Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach food truck launches with grand opening

Troy Harris stands in front of Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach food truck he co-owns with Kareem Wallace.

Celebrate the grand opening of Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach food truck on Sunday November 8, 2020 at 11:30 am. Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach kosher food truck will be Located at 44th and Chester Ave. in University City. The Keystone-K kosher certified truck serves a diary  menu with vegetarian options overseen by a Mashgiach. Items available include falafel, veggie burgers, Kareem’s “Smack You Back” Mac N’ Cheese, French fries and more.

Troy Harris and Kareem Wallace co-owners of Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach food truck

Owners Kareem Wallace and Troy Harris launched the food truck after being laid off from their jobs as kosher chefs at Penn Hillel due to the COVID-19 epidemic. They’ve been buzzing ever since. On election night they received a random request from a  Democratic Presidential candidate Joe Biden campaign staffer to open their truck. Grassroots served hot tea and cocoa at the Overbrook High School polling location, the graduating high school of actor Will Smith.

Both men are from West Philly and met each other two decades ago working at Penn Hillel. Now, they hope to launch an entrepreneur program to help young adults in their neighborhood.

“I‘ve been working here for 21 years and Kareem has been working here for 18 years,” Harris says. “We see something in the Jewish community that we don’t have in our community and we want to bring that kind of support to our community.”

Wallace and Harris are supported by a strong diverse advisory board, that they both agree have been a saving grace.  People such as Ted Siegel, UPenn alumni Gregory Siegel and Eliana Machefsky, and Gary Koppelman, are examples of how the Jewish community rallied behind Wallace and Harris. Koppelman is the owner of  Industrial Food Truck Commissary + Fabrication who offered Grassroots space on his lot so the truck would not get vandalized overnight.

Harris says the advisory board has been with them from the start and he owes them a big thank you. Grassroots: The Chosen Mitbach is supported by an advisory board consisting of Matthew and Terri  Brown-Whitehorn, Gregory Whitehorn, Hannah Bookbinder and The Bookfinder family, Michelle Lyu, Reggie Bolton, and Elana Burack.

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About the Author
Patrice Worthy is a reporter at the Atlanta Jewish Times where she writes about Israeli politics, food, art and culture, ethnic Jewry and Jews in the Diaspora.