Meet the Staff
Jon "Mr. V" Verno
Jon Verno got his start in street vending in the winter of 1995. While trying to make a go of a career in broadcasting, he leased a vending cart to supplement his income. The following spring, Verno set up on his own. He opened his first cart on the corner of Goodman Street and Monroe Avenue across from the old Paradise Alley bar. Fifteen years later, Verno sends out two carts on the weekends - one to his original location, and another to the patio behind Prepp's Bar on Park Avenue - and devotes a significant amount of time to catering and festivals. He recently added new lunchtime locations at Strong Hospital and Cobb’s Hill.
If anyone is a natural for this business, it's Verno. Jon’s philosophy is not about gaining a three dollar sale, but about establishing a relationship. Mr. V’s operation takes things to a different level in the food business. Verno likes to prepare every sandwich as if he was preparing it to eat himself. For him, Mr. V's is a "lifestyle" he wouldn't willingly give up, even when the weather turns foul. "Anyone can sell a sandwich right now," he says, "but if you are still going out in February, you are king of the hill."
That's why he's out every week, all year round, because "If it's different, and as long as you do it well," he says, people will keep coming back. Mr. V. does, and they do, and he unquestionably is the champagne of street meat.