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Everything at The Spicy Spoon, except a small amount of tin, is reused. From the tables and chairs, to flooring and wall panels, everything at this high-end food cart was reclaimed, refurbished and installed by hand.
Owners Leon and Maribel do everything themselves and take great pride in their work. Their menu blends Leon’s traditional American Barbecue with Maribel’s authentic Mexican food. All of the food they serve is made fresh to order, from sauces to the chips. “We make a five star product at a three star price,” says Leon.
The two have applied that same passion and artistry to their food cart. Leon and Maribel spent three years fabricating the cart from reused materials. Over that time they visited the Rebuilding Center frequently. They collected the materials they needed to lay brick and cement, built a food truck frame and dining room deck, and refurbished furniture.
In addition, Leon built the outdoor patio at the Spicy Spoon to collect rainwater runoff to fill his koi pond. The system is designed so any overflow goes back into the soil instead of running off into the street.
Leon has developed a close relationship with The Rebuilding Center. They will call him when something new comes in and ask if he wants it before selling it to someone else. They put things on hold for Leon all the time. “I love the relationship I have with them,” says Leon. The Spicy Spoon is a work in progress, and Leon and Maribel have many ideas for it moving forward.
Leon’s vision for the future: Buying ingredients direct from the farmer and fishermen.
Leon's family owns 30 acres and Leon is starting to think about growing his own vegetables on it. His early plans include sweet corn, tomatoes, jalapenos and zucchini. Leon has also started talking to suppliers about farm direct chicken and pork – and dreams of being able to buy fish directly from the coast.
Read more about The Spicy Spoon online and visit their food cart on Mississippi Avenue.