Food truck sells creme brulee in Phoenix, Scottsdale
Randy Cordova – The Arizona Republic
Sightings of gourmet-dessert trucks are about as rare in the Valley as snowfall, although one man is hoping to change that.
Three months ago, Eric Ireland of Scottsdale launched Torched Goodness, a mobile-food business that sells creme brulee from a 1974 Chevy step van. Ireland, who has worked at T. Cook’s and Oregano’s, has high hopes for the business, which sells the goodie for just $4.
Flavors range from the traditional to the surprising. Ireland describes the orange brulee, for instance, as tasting like a fruity Popsicle. The capuccino brulee has a more adult taste.
All are topped with that crispy sugar topping, torched when you order it.
Question: How did you hit upon creme brulee?
Answer: I was going to do barbecue at first, but midstream we changed our minds because barbecue is such a mess. It was important for us to make it a clean experience.
A: People are more comfortable when it’s a clean atmosphere. The more we can do to make it more comfortable, the less mess you make, the more trusting you will be.
Q: How do get the word out?
A: Facebook and Twitter. People come and it’s Twitter that makes it happen. It’s amazing to me because I was not a social-network person before I did this.
Q: The trend of food trucks hasn’t really caught on in the Valley. How can you survive?
A: Because I’m going to make it a trend. I’m determined. I’m a Scottsdale boy and I know people in the area like creme brulee. It’s about putting out the right product and marketing yourself well. I’ve been in the restaurant industry for 20 years. It’s about being good at something and sticking to it.
Q: Why haven’t food trucks really taken off here?
A: The health ordinances. It’s hard to meet their standards, and every city has its own ordinances. (In other cities) there is more foot traffic. It would be great if we could park at places like Scottsdale Fashion Square, but we can’t with the ordinances.