Big Sexy is back on the road. After having helped his business partner Matt Opaleski launch Hugs & Donuts, food truck veteran Jason Hill is ready to hit the streets with a new food truck that builds on two things Houstonians love: fried chicken and mac and cheese.
Towards that end, Hill is converting the H-Town StrEATs truck into a new venture called Luv Me Tenders that blends items from the StrEATs menu like the popular Shorty Mac sandwich and avocado tacos with the chicken tenders he served during The Bird House pop-up.
Hill has also sweetened the pot a little. "If we get to the goal, everyone will receive one order of truffle fries."
Hill has also sweetened the pot a little, "If we get to the goal, everyone will receive one order of truffle fries."
Former Houston Press critic Kaitlin Steinberg described the Shorty Mac as "junk food gone gourmet, with tender, juicy short rib sandwiched between two slices of buttered, toasted bread and mingled with melted Provolone and macaroni and cheese . . . a cheesy, meaty amalgamation of awesome."
New food truck park
That should come as good news to residents of Spring and The Woodlands, because Luv Me Tenders will be permanently posted at a new food truck park called Bernie's Backyard (no relation to the burger truck) that will open July 3 near the intersection of I-45 and FM 2920.
Hill calls Bernie's Backyard "the first true food truck park in Houston."
Hill calls Bernie's Backyard "the first true food truck park in Houston," because of the amenities it offers to both diners and the trucks. Most importantly, the trucks have dedicated electrical hookups that will prevent them from having to run on noisy generators.
In addition, the park features covered seating areas to offer some protection from the elements. It also plans to have a beer and wine license, a stage that will host live music and two climate-controlled spaces for events — all of which should make it a draw for diners.
Of course, the setting is irrelevant if the food isn't any good, and Bernie's has that covered, too. In addition to Luv Me Tenders, Bernie's will feature tempting options like popular barbecue truck BBQ Godfather, Korean fusion truck Oh My Gogi and Rustica, a new pizza truck from Italian favorite Lasagna House.
Being in a permanent location will come with benefits for diners. "I can focus on food and building a brand," rather than hunting for spaces or catering gigs, Hill says.
Opaleski may be focused on Hugs & Donuts, but Hill does have some news about the popular spot that's been embraced by its Heights neighbors. Next month, the shop will be open seven days a week. Later in the fall, Hugs & Donuts will stay open until midnight on Friday and Saturday.
If nothing else, that should be welcome news to the all the people who are working at the restaurants that are opening in the area.