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BizBeat: G2 takes menu to the streets

TaNea Graves, co-owner of G2 Gallery in Jefferson City, shows off the catering company's new truck. The vehicle will soon be transformed into a full-service mobile kitchen.

TaNea Graves, co-owner of G2 Gallery in Jefferson City, shows off the catering company's new truck. The vehicle will soon be transformed into a full-service mobile kitchen.

TaNea Graves and Kasey Green, co-owners of the downtown catering company G2 Gallery, will soon be offering their services by way of wheels. That’s right, Jefferson City. Your first food truck will be pulling into private parking lots in the next few months, ready to serve “upscale” favorites at a fast food pace.

The catering business announced its purchase of an old Hostess box truck last week, and it will get a whole new look, inside and out. Because the truck will be run by a generator, all the food will be brought in, and taken out of, the truck each day. As for equipment, the truck will be stocked with a hood, ventilation, a stove, fryer, refrigerator and more. The area will also be held up to scrutiny of health inspections, just like a restaurant.

The food will still be considered gourmet, but will feature special menu items not available through catering.

“It will be very different than what we do at G2,” Graves noted.

Gourmet burgers and sandwiches, as well as fries with truffle oil are examples of items to be sold out the truck window. The Gallery will park the truck at various locations throughout the city, informing customers of their whereabouts using Facebook and Twitter.

“We hope to open to the public on certain days of the week. But we also intend to do private events,” Graves explained. The truck will also make its rounds at fairs and festivals.

“The Cole County Fair is our goal for when we want to be open,” she said.

In the meantime, G2 will use social media to get the public pumped for its opening. It will launch a contest in the coming weeks to name the truck, as well as do other promotions with Instagram, giving customers a chance to win “truck bucks.”

“We want this to be something people will enjoy,” Graves said. “We want people to be engaged.”

Last year, the catering business worked with the city to change an ordinance allowing food trucks to park on private lots around town. “It wasn’t that food trucks weren’t allowed,” Graves noted. The city’s ordinance, however, specified the size of the lot where the trucks could park, seriously limiting the choices.

“We want people to know, the city has been very helpful,” she noted.

Once the process was complete, G2 took on the task of finding a truck that was reasonably priced. Because food trucks aren’t super popular in the Midwest, the pickings were slim. That’s when Graves decided to go with the box truck. Now, G2 will work to get the truck ready for business.

Accompanying photo: TaNea Graves with truck

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