By Barb Pert Templeton
Those hoping to grab something besides sandwiches or burgers for lunch will have a brand-new gourmet option in Marine City starting this week when Endless Pastabilities LLC food truck opens for business on South Parker Street adjacent to the Sunoco station.
The mobile truck menu features pasta and salad with build your own pasta bowl selections and kids bowls.
Alex Christie, the owner of the gourmet food truck, along with his brother, Anthony Christie, launched the business in St. Clair Shores last year.
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Alex Christie told officials at a recent Marine City Commission meeting that he and his brother are both veterans and were anxious to bring healthy food to local residents. He said he was in the military for 10 years before he was run over by a drunk driver so he took a full retirement and cashed that in to start his own business.
“Living the American dream and we grew up here local so we want to bring this back to the neighborhood here,” Alex Christie said, noting he has a business agreement in place with the Park Street Sunoco owner to utilize nearby property for the truck.
He said they plan to be open from lunch through dinnertime to serve all interested diners.
“We are a build your own food truck, we have several different types of noodles, we have eight different sauces and then you can add meats, you can add vegetables, we have salads and Italian sausages,” Alex Christie said.
The concept behind the menu is being able to serve everybody. They can serve every type of appetite from those with allergy issues to gluten, vegan and vegetarian meals. He said all of their sauces are vegan based.
Mayor Cheryl Vercammen asked is the idea to walk up and order and then take a seat and wait for it? Alex Christie said yes and they have asked the Sunoco owner if they can put a couple of picnic tables in place soon.
“Our usual ticket times are under 30 seconds for one person, so if someone’s on a quick crunch for lunch, they can stop and grab some food fairly quickly,” Alex Christie said.
Commissioner William Klaassen asked if Christie has certificates of insurance and licenses in place from the health department.
“We are fully health certified through the state of Michigan and I can provide that license,” Alex Christie answered, adding that it’s also something he has from the St. Clair County Health Department.
Commissioner Lisa Hendrick asked if the new food truck will require a business license, a question she directed to City Manager Holly Tatman.
“There isn’t a lot on our books for the city with regard to food trucks and how we handle them,” Tatman said.
She said officials need to decide if they want to require anything if they’re on private property versus a food truck requesting a spot-on city property.
“That’s why we are here today to kind of establish a precedent moving forward because food trucks are becoming a more popular option,” Tatman said. “We really don’t have anything set.”
The rule at present is that if you have an LLC you have an address, so you should have a business license just to make sure the city is inclusive of all.
“I’m open to dialogue on what you guys’ feel is fitting and what you see going forward,” Tatman said.
Commissioner Brian Ross stated that Sunoco has a business license in place and Tatman said yes, that’s true.
Hendrick said she didn’t see the point in holding the business opening up for another month to get a business license, which may not even be required.
City Attorney Robert Davis said they have located a spot in the current ordinance where this business situation could fit and they will bring a full ordinance on food trucks to the commission soon.
Tatman also suggested Christie check out established city ordinances so the new business doesn’t impede on any issues like signage or traffic at his location.
The commission then unanimously approved the operation of the Endless Pastabilities LLC food truck at 325 South Parker Street in the city, at the parking lot to the left of the Sunoco station. The motion included a notation that the approval was subject to the business license issue being revisited.