Sliding On Up

Anyone who follows the food scene knows that food trucks are taking the world by storm. Watching Food Network’s Great Food Truck Race, hosted by Tyler Florence, is one of our favorite ways to spend Sunday evenings and cheer on new trucks hitting the streets. We recently caught up with Season 4 competitors Ahren Samuel, Das Smith and Maurice “Mo” McQueen of The Slide Show to learn about their adventures on the show and beyond.

The Slide Show team-Das Smith, Ahren Samuel and Maurice 'Mo" McQueen. Photo credit to Food Network Blog
The Slide Show team-(L-R) Das Smith, Ahren Samuel and Maurice ‘Mo” McQueen. Photo credit to Food Network Blog

FP: We love the concept of The Slide Show. How do the three of you know each other? How did the concept evolve? 

AS: We all worked together at some point in time and are good friends. Being that we live in LA, we thought it would be a good idea to incorporate the entertainment aspect of our city and how food is the focal point. We also thought sliders were a universal street food that everyone in every city would like and, therefore, would be perfect for the show!

FP: Tell us about your experience on the Great Food Truck Race.

AS: We had a great experience on the show. We felt like food rock stars literally being on the road going from city to city each week. That was a different experience and very fun.

FP: What was it like to compete with the other food trucks?

AS: We loved competing with such cool people on the show. We didn’t know who we would be up against and we were pleasantly surprised by how talented and down to earth the other teams were.

FP: Looking back what would you have done differently?

AS: We definitely would’ve changed some things if we had to do the show over again and the main thing we would change is pricing. We would charge way more for our food from the beginning. Location and pricing is everything.

FP: Besides Slide Show , what is currently keeping you busy? What are some of your non-Slide Show related interests?

AS: We are currently staying busy building the Slide Show brand and our future endeavors. Some non- Slide Show related interests for us are sports, working out, wine tasting (for me), learning more about food and enjoying life.

FP: What are some of your favorite meals to prepare when you are home? If you go out to eat, name some of your favorite places in Los Angeles or other cities you’ve visited.

DS: I love cooking seafood at home.

MM: I love to cook Italian food, especially pasta.

AS: I really enjoy cooking healthy food. I love making fresh salads, soups and proteins. Some of my favorite restaurants in LA are Bouchon, Scarpetta, Cleo’s, Fig & Olive, Mari Vanna, Green Street Restaurant, and Nick’s Martini Lounge.

FP: Sounds like a great list. We’ll have to check some of them out if we visit LA. Now that we think about it-there’s a Fig & Olive near us in Scarsdale! 

What are some of your guilty pleasures? We like to call them foodie pleasures, hence the name 🙂 

DS: I love onions and fried fish. I could eat a raw onion like an apple.

MM: Lunchmeat. I could eat lunchmeat all day every day.

AS: I LOVE sweets but I RARELY eat them because I’m a fitness nut. But when I do, some of my favorite guilty pleasures are pecan pie, ice cream, & cookies!! Mmmmmmm!

FP: Sweets, yes. Fried fish yes. Lunchmeat, hmm we’ll leave that for Mo 🙂 

What advice do you have for anyone who wants to start a food truck? 

AS: Do your homework on food trucks and what they need in order to be successful and do your research on food truck competitions and what concepts are selling on the streets right now. It is a minimal investment for a big return.

FP: Great advice! Last but not least, will the people of LA (or another city) see Slide Show cruising the streets anytime soon?

AS: Absolutely!! So watch out for a Slide Show Truck coming to your town SOON!

FP: That’s exciting! If you’re ever in the NYC area please let us know. Thank you for your time and we wish you the best! 

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