Cupcake Truck Makes its S.F. Debut at Outside Lands Tomorrow
|The former mail truck was was tricked out by a taco truck specialist.|
Called Cupkates (we know, cute), the truck rolled out last week at Caltopia, Berkeley's annual campus welcome fest. Owner Kate McEachern -- a former managing editor at Dwell magazine -- told SFoodie the whole cupcake taco truck concept came after her dream of opening a brick-and-mortar bakery in the East Bay tanked. "We found all these dead zones," McEachern said. "Berkeley dies after the school year; Rockridge is awesome on the weekends, but during the day it's dead. We got sort of commitment-phobic." When her husband suggested she do the whole street food thing, she thought, Meh. When a former colleague at Dwell suggested it, McEachern thought, Oh my god, yes.
|Red Velvet is a specialty.|
She purchased an old mail truck in Southern California, then had it tricked out by a guy in East L.A. who specializes in taco truck conversions. Dwell senior designer Brendan Callahan came up with the logo and panel design.
The baking and frosting happen at a commercial kitchen in Richmond. McEachern lacks formal training, except for a brief internship at Chez Panisse, where she did things like hull 40 pounds of strawberries in what she described as a tiny, floury former closet. Baking was always a passionate hobby. "People sort of joked I was Dwell's in-house pastry chef," she said.
Red Velvet ($2.75) is Cupkates' signature flavor, followed by the Twinkie (vanilla cake with marshmallow buttercream), and S'more (both $2.75). There are classic vanilla and chocolate iterations ($2.50 each), too. Guittard chocolate, Clover dairy, high-class vanilla. "I'm very encouraged by the rise of street food recently," McEachern said. "I believe very much in taking high quality products to the street and selling them at a reasonable price, and the truck lets me do that."
Cupkates will roll up to Outside Lands tomorrow starting at 4 p.m., and later dispense treats to bands in the VIP area. Find out more about Cupkates online (including info about delivery), on Facebook, and via Twitter.