After taking a hiatus from the 2017 edition of Folk on the Rocks (FOTR) the local vendor behind festival-food favourite Taco in a Bag will be returning in 2018.
“All weekend everyone was like, do you have a booth? So, definitely, people had a lot of feedback about us being there,” said Richard Makohoniuk, the man who brought Taco in a Bag north close to seven years ago.
Makohoniuk and his wife took a break from working the festival last year to look after their two-month-old daughter.
It was the first break from the FOTR that Makohoniuk has had since he first started running his booth Smash Mak Food as a way to attend the festival for free by selling frozen treats.
He soon realized, however, that the return from the frozen treats wouldn’t be enough to break even.
That’s when he found a recipe online for his specialized tacos.
Now FOTR attendants can enjoy a bag of Doritos corn chips that have been cut open and stuffed with all toppings of a regular taco, including onions, tomatoes, homemade salsa, guacamole, ground beef and lettuce.
“Our booth started out, because I wanted to go to FOTR and drink beer for free,” said Makohoniuk.
“Then someone put a bug in my ear about this taco in a bag and I’m indebted to her, but that same week I got a recipe online and I’m like, ‘It’s a sign. I gotta try this out.”
While it’s the same recipe that perennial festival attendees may be used to, Makohoniuk said there are some changes to his booth, including where he’s located and the booth’s name, which will now be The Sweet Stop.
“So my brother had the ingenious idea of setting up just outside the beer garden entrance. Now people on the beer garden side can still come to the fence and order without having to leave and the public, because we sell cotton candy and sno-cones and there aren’t too many people 19-plus that really go gangbusters for that, they can still order from the outside,” said Makohoniuk.
“Smash Mak food started the taco in a bag but this year I’m teaming up with my brother because my wife is busy and also pregnant.”
While he is bringing back the tacos, Makohoniuk said there will only be a certain amount available for sale, due to the time demand that running a booth puts on a young family. He wouldn’t reveal the exact number but he noted that he’ll bring back a pulled-pork version of the taco treat.
We’re also going to have relatively limited quantities and when they’re gone, we’ll just have burgers and hot dogs and plenty of great food,” he said.
“I’m sure we’ll have enough for everybody and everybody will be happy but we put a limit on it.”
Makohoniuk said that the scale back in numbers will help him enjoy the concert a bit more and allow him to look after his daughter, rather than spend the entire weekend working.
He argues that it will help him get back to the original idea of running a stand in order to enjoy the festival and visit with friends.
There will be a total of 13 different food and drink vendors at the festival including Noodo Monster, Saffron food truck and Mini Donuts.