Giving back to the community is an important part of Portland’s food cart culture. One former food cart entrepreneur, Rick Gencarelli of Lardo and Grassa, has combined special culinary creations with supporting non-profit organizations. In February of 2016, Rick paired with Han of Kim Jong Grillin’ to offer hot dog with a KJG twist.
Chefwich is the monthly collaboration between Lardo and a local PDX chef (as Rick puts it, he gets to “selfishly collaborate with cool chefs” from around Portland), which puts a special sandwich on Lardo’s menu for a month. Ten percent of the proceeds from each month’s culinary collusion are then donated to a charity of the chef’s choosing.
These joint endeavors also inspire the staff members at Lardo as well as give the Lardo’s customers an exciting menu item they can anticipate. February 2016 saw Lardo join forces with Kim Jong Grillin’s owner and chef, Han Ly Hwang, to create a hot dog unlike any other dog in PDX.
Han chose the Surfrider Foundation to receive the benefits of Lardo and KJG working together. The reason is that Han finds the Pacific ocean to be an inspiration. It was while contemplating life on a beach in Maui that Han became inspired to start the Kim Jong Grillin’ food cart empire.
The Surfrider Foundation was established more than 30 years ago by a handful of surfers from California who wanted to protect their favorite surf breaks from development and pollution. The Surfrider Foundation is now a worldwide activist network of people dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s oceans, waves and beaches.
Although technically not a sandwich per se, the Lardo/KJG joint effort has taken advantage of a baguette from Binh Minh, a local PDX deli and bakery, and a frankfurter from Olympia Provisions. The dog is topped with kim chee mayonnaise, daikon kim chee, sesame sprouts, and strips of pickled mango. Don’t worry, you can get the KJG Hot Dog at Kim Jong Grillin’ as it’s a regular item on their menu.