Thursday, August 25, 2011

Food trucks and Neil Derry

Food trucks are usually not discussed at any length, but that has changed in recent months.

As I noted back in April, the IE Food Truck Fest was scheduled (and held) in Ontario back in June. Frankly, I thought that it was silly to buy tickets to get to a food truck, and then to have to pay for the food.

Things were a little different last weekend, when I went to the Inland Empire Auto Show. In this case, I paid money (and parking) to actually see an event, and the food trucks were just an additional benefit. And a delicious love - I tweeted my love for Baconmania.

Well, the publicity surrounding these food truck events in San Bernardino county has had a positive effect:

The [San Bernardino County Board of Supervisors] unanimously agreed to amend a county ordinance to establish a new category of "hot food truck events" that would allow food trucks to operate at sites other than temporary special events such as outdoor festivals, circuses, rodeos, etc.

But rest assured that San Bernardino County is not going to become a lawless bastion of free enterprise like its neighboring counties to the west:

Supervisors Janice Rutherford and Brad Mitzelfelt pushed to allow food trucks to operate anywhere in the county, but they were outnumbered.

Supervisor Neil Derry said his biggest concern was the potential competition food trucks could have on brick and mortar restaurants that are heavily invested in the communities they serve and whose sales tax revenue stays in city and county coffers.

Let me go on record as saying that I oppose Derry's view. Not that Derry will ever see my view - I'm sure that Derry refuses to read blogs (and the ads that appear in them) because they adversely affect the San Bernardino Sun and other community newspapers (not including the Press Enterprise). And Derry presumably isn't an Amazon Associate either.

But Derry is a blogger. If you go to, you can see this post:

This is Neil talking. Sed pulvinar orci eu velit suscipit gravida. Ut pulvinar mattis placerat. Nunc ut sodales nibh. Aenean tincidunt euismod magna adipiscing commodo. Donec facilisis posuere mauris, et scelerisque nulla dignissim non. Suspendisse sagittis urna at tortor sagittis dignissim laoreet nisi varius. Praesent interdum lacus vitae quam viverra ultricies. Phasellus euismod tempus nisi, at molestie libero pretium sed. Pellentesque non elit vitae mi fermentum ultrices. Aliquam tincidunt sodales ullamcorper. Vivamus ac elit odio. Aenean sit amet est mi.

Get the man a pulled pork/bacon slider...

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Farrell's, again

Back in the 1980s, there was a Farrell's Ice Cream Parlor in Montclair on the northwest corner of the Montclair Plaza property. The place was eventually torn down and paved over (it's part of the Plaza's parking lot today).

That didn't stop us for searching for Farrell's in the area. One night my wife, her brother, and his wife all piled in the car to head out to a Farrell's in the San Gabriel Valley. It was a Saturday night, and since we were all children of the 1970s, we had "Disco Saturday Night" on the radio.

But I digress.

That Farrell's closed down also, which meant that the whole country (not just the IE was Farrell's-less).

Well, Farrell's is about to make a comeback here, and elsewhere. The Press-Enterprise announced that a new Farrell's will be opening in the Terra Vista Town Center, in a spot previously occupied by a Macaroni Grill. (One chain's misfortune provides a pig's trough of opportunity for another chain.)

To learn about the demise and resurrection of Farrell's, go to the history page at Farrell's website. Excerpts:

In 1963, Robert "Bob" Farrell opened the first Farrell's Ice Cream Parlour in Portland, Oregon. It immediately became a huge success and by 1970 the company had grown to 58 restaurants. In 1971, Bob Farrell was approached by the Marriott Corporation who subsequently bought the company. He continued to work with Marriott as the company grew to 130 locations nationwide....

[In 1985] [n]ow under new ownership, the Farrell’s concept was changed from a unique celebration restaurant to a traditional family style restaurant. By 1990 almost all Farrell's locations closed....

In 1996, a new company whose mission was to bring back the heydays of Farrell's past acquired Farrell's Ice Cream Parlours. From this purchase, a few legal tussles from 2003-2008 again stopped Farrell's development.

More here. The legal wranglings of the early 2000s are described here.

Parlour Enterprises...had entered into a development agreement in 2000 with the Kirin Group lead by Herman Chan, to build Farrell’s throughout California. Chan decided to cancel Parlour's rights in 2003 citing that Parlour owed back attorney’s fees to Kirin....

The resulting lawsuit filed by Parlour against Kirin found the two embroiled in a three week-long trial resulting in a $6.6 million jury verdict in favor of Parlour. The verdict was then appealed by Kirin, which resulted in a substantial reduction of the judgment a year later. Parlour then pursued collection of the remaining judgment resulting in Kirin filing for bankruptcy.

Just after Parlour got its judgment, Chan sold the rights to the Farrell’s trademarks for Hawaii to the E Noa Corporation and its president, Maki Kuroda. The sale resulted in Parlour’s lawsuit against E Noa, and E Noa’s countersuit to claim those rights.

In the end, Parlour Enterprises and E Noa Corporation decided to share the rights giving E Noa Corporation rights to Farrell’s in Hawaii and Asia, and Farrell’s International securing the continental U.S. and the remaining countries throughout the world.

So a sticky situation was averted.