S.Sometimes laughter is the best medicine. Otherwise, it’s cheese. Luckily, his one food truck in New Jersey offers both. Who Cut the Cheese Lady offers smiles and delicious grilled cheese options during food truck season. Her owner, Brenda Picone, offers quality ingredients and products that appeal to the masses. After all, who doesn’t enjoy grilled cheese?
Brenda moved from Boston to New Jersey in the late 1980s. Over the decades that followed, she worked in various aspects of the food industry, learning the ins and outs of the business. Then after she decided to retire, she made the leap to food trucks, and Who Cut the Cheese Lady is now her go-to food truck in New Jersey.
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After deciding on a grilled cheese sandwich, Brenda began making one special sandwich after another. The early years of her retirement were spent carefully choosing things like cheese and bread. To produce the best grilled cheese in the region.
She then purchased the truck in November 2017. Of course, they offer a variety of grilled cheese options with a twist, and you can even create your own.
best of new jersey We spoke with Brenda about her business model and the grilled cheese that people in northern New Jersey are craving. Check out the interview below!
Best New Jersey Food Trucks: Who Cut The Cheese Lady Interview
Best of NJ: Over 30 years of experience in the food industry. What was your role during that period or period?
Brenda Picone: In the 1980s, I worked for a food brokerage company. I sold the fruit to restaurants, hospitals, universities, etc. After that, I finally got into my own catering business. This is all happening in the Boston area where I’m from. I did full service there for about 10 years and then moved here to New Jersey. Continued part-time catering here. Then I worked for a school lunch company here for 15 years.
BONJ: So you decided to start a Who Cut The Cheese Lady food truck?
Brenda: No, we actually supported it.I end with my old company. When her husband and I discussed it, we joked that before the actual retirement date, we were planning to take over a local restaurant. did. That’s when we started thinking about food trucks. Then we went out and bought a food truck and that’s when we said. [Laughs]
BONJ: How did your experience in the food industry translate into your food truck business?
Brenda: I took over food and safety laws and regulations, purchasing aspects, food preparation, food costs, basic food service core, and customer service. The real learning curve used to be dealing with health boards, but now we have to deal with health boards and fire inspections before every event. There is a contract that you create each time you book an event. There is also the issue of weather. My first year at the food truck, it rained at almost every event. And it has a big impact on your income.
BONJ: Why did you choose to specialize in grilled cheese?
Brenda: After purchasing the truck and doing all sorts of research, I was advised to contact Meadowlands Racecourse for a flea market. [those]we have to choose something different, comfort food. Upon further investigation, it appears that there are no dedicated grilled cheese food trucks within a 40 mile radius. That’s what we decided and spun up from there.
BONJ: What variations of grilled cheese does Who Cut The Cheese Lady offer?
Brenda: Initially, I came up with 8 sandwiches. Everything was made from scratch.No, I didn’t make my own cheese [laughs]We then narrowed it down to four of the most popular and our own creations. These four are white pesto, buffalo chicken, seasoned steak, and my own pulled barbecue. Then you have your own build that allows you to create your own design using available materials.
BONJ: Do you offer other types of food?
Brenda: We offer french fries seasoned with our pride.We spent months developing the seasoning and people love it and often come back for bottled [laughs]Give fries with your sandwich.
Depending on the event, we also offer children’s menus such as grilled cheese, chicken nuggets, and hot dogs. Then in autumn and winter I sometimes eat tomato soup. But mostly just grilled cheese and fries.
BONJ: Are there any new Who Cut The Cheese Lady items for 2020?
Brenda: We often have specials on sale. I make my own mac and cheese, so I make mac and cheese grilled cheese. I’m going to make corned beef, so I’ll provide corned beef and Swiss cheese. Run specials more often when you’re in a regular place.
BONJ: Tell us a little bit about experimenting and expanding on traditional grilled cheese recipes.
Brenda: Anyone can make plain cheesecake. So I’ve probably made hundreds of variations of grilled cheese. Make it, send it to your family and friends, and ask for detailed and honest opinions. My husband came home from her job, walked through her door and asked, “Okay, what’s your special grilled cheese tonight?” [Laughs]
It was exciting for me and a challenge for me. I had to find a balance between all ingredients and flavors. Bread was also a large portion. I can’t tell you how many bread makers I went through to find just the right one that complimented the ingredients I was putting on.
BONJ: What is your favorite event to attend (with your track)?
Brenda: We frequent the Paramus Farmers Market and love doing events at the JustJersey Fest. We also do a lot of JC Promotions. We do a lot for charities, paramedics, and autism too. Most of the time we tend to stay local in Northern New Jersey, but sometimes we travel across the state.And we always post our location on social media. We are on Facebook and Instagram.
We love weddings too. People are finishing this grand event happy and joyful. We are handing out grilled cheese while waiting for the attendant to pick up the car. People always get a kick out of it.
For more information on Who Cut The Cheese Lady, click here to visit the website.
Want to discover more Best New Jersey Food Trucks? Then check out Best New Jersey Food Trucks: The Complete Series.
All photos: © Patrick Lombardi / Best of NJ