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Local Filipino Pop-Up Competing on ‘The Great Food Truck Race’

Catch Lia’s Lumpia on the season premiere next week

Team Lia’s Lumpia
Courtesy photo

The Food Network’s newest season of ‘The Great Food Truck Race’ will premiere on Wednesday, November 27 at 10 p.m. The four-episode season, dubbed ‘Holiday Hustle’ was filmed last winter across several states in New England including New Hampshire, Vermont and Rhode Island. Among the five teams competing for the ultimate prize — the last truck standing wins $50,000 — is the local crew behind Lia’s Lumpia comprised of executive chef Spencer Hunter, his mother Benelia Santos-Hunter, and their friend Tania Garcia.

Hosted by celeb chef Tyler Florence, the show tests the truck teams’ cooking chops, business skills, and selling strategies. Hunter, who also operates a full service catering company called Hunter’s Home Kitchen, says ‘The Great Food Truck Race’ experience has inspired his team to purchase their own food truck or food trailer as the next stage of the company; the mobile kitchen should hit the streets in early 2020 with regular stops at breweries, festivals, and other special events.

Though the competition was challenging, his mother Benelia shared that it was humbling and exciting to see such a response to their food. Lia’s Lumpia specializes in fusion variations on Filipino spring rolls, with more than 50 flavors ranging from traditional Shanghai lumpia to lumpia stuffed with mac and cheese and pork belly ramen.

The team and their crispy lumpia can currently be found Thursdays at the Sunset Market in Oceanside, Fridays at Poor House Brewing Company in North Park, and Sundays at the Lane Field Park Market. Once the mobile division gets up and running, Hunter told Eater that his next goal is to move into a brick-and-mortar storefront by 2021.

UPDATE: Lia’s Lumpia has made it to the finals; catch the season finale when it airs on Wednesday, December 18.

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