Food trucks at Lavin’s Liquors


Credit: Tina Su

Grub Guru, an Asian fusion and street food truck, has only just begun coming to Lavin’s Liquors in Wayland. The idea of bringing food trucks onto Lavin’s property is quite recent, originating only three years ago during the COVID-19 pandemic. “The location is beautiful here,” Grub Guru employee Louis Ortiz said. “I love it, it’s very relaxed, and it’s great.”

Tina Su

A local Wayland staple since 1944, three-generation, family-owned store Lavin’s Liquors sits right off of Route 126. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Bob Lavin, owner of Lavin’s Liquors, decided to provide a location for Wayland residents to pick up food on their walks.

To provide these food options to residents, Lavin initiated a rotation of food trucks that visit Lavin’s. These trucks serve many different cuisines including lobster, tacos, cupcakes, cannolis, grilled cheese and Asian food. Lavin’s allows these food trucks to share their cuisine with the Wayland community.

“[We started inviting food trucks to Lavin’s] right around 6 months after the pandemic started. All of the neighbors were working from home and they wanted to have some place to go when they went on walks everyday around the neighborhood,” Lavin said. “My daughter thought that it would be a good idea [to invite food trucks], so people could come in and get snacks. It actually worked out pretty good because all of our neighbors like [the different trucks we bring].”

Bringing food trucks onto Lavin’s property has benefited not only the community, but Lavin’s business itself.

“[Bringing the food trucks onto the property] has been good for the business because it brings more people to us,” Lavin said.

The food truck owners and employees enjoy coming to Lavin’s as well.

“The location is beautiful here. I love it, it’s very relaxed, and it’s great,” Grub Guru employee Louis Ortiz said.

Since Grub Guru, an Asian fusion and street food truck, is relatively new to Lavin’s, they haven’t been able to garner as large of a crowd compared to food trucks that have been coming to Lavin’s for several years.

“Our first day [at Lavin’s] was two weeks ago, on Saturday, April 1,” Grub Guru supervisor Pamela Esposito said. “Bob Lavin invited food trucks in the area to come out, sit in the parking lot and help bring people in, to help small businesses. It’s been a little slow for us here, only about seven people halfway through the day.”

However, the Wayland community is informed to look on Lavin’s Liquors Facebook page to receive information on the food truck schedule, so Esposito and Ortiz are hoping this will bring them more customers.

“[Lavin] has put us on Facebook now,” Esposito said. “They’re advertising us. Hopefully, this will help us out.”

Outside of the most recent addition to Lavin’s food trucks, there are many food trucks serving a variety of food options.

“We have a lobster truck, it’s called Maine Cousins Lobster.” Lavin said. “It’s our most popular. We also have a taco truck from Worcester that makes authentic tacos, the owner is a chef. We have Cupcake City, a cupcake truck, a cannoli truck that comes all the time and a grilled cheese truck when we can get them. The newest one is Grub Guru, [the owners] do good.”

Lavin chooses the food trucks in several different ways. Lavin’s daughters search for these trucks when on the road to and from different functions, but other times, ideas come from customer feedback.

“Sometimes, customers come in here and they [tell us], “You have to get this guy, he’s really good,” Lavin said. “Word of mouth is mostly how it happens.”

Lavin believes bringing the food trucks onto his property was a great decision for his business and the community.

“The community loves [the food trucks],” Lavin said. “A lot of people, especially when the weather gets warm, walk over here and sit out in the yard, on the lawn with [food]. They enjoy it. We didn’t know anything about food trucks until the pandemic, and then we started learning more and more. They’re a nice addition to a Saturday, it’s great.”