Jozi Town is on a crazy food buzz at the moment – food markets galore, pop-up restaurants, street eating & secret dining. There’s some serious young hot talent out there who are not only making ‘smack your lips’ good grub, they also have a vibe of hip & cool & are all sorts of trendy without trying too hard. Nice – so much better that way. One such name popping up & catching the foodie masses attention – say hello to Tutto food Co. owners – Clemmy & Daniel. They spill the beans on their foodie vibe, their rad little Jozi food truck & super busy catering business. Here we go, things get tasty…
PTS: Ola Tutto food Co. Welcome to Pass The Salt. Daniel & Clemmy – why did you choose the tough food industry world? & why the Tutto name? We want answers, we want to know everything! Please enlighten us…
TFC: It all started a few years ago when we began working with our friends and associates, Matthew Freemantle & Andrew Kai of Cape Town’s Gusto – running the paella stand at the Neighbourgoods Market in Braamfontein. What started as a fun food project on weekends quickly began to gather speed. We had to make the decision to either quit our day jobs & throw ourselves into the food industry 100% or step out of it altogether. The latter wasn’t an option – we live for food & once we had a taste of the industry it was impossible to back away.
I (Clemmy) was raised in a home where food is everything; my mom grew up in France & is an astonishingly gifted, self-taught cook – definitely what informed my own passion & knowledge of food. Daniel has Italian heritage & a close tie to Israel & the Middle East in his sister-in-law. So we formed Tutto Food Co & decided to grow our own business further into the realms of market cooking & food trucks. It is hard & very tiring, but there’s nothing quite as satisfying as making a living out of what you love & investing in yourself rather than in someone else’s business.
Ok… The Tutto name – we wanted something short & sharp & spoke to our philosophy about food. ‘Tutto’ captured it – the word means everything, all, whole. For us, good food is everything, it is for everyone & it makes life whole.
PTS: So many of the ‘oh so hip & trendy’ – *love them* Jozi crowd recognises the Tutto name from THE food markets of Jozi Town – Market On Main & Neighbourgoods. Hipsters must go mental when they see you there – what foodie delights do you hand out to the hungry masses?
TFC: Freshly cooked paella, which we prepare from scratch in our massive Spanish pans. At Neighbourgoods, which we run in conjunction with Cape Town based Gusto, we serve up two different types: a seafood paella with prawns, calamari, local mussels, squid tentacles, clam meat & peas, as well as a super tasty free range chicken paella that contains the best chorizo this side of the equator from our specialist supplier. The Tutto stall at Market on Main also serves our signature seafood paella, plus we do a really lovely mixed mushroom paella with char-grilled fennel & truffle oil. We love all our paellas but our current favourite is the mushroom – it has powerful flavour while still being light.
PTS: After doing a tiny (& harmless) bit of Internet stalking, Pass The Salt discovered that Tutto has catered for some big players within the food industry – Vicki Clarke, Sally Williams & Karen Short… Ever get a bit intimidated – go on… we’re all friends here, you can be honest with us…
TFC: We won’t lie – it is always a bit intimidating when one is asked to do work with/ for such industry stalwarts, but we have only ever had positive experiences & feedback, which is hugely encouraging.
PTS: So if people were randomly talking about Tutto in the street, they would say… ‘Tutto! The best ….. *fill in the blank* food ever’. What is the Tutto speciality cuisine?
TFC: Afro-Mediterranean – all our food, from our paella to our food truck menu, speaks to the belt of the Mediterranean, comprising Southern Europe, the Middle East & North Africa. These regions all have access to similar ingredients & while their styles of cooking vary, they’re all rooted in big, fresh flavours that talk to one another beautifully. Freshness is really the key word when it comes to our food.
We make everything ourselves, from our dressings & marinades to our sauces & seasonings – nothing comes ready made out of a jar. We’ve also put a lot of effort into finding the best suppliers of fresh ingredients, local seafood, free-range meat & chicken, charcuterie & bread, which is an important aspect of producing the best possible quality products.
PTS: Aussies & New Yorkers love their food trucks – in a BIG way. South Africa has caught onto the vibe & seems to be embracing it. What made you want to own a food truck in Jozi? Do you just like driving a big truck around the city of gold? Where can this famous truck be found?
TFC: There is a massive gap in the market for serving up really good quality, freshly made lunchtime fare to people in Joburg. Having worked in office environments ourselves for several years we were all too aware of just how boring & flavourless canteen & pre-packaged food can be – it is also often the only choice if you haven’t had time to make your own lunch. It’s no big secret that fresh food just tastes better but for some reason ‘plastic’ food continues to dominate the lunchtime landscape.
Basically, as people who live to eat, we just decided that it was totally unnecessary for office goers to continue suffering in this way (#firstworldproblems aside), so we decided to launch our first food truck. Making your food mobile extends your reach, allowing you to serve people in different areas of the city. Apart from that, it is amazingly cool to spend your work week trundling around Jozi in a 1976 VW Kombi, cooking & serving to people out in the open air & sunshine. Right now our main trading grounds are Sandton, Rosebank & we are looking at parts of town & Braamfontein as well.
PTS: The grapevine has been chatty lately… Pass The Salt heard that Tutto will be making an appearance at the Sanlam Investments FoodWineDesign Fair happening on the Hyde Park rooftop in November – tell us a bit about your involvement…
TFC: We are going to be cooking up a storm in our giant sized pot filled with beautiful steamed fresh mussels in a white wine sauce, as well as large pans of flash-fried prawns & chorizo with gremolata oil, washed down with a nice cold Laurentina straight from Mozambique. We are so looking forward to being a part of this annual event & cannot wait to share our food with visitors to the Fair – these are two of our most popular dishes & without doubt two of our own personal favourites.
PTS: Lastly, if the little Tutto food Co truck did ever decide to take the day off – where would it take Clemmy & Daniel?
TFC: Probably to the James & Ethel Gray Park in Melrose, where we love to go & walk our little Jack Russel, Fonzy. We would also love to take it for a trip down to the sea.
PTS: Ok we lied, this is seriously the last one – what is your current favourite Jozi Town hangout?
TFC: We’re a bit short on chill time at the moment, what with the food truck running during the week & then markets & events over the weekend, but when we do get a night off we head to Cyrildene to either the Fong Mei or the Fisherman’s plate. We have been going there for years & it has become our fave family hangout.
Thanks for all the chats Tutto, it has been super, super rad!
Be sure to catch Tutto food Co at all of the above mentioned markets, The Sanlam Investments FoodWineDesign Fair happening in November & well… in that now rather famouse VW Kombie
Or visit http://www.tutto.co.za/
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