For 10 years Tim Kilcoyne served as Executive Chef and Owner of the popular Sidecar Restaurant located on Main Street in Ventura.
“It was a lease issue,” said Chef Tim when asked about the recent closing of SideCar Restaurant. “However, we were already doing quite a bit of catering, so it was a natural progression for the business to go ‘from roots to wheels.’”
These days, Chef Tim and his staff can be found aboard “Scratch,” a Ventura county-based gourmet food truck that lives up to its name. “We prepare all our food with fresh and natural ingredients everyday, literally from scratch. We make our home at various locales around the area providing ‘take-out’ and providing catering for events and groups,” added Chef Tim.
Chef Tim is also a big believer of “buying local” and works with the Ventura Meat Company, which provides Scratch with high quality grass-fed beef. Scratch also buys direct from local farmers, food stands, and certified farmer’s markets.
“For us, being a local business, it’s imperative that we work in cooperation with the other local businesses. There are numerous reasons for buying local. You get a better flavor product-wise because produce is fresh coming right from the farm. Buying local reduces our carbon footprint and greenhouse gas emissions because less travel is required. It also helps the local farmers as well as the area’s economy.”
“Since Scratch only uses local fresh meats and produce, I’m constantly talking to and texting our local farmers to find out what’s available and in season. Whatever I make on any given day, if we happen to have any left over, I either bring it home and/or give it to my employees. I also create a variety of dishes that I can serve using what’s available. For example, if spinach is in season, I create recipes that may use spinach in a salad and/or cook it up and add it to a sandwich, and so on. If we get in a position where we have a tremendous amount of overage at the end of the day, we’ll of course talk to Food Share, but so far, we’ve been right on the money with our projections.”
Scratch Food Truck’s cuisine as defined by Chef Tim is “Seasonal Californian.” On the menu, for breakfast, customers will find “Fried Egg BLTs, Breakfast Burritos or Pork Verde. For lunch or dinner, the “SCRATCH Burger” made of local, grass-fed beef is a popular staple and Chef Tim’s house made ketchup, will soon be available for purchase at the truck. Other customer favorites include the “Tri Tip Sandwich” made with pepper jack cheese, BBQ sauce and cabbage, and the “Smoke Pork Peanut Butter and Jelly Grilled Cheese Sandwich.”
Chef Tim is also currently working with City of Ventura Environmental Specialist Courtney Lindberg on green business certification for his new enterprise because sustainability is part of Scratch’s core mission. “We look for products such as paper goods, napkins, plates, drinking cups and other items that are recyclable and/or compostable.
Unless the food truck has a previously booked event to cater, Scratch can be found at The Ojai Farmer’s Market on Sunday mornings (every Sunday at 300 E. Matilija Street, Ojai from 9am-1pm), The Downtown Certified Farmer’s Market on Saturdays (Corner of Santa Clara and Palm Streets, 300 block of Santa Clara Street every Saturday from 8:30am to Noon) and Tuesday nights at Surf Brewing Company (4561 Market Street, Ventura add the time?). In addition, Scratch posts their whereabouts daily on Facebook at: http://Facebook.com/ScratchVentura and there will soon be a calendar on their website at: http://ScratchVentura.com.
While Chef Tim says that it’s “highly probable” that he’ll eventually settle his business into more permanent home in the future, he acknowledges, “We’ll want to make the right connection where we can stay for the long haul. Right now, we’re having fun on wheels, and we’re enjoying being out in the community. We love what we do.”
ScratchVentura.com, 35 W. Main Street, Suite B #231, Ventura, CA 93001•(805) 290-2276
-Maryann Ridini Spencer for SustainableVentura.TV