Up until a couple of weeks ago, Marty Richie was just a small-town guy with a small-time food business with plans to expand. But then, all of it quite literally went up in flames when his 1980's heavy-metal themed food truck exploded in his driveway.
Neither Richie nor his lawyer are commenting on the cause of the blast, but no one was hurt, and his plans to move into a downtown Lakeville restaurant space have not changed.
Richie is the kind of dude who calls out his high school and graduating class right away when you first talk to him. "I love the '80s. I love '80s metal. I love all '80s music. (For the record, he graduated in '87).
He cooked a bit in his youth but then spent 15 years as a digital marketing executive for various companies until the recession eliminated his job. Twice.
"I started reading about the low cost of starting a food truck and this explosion that was happening all over the country." [We do not point out the irony in his choice of words when he says this, nor the explosive paint job on the facade of the ill-fated truck].
So he got this food truck and only knew he wanted it to reference his love of '80's music. That, and and he wanted to keep things simple.
"I thought about calling it KISS, especially with the 'keeping it simple,' but I was afraid I'd hear from Gene [Simmons] right away. Poison sounded funny. So did Ratt. So, Motley Crews sounded pretty well."
No word on whether he's heard from Vince Neil yet.
"Nobody was doing a Philly, and if they did, it was dry or the bread was wrong, and nobody was doing it with Cheez-Whiz, which is right, so we did that. And then nobody was doing chicken -- it was all pork this and pulled pork that, and burgers. So we did chicken, because chicken is good -- it's the other white meat!"
And so he trucked along, fairly happily for two seasons, until the winter of 2014 reared its ugly head. Unlike the majority of food trucks, MC runs all year, come sleet or come snow, and come it did.
"I would never, never, never cancel an event." And because they wouldn't, they trucked through 10 inches of snow at times, and eventually came to this conclusion: "We can't do it like this anymore."
He says he could see an abandoned old Pizza Hut from his bedroom window, and got the idea it was time to open a place without wheels.
"I just love small-town America. I love road trips when you have to slow down to 45, and then 35 and then ride through the small towns that are sometimes 'blink and you'll miss it'. That's what Lakeville is." Richie says there is only one other restaurant in downtown Lakeville, Babe's, and his new place at 20851 Holyoke Avenue will be just a couple blocks down.
"It's so exciting for me to be a part of small-town America." He says the city of Lakeville estimates that it loses about $6 million dollars annually in residents leaving town to seek restaurants elsewhere, so MC should be well poised for business.
The restaurant will continue to serve those Phillys, handcut fries, buffalo shrimp, a brat burger, and a double stacked burger with bacon and eggs, among other classic favorites.
"If the budget allows" he says he'd like to try his hand at wood-fired pizza.
Look for the opening around June 1.
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