Tam Nguyen owns Butty’s American Style Food Truck and they specialise in American style Burgers and Ribs. The Foodie Hub caught up with Tam to discuss how the recent move to Northbridge is going and unveil more about what they offer and why it is such a great further option for eating out in Perth.
Please elaborate on your background.
I competed in the Culinary Olympics held in Germany. They are held each four years and I picked up 14 medals from there and a strong network plus some fantastic experience. Also competed in Ocenafest. Amongst it, was the competition stress and intense pressure you must perform under. I feel my success there has transferred over and equipped me well to the business & its challenges now. I studied Engineering however chose not to pursue that path and always wanted to run my own business so here we are.
The Truck is located next to the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream truck, the State Library and the Museum at the Cultural Centre in Northbridge. Open from 11am Daily.
Talk us through the process of the truck being materialised from conception.
Always wanted to create a product I was proud of. Food Trucks in Perth are a great new market. I have researched them extensively over the last few years. They have done well in Sydney & Melbourne and I put that down to them offering an alternate option, something different and a high standard of quality. Our truck’s story is that we saw it advertised as a second hand removalist truck, decided to buy it and then modify it appropriately. It took a year to build. During that time we honed down the menu, spent a lot of time on so many aspects of it and came out with what we believe is a superior product for the people of Perth.
Double Cheeseburger ($10.00)
The menu and concept design involved lots of research, I flew to Sydney and spoke with several other guys who are doing it over there and talked about what works. I went to a lot of trouble to make sure we got this right, and now I am comfortable to say we certainly have. You know, I even flew to the States and Kansas City to experience their true BBQ flavours- that’s some research!
The buns are good! Talk about the length you went to for them to be perfected.
We went through every Bakery in Perth to produce the now final product. From small family run Bakery to big commercial operations, we literally went through them all. To put it in perspective, the first Bakery we trialled we had five attempts, and then it wasn’t satisfactory. It was too sugary, or too fluffy, or too buttery. We needed it to be perfect. After a lot of trials at a lot of different bakeries we eventually got there. The bun has a nice shiny glaze. We specifically did not want sesame seeds on it. The buns are butter milk buns which have a richer flavour. We toast our buns and butter before serving.
Butty’s Original Cheesy Fries ($6.00)
How would you describe the cooking style and where do you draw inspiration from?
No garnish. Essentially, bread + meat + sauce. It is the best meat, the best sauce and the best buns. So much time and energy went into the bun production as I’ve discussed, equally the meat sourcing and sauce production. We don’t like garnish. We feel it doesn’t compliment the meat. We add our seasoning fresh to order, we do not mess around with the meat. We use 80/20 beef that comes up as a moist patty. The Beef is sourced from Amelia Park. So over all else, I would say it makes sense to us to not use garnish.
Short Ribs ($10.00)
First Freo, then Curtin Uni, now the Cultural Centre, where next?
Bricks and tile. A sit down, eat in location. With beers in red cups, and southern fried chicken. That is a way down the track & now we are focusing on the Cultural Centre in Northbridge near the Museum and State Library.
Original Beef Rib Burger ($10.00)
What is your favourite item on the menu and why?
The Rib Burger. It is the most unique rib burger in Perth. It is short rib off the bone, marinaded, rolled, braised for 15 hours and then chilled. We then slice it into burger patty rolls and grill. It is not shredded meat, the way we do it we believe is just perfect and we season with Cajun spice.
The Food Truck industry will do very well in Perth dependent on Council. It is a great new industry and fantastic to see Perth offering different options such as this now. We are very happy to be operating in the City of Perth and look forward to doing well. Come down and give us a shot, it is a great experience and another good dining addition to Northbridge.
Manager Daniel (left) with Tam at the Good Food & Wine Show 2013 where they sold out two days running!