Growing up, Dustin said he developed a love for barbecue from watching his dad teach himself how to grill.
“Every Sunday, I would have a bunch of friends over, and we would cook a bunch of barbecue,” Dustin said. “Most of my life I’ve been around it.”
After working as an executive chef for around 11 years and having a family of his own, Dustin said he did not want to work more than 70 hours a week with late nights. When it was time for a job change, he said he discussed the concept of a barbecue trailer with his dad, and they teamed up to open the food truck together.
Although Dustin lives in Pflugerville, he and his dad chose to open in Hutto because it offered the small-town feel they liked. Since opening, the community has been supportive of their business, and word of mouth brings people from outside Hutto to the food truck, Dustin said.
Pustka Family Barbeque is located in downtown Hutto, and umbrella-covered picnic tables are available for seating. Meat options include prime brisket, ribs, sausage and chicken. Customers may also order sides such as beans, potato salad and jalapeno-green apple slaw or charred corn elotes salad.
As the weather gets nicer, it is common for the truck to sell out before closing time on Wednesdays through Fridays, but Dustin said it is impossible to predict when that will happen each week.
Tracking which dishes are most popular is not the only variable he needs to watch out for—Dustin keeps his eye on the weather day by day. On rainy days, he said they will not open depending on how long it pours in an effort to avoid wasting food.
“It’s already tough enough for a small business like this to survive and even more so when you cook a bunch of food and you end up not being able to sell it,” Dustin said.
During the week, Dustin’s uncle Mark Pustka will help with the truck three or four days out of the six days it is open. As far as cooking operations, Dustin said he does 100% of the cooking every day.
“People probably don’t realize that, and some may take it for granted of how good everything is and how much they enjoy it,” he said.