CRESTVIEW — Deborah Andreozzi's longing for the Mexican food she experienced while living in Huntington Beach, California was the basis for a Crestview business venture.
Andreozzi and her business partner, Pamela Daniel, took the plunge into food trucking in October of last year with PnD South of the Border Tacos.
"When Deb moved here she loved Mexican food. They had all kinds of taco trucks out there in California. It's a known thing out there and it seems to be all Mexican. It was her favorite, but there was nothing like that here at home," Daniel said.
"I always wanted a taco truck. It was always my dream," Andreozzi said. The Crestview resident launched the truck with the blessing of her six children, who love her cooking and also encouraged her to make it a business.
Andreozzi and Daniel, friends for 17 years, brought their years of experience working at local restaurants to embark on their enterprise.
"We've been at it off and on," Daniel said. "We met at Coach-N-Four (a former Crestview restaurant, and) were both employees there. I've worked at Gator (a Baker café)."
Daniel said she'd been out of the food business for a while before they opened the PnD. She and Andreozzi even trained and worked together as Certified Nursing Assistants at Emerald Coast Hospice at one point. But their love of food and from-scratch cooking made the industry part of their lives once more.
"It's all homemade, except our chips and shells, but we blend our beans. Nothing's premade — we cook and season everything. You've always got to put your own swag," Daniel, a Holt resident, said.
That "swag" includes one of their specialties, hamburger potato taco filling.
Daniel said the hamburger potato is her favorite thing on the menu to cook. "No one else does it around here. Everybody has pork, that's carnitas. But the hamburger potato I don't think it's around this area at all. I don't think any Mexican place has that."
She said the dish hearkens back to times when you have a big family to feed and you want your food to go further. "With a big family, it went further and lasted longer because you added a potato."
Another dish at PnD you may not find on other Crestview menus are elotes, a Mexican version of corn that Andreozzi enjoyed at food stands all around Huntington Beach.
"It's fresh corn on the cob and we coat it with mayonnaise, parmesan cheese and then we put a Mexican cheese on it," Daniel said. They sprinkle a classic Mexican seasoning called tajin to it, a little chili and a little lime.
The menu also includes California smothered burritos, chicken tacos, beans and cheese, queso and chips, and sides, soft drinks and tea. Prices start at $2.95 for a la carte food items, and combination meals, served with chips and salsa or rice and beans, cost $8.95 each. Elotes are $3.95, and drinks are $1-$2.
The truck is open 11 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. weekdays at 1212 Ferdon Blvd. N. in Crestview.
Daniel and Andreozzi also provide deliveries for orders costing $20 and up. There is an additional $2 delivery charge.
Call 612-6510 to pre-order. Visit the PnD South of the Border Facebook page for more information.