ROCKFORD (WREX) — A brand new food truck is just getting started in the Stateline; the Taco Shop 815 is bringing authentic Mexican food on-the-go to Rockfordians near and far.
"I wanted to start a business where I can work certain days, and then the rest of the day is for my family," says owner Christian Becerra.
He says a passion for cooking and family is what's behind every dish served and what led him to start the food truck. Becerra had worked in the restaurant industry for 13 years, then was laid off at the beginning of the pandemic. He thought we was done with cooking for good and went to work in construction, but realized he missed being in the kitchen.
"When I went to try something else, I realized how much I loved it," says Becerra.
"I love cooking and creating and I just decided I wanted to open up a food truck. I want my own freedom, be able to park anywhere I can so people can come try my food."
He says being able to spend more time with his wife and children was also one of the biggest determining factors to take the plunge.
The truck officially opened for business last weekend and Becerra says the turnout was more than he ever expected.
"Watching peoples faces when they try my food and tell me its good, that's everything," he says.
While the business is just beginning to grease its wheels, the food coming off the truck has been carefully crafted and perfected over three generations.
"My mother-in-law actually makes these amazing birria," says Becerra, "I'm from Guadalajara and we have like the best birria there."
"Our recipes goes back from my mother-in-law to her mom. We adjusted it, tweaked it, but its pretty much a family recipe.
When you walk up to the truck you can smell fresh tacos and birria wafting through the air, the scent of sizzling beef drawing you in.
On the menu, you will find classic Mexican dishes like tacos, tortas, burritos and quesabirrias. You will also find some more creative options that Becerra crafted: pizza-birria and ramen-birria.
"I love getting creative and we're always going to try to bring in some unique flavors when we can," says Becerra.
"Its a small local business and everything is made fresh every day."
The Taco Shop 815 is open Thursday through Saturday from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. in the parking lots of Forest Plaza Shopping Center on East State Street.
To stay up to date on when and where the truck will be open, follow them of Facebook and Instagram.