Roz Edison and Kamala Saxton are the driving force behind Marination Mobile.
Ever since it first hit the streets about a year ago, Marination Mobile has been on fire. It was named best food truck in the nation in a Good Morning America viewers poll in November. This movable feast is the dream of Kamala Saxton and her business partner, Roz Edison, who are on the hot seat in this week's Grillaxin' Q&A.
SW: When did you start cooking?
Kamala: A year ago, when we opened. We're not trained chefs. We've never been to culinary school. We've never held a cooking position. We hired people who know what they're doing. We are basically home cooks. One of my favorite jobs ever was working at a deli in Palo Alto, Calif., but that was a long time ago.
SW: Was that where you grew up?
Kamala: I grew up in Hawaii, on Oahu and then moved to California. Then Seattle, then Boston, then back to Seattle.
SW: What was your inspiration for rolling out Marination Mobile?
Kamala: I've always been in love with street food, especially when I'm traveling. I wanted to try something different, but a restaurant seemed like a huge endeavor. And my passion was in street food. Kogi had opened in L.A. and I thought Seattle could use a Korean taco truck. I asked Roz if she was interested. She ran numbers. We met with friends who have background in the food industry in Seattle.
SW: It seems like this happened just as the whole street food scene was revving up, right?
Kamala: I think our timing couldn't have been better. I also think even if we started today, our timing would be good. Seattle still has a huge market for street food. I think the market could support the additional trucks. I'd love to see 20 more trucks in Seattle.
SW: When you designed the menu, what were some of the challenges you faced working in such a tight space?
Roz: The menu isn't constrained by the environment. But the process in which we prepare the food is. We knew what we wanted to feed our customers. We knew the kinds of flavors that would appeal to a broad audience. It's just a question of speed, especially at an event like we're at today. Obviously, there's a lot of logistics to think about, but it works. We have a very talented crew and we're creative with our solutions. It all comes together.
Check out part two of this week's Grillaxin Q&A when the Marination team dishes about some of their favorite brick-and-mortar Seattle restaurants.