It has been a long time since I’ve seen a food cart out in front of Fabric 8 and way too long since I’ve seen the Magic Curry Cart and its owner Brian Kimball, one of the original owners of a Mission cart. But, there he was on Saturday afternoon in front of Fabric 8 on 22nd Street near Valencia, cooking up hamburgers and testing out some new sauces.

At 5:30 p.m. he was still there and you may be able to catch him if you head that way now.

Generally, he said, he doesn’t take the cart out because he is focusing on the wholesale business. Already, his website explains, Whole Foods carries his homemade Thai style curry.  But next week he will be launching a kickstarter campaign so he brought out the cart for a bit of advance promotion.

For those of you new to the Mission, Kimball is a part of the Mission’s gastronomic history. He described his start to Brooke Minters in September, 2009:

….on Friday March 6th he pushed his cart down Linda Street to the corner of 19th to see what would happen.  It worked.  The next week he sent out a Facebook invite to all his friends in San Francisco.  Twenty people showed up, and one of them tweeted about the occasion.

So he joined Twitter, tweeted and more people started showing up. In the six months that his cart has been up and running, he’s collected 4,145 Twitter followers.  At least half a dozen other carts including his brother Curtis’ the Crème Brûlée Cart, have rolled out since.

We’ll let you know as soon as the kickstarter campaign goes public.

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Founder/Executive Editor. I’ve been a Mission resident since 1998 and a professor emeritus at Berkeley’s J-school since 2019 when I retired. I got my start in newspapers at the Albuquerque Tribune in the city where I was born and raised. Like many local news outlets, The Tribune no longer exists. I left daily newspapers after working at The New York Times for the business, foreign and city desks. Lucky for all of us, it is still there.

As an old friend once pointed out, local has long been in my bones. My Master’s Project at Columbia, later published in New York Magazine, was on New York City’s experiment in community boards.

Right now I'm trying to figure out how you make that long-held interest in local news sustainable. The answer continues to elude me.

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