Denver chef and restaurant consultant Michel Wahaltere, who's had his spoon in way too many soups to mention (short list: 9th Door, SportsBook, 5 Degrees, MiniBAR, Cucina Colore,), is officially taking his skills to the streets. Wahaltere, along with Mark Strazisar (Lucky Star, Sutra, Beta and Lime) and Nicholas Wilhem, a former chef at Sushi Den who now teaches sushi-making classes, will launch Aja to Go, a street food truck, later this year.
"We'll be the first mobile food truck in the city to travel day and night around Denver serving up great sushi, salad bowls, noodle bowls and Asian tapas," says Wahaltere, who's also working on several other restaurant concepts, including a steakhouse & lounge, a Mediterranean Rim restaurant and a modern southern restaurant with live jazz.
But the streetmobile, which is being built by the same team who put together the Biscuit Bus, is first on Wahaltere's lengthy list of projects. "Just like when you're in Asia, where you often find moving restaurants at fish markets, by the river, or at a busy intersection, you'll be able to rush out to the sound of a brass bowl gong on the street and order sushi, small bites, noodles, all freshly prepared and affordable," explains Wahaltere.
The menu, says Wahaltere, will pimp fresh fish and vegetables, scratch-made sauces, finger foods and healthy ingredients. "Street trucks have become a new way of eating sophisticated, but fast food, prepared by real chefs, and we're going to use refined, top quality ingredients to make light and healthy preparations that make the most of the eclectic and savory flavors fundamental to Asian street food."
Wahaltere also hints at more street truck ventures in the future, including a tapas truck, once Aja to Go is up and moving. "I've got two more ideas after this one gets started. I like this movement. It's social eating and exciting, and let's not forget that tapas are often served at bars in Spain that open to the street."
To find out more about Aja to Go, go to ajadenver.com.