We had the good fortune of connecting with Kelley Barrett and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kelley, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
In a word: flexibility. We opened three weeks before Covid-19 became a nationwide issue and lockdowns were enforced. Our dream was on the knife’s edge and it felt like all our hard work was about to be taken from us by this massive, faceless entity over which we had no control. But we never stopped trying. We changed our menu daily to suit our event location. We have found weird niches for ourselves completely by accident and leaned into them. We never stopped looking and booking. We made friends with as many other trucks as we could and always were and are ready to try new things to see where they take us.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I have loved cooking since I was a child. My grandmother, mother, and aunt involved me whenever they could and made kitchen time the best time. But up until 12 years ago, it never occurred to me to become a chef! I had been a shoe salesman, a delivery girl, a clerk, and a carpenter up until one fateful dinner party where my friends asked if I was ever going to start a restaurant. That sounded like a great idea, except I had no professional cooking experience! So I enrolled in culinary school, worked full time while earning a degree full time, got myself restaurant jobs in whatever capacity I could and figured it out. And no, it wasn’t easy. I got in over my head so many times, found out just how many hours a week I can work before I snap (way more than 40), and have worked under so many people who aren’t fit to run a race much less a restaurant. Trying to stay sober in an industry that thrives off of substance abuse is no easy feat, either. So far, the worst of my bad habits is caffeine. And after all that, honestly, owning and operating a food truck is somewhat easy, and even when it is 15 hours a day, 7 days a week, it is still fun and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Day 1: Denver Museum of Nature and Science. Lunch at Uno Mas Taqueria on 6th, dinner at Blue Pan Pizza
Day 2: Red Rocks. Lunch at whatever food truck is currently hanging out in Golden, dinner at Purple Ginger Asian Fusion
Day 3: Denver Botanic Gardens. Lunch as a picnic in the park, dinner at Anthony’s
Day 4: Wander around Santa Fe and check out all the art galleries and funky little shops. Lunch at Tacos de Mexico, dinner at the Brutal Poodle
Day 5: Long walk around Wash Park and South Pearl St, maybe some shopping in Cherry Creek. Lunch as a picnic in the park again. Dinner at Sushi Den
Day 6: Denver Aquarium. Lunch at Denver Beer Co’s food truck, dinner at Daughter Thai
In between, we’d go to 1Up to play skeeball and video games, try and catch a local show at the Oriental Theater, visit the Edgewater Marketplace and go bother all my food truck friends.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many, it is difficult to settle on just one! To my brother from another mother, Robb Dominy, who is my co owner and a badass chef. To Anne and Rusty Pickard, who believed in us and invested in us to help get us into a truck in the first place. And to Desiree Rearigh, former owner of Diesel Dogs in Castle Rock, who sold us her truck to get us off the ground and rolling!
Yelp: Barrett and Pratt Provisions