Episode 11: The Iconic Señor Sisig
It's always determination, sacrifice and you have to have that passion for whatever it is in that business you're trying to do. You gotta have that passion because without that passion you're not going to make it. - Gil
Chances are you probably have seen, waited or even heard of those long lines of people waiting at a food truck for lunch. Now, not every food truck can get that type of devoted crowd that patiently waits unless you're serving some delicious food. Case in point the iconic Señor Sisig. Guy Fieri from the food network stated it perfectly "It's not Asian, it's not Mexican...It's Señor Sisig".
In this podcast, we were able to sit down with Evan Kidera and Gil Payumo the founders of Señor Sisig.
We talked about:
How it all started for them?
How they came up with the name Señor Sisig?
How a roller derby event pushed them to bring out the truck for the first time?
The emotions the comes with running the business.
The growth and the responsibility they have now with the company.
Their entrepreneurial mindsets.
Life outside of Señor Sisig.
Señor Sisig officially started back in 2010, but even before that, the idea had been brewing in Evan and Gil's head. Evan had traveled south and found himself in Echo Park of Los Angeles County. As he was rolling through one afternoon, he came across a long line of people waiting for a food truck called Kogi. He thought it was crazy, being that it was not late night but rather in the middle of the day and a long line was formed to eat from this food truck. That's when he realized an opportunity to take this type of street food concept that Kogi had done and do the same in the Bay Area with his own fusion twist. He was actually surprised that the Bay Area was not big on this type of street food concept even though the Bay Area is known as a foodie city. He reached out to Chef Gil to help come up with an idea on what they could serve, which ended up being the now famous Filipino Fusion food of Señor Sisig. Nine years and six trucks later, they recently just announced the opening of their first restaurant in San Francisco.
I've enjoyed all my successes and all my failures because I feel like that's how I'm continuing to grow and so there's really no ceiling. I'm able to grow as much as I want through both successes and failures.- Evan
Beyond their savory food, the logistics of the Señor Sisig process is like watching a perfectly timed orchestra. The chefs get to the headquarters at 4 am to start preparing the food, the trucks get loaded, the drivers get ready, and off they go by mid-morning to secure their locations for their devoted lunchtime customers. It's a process that they have mastered, and you see why Señor Sisig is the successful company it is.
With every entrepreneur, there are always emotions and internal battles you go through when you start a business. Although it seems evident to us that Señor Sisig was going to be successful, Evan and Gil went through the same mind battles every founder goes through. They questioned themselves if their food concept was a good enough idea, or was quitting their jobs a wise decision. They overcame life's obstacles, put themselves out there, stuck to their concept, mastered the process and worked hard every day to be where they are today.
Señor Sisig is really just starting. It's exciting to see and get to know these two gentlemen because just like Evan says, “he could not imagine working on something that has a ceiling." The opportunity for Señor Sisig is limitless.
Enjoy the Podcast, keep being a "DOER" and grab some lunch at your closest Señor Sisig Food Truck.
In this episode, here are Some Questions I ask & what You will learn:
Evan gives His Into (1:22)
Gil give his intro (2:20)
What was your entrepreneur ventures before Señor Sisig? (2:40)
How did Señor Sisig come about? (4:23)
How Tweets helped the food truck industry (5:55)
Kogi in Echo Park realization. (6:30)
Evan talks about the frustrating corporate life. (7:55)
Gil talks about Sisig. (8:49)
What was the inspiration behind the name Señor Sisig? (10:05)
The process of elimination with business names. (11:25)
We talk about the first day of Señor Sisig and how a roller derby event pushed them to open up. (11:55)
The idea is showing results. (12:55)
Gil talks about his emotions about leaving his full-time job to pursue Señor Sisig.(14:25)
"Don't let perfection hold you back." (16:15)
What 's your guys typical day like? (16:39)
What has been your biggest learning experience? (17:42)
Evan talks about the emotional attachment to a business. (18:25)
What piece of advice would you give someone who wants to be int he food business? (19:27)
WIDDWID (Why I Do What I Do) (21:56)
What would make Evan unhappy? (23:35)
What do the do for fun? (24:36)
What's their cocktail of choice? (26:22)
How do they want to define their legacy? (27:16)
Gil is... (28:25)
Evan is... (28:32)
Contact Info (28:48)
FOLLOW SEÑOR SISIG
Editor’s Note: This story was shared through a Scotch Parlor Podcast. Photography was done by Rick Scotch in San Francisco, CA