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New Times / Commentary

The following article was posted on February 13th, 2013, in the New Times - Volume 27, Issue 29 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from New Times [newtimesslo.com] - Volume 27, Issue 29

Bites: Last Wrap

On Feb. 10, I got the overwhelmingly sad news that Porter’s Truck- Gourmet food on the Go had announced they had served up their last meals on wheels; after 2 1/2 years of feeding SLO residents, Porter’s is no longer going to be in business.

They announced the closure of their portable business on Facebook, and the response was overwhelmingly supportive and shocked.

Some of the 62 comments expressed outrage: “WTF?” wrote one local. “I now have no reason to go to SLO!” wrote another. Others took a more depressive approach to their grief.

“Oh No [sic]! I was just having a major craving for a port [sic] char siu taco,” wrote one Porter’s fan.

The comments continue to pile in, and many—if not the vast majority—of them pose the same question: How can this be? San Luis Obispo loved you guys!

The Porter’s Truck Facebook liaison responded by saying that quality food made from scratch isn’t cheap, and the rising costs to keep such a business afloat were no longer maintainable in the current market. Porter’s statement went on to say that they were thankful to serve as many people as they did in 2 1/2 years of business, and it was great to get to chase a dream.

It’s sad that even local, tech-savvy businesses like Porter’s seem to be unable to keep up with the have it your way, one-size-fits-all fast-food joints that crop up locally like a persistent case of herpes.

Porter’s Food Truck relied heavily on its Facebook presence to keep customers posted on latest menu changes, specials, and where the truck would be parked for people on lunch break or looking for a snack.

And if you look at the Facebook numbers, it certainly seemed to be working—with more than 1,000 people liking their page.

But of course you can’t just rely on Facebook to determine the viability of anything in the current market.

So why, then, does a place like Porter’s, a place that serves up made-to-order food from scratch with fresh ingredients, a place that had an original and incredibly convenient concept … go under?

Well, Porter’s couldn’t compete with frozen patties and multi-million-dollar ad campaigns. And while it may be too late to help the little food truck that provided lunch to thousands of hungry San Luis Obispo citizens, I can’t help but pray to whatever food god is listening that the individuals who were so outspoken about the really, really sad loss of Porter’s will learn from their unrequited taco cravings and select another local business the next time they dine out.

We can help Porter’s memory live on by saying yes to local businesses more than we say no, and by eating at and supporting our favorite eateries before it’s too late.

Calendar Editor Maeva Considine will wipe her tears of sadness away with the remains of a Porter’s Food Truck curry pita sandwich. Send your food-related news to her at bites@newtimesslo.com.