Home on The Range

Haiden and Savana Waterbury

Photo courtesy of facebook

High school sweethearts with backgrounds in rice farming, Haiden and Savana Waterbury recently switched gears to realize a lifelong dream of entering the food industry. With The Range food truck, the Gridley-based couple focus on sourcing ingredients locally and creating unique variations on dishes from around the world. Take, for example, their Vietnamese tacos, which come filled with ginger- and lemongrass-marinated pork and topped with tangy coleslaw, cilantro, jalapeño and Sriracha sauce. The truck launched this past April and has since become a regular vendor at the Fork in the Road gatherings, in addition to catering private events. The CN&R caught up with the Waterburys outside of Chico’s Hooker Oak Distillery, currently the truck’s steadiest weekend location. Go to www.therangefoodtruck.com to find out more and to get in touch with the Waterburys.

How did you decide on the name?

Savana: We felt like it represented us and the fact that we have a range of foods and really like to mix up what we’re doing seasonally. Also, we live in Gridley and our backyard is a beautiful view of the Buttes, so we wanted to play on that.

Haiden: The mountain in the logo is a rough outline of the north Butte, which is the closest one to us.

How has this area and your farming background influenced your food? And how do you decide what makes it onto the menu?

Haiden: Farming definitely influenced our decision to want to go really local. Seeing all the variety of produce we get around here, we wanted to highlight what’s best in this area.

Savana: It’s really important to us to focus on the community, focus on local ingredients, and to show people that you can cook amazing food with what’s right in your own backyard.

Haiden: We try to do multicultural cuisine, so we’re looking at a lot of foods that are maybe popular around the world but not here, and then trying to put our own twist on them. There’s a lot of trial-and-error and testing on family and friends.

How does your relationship outside of business benefit your dynamic working together?

Savana: We’ve been together since we were juniors in high school, so we work together really well [laughs]. It’s a completely equal partnership. We pick up each other’s slack and both do a little of everything.

Haiden: Especially when it comes to cooking, that’s something we’ve always been able to work together really well on.

Do you have a favorite item on your menu to recommend to newcomers?

Haiden: We definitely like to mix it up, because we feel that if you do one thing for too long it can get a little stale, but we really like the Vietnamese tacos and the Mediterranean sliders. Those always seem to find their way back onto the menu for big events.