BOONE — Popular food truck Betty’s Biscuits is transitioning to a brick and mortar location in downtown Boone with an anticipated summer opening date.
Betty’s Biscuits took to the road in 2018 after what Tina Houston said was “not quite a double-dog-dare.” After The Cardinal restaurant owners started their “burger wagon,” Houston spontaneously purchased a friend’s old work truck to add to the food truck business in Boone.
Houston describes her other restaurants, Reids Cafe & Catering and The Beacon, as more for special occasions, saying people wouldn’t dine there more than once a week unless they are “super bougie.” She said Betty’s Biscuits was a way to get out into the community.
The food truck made its debut and quickly became popular at the Watauga County Farmer’s Market. Houston fondly remembers the first Saturday at the market, despite it being a “disaster.”
“My family all showed up for the first day at the farmer’s market in 2018 and we got annihilated,” Houston said laughing. “They surprised me — all my aunts and uncles and my mom — and we ran out of change. We ran out of straws. We ran out of sausage. I just remember yelling out the window to them like ‘can you get me quarters?’”
Houston said she put up with more at Betty’s than she would at another one of her restaurants. She said from the truck breaking down, the horn getting stuck on and early morning calls for more propane, they always had a good time with the food truck.
“No matter what Betty’s threw our direction, there was something sweet about it,” Houston said.
Betty’s Biscuits Manager Zach Anderson said he often jokes with his coworkers about how it is “wild” they get paid to have so much fun.
“It was that outreach to the community for the company but we kind of have this goal of ‘we’re gonna make as many friends as possible’ and we bribe them with biscuits to be our friends,” Anderson said jokingly.
After realizing the level of energy consumed by the food truck, Houston said she partnered with a graduate program at App State to transition to solar energy. She said this allowed them to save money and energy while also operating without a loud generator.
Houston said Betty’s Biscuits worked as a savings account of sorts, with little money going into operations and the majority being used for staff development and giving back to the community. She has tried to donate as much money as possible to organizations that serve adolescents, including Mountain Alliance, Western Youth Network, the Children’s Council and Crossnore School.
After about five years in operation, Betty’s Biscuits food truck had its last day in operation on Sunday, Feb. 26 as the business prepares to move into a brick and mortar location at 642 West King Street in downtown Boone this summer.
Serving the last biscuit of the day to her mother, Houston said she is grateful for the continued support of her family and community during this transition.
Betty’s Biscuits is named in honor of Houston’s grandmother who she said was a great baker. Houston said she grew up baking with her grandmother and it was “just perfect” to include her mother in the closing and opening of a chapter for Betty’s Biscuits.
While the truck goes into “semi-retirement” off the mountain, Betty’s Biscuits will continue to serve its signature biscuits accompanied by coffee and locally sourced ingredients. Once open in its new location, several new biscuit-centric items and beverages — including Bloody Mary’s and mimosas — will be added to the menu.
Houston said she hopes to open in June, with hours from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. several days a week. They also plan to open late for First Friday Art Crawls with potential for live music in an outdoor garden area. While many facets of the business are still in the planning process, Houston said she will continue to donate a portion of proceeds to charity and she hopes to eventually return to a solar powered operation.
“We’re just excited about it,” Houston said. “It feels like Betty’s has a lot of support. It’s just gonna be a real bright and comfortable space that is welcoming of everyone and supportive of everything going on in town.”
For more information, visit www.bettysbiscuitsnc.com.
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