Now, Rose “Slam” Johnson's Hot Bike would not be the first taco bike in the Bay Area. That honor, of course, is due to Alfonso Dominguez's El Taco Bike. But Hot Bike does have something going for it, besides the adorableness of its creator (one of our Hot Pink List designees from last year's Queer Issue). Where Dominguez's ride was merely the storage receptacle for delicious steamed tacos de canasta, Johnson's will serve as an actual portable kitchen on a Yuba Mundo utility bike. That's right -- vegan tacos made to order.
She's looking to raise $5,000 to make her dream a reality. Yes, that means a Kickstarter. But the video's cute too! Look at it:
Potential offerings for the Hot Bike include roasted veggies and sweet beans (!), each topped with Johnson's signature beet coleslaw. The project is the culmination of many years of dreaming by the queer community activist, who has done work with the SF Bike Coalition's Bike to School program, AIDS Life Cycle, the YMCA's bike program, and the LGBT Center's youth meal nights. She's into the way that food has the power to bring people together. And she lives for biking -- Johnson often spends the summer on the back of two wheels, having trekked up and down both coasts.
Johnson plans to focus on catering events, or posting up alongside other food carts. I asked her during our recent interview on the bench outside of the 24th Street Philz Coffee why she wouldn't be into doing the jingle-jangle ice cream truck thing (visions of door-to-door taco service pinging about my head) and she said it had to do with a concept she calls the "street food bubble." See, people it seems are hesitant to buy tacos off the street from somebody whose kitchen hygiene skills are unproven. That's why she likes to vend her wares in more established areas.
"Once it's popped, it's popped," Johnson continued. "But yeah, otherwise people are skeptical of selling food on the street."
Overcome what skepticism remaining in your heart on Sun/26, when she takes her outfit (minus bike, that's not built yet) over to Public Works for the club's Stardust Sunday party featuring the First Church of the Sacred Silversexual, Mancub, and 8ball of the Space Cowboys.
Stardust Sunday feat. tacos by Hot Bike
Sun/26 8 p.m.-12:30 a.m., $5 presale
161 Erie, SF