January 27, 2023

Don’t Wait for the Next Trend: Chucks FlavorTrain | Episode 32 of Twist of Fate 

Don’t Wait for the Next Trend: Chucks FlavorTrain | Episode 32 of Twist of Fate 

Chucks FlavorTrain offers recipe development, private cooking, and catering services to people in the Napa area, but he’s also a bit of a unicorn on social media. This somewhat unwitting phenomenon managed to take off on platforms like TikTok, as much for his artful plates as he did for his voice. Sitting down with Douglas Younger III on Twist of Fate gave him a chance to open up about his entrepreneurial journey and how he managed to break the mold. 

The Origin Story 

Younger has a way of putting things, so when he asked the cook for his Batman origin story, it started the way a lot of people’s origins stories start: he wasn’t a fan of his day job. When he got a smoker as a gift, he found that taking his cooking skills ot the next level was empowering for him — though that didn’t mean he could quit his job yet. 

He could put on the superhero cape for a few hours and cook for his family and friends, but he still had to put on the proverbial suit every day to pay the bills. Chucks FlavorTrain is a business, but for the founder, it’s more about his passion. 

Cooking is as much of a nostalgic roadtrip of family BBQs and parties as it is a way to support himself, his wife, and his daughter. Success to him means being able to pay for his daughter’s education with his food — not becoming the number one chef in America. 

The Momentum

Chucks FlavorTrain catapulted on social media, scoring enough views to get his enterprise some major attention. He took the opportunity and ran with it. When someone asked him if he catered, he said ‘Of course, love to cater’, despite the fact that he’d never catered before. While a stressful event, the whole experience taught him that he was up to the task. 

Like most successful entrepreneurs, he leaned on his passion to get him from one stepping stone to the next. He also wasn’t afraid to listen to people. With friends in the financial and tech world (hello, Napa Valley), he was able to improve everything from his video quality to his tax prep plan. He listened to the tips and tricks and incorporated them to build an already solid foundation. 

When it comes to how he cooks, he loves to experiment. He encourages all small business owners not to wait until the next trend. Do what you want to do and maybe you’ll be the one to start a fad. He also values the support of his audience. He doesn’t need millions of fans on TikTok to make it in the industry, he may only need a few supporters in Napa to carve out a space for himself.

The Cooking 

There’s a lot of competition for anyone in the food industry. Small restaurant owners fight with big chains, culinary specialists struggle to find a niche, and failure is abundant. For Chucks FlavorTrain, though, he wants people to know that there may be fewer barriers than you think. 

He encourages people starting out to look for deals, especially for things like used cooking equipment that often sits untouched in people’s homes. You don’t have to shell out hundreds of dollars on ingredients either, BBQ was created precisely because people were tasked with making inexpensive cuts tasty. 

This isn’t just strong advice for people in his industry, it’s important for people in every industry. Whatever is standing in your way might not be as much of a deal-breaker as you’re making it out to be. Even starting a side hustle investing a few hours of your week can be enough to break down doors. 


Become a guest

Embark on an entrepreneurial odyssey with Twist Of Fate: A Small Business Podcast. Are you an aspiring entrepreneur? Or on a quest for reinvention? Dive into small business insights with our episodes, explore our blogs, join our Patreon, or seize the opportunity to be a guest on our show, sharing your tale of inspiration with a like-minded community.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.