A locally owned food truck is taking root in Oberlin this semester, providing college and community members with a quick and easy means to grab a meal on the go. The truck, dubbed “North Coast Toast,” is owned and operated by College third-years Casey Silverstein, Jeremy Reimnitz and Evan Zierk.
After a boisterous launch party last Saturday — boasting both a Jacuzzi and fifty-foot-long line for grilled cheese — North Coast Toast has already made a name for itself. The three owners invited both college and community members, an indication that the truck will prove to be a culinary resource for all.
North Coast Toast was initially conceived during an Entrepreneurship Winter Term project. Both Silverstein and Reimintz were enrolled in Intro to Entrepreneurship, and then submitted a sample project and resolved to take their blueprint off the page and on the road. According to Silverstein, the two participated in LaunchU, an accelerator and pitch competition sponsored and funded by the College.
Enter Evan Zierk, who joined forces with Silverstein and Reiminitz soon after. “We’re able to fund North Coast Toast mostly through generous donations of our Kickstarter backers,” Silverstein wrote in an email to the Review, adding that he and his partners contributed the remaining money.
Aside from their “gooey,” “spicy” and “savory,” taste, North Coast Toast’s grilled cheeses will also be made from local ingredients. “I like the idea of North Coast Toast being able to provide business to local food vendors while also serving a product that is farm-to-table and delicious,” said Silverstein. “[In order to do this,] we contacted various food distributors including, but not limited to, Minerva Dairy and City Fresh.
Silverstein hopes that the truck’s three future locations, two across from Tappan and one across from the Conservatory, will succeed in targeting popular areas of campus, upping the ante on late-night snacking.
“We want to work with the community to see what they want to eat and will be always taking suggestions for our monthly specials,” wrote Silverstein. “[We] hope to gain a customer base in Oberlin that could function as a community or family. I really only want to serve what the community wants to eat. With that said I would love to see North Coast Toast function as an example of consumers demanding from a business exactly what they want — hopefully local and delicious food.”
Although they may have loftier ambitions — working with the town to develop laws that would allow food trucks to acquire permits — their current goal is simple:
“North Coast Toast thinks Oberlin College and Community members work hard and they deserve a unique lunch and late-night option,” said Silverstein. “We want to [provide] the community with more food options — especially ones that are quick and cheap.”