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NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION — and this appLies to Chego, too

reaLLy, dude? reaLLy? is this what it aLL comes down to when it comes to human nutrition?

Okay, honey bunnies, let me give y’aLL some context before I start yammering.

Here’s a gander at Papi’s food:

The heart and souL of the KoGi taco.

And here’s s’more:

Mmmm... Spam.... sLiders...

So ooey. And gooey.

Look at aLL the layers, the love, the sense of humor and Facebook pokes at what it means to be in LA, what it means to grow up as the chiLdren of immigrants and what it is to feast on something that tastes aLive.

So the last thing I wanna do is sLap on a NutritionaL Nazi straight jacket on our babies. Like THIS:

So here’s a parody of what happens when I encounter a request from one of the NutritionaL Nazi’s many minions in my inbox:



Now, I’m sure that C*** is a very nice guy — as can be evidenced in his tone and word choice. (BTW — for those of you enamored with my artistic skiLLs, just know that I totaLLy ripped the pictures off of ragetoons! I did not draw them, they are not mine!)

So I feeL kinda like a douche for bLogging about how much these emaiLs annoy me, but I’d rather address it once and then shoot the link on over to anyone eLse asking for “nutritionaL information” — which, reaLLy, is code for caLories and not nutrition.

Let me break it down to y’aLL, why these emaiLs get on my nerves:
1) On a superficiaL, ego-leveL — when it comes to caLorie-counting, you wouLd not ask it of Jar. You wouLd not ask it of Mozza.  You wouLd not ask it of JitLada, nor wouLd you ask it from Soot BuL Jip.  You wouLd not even ask for the number of fat grams from an OG lonchera/taco truck.

You might ask it from McDonaLd’s, you might even find it easiLy enough on the website of AppLebee’s.

You see the difference here?

2) Since it’s stiLL independentLy-owned and pretty mom and pop, there’s aLso the issue of standardization. We’ve got 4 trucks and 8 managers.  One’s bound to be a littLe more generous with the cheese on the kimchi quesadiLLas whiLe another might be a littLe stingy with the ensaLada.  It happens.

So a shortrib taco on Roja’s lunch run might have 15-30 caLories more or less than a taco on Naranja’s dinner run.

::shrugs::

It happens.

3) On nutritionaL info — good lord, America — what exactLy has been equated with nutrition? CaLories?  Sodium leveLs?  The number of fat grams?

And sorry, but when it comes to vitamins, you’re probabLy better off eating a singLe leaf of lettuce than you are chugging three bottLes of Vitamin Water. At least you’d be getting some fiber in lieu of processed sugars and synthetic vitamins.  (For those of you who are unfamiLiar with synthetic vs naturaL vitamins might want to conduct a littLe bit of research HERE and THERE. Some synthetic vitamins are even toxic, mah dears.)

Does this actuaLLy look "nutritious" to you?

0 caLories — which probabLy means that they use aspartame, SpLenda or some other neurotoxin to sweeten the drink. No protein, no carbohydrates, no sign of anything remoteLy nutritious.

WHAT is NUTRITION anyway, peopLe? What is the POINT of good nutrition?  WHAT exactLy is a nutrient? Does anyone even KNOW anymore?

Look, I’m not yeLLing at y’aLL. I’m just getting passionate.  And being very direct about it.

I’m an Aries. DeaL with it.

4) It wouLd make more sense to ask us where our food comes from. Where does your beef come from?  Where does your tofu come from?

These are very reasonabLe questions to ask us.

Our beef comes from Rocker Brothers — who not onLy provide us with kickass meat, but meat that’s aLL-naturaL. So no hormones or antibiotics as far as we know.

Our tofu is organic, so if you are hankering for an organic version of deLightfuLLy tasteLess soy protein, PuLmone offers some exceLLent sampLes.

The sauces and sLaws are made fresh every morning from veggies and fruits that get deLivered fresh every morning. So you’re tasting fresh limes, onions, ciLantro, Napa cabbage, Romaine and chiLLies in your taco.  And you’re probabLy ingesting nutrients that are stiLL aLive on some leveL.

5) But we’re not pretending that we’re heaLth food. We use cheese in our quesadiLLas.  CHEESE.  That comes from COWS.  No expensive, nutrient-deficient, overLy processed soy cheese that aLmost tastes like cheese if you use your imagination hard enough.  (I don’t understand why peopLe keep asking that we carry the stuff.  Not onLy is it bad for you — but it aLso doesn’t even taste good!!)

On many an occasion we use Spam. Which is about as processed as canned piggLes can get.

6)  It isn’t that hard to use a littLe common sense, is it? If you’re looking to cut caLories and JUST caLories (I’m not a caLorie-counter, but to ask peopLe to stop counting caLories is like raiLing against the tide under a fuLL moon) then cut down your portion size.  Get one taco instead of three.

A caLorie is just a unit of energy, sure. But it reaLLy does matter where your caLories come from, my dears.

HonestLy, if we’re taLking strictLy about nutrition, I’d pick a cheeseburger from In-N-Out over a Diet Coke any day. It tastes better and probabLy wiLL give you a lot more energy and pep in your step than syntheticaLLy sweetened caffeine that comes in an aLuminum can.

7)  HonestLy. What is up with aLL this nutrient-deficient aesceticism?

Isn’t it odd that there have never been so many low-caLorie, sugar-free, vitamin-packed, low-fat food products on the market — and yet America is stiLL so friggin obese??

I think it’s time to put a moratorium on the caLorie-counting and low-fat, sugar-free foods masquerading as something aLmost reaL. (German chocoLate cake fLavored protein bars, anybody? Or how about those super processed soy protein isoLate-based Frankenmeat patties disguised as burgers?)

ENJOY your FOOD peopLe! ReaL food.

And if you want to enjoy your potato chips, then enjoy your potato chips. REAL potato chips.

Just don’t eat the whoLe econo-sized Costco pack in one sitting.  If you listen to your body and your cravings, you’LL know when you’ve had enough.

And if you’re that guiLt-ridden when it comes to eating out, then make a point to know where it comes from. And be honest about it.

BABY: Mommy -- where does Spam come from???

MOMMY: It comes from dericious rittLe piggLes, that’s where it comes from.

*************************************************************************

ApoLogies for aLL the proseLytizing. I am in no way The Authority on human heaLth — heLL, I eat enough sugar to put a hyperactive 7-year-oLd to shame.  It’s just that I had to get that out of my system.

It’s been fermenting for way too long.

Love, tacos and nutrients!
Aliiiiiiiiice

P.S. And if you’re stiLL stuck on caLories and fat grams — do your research, find a lab, sheLL out some dough and get a sampLe yourseLf. If it’s THAT important to you, it’s worth the investment.  The honest truth is that quantifying our food in this manner is not onLy NOT a priority, but it aLso demeans the spirit behind our food.  To use a metaphor, if I had a kid and the schooL demanded that I hand over his BMI, vaccination records, birth records, list of aLLergies, IQ, grades, list of extra curricuLar activities, MRIs, X-rays, height, weight, taste in music, taLents, leveL of obedience and signs of inteLLectuaL shortcomings — I wouLd not want to send my chiLd over there.  I wouLd not want to have him poked and prodded and tested and assessed and reassessed and thereby have his vaLue quantified by the bureaucratic standards of the schooL so that my chiLd can be deemed worthy of matricuLation.  No thanks.

Go to Pink’s or Tacos Arizas and demand for them to provide you with the nutritionaL content of their food. Go on.  Do it.  I dare you.  TeLL them that you owe it to them as a paying customer to dissect and quantify the sum of its parts so that you can assess whether it’s “worth the caLories.”  Getting coLd feet?

Here’s why — when it comes to food stands or restaurants or trucks that actuaLLy care about the food, we don’t owe the peopLe anything but this: good food. Anything eLse we give them is the extra icing on the cake.

72 Responses to NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION — and this appLies to Chego, too

  1. OrangeCountyGal says:

    Ahmen!

  2. Dmeezy says:

    I think it needed to be said. Honestly, Who gives a F^#&? LOL. This is not a health taco truck nor do I believe you are delivering FAT Bombs either. How often do you eat a a friend or family members house and get nutrition info at Dinner? Food is meant to be fun!!!
    I consider Kogi a guilty pleasure with fresher ingredients than anything I’d find in a fryer at some of these other places.

    Counting calories is not as important as watching what you eat and remaining active.

  3. Jason says:

    Your such a whiner. Get a lab to test your stuff and place the results on the website and a flyer in the trucks for the few who care. It doesn’t matter what other trucks do.

  4. Eric Shin says:

    Warrior Diet. Eat till you’re full, lose weight, feel great. With this I’ve been able to lose weight eating Kogi every day :)

  5. Cha says:

    Oh, you’re so an aries

  6. Bill Smith says:

    Great post. The emailer might be referring to California law requirements for chain restaurants to post nutritional information:
    http://snipr.com/yftn0

    However, since Kogi/Chego have less than 20 locations in California, they’re not required to do this. Although, I’m sure Mozza, Jar et al, get asked this question as well as the food source question quite a bit.

  7. Pete says:

    While calorie, fat content etc does seem silly, for diabetics, carb counts are crucial for us in order to judge the proper insulin to take in……sure, we can make our best guess, and we learn how to do that, but i always appreciate knowing the approximate amount of grams of carb in my food.

  8. robot7 says:

    Good grief, if people are so worried about nutritional content, why don’t they just test the food themselves? You’re not ADM or PepsiCo. Actually, to your point, if they’re really worried about nutrition, why are they relying on the FDA’s nutrition label at all? That’s like planning a backwoods trip with Google maps.

  9. Michael Doss says:

    Ah, another voice in the “we won’t give you the information you’re looking for, and we’ll rant about the ‘nutrition’ strawman” chorus.

    People eat for different reasons, and lots of people, on lots of different kinds of diets (weight-loss and health related) NEED to know the calories, sodium, or other chemistry-related aspects of their food. Otherwise, they have to skip it. Yes, they want “natural” food. Yes, they want their food to come from good sources. But they need to know this information so they know which of your items they can enjoy, or which they have to portion out and share with friends.

    You can be cool and edgy and not give out your nutritional info – that’s up to you. But realize that some of us won’t be able to eat your food if we do, and in the end, that’s your loss, not ours – plenty of other awesome, natural, “real” food comes from places where they tell us the details.

  10. Tom Reino says:

    Note to self: Do not ask Kogi for any nutritional information, just eat and enjoy

  11. Brandon says:

    Oi…

    Look people, I’m all for recording what you eat if you’re trying to lose weight. I do it, so I understand why people would want to know, but you do know that you can ballpark this kind of thing, right? Just estimate for your own pleasure. Look at calorie counts of (nasty) fast food tacos and take an average if that’s your thing. Better hurry though. While you’re doing all of that math, the rest of us will be ordering our food and there may not be any short rib left if you don’t get yours before I order! ;P

    Alternatively, every diet has room for a cheat meal. If a stop at the Kogi truck is going to ruin your diet, then your diet sucks anyway and you need to re-evaluate.

  12. Heina says:

    I am a Kogi fan, but this post disappoints me. Aside from the obviously ungracious tone, no one is asking for a nutrition label on each and every item. All you’d have to do is provide a rough estimate based on the ingredients used in each taco. As a consumer, I don’t know how much oil y’all use to cook the items, or if there’s any hidden calories. I know Kogi isn’t “health food” but I at least want some control over how many calories I eat a day. Without at least some kind of help from those to whom I shell out my hard-earned money so that I might eat their food, I’m lost. A simple list containing a rough estimate of what ingredients are used and about how much of each ingredient is used in each item would be no trouble to Kogi at all and would help me immensely in my quest for good health.

  13. OneLoveRissa says:

    wooo an Aries like me! maybe thats why i like this so much, you tell those idiots!

  14. LMAO says:

    Seriously though. Have you LOOKED at what you’re eating?! The salsa verde is a bunch of veggies suspended in OIL.

    It’s damn good which means they’re probably FAT bombs too.

  15. Mud says:

    I am not sure why this is being posted. I just tried Kogi for the first time and did note the Quesadilla is probably not healthy on the calorie count – it was pretty greasy but tasted good. Isn’t that the reason why people eat at Kogis? for the tasty food? If people are health conscious then the solution is quite logical – don’t eat fast food and go and cook your food at home with healthy ingredients and don’t bother eating out.

    You take chances when eating out. I knew someone who had stomach poisoning from eating fresh oysters at a popular restaurant in Pepperdine, CA and had to be hospitalized a few hours later.

  16. SD says:

    To my dearest Kogi,
    First let me start by saying even if there were a weeks worth of calories in your kimchi quesadilla I would still eat one everyday if I could. And if it’s true that there is anyone on your crew that’s heavyhanded with the cheese, please let me know and I’ll tail them whenever they’re on schedule.
    That being said, it does indeed happen at Mozza and even Ma & Pa type places that people ask for the caloric value of things. I know, because I am the chef/owner of my own establishment. An operation that is even smaller than yours, and it still happens. I like to say if you have to ask for the caloric value of the foods that I prepare with such love and care then you don’t deserve to be eating them. No I do not use low fat cream cheese in my cheesecake, nor will I let you substitute nonfat milk in your alfredo sauce. Both alterations would interfere with the European butter that I pay extra for. Sadly, these calorie counting people are everywhere. But hey, these are the times we live in. They worry about the calories in a fresh peach cobbler made from peaches harvested from the tree in my backyard but have no f-ing problem feeding their child diet soda and frozen chicken fingers from costco for dinner. And Kogi, are you not aware that we live in the vanity capital of the world??? Of course people are mindful of their caloric intake! I try not to hang out with them, but they’re EVERYWHERE! In fact, could you have a seperate line for those who need the caloric value of a shortrib taco (my mouth is watering at the mere mention of it)? That way I won’t have to wait in line so god damn long. I guess I’m just surprised at your rant. But please don’t let it get you down. There are so many Kogi appreciaters that love the fact that you use fresh yummies made with skill and creativity!
    Me want Kogi now!!!!
    Your most adoring kogi-calorie gorging fan,
    -SD

  17. Christine B says:

    I understand being upset when customers try to dictate what you do with *your* business, *your* baby. For example, an earlier rant on requests to make Kogi more vegan/vegetarian comes to mind–it’s a taco truck, for crying out loud, and you are completely within reason to be annoyed about that.

    But… ranting at people who simply ask (not demand, ask) for nutritional information seems unjustified to me. No one is trying to change you, no one is making you put less cheese on those luscious kimchi quesadillas, no one is trying to force Kogi to be “zero-calorie friendly.” (Thank God!)

    However, as OneLoveRissa posted above, you definitely came off as ungracious. The person e-mailing you was very polite and friendly, and you called him one of the “Nutritional Nazi’s many minions.” :/ A simple explanation like, “Providing nutritional info is only required for chains with over 20 locations. As a small mom-and-pop business, lab testing our food would be a huge financial burden, so it’s not a service we can provide for you guys at this time,” would be more than sufficient. No need to go all animated rage face. And I disagree that getting your food tested for it’s nutritional content demeans the spirit of your food. Yes, at this point it’s an additional service that you guys choose whether or not to provide, but who knows–one day Kogi/Chego may grow big enough that you will have to.

    Belittling people who do care about the caloric content of Kogi or are just plain curious, however, comes across as condescending and unappreciative of the people who are your fans and supporters. We love what you do, and don’t want you to change a single thing about Kogi/Chego. Believe me, the thought of fake cheese on my Kogi makes me wanna hurl. So please don’t flip out on us over a little question, like asking about the nutritional content–unless the person asking is being a major tool and actually deserves it. Not everyone who cares about eating healthier is in it just for the “fad” aspect. As posted by other commenters above, there are people who do need to know about nutritional content for relevant health reasons. As for the rest of us without dietary restrictions, I certainly don’t drink diet soda crap or eat anything low-fat or artificially sweetened, but I do care about eating right and eating delicious food, so I definitely appreciate that you guys provide the best and freshest meat and produce.

    Anyway, I still love you guys to death! Just wanted Alice to know that not everyone who asks about the nutritional info is a food Nazi.

  18. Aliiiiiiiiiiiiice says:

    OrangeCountyGal - haLLeLujah!

    Dmeezy - I definiteLy concur with you, dude.

    Jason - I beLieve your comment wouLd demonstrate something psychoanaLysts wouLd categorize as “projection.” That said, like I said, if caLorie counts are that important, do the legwork yourseLf. HonestLy! I’m not mad, just exasperated.

    Eric Shin
    — you’re such a Gemini! I’m gLad the Warrior Diet’s working for youse, dear brother. :)

    Cha – heLL yeah! And proud OF it! Enthusiasm and excLamation points, FTW.

    Bill Smith — ahhh, I see. 20 locations or more. Good to know. :)

    Pete – for diabetics and peopLe with aLLergies, it’s totaLLy fair to ask if we carry certain ingredients in our food. But as for carb counts or sugar grams — we honestLy don’t know. :/

    robot7 – “Actually, to your point, if they’re really worried about nutrition, why are they relying on the FDA’s nutrition label at all? That’s like planning a backwoods trip with Google maps.” <– THANK YOU. HonestLy, I get so exasperated because the peopLe who get upset over caLorie counts wouLd benefit the most from doing a littLe research and reaLLy asking themseLves what nutrition is or means to their bodies. Otherwise, they're totaLLy missing the point.

    Michael Doss — “we won’t give you the information you’re looking for, and we’ll rant about the ‘nutrition’ strawman” <– that statement impLies that we have that information to give and are hoarding it from the pubLic. We don't! There have been no scientists performing tests at our truck lot and there have been no labs we've been submitting food sampLes to. So it's not a matter of "we won't give you the information" — it's a matter of "we don't have the information, and we don't have the interest, time, money or energy to do it." If we were interested in deveLoping a frozen foods line, then that'd be a whoLe 'nother issue entireLy.

    Tom Reino
    – you said it, cabron.

    Brandon – I know, right?? COMMON SENSE can do us aLL a worLd of good.

    Heina – I'd apoLogize for my ungracious tone, if that was the tone I was going for. My intention wasn't to be ungracious, my intention wasn't to be gracious. Look, if you’re upset over the way I said something over what exactLy was said, then I’m cooL with that. Like I said, I'm an Aries. I'm not yeLLing at anyone, I'm just being passionate. So just don't take it personaLLy. ;D

    OneLoveRissa — AHAHAHA. We're not angry. We're just frustrated. And impatientLy so.

    LMAO – omgz, you're gonna love our CREAM quesadiLLa this week. It wiLL dose you with one heavenLy case of food coma.

    Mud – I like you, kid, I like you. What’s you’re name? You sound like a sensibLe guy who understands the vaLue of reason.

    SD – I just wanna hug you. (( H U G )) There. Thass aLL.

    Christine B
    — again, I'm not upset. Frustrated? Yes. Annoyed? Yeah, it's annoying. Angry? No, definiteLy not. Look, I write everything down without seLf-censoring my opinions in one sitting. So I'm not the most dipLomatic person. But an opinion's an opinion — so the onLy thing I can apoLogize for is if someone took it personaLLy or thought I was being intentionaLLy rude or nasty to another human being.

    Like I mentioned in my post, this was just one of many emaiLs I get. And, like I mentioned in my post, I'm sure that the person writing the emaiL is an nice guy. And, like I mentioned in my post, because he sounded like a nice guy, I feLt like a douche for bLogging about it — in case he took it personaLLy.

    But not everyone who writes those emaiLs are nice, and a good lot of them are seLf-entitLed douches, punks and jerks. The last emaiL just happened to be the most recent one and I didn't have the patience to sift through a thousand other emaiLs concerning a thousand other things just to post up the mean ones.

    The Aries in me wants to say, "Oh, looks like we've got an Etiquette Nazi here" — but I won't. Cuz I like my share of aLLiteration and "NutritionaL Nazi" sounds a lot better. Has more punch to it. PLus, you get the gist of what I mean, which is important because I can't heLp but be so damn verbose, it's nice to be abLe to cut corners here and there.

    Even if it occasionaLLy offends peopLe. :)

    Eating right is definiteLy important, so it's important to know what goes into your body and how much and how often. In that department, I'd be more than happy to heLp you.

    My point was, is that nutritionaL labeLs are misLeading and the estabLished constructs of what constitutes as good heaLth are outmoded, out of touch and way out of wack. So to provide an FDA-approved nutritionaL labeL wouLd onLy be supporting a nutritionaL system that can actuaLLy become detrimentaL to human heaLth if taken deathLy seriousLy.

    For exampLe — sugar grams. More important than knowing how much sugar something has, is where the sugars come from. The body processes sucrose very differentLy than it does fructose. Or when something lists carbohydrates — weLL, the carbs from a sLice of Wonderbread are processed WAYYY differentLy than the carbs from a bowL of quinoa or ear of roasted corn. So what KIND of carbs? WeLL, according to the nutritionaL labeL that's approved by the FDA (who recommend HOW many servings of carbs a day??), it doesn't matter.

    CoupLed with that is the fact that we just aren't that kind of restaurant. And you'LL be hard pressed to find one that's independentLy owned that is.

    Not onLy does it do a disservice to the spirit of the food, but it's just not a practicaL thing to do when different trucks execute their menu items differentLy. And with our speciaLs changing weekLy, I don't know why it'd make sense for us to spend money and time and effort into doing something we don't wanna do for peopLe who are eating for the wrong reasons.

    I guess what bothers me is that some peopLe think we "owe" it to them to make that kind of investment. But if it's about your constructed idea of ideaL heaLth, then don't you owe it to YOURSELF?

    What I mean is, instead of wasting energy trying to nag a mom and pop into investing energy that is better aLLotted eLsewhere (food prep, customers, great ingredients, affordabLe prices), why not use that energy to figure out how to do it yourseLf?

    Start a group, form a bLog, do your research, get donations — I don't know!

    But if it's about your heaLth, then you're responsibLe. Not some restaurant, not some corporation — not even Trader Joe's. YOU. (And I mean the coLLective you, not Christine B., so don't take it personaLLy, yah? ^__^)

    Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaar!

  19. Taylor says:

    You wonder what good nutrition is? Knowing how many calories are in your food.

    Macronutrient breakdown and glycemix index are largely unimportant compared to how much calories you should be eating for YOUR body. People eating over their caloric intake over long periods of time is FAR more detrimental than freaking out about “processed” ingredients. It’s virtually impossible to be overweight and healthy at the same time. I hate when fat people say they eat healthy. No.

    I guess you don’t care, but guess what? You owe it to your customers to estimate the nutritional content. A lot of your dishes use the same ingredients. All you have to do is weigh your ingredients for a dish and add the nutritional facts together with a calculator like FitDay. With the uniformity of your dishes, this wouldn’t take more than an hour. So do it.

  20. Alice Shin says:

    DISCLAIMER: I WAS RAISED BY WOLVES AND DON’T HAVE ANY MANNERS. AND I DON’T CARE! That said, for me, it’s more important to get what I have to say than to get stuck on the way that I say it. Good etiquette and sycophantic behavior are for suckers. (And for peopLe with a LOT more patience than I apparentLy have.)

    Taylor – 1) ::exasperated sigh:: YOU do it.
    2) You missed the whoLe point, buddy.
    3) We don’t owe you anything. It’s a $2.00 taco. Scared about caLories? Drink your Diet Coke and eat your ChocoLate Covered BLueberry CrumbLe 98.5% Fat-Free, Sugar-Free Protein Bar — NOW with REAL ChocoLate BLueberry CrumbLe FLAVOR! <– I say this partLy in jest, and partLy because I have a point. And you aren’t getting it.
    4) If it’s that easy and doesn’t take that much time, YOU do it. DO your research, TAKE responsibiLity for your version of nutrition and heaLth. Post it up. BLog about it! I don’t care. Just don’t come into a non-corporatized environment and ask for corporatized standards. Or do it. But try not to be too disappointed when we don’t compLy.
    5) Oy(L). Let’s see… truck managers work 10-12 hours a day — the last thing on their list of priorities is to do math to count caLories. (And knowing them at the end of a run, they’re too tired to do any of it correctLy.) Prep cooks are in the same boat. Anybody eLse doesn’t know the exact quantities of what ingredients go where, especiaLLy when everything’s made in buLk. There are over 20 ingredients in one marinade. Good luck figuring out whether the shortrib marinade is 1/32 Asian pear or 1/12 Asian pear, how many caLories are in 2 cups of sesame seeds, etc. You know how much cheese is in a quesadiLLa? Enough. They take a handfuL or two and cover the face of the bListering tortiLLa untiL it looks about right. Then they fiLL it with just enough spicy pork and then sLather it with however much saLsa verde they deem to be deLicious. Or, if they’re running low, they eyebaLL how much ought to be rationed to last them the whoLe night. You do the math.

    If the lack of nutritionaL information is keeping you from trying our trucks, then that’s fine by me! HonestLy!

  21. anothergoddamnaries says:

    Dearest Taylor, and Everyone Else Who Freaks Out About Nutrition Info:

    Have you ever been to France? Everyone – and I mean, EVERYONE – is skinny. Really skinny. Do you know what they eat? Cheese, bread, meat, poultry, butter, cream. And they cook everything in duck fat. The caloric density of French food is epic! And it’s delicious! But guess why they’re SO SKINNY – because their portions are tiny; they take the phrase “watch what you eat” quite literally.

    This same logic, albeit reversed, applies to all of the fat vegans I have ever met.

    If you are someone who counts calories with militant fervor, you should assume responsibility for your own body and prepare your own food; or restrict your portions when dining out. If you simply cannot peel yourself away from a particular restaurant, dish, or portion size, but still MUST know how many calories you are consuming, maybe you should do some comparative research – look up the info for mass-produced sauces, salsas, slaws, meats, etc., run a tape, and guesstimate it yourself.

    And remember that YOU choose what YOU eat – no one is forcing you. I’m REALLY allergic to gluten, and if I am at all suspicious of a dish’s ingredients, I just DO NOT EAT IT. Or, if I really want something and don’t care, I eat it and deal with the horrible consequences several hours later.

  22. tien. says:

    FYI – For those concerned about the nutritional content of any of their food, these two videos pretty much explain the process of obtaining the information you need from a food lab. Also, you learn how to pick up a girl. You are welcome.

    Video 1 explains the problem – we don’t really know the fat content/other nutritional information of the food we order from small shops (and taco trucks, for that matter):
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIr6v5LYPdc

    Video 2 explains the solution, with bonus lesson on one great pick-up line:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZv0MdkVwkA

    tien.

  23. Jo-Anne says:

    Wow, this blog is the epitome of exceptional customer service. I’m glad that you feel like a douche (your words not mine) when you were writing this blog because that is exactly how you are coming across. Chris asked you nicely about nutritional information, but instead of just saying “sorry, we do not provide nutritional info and do not intend on providing it, but our tofu and veggies are organic, and our meat are antibiotic-free,” you went on and on whining about how much the email and other similar emails annoy you. I don’t think people care that you are annoyed. Since you brought it up, where does Rocker Brothers get their meat? Who supplies them? Were the cows grained fed or free-range/grass fed? Where do you get your tofu? Where are your veggies grown and are they pesticide free? Where do you get the squid that you use for the calamari taco? How often do the taco truck guys wash their hands? What do the taco truck guys do when they have to use the restroom (#1 or #2)? Are the taco truck guys allowed to fart in the taco truck?

    Here are more important questions:
    1) Where do you display your Public Health Permit? Do all your trucks have a Public Health Permit? The last time I saw a Kogi truck I did not see the Public Health Permit displayed.

    2) Do you have city business licenses for ALL the cities you visit? Most cities’ zoning laws do not allow taco trucks to operate on private property (with or without the property owners’ permission). Do you always obey these laws? The Los Angeles County Health Department requires you to obtain city business licenses from all the cities that you visit and conform to the local government laws. My cousin stood in line for 2 hours and was not able to purchase a single taco because the police department told the Kogi truck to leave. I think people need to know that they are taking that risk everytime they stand in line to buy Kogi food.

  24. Twerp says:

    Dude, Jo-Anne, it’s a freakin taco truck. Why don’t you go hassle Rambo’s Tacos or any other taco truck in the area. Where do they get their meat? Is their food organic? I wonder how many calories are in their food. Why stop there. How about The Pantry. It’s been around since 1929, they should about time release the caloric information of their food. I want to be healthy eating ham steaks, eggs, and mountains of hash browns too. If only I had the nutritional information! And no, I refuse to exercise and I refuse to eat in moderation.

    ZOMG! No Korean BBQ place will disclose or get their food tested for nutritional information?! How will I know how many calories I am ingesting when I eat 20 pounds of all you can eat bbq? Korean food is healthy right? Why am I gaining weight when I eat it? I don’t understand!!!!!!! We should close down all the restaurants in Korea town, after that, we should go over to Monterey Park!

  25. Eric Shin says:

    @Jo-Anne
    1) We do have a public health permit, it is displayed at the back of the truck with the year and expiration date. There are no letter grades for trucks like there are for restaurants it’s either you pass or you fail.

    2) We have over a dozen business licenses that we pay for and we try our best to adhere to city laws. Sometimes, no matter what paper work you obtain and what the city council says, sometimes the city will still kick out our truck. There have been instances where we have in paper permits to sell, but the local police tell us that those papers don’t cover catering trucks(even though city council told us it was what we needed). And then there are nearby businesses that call the police to file a complaint about the presence of our truck. When that happens, though we are not legally obligated to move, we still do to respect the local business.

    3) Our tofu is Sprout Tofu and it is labeled as FDA Organic. I personally do not know where Rocker Brother’s gets their beef or what farms they source. You can ask Chef Roy, he’s around Chego during dinner and frequents the trucks late night. He will tell you anything you want to know about the quality of our ingredients and he’ll be straight with you.

    Jo-Anne, I understand your anger and it’s a nice to see people who get passionate about food whether it be good or bad. We are subject to our opinions as well as my sister.

    Without getting overly emotional let me just state that our stance on this whole macro-nutritional and caloric value thing is that we don’t believe in it. We simply don’t. What we believe in is making delicious food from quality ingredients. You can hate us for not being “health conscious” but that’s the way we roll.

  26. papi says:

    y’all are so silly fussing like this…
    jo`anne, of course we fart in the truck, we are no different than your local 4 star kitchen.
    why else would there be exhaust fans and retractable roof vents?
    kogi power!

    papi

  27. Jo-Anne says:

    Eric and Papi, thank you for your response. I am not upset about the lack of nutritional information. I completely understand that non-chain restaurants and taco trucks are not required to provide nutritional information. Honestly, I don’t care about the lack of nutritional information. I was bothered by Alice’s reponse to Chris’ question. To me the blog entry came across as unprofessional, defensive, and rude to Chris and other customers with similar questions/concerns. The question could have been addressed without any hostility. The food that you prepare is delicious and I don’t think good food needs to be defended. This could have been addressed differently, that’s all.

    Regarding the business license thing: Taco trucks are kind of working with a double-edged sword. Taco trucks are allowed in most cities and cities issue business licenses for them, but they are not allowed to operate on private property. This is difficult for a business like yours because you are not allowed to block the street or sidewalk either. So, where would you go? I guess it is better to operate on a parking lot (on private property) to keep the customers safe and from interfering with circulation/flow of traffic (and just leave when the cops kick you out) rather than the opposite. When we’re craving for Kogi, my boyfriend and I are usually one of the first ones in line to avoid any possibility that the truck would have to leave early or run out of the items we want to eat. My favorite is the calamari taco, which you do not have all the time. =(

    Papi, I didn’t know that employees in 4 star restaurants are allowed to fart in the kitchen! hahhahaha. Although that was not a serious question, I have always been curious. Thanks for confirming.

  28. tien. says:

    Jo-Ann – You worry too much.

    tien.

  29. Sweet stuff! Nice read, I’ll stop by again.

  30. Big- VZ says:

    For those that want to know the calories, just do the math and stop buggin’ Alice or the crew. They have more important things to do, like make my awesome tacos!

    Calories- fill in the blank or assemble the food by using the calorie counter app on your phone.

    Corn tortilla:___________
    BBQ Beef:_______ oz
    Chicken:________oz
    Pork:_________
    Tofu:__________
    Cabbage slaw:________

    Flour tortilla:______
    Sauces, green,, white, etc…:_________
    Slider bread:_______
    cheese:________

    ETC._____

  31. mud says:

    For you health consciense(spelling?) food eaters, you should watch a movie documentary where a guy volunteered to eat 30 days worth of fast food (breakfast, lunch, and dinner)- the documentary is called SUPERSIZE ME.

    To ERIC: it would be nice if the menu gave a bit more info as to what is in the item in question. It doesnt need nutritional food value – for example your burritos – what else is put in beside the meat????

    I have found out recently about KOGIs and am clueless as to what is in your food items – salsa?, salad? beans? rice? kimchee? etc . I ordered a chicken burrito and was surprised it cost an extra dollar to have kimchee in the burrito and when I left there was NO KIMCHEE in it!

  32. Miles says:

    Alice,
    I completely agree with you when you say that quantifying “nutritional” information by some corporate standard diminishes the spirit of your food.
    With that said, I found this post to be one that blurred the fine line between “passion” and hostility. Perhaps your “passion” is wrapped up in some kind of anxiety that disclosing the amount of calories in your delectable food will dissuade people from coming to the trucks.
    People who meticulously count calories probably don’t make up the lion’s share of your customers; people who love mind-bendingly delicious food do. I fall into the latter category, and I for one don’t use calories as a guide in my pursuit of tasty new food.
    People are bugging you about calories, so what? You should feel bad for those unfortunate souls who are scared off by carbs, calories, etc. The people who ride or die for Kogi keep coming back because we can taste the love in the food, so as long as you don’t start using some low-cal love substitute all will be fine in the world.

    One love

  33. Ugh says:

    No ones asking for food modification, just rather information to be able to fit the food into intake budgets. This is an obese country, don’t be ignorant.

  34. Eric Shin says:

    @mud We have a more detailed description of our items on our menu page right below the simple menu. Just scroll down. It’ll list everything that goes inside our food. For instance, our Chicken Burrito is Chicken, Salsa Roja, Onion Cilantro with a squeeze of lime juice, Salad with a Chili Soy Vinaigrette, with Scrambled Eggs, Hash Browns and Cheese. Also, come to my truck, Azul Lunch 12-3pm. If you want kimchi in your burrito, I’ll do it for you. I’ll give you a life-time supply of burritos with kimchi at no additional charge :)

    @Ugh Yes, I understand where you are coming from. And you have every right in the world to buy a burrito and take it to a lab to get it tested for calories. Though, isn’t it quite ironic in this day in age of counting calories and diet soda we still find ourselves over weight while older generations before us just ate and had a much lower rate of obesity? Hell, 1 generation ago in my family everyone was skinny. The current generation watches what we eat. Really, if we want to discuss how to lose weight, we should really do the research and see what’s changed in the last 100 years in terms of what we eat and what we do. Is that diet soda with 0 calories really a “healthy” alternative? Are Lean Cuisines “Lean”? Is the modern stance on eating scheduled meals 3-5 times a day even though we are not hungry the same as our ancestors? Why are people living in other countries skinnier? What goes into their food and daily activities? Do they use the same kind of flour in their breads. Do they use pesticides and hormones to grow their food? I don’t know. These are questions I ask myself. Why is our culture which is so obsessed with calories fat?

  35. Alice Shin says:

    anothergoddamnaries — I think we’re awesome! A sucker of lost causes, fuLL of strong opinions and not aLways the most dipLomatic. Cuz, honestLy, sometimes there ain’t time or patience for dipLomacy. That’s what Virgos, Libras and occasionally Geminis are for. ^__^

    tien — you are hirarious! And wonderfuLLy protective. You’re cute. I ruv you.

    Jo-Anne — I think you have bigger issues than I have the interest or energy to even begin to address. PersonaL vacation time in a remote and peacefuL pLace might do you a worLd of good. :)

    Big- VZ — (( H U G )) Who ARE you? I like you!

    mud — Eric handLed this one okay.

    Miles — I respect your opinion, but honestLy, when I get frustrated, I’m a bit hot-headed. I’m not anxious, it’s just a lot of unnecessary work to cheapen something that has so many steps to it.

    For exampLe, in making the saLsa roja aLone, there’s the savory base of it, the Korean and Ancho chiLLies that are skiLLfuLLy combined so that one doesn’t overwheLm the other, the right touch of acidity, the emuLsion w/ toasted sesame oiL to get the right consistency, the pureeing of onions, garLic, sesame seeds, etc. It may look sLoppy, but it’s a deLicate process.

    And then to have that aLL reduced to caLories.

    And not onLy that, it’s gonna cost us time and money.

    If I was anxious, I wouLdn’t be encouraging peopLe to sheLL out their own dough and taking it to a lab themseLves.

    PLus bringing our food to a lab wouLd miss the whoLe entire point of who we are and what we stand for.

    Am I repeating myseLf, or just embarking on the futiLe task of raiLing against the tide?

    THAT’s where the fire comes from. Not anxiety, just frustration.

    If I was anxious, I wouLd kiLL aLL those emaiLs or bLog about how no one has the right to ask us that question and if they make a push for it again that we’d take legaL action against them. THAT wouLd be anxiety. When you’re trying to controL what other peopLe think, say or do out of fear.

    Me, I’m just responding without much of a fiLter.

    But you’re right in that I’ve aLready wasted enough time writing these many responses to aLL these comments. (I just want to show that I care!)

    StiLL, it started an interesting discussion/argument, didn’t it?

    Ugh — InterestingLy enough, when it comes to caLLing another person ignorant, it’s usuaLLy a case of the pot caLLing the kettLe bLack. It’d probabLy be more productive for you to do a littLe homework so you, yourseLf, wiLL not be in danger of faLLing into your projected category. Ignorance is being uninformed and unaware. It can sometimes aLso be a wiLLfuL ignor-ing of the use of a littLe inteLLigence.

    “This is an obese country.” A very big umbreLLa statement. Look into and research how and when that came to be.

    “Food budget” — ummm… weLL, it wouLd be smarter to specify what exactLy a food budget is. Does it incLude vitamins? Fiber? NaturaL sources of mineraLs? If it incLudes caLories, does it specify how many caLories come from a Twinkie and how many come from a roasted sweet potato?

    Ah, MiLes, you’re right. I’ve more than exhausted myseLf over this issue and am starting to sound like a broken record.

    ::sheepish::

  36. Seth G. says:

    This is one of the most mean spirited posts I could possibly imagine.

    I love your food, saw the post about nutritional information and thought “Oh, not a big deal, but that would be nice.”

    Then I read your rant. How about “Sorry, we feel to do this correctly, we’d have to hire a food lab… blah blah”. Whatever your intent with this post, I can’t imagine the tone of your writing is what you intended to convey. Because it comes off as quite nasty. I see you are in Silverlake today. I was excited to hit up your truck. Now I’m not so sure. All because I clicked on a post and thinking “Oh. Not a big deal, but that would be nice.”

  37. Scott says:

    Oh for christ sake what a bunch of cry babies out there, Oohh they wont tell me the nutitional info…. Oohh she was rude to me in her post….
    So what! pull on your big kids panties and get over it!
    Food should be enjoyed! it’s one of lifes great pleasures, eat and enjoy period. If you have to ask is this good for me? maybe you should just stay in and steam some vegetables.

  38. jp says:

    I find most people’s concerns for calorie counting to be quite scary in their fanaticism. In nutrition, calorie counting (aka calorie control: calories in versus calories out) is only one component of a healthy diet yet everyone, including politicians, make it seem like the only component of importance. What many of the critics above seem to forget is that nutrition is not just calorie counting: it’s about adequacy (eating enough of each nutrient), balance (are you getting all of the nutrients? this is analogous to “does your daily food contain different sides of the color spectrum”… beige meals all the time clearly don’t count as balance), calorie control, nutrient density (#nutrients and amount of nutrients per calorie… if you know the ingredients that are less nutrient dense then you can figure out if your food item is high or low in nutrient density), moderation (portion sizes), and variety (types of food you eat… pop tart every day is clearly not variety)…. (or at least my college-level Nutrition class emphasized that these were the components of a healthy diet…).
    Rather than live day to day or meal to meal counting calories, I would think people could live better by learning to recognize what ingredients are higher in fat/calorie/nutrient/whatever content and learning to eat more or less, depending on their needs, of said item in one sitting (like in the blog post: 1 taco instead of 3…. or even 2 instead of 3… eat a fruit before if your diet lacks enough fruits and veggies). I would also think that people could live better by simply looking at how much color their diet (what they eat consume… I’m not talking fad diet here) has each day, how many fruits and vegetables they had, what kinds of meat and approximately how much they ate (you can approximate if you know that a piece of meat that is the size of a deck of playing cards is approx. 3 ounces… nutritional sites like mypyramid recommend about 5 oz of meats and legumes each day), etc….. It’s not rocket science and I don’t see why every outlet of food needs to always be held to the same standards as corporate food businesses when smaller businesses don’t have the capacity or uniformity of corporate businesses to make their nutrient labels hold any significance. The more laws are made to force smaller businesses to conform to rules beyond their capacity, part of the nation dies before we know it’s too late.

    Thank you Kogi team for being committed to quality and family/community-orientation. The world needs more entities with said commitments.

    and ps. to the question of “does this actually look nutritious to you?” only on a bottle of clear water (arrowhead, crystal geyser, etc) :)

  39. axt113 says:

    Wow, so glad I don’t buy anything from Kogi, and this convinces me never to start, if this is how you do business, then I hope you have bankruptcy planned for

  40. Eric Shin says:

    @axt113 There’s a fundamental thing about Kogi that you are misunderstanding. If you went to our stop and tried our food, I’d think you’d understand. Without having tried our food and not trying to find out who we are and what we stand for, I think your argument is baseless. We are nomads and food gypsies.

  41. geno says:

    Since you used the FFFUUUUUU comics format, you obviously have a finger on the pulse of the internet. Allow me to be the first to call out Godwin’s law on this blog post and add that you should go ahead and post the nutritional info to make up for calling people who want a simple answer to what they’re ingesting nazi’s.

    I mean, you’re located in Southern California, for christ’s sake: the mecca of “health conscious”, boujie-ass citizens. You would *think* someone over there would have had the foresight to just post it up anyways.

    Soooo regretting recommending your food to any and all my friends and acquaintances that wanted an interesting asian-fusion meal.

  42. justasuggestion says:

    If there are enough e-mails to the point where it bothers you, isn’t it easier to just put the information online so they won’t bother you? I thought Kogi was supposed to be for the people? I think calorie counting is no way to live but if people want it, why not give it to them? You don’t want those customers anyways.

  43. Thomas says:

    I have respect for what you do and what you guys started. Pretty much a nationwide if not world wide food phenom. Nutritional info aside (who cares, if you’re getting fat, stop eating so much and exercise. Pretty much the way we’ve been doing it since caveman days) this post seems to be split right down the middle. The people who want to gripe about numbers to associate how healthy they are and then the people who want to gripe about how this retarded thing got started and how it was dealt with.

    Eric, you seem to be much more adept at handling things in a more professional manner. Maybe give your sis a break and you pick up the PR for a while. Jeez, even the Chef’s post was better than Alice’s and he’s supposed to be hot headed and passionate and unfiltered about his food. Keep fighting the good fight and much respect.

  44. Matthew Rigdon says:

    Wow. I recently had to deal with a serious medical condition that means I HAVE to pay attention to what a nutrition label says or I WILL HAVE TO GO TO AN EMERGENCY ROOM AND HAVE ORGANS REMOVED.

    It’s become critical that I pay attention to what the cholesterol levels in food are. I wish it weren’t so, but there you go. Life’s a bitch (much like the author of this post). I don’t care that much about calories (I don’t order large amounts of food). But cholesterol is now a big deal for me. In the absence of any information, I have to take a pass on food because there’s really no way to “estimate” how much cholesterol shows up in something.

    I can understand if you’re understaffed, if there’s not enough money to cover expensive tests, if you don’t want to take the time to even “guesstimate” what your levels are, but this response from someone at your organization that is so condescending and outright violent has turned me from a fan of your food (I’ve driven out of my way to eat at the truck) into an outright enemy. From now on, I will do what I can to RUIN your business. If anyone asks me what I think of your food, my answer will be, “Kogi is shit!” As for the performance of whoever this is writing your blog, all I can say is…

    BRA…..VO….

  45. Pingback: Eating Cloned Meat; Remembering Michael Batterberry; Suing Mario Batali - Multi-City Restaurant Buzz - Zagat

  46. Roy says:

    This information could have been delivered more effectively without the questing tone the post takes. You not only criticize the customers who have asked you for caloric information, but you take it a step further and criticize even your customers who didn’t ask, but who might like to know.

    You have a very accurate argument/fact that only larger restaurant chains that have the resources to standardize their food and research their caloric content are required to post this information. By stating that you guys are still to small to be able to do this, and how impossible it would be for you to standardize what is done on all your trucks, you would have generated a lot of goodwill from your customers who just want you guys to do well and flourish.

    That should have been the end of your post. Unfortunately, you needed to go further and alienate some of your customers.

    Wouldn’t you rather have me thinking that you guys are working so hard and trying to make it in this very competitive marketplace and have me routing for you? Instead what I’m thinking is, “Kogi is calling out my motivations for wanting to know if I should eat 2 tacos for lunch or 3?” I’m a huge Kogi fan, but I don’t know if I want to be made to feel like what I’m thinking is somehow wrong. Now when I go to the truck am I always going to feel like they’re laughing at me from inside the truck because I like to watch how much food I consume in a day?

    I’ve worked in PR for many years. The customer is always right. Always say only what you need to, nothing more. Make everyone feel good about themselves and consequently they will feel good about your business. These are pretty straightforward PR tactics.

    It’s great to be the cool kid on the block, but when you start to act like it, it’s bad business.

  47. Claremole says:

    Why so sensitive? What have you got to hide?? Hmmm???

  48. =_= says:

    MuST YoU tyPE like thIS for some ODD ass reasoN? I mean occasionally its ok… but.. geez.

    And also, all you have to do is look up the nutritional info on your ingredients and roughly add it up =_= it’s not like rocket science. It just sounds like you guys are being lazy or something, haha… I mean though when I eat Kogi its because I want the flavor not that I care about the calories/nutrition (although I guess it would be nice to know). But really guys, its not rocket science, just roughly add up your ingredients and that’s all that takes, not a friggin lab and sampling. And really it just looks more professional and seems like you care a little bit more about your consumers. I don’t know, it just seems like you guys are afraid of scarying certain calorie conscious people off. (but I mean I think those people would’ve been scared off even without the official numbers.)

    I actually read the nutritional info (I eat mostly vegetarian diet so I started because of protein intake…) its helpful… oh well.

  49. =_= says:

    뭐 손맛이다 뭐 이런것도 있겠지만 꽤 알려져있고 점점 성장하는 회사인 이상 필할수는 없을꺼 같네요…

  50. DanGarion says:

    So what are the nutritional values of your items?

  51. moses valenzuela says:

    Asking for nutritional information is ridiculous. Have some common sense. Most of the Kogi truck is not considered healthy but they do take pride in providing fresh ingredients. If people are so worried about calories then get out the Kogi truck line and go eat some grass. Eat good food, not whether it is healthy or not. I’m sure many already said this but why don’t you exercise after eating it or cutting down the portion. Some people have no sense of self reliance.

    Go Kogi. You are the #1 food truck in LA in my book!

  52. Tristan says:

    Wow…this was incredibly rude. I’m not a big health freak. I believe ultimately, you should use common sense and exercise regularly.

    But, as a frequent customer of Kogi BBQ, I’m disappointed in this incredibly rude and “I’m better than everyone else” attitude. How sophomoric.

    You’ve lost a customer.

  53. sam says:

    Good God!! If you people are that concerned… Don’t eat Kogi!

    It’s simple. If you like the Kogi, eat there. If not, don’t. If Kogi won’t post nutrition facts and you need nutrition facts to decide whether or not to eat there, then don’t eat Kogi!!

    Simple.

  54. char says:

    Hmm, I cook my own Korean BBQ and never think about what I throw in it. I’m a pretty health conscious person, dedicated to being an athlete and have several serious food issues, most notably with milk and gluten products.

    Yes, people don’t get nutritional information from truck stands, or food stands in general. Since it’s hard to factor, I don’t expect that from Kogi but it means that it’s only a once-in-a-while excursion.

    The response was unprofessional, written like a twelve year old on the internet, and risky since it seems a fair amount of people were offended. From a business standpoint, it’s really not worth hurting the established consumer base. I don’t imagine that new customers were inspired to go buy Kogi Tacos from this blog. If anything, without knowing your product and only your attitude, it would probably be a turn off.

    No matter how justified you may feel, if you feel this strongly, do it eloquently and match point for point, without a long winded put down. It is clear based on responses to blog comments that you are completely capable of this.

    Also be careful you don’t go claiming that people don’t know how to control nutrition. I’m a serious athlete, and I watch calories – not to lose weight, but to optimize and attain the desired physique demanded of a sport. Fat, carb, protein calorie ratios are essential, as is fiber, sugar, and several other things that are generally provided. There is clear supporting evidence in how diet impacts training, and a lot of good information.

    So I guess what I’m saying is it’s better not to give some general response bashing nutrition. Otherwise you sounds like you don’t know what you’re talking about. Keep a simple, respectful answer (don’t all customers want respect?) and you won’t have to deal with all this backlash.

    I wish you the best of luck. I’m not writing this to dis you, but I did notice you showed concern to customer response, and I feel feedback is important, because aside from this blog entry, I very much appreciate what you guys are about.

  55. Dan says:

    I’m a big fan of Kogi since I discovered it a few months ago but what a letdown to see this kind of response from somebody who’s supposed to be the face/representative of Kogi.

    I obviously don’t expect any nutrition facts from a taco truck. That being said, I also don’t expect to see a juvenile rant against somebody innocently asking for nutrition facts. Was it difficult to say something like, “sorry, we haven’t got the time or resources to go through with your request nor any plans to do so.” What waste of energy, time, and effort this blog post was, simply to satisfy the writer’s ego.

    Advice to the author: Put the company’s agenda before your own needs, especially in a public forum like this. Put it on your own Facebook page but don’t use your company’s time and resources to spew arrogance and lack of customer service like this.

    I’m still going to enjoy a good old Kogi taco but maybe it’s time to try out some of the copycats.

  56. Lindsay says:

    This post bums me out.

    I discovered Kogi during my pregnancy, and I love the Tofu Tacos.

    Well, I gave birth to my daughter back in June and I started back at work last Monday. The Kogi truck has been calling to me….

    I joined weight watchers two weeks ago to help me shed my baby belly. I wanted to see if you guys had had nutritional info on your website and I stumbled across this post.

    With other “splurge” foods I can kind of guesstimate how many points or calories are in any given item. If I ate at a regular taco truck I could kind of guess how many points were in a regular taco. The thing I love about Kogi is the same thing that gives me a problem… the food is very different and unique. That’s the reason I’m drawn to it, but at the same time I can’t really guess the points value on a Kogi tofu taco, I have nothing to compare it against. With out some sort of idea of the calorie count from you guys, I can’t eat at your trucks without throwing my diet out the window.

    On the topic of soy cheese: I’m allergic to dairy, it makes me vomit. I miss real cheese, I wish I could eat real cheese but I can’t. With some diligent searching, I’ve been able to find several tasty cheese alternatives. I don’t expect restaurants (or food trucks), to carry soy-cheese. However, I’m always appreciative when they do. Its nice to know that some restaurants care about my dietary needs.

    Apparently, you don’t care, I piss you off and you don’t want my business.

    The arrogant and condescending tone of this post is really disappointing. If this is how you feel about me as a customer, I think I shall take my business elsewhere. As I often pick up lunch for my co-workers, you have lost their business as well….

    Too bad. Tofu tacos, you shall be missed.

  57. RO says:

    Guys/Gals –
    Just cool it y’all. And stop hiding behind a blog with all your mean-spirited or temper-tantrum posts (this includes the “I’m going to stop going to Kogi’s” threats — just stop going.) If you don’t like it, stop going. If you must have nutritional info, estimate it yourself. If nutritional info is necessary for Kogi’s survival, they will post it up eventually or go out of business. Eating at Kogi’s is optional.

  58. Lisa says:

    Just stumbled across this and frankly I’m a little insulted. Is this the attitude you have towards customers who spend their hard earned dollars at your trucks?

    I have never tried Kogi and was thinking about trying it since I had heard nothing but good things about the food. Now seeing this, I’m certainly having second thoughts of ever doing business with your company.

    I didn’t expect to find nutritional info about your food here, nor do I expect to get any from a food truck, however this certainly could have been handled better. A simple, “I’m sorry we don’t have that info available” would have sufficed.

    There are a lot of health conscious people out there who do watch their caloric intake (such as myself) and having such information would be beneficial for a growing successful company like yours to invest in. Isn’t being in customer service about what your consumer wants? It wouldn’t be a bad idea to invest a little money to learn what the nutritional make up of you food is, so you can fairly disclose such information should it be requested to your loyal consumers. It does not demean your food.

    By the way, I agree it’s all common sense and anyone counting calories will already have an idea of how many calories are contained in your food by just looking at it. An In & Out cheese burger has approximately 480 calories and a taco bell taco has approximately 190 calories….An apple has about 75 calories…

    It would just be really amazing to see a food truck go the extra mile for their consumers instead of sit here and hurl insults to customers who keep asking for that type of info just because those questions annoy you. That condescending attitude is something that will carry over into other areas of your business and will ultimately repel customers.

  59. Carla says:

    KogiBBQ you guys just lost a whole bunch of sorority and fraternity customers from UCLA and UCI. FYI, I’m not even a health freak, but you guys are something else.

  60. Vicky says:

    I’m gonna submit an article about you guys, and it’s not gonna be good news. Later bitches.

  61. I do not know what prompted this guys response,..but if I was cooking with as much style and passion as you folks seem to be and won’t disclose proprietary recipes(I turned down Bon Appetite), and you’re doing great business anyway, screw all the health food PC correct wimps that you will probably never win over anyway…..granola munchers should stick to all the corporate kitchens that will bend over at the slightest soccer Mom’s complaint and you guys keep cooking with your special mojo and do not grab your ankles to try to make everyone happy….You want big flavor & sensation with a stamp of approval from Doc Oz…better keep moving over to the Naked Pizza kiosk…..the fun and passion is at the Kogi Truck for grownups!

  62. KogiLover says:

    for someone who’s so conscious about calorie and stuff, why don’t you go stuff yourself with kogi’s wonderful short rib burrito and then EXERCISE!!! geez! why is it such a big deal?! eat whatever you wanna eat, you know you LOVE kogi so who cares about calories?! do you eat this everyday? well then, EXERCISE EVERYDAY!

    whew people, there are too many other important things in life than knowing how many calories you’re stuffing yourself with! because you know no matter what you eat, you need to exercise and burn it off!

  63. short and to the point, nice!

  64. Lisa says:

    All you idiots have it wrong lol. People ask you (Kogi) for this info because although we are on a diets, our diets allow for some extra room for goodies LIKE KOGI once in awhile. Even its crazzzzzy fattening but I crave that onneeee taco so badly, Id like to count the fat and fiber and whatever else I need to make it work for my eating plan. Come on Kogi!! Dont hate!!!!!

  65. s.i. says:

    I won’t rehash what others have sufficiently addressed in previous comments. But I do want to add my name to those who were insulted by this post. Who cares how or why people people count calories, they are–were–your loyal customers and don’t deserve to feel attacked like this blog post has made many feel. I’m sure you won’t care, since I am one of those “nutritional nazis” that exasperate you so, but I will never eat at one of your trucks again and will disuade everyone I know from eating at there as well.

  66. You could certainly see your skills within the work you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers such as you who are not afraid to say how they believe. All the time follow your heart.

  67. Zorana says:

    wow… complain all you want for people who want to know how many calories they are putting in their bodies but HANDS DOWN this post serves as a far greater annoyance! looove your food, actually your truck is outside my work right now and trust I’m gonna go chow down in minute but as some posts above show; have some common sense and decency to understand that not everyone who inquires is a nazi health nut… diabetes, kidney disease.. there are many reasons a large amount of the american population should want to know what they are putting in their bodies… but hey, whatever thanks for at least giving the public an answer.

  68. Hi my family member! I want to say that this article is awesome, nice written and come with almost all significant infos. I would like to see extra posts like this.

  69. FU says:

    Wow immaturity – if you think your food is good and you really have nothing to hide, then whats with being all snarky?

  70. Danielle says:

    You know, I know this is old, but I just have to say that every time I think of this article – which is to say every time I want to eat at Chego – I get my hackles up.

    Just because YOU don’t have to count calories to be healthy and balanced doesn’t mean some people don’t need to. We are all wired differently, physically, mentally, emotionally. Some people need to know. I would rather have you guys as an occasional takeout option than a total splurge, but you have to be the latter specifically because I don’t know what I am getting into nutritionally. And it’s not like the menu description covers all the ingredients. There’s no oil? Yeah right.

    And commenters, don’t tell me to go exercise. I exercise a shitload. I also know that *I* choose what I eat, and I want to make informed choices.

    I just think it is so arrogant to think you know everything about how everyone should eat and what we should want to know. You know how to make fantastic food, and I appreciate that. But it doesn’t make you a nutritionist.

  71. CarlIto says:

    Lol @ people demanding to know the nutritional breakdown for the food they eat here. Get a life! I guarantee a majority of you don’t really count your calories nor do you take your “diet” that seriously. If the kogi truck is a staple in your diet or if it affects your “diet” that much then your obviously full of it. A small splurge once in a while won’t hurt you. It’s not like your some professional athlete that needs to be in absolute top shape. Get over yourself, it’s not that serious. Just eat and be merry, you overly sensitive fatties.

  72. Hi, guys,

    Chef Roy Choi graciously shared his recipe for ultra-delicious Kogi Kimchi Quesadillas online here: http://www.realcaliforniamilk.com/recipes/kogi-bbq-kimchi-quesadillas/

    I entered the recipe’s ingredients into LoseIt! and got these nutrition stats for one serving of a Kogi Kimchi Quesadilla (assuming no fat is lost during the cooking process):

    Calories: 1220
    Total Fat: 87.8 grams
    Saturated Fat: 42.2 grams
    Cholesterol: 179.7 milligrams
    Sodium: 2071.3 milligrams
    Carbohydrates: 66.1 grams
    Fiber: 6.6 grams
    Sugars: 2.8 grams
    Protein: 41.4 grams

    Since one serving of a Kogi Kimchi Quesadilla is sliced into four portions, I recommend purchasing one Quesadilla for sharing if you have to count calories.

    Jen

    PS — I ♥ Kogi BBQ. Absolutely ♥ it. I wish the Kogi food trucks stopped by my workplace more often!!!!

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