Adam Sobel’s push for mobile food vending on the streets of Red Bank inched forward this week.
The owner/chef/driver of the popular Cinnamon Snail vegetarian and organic food truck came away from Wednesday night’s borough council meeting with a pledge that the governing body would look into creating a dedicated spot near the train station that mobile food vendors could compete for.
But the location under discussion isn’t one that Sobel, the presumptive lead candidate for the license, is sold on.
Borough Administrator Stanley Sickels told the council that after consulting with Sobel, he recommended that mobile vending be limited to a single spot on Oakland Street, between the station and West Street.
Food vendors would bid for the sole mobile license in town. There’s been no public talk yet of a minimum bid, “but if it’s going to be thousands of dollars, it’s going to be totally out of the question for me,” Sobel tells redbankgreen.
Of more immediate concern, he said, is the location, tucked away on a dead-end block out of any regular flow of humanity. “I’m not so psyched, to be honest,” he says.
Sobel, who says he is sensitive to the concerns of bricks-and-mortar food establishments, says he has suggestions for a few other places in town that “wouldn’t step on anyone’s toes.”
The Chestnut Street resident, who parks his truck at the Galleria shopping center — private property — at the Red Bank Farmers Market on Sundays from May until November, and also does business in Hoboken and Manhattan, says his aim is to work where he lives.
“I really want to be here just on the principle of trying to serve the community I live in,” he says. “I don’t expect to make the kind of money here that I make in Hoboken or New York City.”
Mayor Pasquale Menna, who called the Oakland Street spot “a great location,” directed Sickels to meet with borough Attorney Dan O’Hern to draw up bid specifications.