By Griffin Nelson
Photos by Jane Kortright
The newest adventure for Kelsey Lucius, owner of Bottom Line Bakery, was technically the original one. Before the bakery doors opened, a food trailer had always been the plan as a low-pressure way to use her skills in the kitchen to build a personal business. Having already established a strong following through her cottage bakery — filling a bottomless queue of custom orders — she knew she could grow and expand.
“I was looking into buying a finished trailer,” says Lucius, “but after adding up the cost I realized it was astronomical.” With a capable and supportive family around her, building her own seemed like a possibility. In May 2021, she purchased an empty shell of a trailer and she and her boyfriend (now husband) got to work.
One month later, she admitted she’d hit capacity and couldn’t wait for more space. So, despite having a partially built food trailer and the added stress of moving across town to her dream home, she signed a two-year lease to open the Bottom Line Bakery store location in Evans. “I’m over here throwing caution to the wind,” jokes Lucius. “The support is honestly bewildering but phenomenal to me!”
The trailer project had to be put on hold for the bakery build-out and opening. By 2022, Lucius and her staff had a good rhythm in place and the trailer project resumed.
“My husband Joe did all the electric, secured the generator and helped my dad run the plumbing. It was insane, but we got it all done.”
Dubbed Salty Tomatoes, after Lucius’ favorite nickname given to her by a coworker, the food trailer has provided an excellent way to get out into the community with a new and creative menu.
Since their first event in August 2022, they’ve routinely sold out of Smash Burgers, participated in food truck festivals and developed systems to maximize efficiency while minimizing waste. “We now have the time and experience of being in the trenches,” she says. “We’ve grown so much together!”
Besides the popular, customizable Smash Burgers, the food truck has menu options like Cubans and other handhelds, pie and cake from the bakery, and they even have plans to add frozen treats for summer.
Seasonal options rotate and there are custom menus for wedding rentals or other big events. Besides Food Truck Fridays, one of her favorite ways to get into the community is when they are invited to neighborhoods. Nothing beats a fresh meal or sweet treat after hours of swimming at the pool or spending time with friends enjoying the summer days.
To make inquiries or to keep up with the Salty Tomatoes food truck, follow them on Instagram at @SaltyTomatoes_ and @BottomLineBakery or visit saltytom.com and bottomlinebakery.com.
As seen in the June/July issue of Augusta magazine.