Affton food truck garden unveils opening date

Veneta Rizvic | Jun 01, 2020

St. Louis Business Journal

article originally appeared

9 Mile Garden in Affton will open its doors Friday, July 3 — launching a grand opening week that will feature several live musical performances and charitable events.

The grounds of the food truck garden, located at 9375 Gravois Road, will open for lunch that Friday and continue operating for both lunch and dinner service through the weekend.The garden and its staff will follow health and safety guidelines set by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and St. LouisCounty, officials said.

“We’ll have plenty of sanitizing stations on-site, our tables will be situated more than 12 feet apart, and we’ll be encouraging our patrons to wear masks and practice social distancing,” Brian Hardesty , managing partner, said in a statement. “It’s important to us that people know that all regulations and measures are being taken to protect their health.”

Live musical performances by local acts The John HughesExperience, Caroline Steinkamp and Tree One Four will kick offopening weekend July 3. 9 Mile Garden will offer an outdoor movie screening the evening of July 4 in celebration of IndependenceDay, and the food truck garden’s lineup of 30 food trucks will be on rotation throughout the week.

Participating food trucks include: Fire and Ice Cream; Zia’s; Sedara Sweets; Farmtruk; Guerrilla Street Food; Doggie Mac’s; Seoul Taco;Essentially Fries; Zacchi’s; Wok and Roll; The Saucy Iguana; UKraft; Trcukeria Del Valle; Burgers STL; Wayno’s; Blues Fired Pizza; SpudShack; The Crooked Boot; Red Dirt Revival; Supersmokers; CJ’sDeli; Tastebudz Express; Heavy Smoke; Scoops & More; Poptimism; Graze; Smokin’ Loud BBQ; and Slice of the Hill.

The Canteen, an all-draft bar, also will open its doors, serving a wide selection of draft beer from local and national breweries alongside a selection of draft wines and cocktails, and cold brew coffee from Blueprint Coffee. The 3,500-square-foot space will have 16-foot garage doors that retract to transform the space into an open-air bar. The space also can be reserved for private events for up to 200 people.

Larry Chapman’s Seneca Commercial Real Estate owns the retail center where the food truck garden is located. The project has an estimated cost close to $1 million, officials previously told the Business Journal. The real estate company served as its own general contractor.

Hardesty, co-founder of Guerrilla Street Food, teamed up withSeneca for the project in November of last year.

He launched the first Guerrilla Street food truck with his partner Joel Crespo in 2011 after purchasing a former laundry van for $2,000. The duo’s first restaurant came in 2015 at 3559 Arsenal St.Today, Crespo and Hardesty own two restaurant locations and operate a food counter inside 2nd Shift Brewing. Their food truck can still be found on the streets of St. Louis.

Seneca Commercial Real Estate is a new company formed byChapman in 2019, officials said. Previously known as ChapmanVentures, the company redeveloped Affton Plaza and began working on ideas for phase two of the project — which turned into9 Mile Garden.