First there was the food truck, now there's the food bus. (Maybe next Gordon Ramsay can relocate his empire into a fleet of RV's.) World Fare, the BUStaurant–a mobile restaurant in a double decker bus–debuts tomorrow, March 16th, after having done a few test runs over the weekend. Co-owner Travis Schmidt says that the bus will officially hit the streets (follow them on Twitter @worldfare) during lunchtime along L.A.'s Miracle Mile.
The World Fare BUStaurant serves, yes, “world fare” in a vintage English double decker bus which Schmidt and his partner Jason Freeman found in San Diego, where it had been used for sight-seeing tours. With a full kitchen on the bottom level and an upstairs deck that can seat about 16, the bus is more like a traveling restaurant than the fleet of food trucks now serving and tweeting around Los Angeles. The chef is Andi Van Willigan (former Michael Mina Group corporate exec chef; 2 seasons as Ramsay's sous chef on Hell's Kitchen), who is also a partner in the business.
Van Willigan will be dishing out the signature dish, Bunny Chow, along with more restaurant-y food that will be featured on the “chef's blackboard,” like tuna tartare, steak frites, and wine-braised Piedmontese short ribs. And no, Bunny Chow is not rabbit-on-a-stick: it's South African street food, a hollowed-out bit of bread filled with chicken curry. Van Willigan's menu will have 5 different Bunnies (featuring different fillings), plus a 6th for dessert. Why Bunny Chow? Because Schmidt is from Johannesburg, where the dish is popular, and he wanted something “that wasn't a sandwich.”
After the bus has been up and running, so to speak, for awhile, Schmidt says that they'll start doing pop-up events. “It's a restaurant with a view. We'll pick the view,” says Schmidt, who envisions doing a “six course dinner at the beach,” or parking his bus on Mulholland for a rooftop dinner overlooking the city. No, he will not be passing out maps to stars' homes. If TMZ wants to start their own food truck, that's up to them now isn't it.