Asian Persuasion, which opened in June 2011, tickles the taste buds of America’s Finest City with flavor-packed dishes with Mexican, Korean, Filipino, Japanese, and Chinese influences. Yeah, that’s a whole lotta tasty packed into one big red truck! Asian Persuasion’s owner, Jessica Tsang, was kind enough to take the time to do this interview for SDFT.
SDFT: What did you do before you had the food truck?
JT: I was a banker for over 8 years before opening up my truck. However, I grew up in the restaurant industry working with my parents at their Chinese restaurant. I would cashier, wash dishes, wait tables, basically whatever my parents needed help with from the age of 12 and up. (Funny thing is that growing up I refused and swore I would never go in the restaurant industry!) Guess I was wrong!! My passion for cooking and creating dishes and me being unhappy working for the “man” got me thinking that I need to do something different. So my research started, then I got laid off from my job (haha) and it’s all history from there. 🙂
How did you decide on the name Asian Persuasion?
I came up with the name with a friend just as a joke, but then it stuck. I figured I could really have some fun with the name with marketing and menu items. It’s hard not to see the big red truck with a dragon on it called Asian Persuasion and it not stick out your mind. Most people laugh when they see the name because at one point they have used the term Asian Persuasion. I know I have. lol
What’s your favorite thing about running the business and what is your biggest challenge?
Making my own schedule and meeting new people! I’m a talker and love to interact with people.
My biggest challenge is doing the job of 5 people…It gets tough having to keep up with paper work, prepping, scheduling events, shopping for supplies, paying the bills, everything. BUT I love it!!
What’s the best response anyone has had to your food?
I am flattered by any and all compliments we get about our food. We have some hardcore followers that come find us in SD from Murrieta and Los Angeles at least once a month just to get their fix. But the thing that stands out most to me is the comment a food truck follower posted on our FB page for the Eastlake Food Truck Gathering I started. She said that the gathering has brought her and her teenage son closer because they have something to do every Wednesday together and talk about all the food they try. It has helped them have a closer relationship. That to me made what I do every day well worth it and keeps me going. Food really does bring people together!
How do you come up with these delicious menu items like the Char Siu Sammy, firecracker shrimp, and spicy orange peel chicken??
I put what I like to eat and what I think others would enjoy.
What would you say is your most popular item?
The Korean BBQ Burrito. It’s steak marinated in our homemade marinade, white rice, our sweet Asian slaw, and spicy mayo wrapped in a warm flour tortilla.
However, my personal favorite is our FOB tacos, which is probably the second most ordered item on our menu. It’s panko breaded fish, our Asian slaw, and spicy mayo on warm corn tortillas. It’s a perfect combinations of sweet and spicy, crunchy fish and soft tortilla, I literally can eat them everyday!