New doughnut-obsessed food truck parks it on popular East Austin strip
You might call Paul Sedillo a doughnut obsessive. Not just content to explore recipes in his own kitchen, the entrepreneur has spent the last several years criss-crossing the nation in search of the best bite in each city. Now, he is bringing the results of all that meticulous research home to a new food truck opening in early November.
The trailer, located between The Lost Well and Fleet Coffee at 2421 Webberville Rd., will actually be a twofer. According to a release, Republic Donuts will be open Tuesday through Sunday mornings starting at 7 am. At 5 pm on Wednesday through Sunday evenings, the truck switches over to Republic Diner, serving the late night crowd with a menu of comfort food classics.
On weekends, guests can sample both concepts during Saturday and Sunday breakfast service.
To dual menus are ambitious, but Sedillo has help from one of the rising stars in Austin’s food scene: chef James Durham. An alum of Bufalina, Salt & Time, and Sway, Durham shares Sedillo's passion for thoughtfully sourced all-American food.
The sweets side of the business might ring a bell for many Austinites. Sedillo has been previewing Republic Doughnuts throughout October with a series of pop-ups at Southern Heights Brewing Co. and Kitty Cohen’s. The eatery was also plastered all over Instagram the weekend before Halloween when its sprinkled pink doughnuts were served on top of a shot as part of Nickel City’s Simpsons-themed Moe’s Tavern takeover.
However, Sedillo tells CultureMap that the cake doughnuts served at the truck will be a little different than the batch made for the east side bar. For starters, they will never sit past an hour to ensure freshness, and they will always be made in small batches.
The initial menu will rotate five flavors: peach cake, Bourbon vanilla glazed, boozy butterscotch, five spice flavor with Scotch-marinated apples, and pecan pie. For the latter, Sedillo has been working with Sandeep Gyawali of Miche Bread to develop a treat made out of mesquite flour.
Smashed burgers served on Martin’s potato rolls anchor the Republic Diner menu, but the truck also will offer a wide variety of sandwiches from pimento cheese to chicken fried steak. Sides like tots and fried pickles will round out the offerings, along with a specials ranging from Cajun fare like gumbo to green chile patty melts.
For weekend breakfast service, diners can pair the doughnuts with savory dishes like an egg sandwich topped with a house sage breakfast sausage or hash browns. There will also be stuffed French toast if guests want to go full throttle with a sugar rush.
Sedillo says the food truck is only the first step. He is actively seeking a lease to give the concepts a permanent brick-and-mortar home. That may not happen soon in Austin’s competitive market, but the trailer will make a very nice consolation prize.