What Would They Know? Hernan Palacio of Senor BBQ

by | Food & Catering Wisdom, What Would They Know?, Wisdom


Polka Dot Bride

There’s something about the fun of a barbeque that lets everyone relax and have a good time. Hernan of Senor BBQ brings to the humble barbeque an extra spark of fun with his Argentinian background of charcoal grilling whole lambs, chorizo, ribs, chicken – even vegetables. There’s nothing like that smokey flavour of food cooked over an open fire by a master of the open flame, coaxing meat to the perfect degree of melt in the mouth ‘done-ness’, topped off with his famous chimichurri sauce all served with a generous dollop of Latin American inspiration and music. Hernan’s motto is “Discover your inner Latino”, so fill up with that Argentinian vibe – your guests will have a great time! Here is Senor BBQ’s story.

What is your background – and did you grow up in a ‘foodie family’?

I’m born in Argentina, where the “Parrilla” (charcoal grill) is a ritual!

How long have you been in this business?

Our humble beginning in Melbourne was in 2006, but I remember serving my first chorizo sandwich at 14 years old at the Buenos Aires carnival celebrations!

Image by David Hannah Photography

What made you decide to set up a food truck specializing in charcoal grilling?

At the moment, I had worked in various restaurants while pursuing an artistic career. Food is a great medium to connect people and I noticed that there was a niche to offer a Fiesta with music, dance and of course the grill.

What is it about food cooked over coals that everyone seems to love?

I think that it connects with something very primal. I believe that humans have a deep memory of our evolution and things like the smell of sizzling meats of a real fire activate that part of the subconscious.

How have you bought your Argentinian heritage to your cooking style?

We cook traditionally, Argentinean way. The secret ingredient is patience!

What is your specialty – what food are you famous for?

Over the last 20 years we I have perfected our famous Chimichurri. Hand Crafted By Senor BBQ, this is a traditional Argentinean sauce that we add to the meats after is grilled. Based on parsley, garlic, oregano, olive oil, vinegar and Italian spices, is the perfect match for those sizzling chorizos!

Video via My Family Feast SBS TV

Are bridal couples able to request specific meats for you to grill?

We can grill any animal or vegetable! We use a few different methods depending on size and cut: slow charcoal grill, “A la Cruz” (on a cross over logs for 5 hours), Kenka (Chilenian spit roast), etc.

What do you provide as accompaniments to the meat?

We provide a Latin American inspired menu: empanadas, salads, ceviche, paella, offal, sauces, etc.

Do you make things like the chorizo yourself – to make sure that they have that special Argentinian flavor – or do you have suppliers who know how to make them?

After an intensive research, ten years ago found North Carlton Quality Meats and they manufacture an amazing chorizo exclusively for Senor BBQ. Since then we have cooked thousands of them.

Choripan Image by David Hannah Photography

What is a choripan?

When we talk about Argentinean street food, we are talking about Choripan! It consists of a chorizo in a roll, with chimichurri sauce to add.

When in Buenos Aires, go for a walk, follow the scent and you will find a smoky stall offering this popular dish.

How many people are you able to cater for at a time?

We can serve up to 500 guests at the time. We bring grills on trailers and our complete set up to cook from.

Image by David Hannah Photography

What services are you able to offer for a wedding?

We bring a Fiesta! Our cooking is very theatrical, we play with fire on gargantuan grills. While we cook, our crew groove to Alter Latino music.

We offer catering and entertainment with a Latin flavour. Our motto: “Discover Your Inner Latino!”

Please suggest a menu for a wedding feast?

Our most popular wedding menu:

On the grill: Beef ribs, chicken wings, chorizos, pork neck, vegies. We can do also “Achuras”: molleja (beef sweet bread), morcilla (black pudding), chinchulines (chitterlings), etc.

“A la Cruz” (on a cross over logs for 5 hours): Lamb and Piglet. Entrees: empanadas, paella, ceviche, sliders with achuras.

Dessert: Alfajores and cake

Do you travel with your truck and how far from Melbourne do you venture for a wedding or event?

We offer our services in Victoria and have done events in Adelaide and NSW. Even I had fly to Noosa to cook a few animals for a wedding.

Image by Sarah Wood Photography

Do we need a lot of space (such as on a farm) to book your services for a wedding (or are you able to cater a wedding in a backyard in the city for example?

We can cook anywhere outdoors: backyards, carpark, terraces, balconies, etc.

What do you enjoy about running your food truck business?

The variety of people that one comes across, everyday is a new adventure!

Where can we find you most weekends?

Most probably cooking at some market or festival, check on our website for upcoming events.

How do we find you?

I recommend to book as early as possible to secure the date required. We manage our bookings through http://senorbbq.com/, filling the enquiry form which we answer same day.

​​​​We are also famous for our ability to provide catering solutions at short notice.

Image by David Hannah Photography

What do you enjoy about living in Australia?

I love to experiment with cooking and Australia is the ingredients paradise! Cooking dinner with friends and learn from other cultures and then play some fusion, mixing concepts and flavours.​​​​

Thank you Hernan for sharing your story. Succulent food with a dash of Argentinian pizazz and style – yum! To find out more about Senor BBQ visit the website.

Headshot courtesy of Senor BBQ.

  • dna says:
    November 13, 2017 at 11:55 am

    Maestrooooooo, you have your own Chimiiiii!!!

  • Wedding Australian News - Polka Dot Bride says:
    November 18, 2017 at 12:00 am

    […] Planning a food truck wedding? Meet Hernan on Senor BBQ and his amazing Argentinan BBQ food truck! […]



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