookings for them for the restaurant right from the truck.

We added a movie display to the parking lot where we have the truck. The projector is within the truck and it reflects on a tablecloth draped over a metal stand. It bring a tiny ambiance in ~ night.

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Q: carry out you think the truck craze is a fad or a tendency that’s below to stay?

A: With human being watching their wallets for this reason much, it’s absolutely here to stay. And also it will evolve. Also crazier trucks will come out. There are just so countless things you deserve to do ~ above wheels.