Food Truck Diaries: Orange County food truck sells coffee, gains national attention
Posted January 26
Updated February 2
Hillsborough, N.C. — One Orange County family is gaining national attention for their business model – selling coffee in school drop-off lines.
The business opened in August, and the simple idea has gone viral and turned into big business for one Orange County family.
“The cafe mocha is a big one… and the hot chocolate people like to buy those," co-owner Heather Rael said.
Last year, Heather and Gabriel Rael launched the food truck to bring in extra income and help them connect with the community. When their daughter's school approved it, they started selling coffee. Every morning, the truck sits in the back of lot, so it doesn’t disrupt the flow of the drop-off line.
“We knew that this would be a good location. So, we started probably about a year ago starting to get the equipment and getting the trailer going," Rael said.
Parents, teachers and even community members can park and get coffee.
“It’s convenient. It’s really nice to have a place where I can come do my drop off like I would normally do and then jump over and see some good friends," said parent Bessie Mbadugha.
Last year, the business landed the promotion of a lifetime after being featured on NBC’s Today Show for their "genius" business idea.
"We didn't really understand the scope of how far it went. And we started hearing from people from different places," Gabriel Rael said.
After the story ran, the phones started ringing. People from all across the state began inviting the Raels to do business at their events.
"The attention is a little crazy," Rael said. "We weren't expecting that at all. That was a nice surprise."
Certainly, a surprise of a lifetime. And now the barista parents are on the road to success.
The food truck is open every weekday morning from 7:15 a.m. until 8:15 a.m. at The Expedition School.
If business continues to boom, The Rael family said they’ll consider franchising.