Almost two years since Healthy Heavenly Foods left the Bear’s Lair Food Court, the vendor returned to UC Berkeley on four wheels.
On Monday, the vendor’s food truck opened its windows to the campus community at Bancroft Way and Telegraph Avenue. In 2010, the vendor left the food court after it rejected the terms of a new lease offered by the ASUC Store Operations Board.
“The reason I came back is because I love working on campus and the students love my food … when I cook and people love my cooking, I’m really happy,” said Ann Vu, owner of the restaurant.
In November 2010, Vu renewed controversy surrounding the Bear’s Lair Food Court when she expressed her intent to file a lawsuit against the ASUC and the board with hopes of regaining the money she had lost in the former business, claiming she was forced out of business because of unfair contracts presented by the board.
Vu said she thought parting from her store in the campus food court had also marked the end of her 20-year-long career in the food business recreating the Vietnamese flavors that she had grown up with.
After leaving the campus food court, Vu said she sought a permit from the city of Berkeley to operate her food truck and get back into the food business.
Now, Vu’s business is open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and although she has to pay the city for the permit and license — approximately $700 for the permit and about $1,000 for the license per year — she said it is a lot less than what she was paying before and that she likes the sense of true ownership this new food truck venture affords her.
Editor’s Note: In May 2009, the board forgave The Daily Californian a portion of its rent for the office it leases. As part of the agreement, a non-political student member of the board sits on the Daily Cal’s Board of Operations, which has no control over the paper’s editorial content.
Afsana Afzal covers academics and administration.