Bryce Balluff, a local chef and one of the early leaders of the food truck scene, died February 21. He was 35.
Balluff was the original owner of Fork in the Road food truck, and the food that he was serving helped those who couldn’t quite grasp what the food truck craze was all about to “get it.” Going beyond burgers and street food, he served more upscale items like foie gras and pork belly. In 2013 he provided the food for one of our Supper Club events, serving from the truck behind the warehouse setting of Wine on the Way.
In 2014 he was the opening chef and co-owner of Southern Moon Smokehouse on Curry Ford Road, but after only a few months, he left the business following a dispute with his partners. His online resume indicates he was working with Frog Song Organic Farm. He was also doing occasional cooking demonstrations with Orlando appliance dealer Southeast Steel.
Bryce William Balluff was born July 23, 1981. He received his training at French Culinary Institute, and he listed chef de partie at New York’s popular Per Se among his past experience. “Being one of only five chosen for the position out of forty,” Balluff wrote in his Linkedin profile, “I came to Per Se a cook. I left as a chef.”
Locally, he worked at Luma on Park, Puff ’n Stuff Catering, Funky Monkey Wine Company and Draft Global Beer Lounge. On Facebook, he was known for his quips and offbeat humor. “I have the heart of a champion. Unfortunately, I also have the liver of a quarterfinalist…” was a post from August.
But as a former employer posted on Facebook after Balluff’s death was announced: “This business is so brutal we have to all stick together. The stress is so bad sometimes that people cannot handle the extreme pressure we are all under.”
Balluff’s survivors include his wife, Kerri Finkel; children, D;Artagnan (Tanner) and Aubry; parents, Paula and Paul Balluff; and brother, Daryl.
Services were held Sunday. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that contributions can be made to the D’Artagnan Balluff College Fund, 311 Needles Trail, Longwood Florida, 32779.