Wednesday, December 12, 2012


We are moving up in the world!

I am happy to announce that we have a real website up and running!

check out for up to date information on services, menu, and locations!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

December Menu

 There was some confusion yesterday at Centre Green. Some of the employees came out looking for the Hillsborough Street menu, which I had posted on this blog. I apologize for not updating the blog with our December menu. Here is what we are offering on the cart this month. Thank you for you patience, and understanding!

All-Beef Hot Dog………………………………………………………. $2.00

All Beef Hot Dog with your choice of Good Old Fashioned Hot Dog Fixings!

Italian Sausage…………………………………………………………$4.00

Spicy Italian Sausage served with Sautéed Peppers and Onions


Braised Bratwurst topped with Sauerkraut and Cheddar Cheese

“Flippo” Brat………………………..…………………………………$4.00

Braised Bratwurst topped with Bacon Mac N’ Cheese

Vegan Sausage………………………………………………………...$4.00

Tofu Sausage served with Sesame-Ginger Slaw

Assorted Chips…………………………………………………………$0.75

Drinks……………………………….……………………………… …$1.00

Ask about Daily Specials, Catering, and Special Events!


Monday, December 3, 2012

Menu and Location update

The schedule on Hillsborough Street will be reduced until the end of the year because of exams and holiday break.

I am shooting to be out there Monday the 3rd, Wednesday the 5th, and Friday the 7th from 11am to 1 pm. The exams are all in blocks, and the morning block doesn't end until 11, and the afternoon exam block doesn't start until 1pm.

As far as the week after on Hillsborough Street, I may only be out there on Wednesday or Thursday since most of the students will be gone.

I am using this time to expand, line up new lunch stops, as well as new night stops as well.

After experimenting with different menu ideas and concepts, and getting a feel for what sells and what is popular, I am working on bringing a more consistent menu so that the awesome people that are traveling to find me can know what to expect.

I am so grateful to those of you that hunt down the cart using facebook and Twitter. I love seeing the regulars, and I am amazed at how far some of you travel! I am sorry that some of you had come looking for a menu item, and it wasn't there. I am working on correcting that for you.

The Hillsborough Street menu will remain pretty much unchanged, with straight up hot dogs and a sausage sandwich specials being served.

At the other locations, the sausage sandwiches are much more popular than the hot dogs, so the menu will be more geared in that direction.

I have been serving the different sausages in a small hoagie roll, and it is the size of a mini football by the time I add all the toppings! I am really liking the whole concept!

I will post the permanent menu in a few days after I do some soul-searching, and narrow it down.

As always, your feedback on menu items and locations are always greatly appreciated!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Location Update

I am developing a pretty regular schedule for the Gastrodog cart.

I have been going strong out on Hillsborough Street. I have been setting up weekdays by 10 am and staying open until 2 pm.

I have been slinging Gastrodogs at least one day a week at Lonerider Brewing Company in Raleigh. That is a blast out there.

I have been trying to make it out to the Saturday Arts Market at the Durham Farmers Market Saturday mornings, in Durham Central Park, which is a really good time.

I have also been at Deep South in Downtown Raleigh the past two Saturdays, which is also a lot of fun.

I have been really good about posting where I will be and when on our Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Thank you for a great time!

New truck pictures

Here are the latest round of truck pictures. The manufacturer and I are hammering out a few last minute details, but it is pretty much ready to go!
I am super excited to get it rolling and to cook for you!

Hillsborough Street Menu Update

In the past few weeks the Hillsborough Street menu has undergone some changes based on what was selling and "suggestions" from the Health Department.

I have updated some pricing, and started carrying a Carolina Packers Brightleaf Red Dog based on requests. I have also added the Chicago Style Toppings, which is one of my personal favorites!

You will notice that there are very few Gastrodogs listed on the menu.

That being said, and after much soul searching, that doesn't mean that there won't be ingredients on the cart for a Flippo Dog or a Buffalo dog should one of the Gastrodog fans want one. I am always going to try, and have a few orders on the cart for those in the know! I am just going to be discreet about it.

I wouldn't want some of your driving a long distance for a beloved Gastrodog, and me not be able to deliver on it!

So listed below is the regular lunch menu on Hillsborough Street, plus the secret menu.

I am happy that many of you are taking advantage of the Wolfpack Combo deal. For those of you that don't know, if you buy 5 combos, I will buy the next one for you. There is no time limit or a limit to how many free combos you can get!

Brightleaf “Red” Dogs……………………………………………………    $1.00

All Beef Hot Dog….......................................................................................   $2.00

        Included Toppings: Mustard, Ketchup, Relish, Onions, Spicy Mustard, Mayo, Siracha Hot Sauce,

Vegan Dog w/choice of toppings……………………………………. ……  $3.00

Drinks….........................................................................................................  $1.00

Coke, Diet Coke, Mt. Dew, Sprite, Bottled Water

Assorted Chips……………………………….…….…….............................  $0.75


Wolfpack Combo…...........................................................................$5.00

2 All-Beef Hot Dogs, toppings included, Chips, & a Drink


Additional Toppings

Chili…………………………………………………………………     $0.50

Cheese………………………………………………………………     $0.50

Coleslaw……………………………………………………………      $0.50

Sauerkraut…………………………………………………………… $0.50

Chicago Style Toppings (Pickle, Spicy Peppers, Tomato, Celery Salt)………..$1.00

Spicy Kimchi-*This Item does contain shellfish*…………………………  $1.00

Ask about Daily Specials, Catering, and Special Events!
Thank you for your patience while I have reworked things. I have really enjoyed meeting so many of you, and developing an awesome group of regulars willing to stand in line during a downpour! You are the best! Thank you again!



Friday, October 19, 2012

Hillsborough Street Menu Changes

Over the next week or so, the Hillsborough Street menu will undergo some changes.

I had a visit from the Health Inspector, and they made some "suggestions." I did very well on my inspection, but they clarified some points for me. The inspector even said some of the laws were written in the Stone Age and didn't make sense any more, but they still have to enforce them.

The following change makes me very sad.

Based on the small amounts that I have been selling, and how I have been preparing the The Buffalo Dog and the Flippo Dog to order, both will be coming off the Hillsborough Street menu. Both items will still be used at the night and weekend events for the cart where I sell and hold a large amount of both items.

I will come up with some different toppings and items that I think will work.

Thank you so much for continuing to come and check out what I am doing on Hillsborough Street and at the different venues that I go to!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Truck Pics!

Here are a few truck pictures that the manufacturer has sent me! Most of the mechanical systems are installed now. More pictures to come!


Just a quick update on everything!

I just wanted to let everyone know that the Flippo Dog is a huge hit! I is most likely going to be a regular part of the menu at most events! It is completely over the top!

Things are going really well on the 2600 block of Hillsborough Street across from D.H. Hill Library.
That will continue to be a regular location for lunch.

As of this week, I have all the permits set for the City of Durham. I working on adding regular weekly locations. The first location is most likely going to be the Saturday morning Farmers Market at Durham Central Park. I am hoping on being out there this coming Saturday morning, October 13!

I have more dates at Lonerider Brewing Company in Raleigh lined up as well as dates at Chatham Hill Winery in Morrisville.

This coming Sunday October 14th, the Gastrodog Cart will be at the food truck rodeo at Wheels Family Fun Park in Durham.

Stay tuned as I am adding more locations and dates, and of course that shiny new food truck is right around the corner!

Thanks to everyone! I am having a blast meeting you, and serving up the gastrodogs!

Visit Raleigh Blog

We were recently featured in a blog article from Visit Raleigh food blogger Kristen Baughman.

Here is the link

She did an excellent job writing the article, and I really appreciate her taking the time to come and talk to me!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

New Gastrodog

I rolled out a new gastrodog this week.

I went over the top on the latest one called the Flippo Dog.

It is a all beef hot-dog topped with bacon macaroni and cheese and toasted bread crumbs. I used a ton of cheese and a ton of bacon.

It will be standard for a while. It will join the Spicy Kimchi Dog, Bill's Buffalo Dog, the Vegan Dog, and the Italian Sausage.

This Friday night the Gastrodog Cart will be at Lonerider Brewing Company in Raleigh.

Thanks for a great week on Hillsborough Street and Chatham Hill Winery.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Chatham Hill Menu for September 22

I will be at Chatham Hill Winery this Saturday, September 22 from 2 to 5 pm. Come on by and grab a glass of wine and a gastrodog! It's a beautiful place. Combined with a beautiful day, it should be a lot of fun!

The menu for today is:

Bill's Buffalo Dog-$4
All Beef Hot Dog topped with Buffalo Chicken and Blue Cheese Crumbles

Spicy Kimchi Dog-$4
All Beef Hot Dog topped with spicy Korean Cabbage and Siracha Hot Sauce

Italian Sausage-$4
Confit Mild Italian Sausage topped with choice of either Sweet Tomato Compote and Mozzarella Cheese, or Sauteed Peppers and Onions

Vegan Dog-$4
Tofu Sausage with Sesame Ginger Slaw

Coming attractions this week-

I will be back at Chatham Hill Winery next Friday for their Food Truck Rodeo and I am going to roll out some different items.

The Flippo Dog
All Beef Hot Dog topped with Creamy Macaroni and Cheese, Toasted Bread Crumbs, and Bacon

 I am also contemplating putting something really different like a Chinese sausage eggroll or spring roll, a chorizo burrito, or something really awesome and crazy, Charlie's Chilly Cheese Dog. I will see what I can come up with!

Hope to see you out there.

Update and Hillsborough Ramblings!

Sorry I haven't written in a few weeks. I am finally getting my head above water after jumping off the cliff into self-employment!

The Gastrodog Cart is going full-time!

I am setting up Monday through Friday on Hillsborough Street across from N.C. State's D.H. Hill Library. I have been typically been getting set up by 10 am and staying until 3 or so. However the past two days, I have been doing a breakfast sausage dog, in which I brush the bun with French toast butter, crisp up two breakfast sausage links, melt cheese on it, and drizzle a little maple syrup. This little guy has been amazingly popular! I will probably add it to the full-time menu, and get set up by 8am and close by 2pm or so, since sales drop off greatly after 2.

I will am going open early this week again, and if the breakfast sausage keeps selling like it has, I will add it to the regular menu and possibly adjust the hours.

The gastrodogs, particularly the Kimchi dog and the Buffalo dog have been gradually catching on as well. Everyone who has tried one of them has said that they really enjoy it. Good ole' fashioned chili dogs are by far the most popular seller. I almost run out of chili every day.

This is a really hard job not to like! I love making food that people enjoy, being outside, and meeting all kinds of great people through out the day. I love seeing a lot of the same faces repeatedly.

I have also lined up some events at Chatham Hill Winery in Morrisville, Lonerider Brewing Company in Raleigh, and Wheels Family Fun Park in Durham. . I will post those dates and menus as I get closer to them.

I am still trying to get all the proper licensing for the Durham Farmers Market on Saturday mornings. I will try and wrap all that up this week.  I want to have a  few regular Durham stops after all the love they showed me at the Durham Central Park Rodeo a few weeks ago!

I am always trying to add new locations as well, since my food truck is rolling along in the construction process.

Thank you so much to everyone who has been supportive and/or eaten at the Gastrodog Cart so far. I will continue to work hard to make the product better and the experience more enjoyable!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Durham Central Park Rodeo

Just wanted to thank everyone that attended the event September 2nd at Durham Central Park!

I hope you all had as much fun as I did! I met a lot of great people, and served a bunch of Gastro Dogs!

Being my first event of that size, I learned a lot about what to do and learned what I can improve on.

I was really happy with certain items, and I thought I could definitely improve an item or two.

I will take the experience from the event, and as always, keep fine tuning the Gastro Dog Cart operation!

I am working on getting everything set up for some regular Durham locations for the Gastro Dog Cart! I was feeling the love Durham! I will keep you posted. I promise, we will be seeing a lot more of each other!

Our next event will be at Chatham Hill Winery in Morrisville this Sunday, September 9 from 1:30 to 3:30. I will post a menu later this week.

Monday, September 10th, the Gastro Dog Cart will start regularly camping out on the 2600 block of Hillsborough Street across  from NC State's D.H. Library!

I look forward to seeing you again very soon!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

September 2 Menu-Durham Central Park

We slipped into the Food Truck Rodeo at Durham Central Park at the last minute!
I am so excited to be able to be a part of it!

Here is the menu that we will be offering.

We actually shipped our top-split hot dog buns in from a bakery in New England. They are pretty tasty!

Hot dogs and sausages will be all beef hot dogs cooked on the flat-top grill!

Spicy Kimchi Hot Dog-$4
All Beef Hot Dog topped with Spicy Kimchi and Siracha Hot Sauce
*Please note that this kimchi does contain shellfish*

Bill's Buffalo Dog-$4
All Beef Hot Dog topped with Buffalo Chicken and Blue Cheese Crumbles

Pork Bratwurst-$4
All Natural Pork Bratwurst served with Braised Sauerkraut and Dijon Mustard

Italian Sausage-$4
Confit Italian Sausage served with Fresh Tomato Slices, Shredded Mozzarella, and Basil Aioli

Vegan Dog-$4
Tofu Vegan Sausage served with Apple Cider Vinegar Slaw

Bottled Water and Assorted Sodas

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Shooting for the Stars

I am planning on doing an ambitious menu for the event September 9th at Chatam Hill Winery in Morrisville.

I am going to shoot for doing a lobster-shrimp sausage with tarragon-chive aioli, a beef short-rib hot dog with spicy kimchi, a vegan dog with slaw, and a bratwurst with braised sauerkraut.

I have my commercial kitchen all squared away, so it's time to get to work!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Semi-Grand Opening Menu

Here was a our menu for the semi-grand opening on the Gastro Dog Cart last Saturday.

I apologize for the fact that you couldn't read the original post.

We had a blast out there slinging our hot dogs and sausages!

We proudly served up high-quality, grilled Nathan's Hot Dogs with Buns the we ordered from a bakery in New England for $2.50.

Topping included at no extra charge were ketchup, mustard, Siracha hot sauce, relish, and onions.

For an extra $0.50 each topping, we loaded on chef-made chili, chef-made slaw, and quality kraut.

We also rolled out a few different Gastro Dogs.

We sold our Bill's Buffalo Dog which was a grilled Nathans dog with our Buffalo Chicken Topping and Blue Cheese crumbles for $4.

We sold our chef-made kimchi and bacon on our Nathan's dogs for $4.

We sold a Carolina Dog, with slaw, chili, and onions for $3.50.

We also sold a Vegan dog with slaw for $4.

You could do a combo meal with includes two hot dogs with regular toppings, chips and a drink for $5.
Also you could add a chips and a drink to any Gastro Dog for a $1.50.

It was a blast, and we learned a lot about what to do and not what to do, so thanks to those that came out!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


I just wanted to throw out an update to everyone.

I plan on opening CJ's Street Food full time starting the week of Labor Day, as I am still working out my notice at my current chef gig.

Everything is lined up as far as having a location to operate. As of right now, I have a regular location for the Gastro Dog Cart on the 2600 block of Hillsborough Street in Raleigh at the corner of Gardner Street and Hillsborough, across from DH Hill Library. I plan on adding other locations in other areas in the near future, but for the moment until I am up and running full-blast, this is the location I will start at.

I plan on setting up at my location on Hillsborough Street this Saturday, August 18th. It won't be the true Gastro Dog experience yet, since I don't have my charcuterie production up to speed, but there will just be some unique toppings for some high quality hot dogs and sausages. I just want to get started at this point!

I do have our first event lined up for Sunday, September 9th at Chatam Hill Winery in Morrisville, which I am really excited about. My charcuterie, toppings, and condiments will be the cart for that event!

As far, as the food truck goes, I just approved the CAD drawings, so they will be submitted to the health department for approval, and then construction will begin!

Everything is taking shape. I hope to see some of you this Saturday!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Big Day!

Today, we got approved for our city of Raleigh pushcart vendor permit for the Gastro Dog cart. We are now able to operate at our permitted location in Raleigh! Once we open, we will be permitted to be across from the NCSU library on Hillsborough Street.

Also, the process is almost complete of getting the commercial kitchen with the sausage making equipment all squared away.

I am headed off to Durham County offices this week to get the Durham permits all wrapped up. My understanding is that if I get can get through Raleigh's permitting process, then Durham's should be no problem. I am hoping to get it all wrapped up by the weekend.

I am seeing a light at the end of the initial regulatory process, and I am really excited to be able to open!

Thanks for following our progress, and for the encouragement and support!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

October 1!

Now that the contracts are signed and the check is delivered, we have an estimated date for the completion of the truck.

We are scheduled for an October 1st completion date on the truck, so mark your calenders!

Until then, come say "Hi," and check out the Gastro Dog Cart.

I am planning on having the cart out on the road by August 1st, barring any more bumps in the road.

I am working on locations for lunch stops and late-night stops for the cart. I have a good amount of feedback and suggestions on prospective locations, but I am always open to more suggestions!

I will continue to keep you updated on all the progress on the locations of the cart and truck construction through this blog.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Check is in the Mail!

It is a big day for us!

The sneeze guards are completed, shipped and the tracking number said they should be here by Wednesday. Once I have them in my hand, I will schedule my cart inspection with Wake County. Hopefully, they can schedule me for later this week, so that I can have my permit in my hand by the weekend. I just wanted to thank all the people at Top Dog Carts, who worked with me and the health department to design and manufacture the sneeze guards for the cart so they meet the new standards for the state.

The ink is dry on the contracts for the financing and construction of  the truck! As ole' Jack Burton would say, " The check is in the mail!" (Sorry for the bad "Big Trouble in Little China" reference!) We signed the contracts, and we are on the board at the manufacturer to have our truck built.  We started designing the truck, and looking at financing options over a year ago so it has been a long process to get to this day.

If all goes as planned, I will get the Gastro Dog cart out on my day off as early as next week!

Before we know it the truck will be on the road, and we will be doing our best to bring a great experience to you!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Works like a charm!

Yesterday, I gave the Gastro Dog cart some lovin!

I tested the gas system, and everything works great. The steam tabels and the grill got hot quickly.

The electrical system needed to be adjusted slighlty so that the the battery would hold a charge better, and the water pump could operate more efficiently. So I cleaned up the elctrical system and the battery and the pump check out great!

I gave the cart a good clean with soap, water, a metal scrubby, and stainless steel polish.

I replaced a blown fuse on the truck that will be towing the cart, so that the flashers and brake lights work.

I am just waiting on the custom sneeze guards which I am expecting to ship early next week. Once I receive them, I can set up my inspection with the health department.

Here is a picture of the front of the Gastro Dog cart with the new sign on it!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Status Update

We just wanted to drop everyone a status update.

The closing date for the truck financing is set for early next week. The truck is being built by a manufacturer in Texas. They are customizing a 2006 Chevy Step Van, and turning it into the CJ's Street Food Truck. We are expecting the truck to be ready to go by Late September. We will post pictures of the construction on the blog and our Facebook page.

The Gastro Dog Cart is hung up in the inspections process with Wake County. We are hung up on sneeze guards. The Gastro Dog Cart is not the typical hot dog cart design, so there isn't a typical design yet for a sneeze guard. We have been going back and forth for the past few weeks on a design for a cover for the flat top grill. We are almost there, and we have two stainless steel fabricators lined up to do the work once the design is approved. To add to the excitement, the shipping company misplaced our custom graphic sign, so we have been trying to track it down and/or file a loss claim for the past three weeks. The replacement sign was shipped yesterday. We expect the Gastro Dog Cart to be on the road by the end of July or the first week in August.

We are excited to say that we have located two potential commercial kitchens in which to make the Gastro Dog sausages. We are still trying to locate a commercial space approved for food trucks. The first one we looked at in Durham, currently has no openings for another food truck.

Slowly, but surely our dream of the CJ's Street Food concept is coming together, and we are so excited to get out on the road, and make people happy doing what we love to do!

Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

We bought the cart, and have filled the inspection forms with the department of health, as well as ordered the custom sign for the cart! I am so excited that this business is  finally starting to get rolling after a year or so of planning.  We also received preliminary approval from the SBA for financing on the construction of the food truck!

Until the truck is built, look for the CJ's Street Food Gastro Dog Cart! It will be serving all kinds of different charcuterie as well as complimentary toppings and condiments, as well as good ole' American hot dogs! I am even working on a few different types of vegetarian "dogs!"

Once the CJ's Street Food Truck is on the road, it will serve internationally inspired street food!

If you can't tell, I am really excited to make my ideas and inspirations a reality!

Thanks for following, and being patient! I look forward to seeing you on the street!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Gluttony in a Bun

Just to show that Mr. Chef-guy isn't all serious about food, I went way over the top.

I wrapped a hot dog in bacon and fried it. I then put spicy mustard, a dill pickle and sauerkraut in the roll with the beautiful bacon-wrapped dog.

It was so awesome that I couldn't believe that I have never done that in my life.

Absolutely gluttonous.

Pork with more pork and all the right classical fixings! I wasn't pretty enough for a picture but it was worth every, dirty bite!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

More Asian Style Tacos

Pork Belly Taco with Pickled Red Cabbage, Siracha, and Grilled-Scallion Sour Cream

Asian-Style Tacos

Duck Taco with Pickled Red Cabbage and Cuccumbers, Sweet Chili Mayo, Shiitake Mushrooms, Bean Sprouts, and Hoisin-Soy Rice

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

A Simple, Ingredient-Driven Dish

Farm-Fresh Pork Chop with a Mesculin Mixed Green Salad with an Apple Cider Vinaigrette.

This is a pork chop from a local North Carolina farm, and may have been the best pork chop I have ever eaten. It is a perfect example of sometimes simpler is better. Amazing

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Beef Flatbread

Seared beef on flatbread topped with sauteed peppers and onions & a lime crema

It's what's for dinner

Noodle bowl

Thai Noodles Bowl with Pork Stuffed Bun

Slurp 'em up!


Ricotta Gnudi over Roasted Tomato Sauce

These were a lot of fun to make!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

First Dish

Here is an idea of something we would do at an event:

Filet of Red Snapper served over a Steamed Pork Bun complimented by Red Curry Broth & Baby Bok Choy

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Just in case you are wondering...the charities we are going to donate  to are the local SPCA and similar groups and local food banks. Animals should be loved, and people shouldn't be starving! Simple as that.

Monday, January 30, 2012

What we are

CJ's Street Food will be a mobile food company.  CJ's Street Food will own and operate a food truck and a food cart.  We want to bring people together through our love of food. Portions of our profits will be donated to charities on a bi-monthly basis. Check back for information on times, locations and menus. We are currently a work in progress! Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for updates as well. Feel free to contact us through our email with suggestions on venues, menu ideas, worthy charities, or just to say hi! Thanks for checking us out! I hope to be able to cook for you soon!