Jace Krause always had this dream of owning a business. But with no formal business training, he wasn't sure where to start.
He did know a few things. He could write. He loved music. He could cook a delicious fried egg sandwich.
That's when the idea for a food cart crept into his mind. But it would take a year or so, and a move to another city to make the dream happen.
Krause was living in Seattle, and his bandmate/musical collaborator/friend Ryan Lynch had just moved to Portland from Sonoma, CA. Lynch was working in sales at the Oregonian but dreamed of a gig where he could do what he loves doing: bullshitting with people and selling a product that he truly believes in.
Krause had a pretty good job in the corporate tech landscape that permeates Seattle. Great bennies, a month of vacation, free pop in the breakroom… the works. Nearly 5 years went by at that job while Krause got married and had a son. Priorities changed, and he grew increasingly unsatisfied with his ability to express himself in such a stifled environment. Sitting in front of a computer all day was no longer for him. After some dark days of thinking about the direction of his life and the example he wanted to set for his son, he knew he needed a serious career change. A 180.
So Krause made a promise to his lovely wife Ellen. He said that if she found a job in Portland, he would gladly move. They both had family connections in Oregon, and with a toddler in tow, they knew it’d be great to live closer to their families.
Turning in his resignation was one of Krause’s happiest moments. But then the questions started.
“What are you going to DO in Portland?”
He kept giving the same answer: “I’m starting a food cart.” By the time they moved, he had told at least 100 people and pretty much had to follow through on that plan. Otherwise he’d look like a jerk.
Krause’s love of cooking started with the women in his family. Both his mother Mary and grandma Ethel made simple and tasty dishes that always had a special touch. Krause has fond memories of eating Ethel’s scrambled eggs and french toast as a boy. Ethel’s scrambled eggs were fluffy and moist, like eating a cloud. A delicious cloud made of eggs. Krause didn't get serious about cooking until his grandma Ethel had succumb to Alzheimers, and his biggest regret to this day is never finding out her secret to the best scrambled eggs he's ever had.
Krause’s passion for cooking and food grew over the years. He made and delivered pizzas in high school, and waited tables in college. Breakfast was his favorite meal to make. His fried egg sandwiches were a frequently requested meal by his wife, so he set out to create a signature version of the dish that he could sell to hungry and sleepy residents of Portland as they started their day.
On many drives between Portland and Seattle for band gigs, Krause told Lynch about his plan. Lynch wanted to join the action, and when he tasted the food, it sealed the deal. They found a cart, a patch of asphalt to park it on, and painted the whole thing a bright yellow. They tapped into their absurd humor for all the names, and opened their doors (or should we say windows?) April 1, 2012.
After five successful years, Krause took over the business in 2017 as sole proprietor, and launched a second cart in downtown Portland at Pioneer Courthouse Square.