Meet Your Neighborhood Food Truck | Q&A with Grace Kim of Feed My Seoul
Feed My Seoul food truck specializes in a meal SLO is well-known for — BBQ, but with a Korean/Japanese twist. Co-founder, Grace Kim, was born in South Korea and raised in Atascadero. After meeting her husband, Chef KH, and starting a family they decided to come back to the Central Coast and bring their passion for artisanal Asian meats to the culinary community. We sat down with Grace to learn more about running a food truck with your entire family in it, her favorite item on the menu, and plans for a permanent location.
First things first, how did Feed My Seoul get its start?
I wanted very much to come home and raise our son as I was raised right here in the Central Coast. To make my fondest wish come true, my husband quit his very lucrative marketing career in Korea, enrolled in culinary school, and immigrated to the U.S. Feed My Seoul is our love letter to the 805. The Seoul Bowl is infused with the best elements of Korean cuisine modified for a health conscious Californian palate.
What are your sustainable programs and how can people take part?
Our current sustainable programs include Lunch Club which is a membership with a one-time buy in. Members receive a reusable lunch tin and chopsticks, and bring in their gear to receive a free upgrade every time time they visit the food truck.
Additionally, we sell our Seoul Sauce and kimchis on Harvestly.co in reusable glass jars to be refilled for a discount. Of course, with the pandemic we are not encouraging our members to bring in their own hardware just yet, but soon we will be relaunching those programs. When our permanent location, Feed My SLO Cafe opens (stay tuned!), we will be introducing Breakfast and Liquid Breakfast Clubs, as well.
What’s one thing everyone should try off your menu?
Our Fire Chicken is not your ordinary chicken. It’s earthy, there’s a hint of spice, and sweetness for a robust umami experience.
Favorite thing on the menu?
Pork Belly. I’ve had pork belly here, LA, and South Korea, and hands down, our Pork Belly is unparalleled. I eat it several times a week still — can’t stop, won’t stop!
How do you and Chef KH come up with new recipes?
Travel is a huge part of our lives. Typically we take December and January off to spend time with our families in Asia. We go to Japan annually to see what’s new and delicious. Also, customer feedback. We listen, respond and create accordingly.
What’s it like working with your spouse (& in a food truck to boot)?
Challenging. We are strong personalities who don’t take no as a real answer, but rather as a starting point to begin negotiations. Maintaining separate and defined spheres of influence is how we get along. Additionally, we both have an immense respect for each other’s intelligence and varied skill sets.
You have a strong social media presence — how has that contributed to your brand? Any recommendations for other businesses?
Social media built our brand to what it is today. Without it, no one would know how to find us as we are at a different location every day. There’s no “fake it til you make it” on social media. Rigorous honesty is what made our brand a success. I would encourage other businesses to look deep within and do likewise.
We hear you’re opening up a permanent location in downtown SLO. Can you share more?
We’re still in the escrow phase of the project, and dependent upon government approval, but I will be the first to share more as we get closer to opening.
One last question…why should our community support local?
If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that we need each other to survive and thrive. Small businesses are the backbone of any community. But, it’s also a two way street. Today’s consumers are smart and choose to support businesses that support other local businesses, organizations and passion projects. Local businesses provide local solutions to everyday problems. The answers are right here in this amazing community.