Joanna Yorke, Reporter
BATTLE GROUND — When Tina Condon’s parents, Bob and Merilyn Condon, came to her in 2013 and told her they had sold their family’s Steakburger restaurant site in Hazel Dell, they asked her if there was anything from the original restaurant she wanted.
“I looked at them and said, ‘I want the name and I want the sauce,’” Condon recalls.
On this particular day out at Condon’s Steakburger on the Go food truck, which happened to be parked in the lot behind Dick’s Tire Factory in Battle Ground at the time, Condon walks and talks, moving cases of soda and other items into the food truck in order to get ready for the day.
Condon is currently about to enter her third year of running the Steakburger on the Go food truck, something she started a few years ago when she realized she needed to make sure people in Clark County weren’t forgetting the flavor of the Steakburger sauce.
“My goal was to to get the sauce in the stores, but I realized that could take a while and I was worried people might forget the flavor of the sauce,” Condon said. “Pretty much everyone in Clark County knows the Steakburger sauce.”
When Condon first opened the 16-square-foot food cart, she could be found about a half-mile from where the original Steakburger restaurant had been in Hazel Dell. She also sometimes took the food truck “on the go” and catered some events.
Condon has since changed her locations around a bit and is even more “on the go.” Currently, Steakburger on the Go is in Ridgefield on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., in the Ridgefield Industrial cul-de-sac east of Chevron and north of Corwin Beverage; in Hazel Dell on Wednesdays, 11 a.m.-1 p.m., at North Park Industrial, 5408 NE 88th St., Vancouver; and in Battle Ground on Fridays (and some Saturdays), 11 a.m.-4 p.m., in the parking lot behind Dick’s Tire Factory, 510 W. Main St., Battle Ground.
During the month of December, Condon has also been taking the Steakburger on the Go truck to some of the area Christmas tree farms during certain days and hours.
“Even though it’s Steakburger on the Go, I didn’t think I’d be ‘on the go’ so much,” Condon said, laughing. “Going to all the different communities is so much more rewarding, and location is really key.”
As a third-generation owner of the Steakburger name, Condon said she basically worked in the restaurant her whole life, managing the Fourth Plain location when she was about 17 or 18 years old. At one point, the Condons and their extended family owned a total of seven Steakburgers in Clark County and Portland, as Condon said the goal had been for each woman in the family to have their own business. After a while, however, some of the other daughters married or didn’t want to keep going with the business, so Condon was the only one left.
Soon the Steakburger businesses in the family dropped down to the original one in Hazel Dell. Condon was working there when her husband came down with cancer. Her husband, who was originally from Colombia in South America, wanted to return to his home country to live out his remaining days. So, Condon packed up some of the family and they moved to Colombia for several years.
In 2011, Condon’s husband passed away and the family moved back. When she returned back to the area, Condon said she didn’t want to go back to working at the Steakburger restaurant. She ended up getting a job at Chuck’s Produce and worked there for about four years, until her parents told her that had sold the site of the Steakburger restaurant.
“I went back to the restaurant for a bit right before it closed,” Condon said. “Everything was tweaked a bit because they had had someone else running it, but I had to at least make sure the sauce was good before the restaurant closed.”
Each of Condon’s three children have helped with the Steakburger restaurants in some capacity and some time or another, and have helped out with the food truck in different ways.
The Steakburger on the Go menu consists of hamburgers, fries, hot dogs and chicken burgers, and Condon said she tried to accommodate any special requests. She said they have a lot of options that people can add to burgers or hot dogs, such as jalapenos, onions, eggs, etc. She said they also make chili often, meaning people can order chili dogs or chili burgers.
Customers are also able to of course buy the Steakburger sauce by the quart at the food truck.
To see monthly and weekly updated schedules of where and when the Steakburger on the Go food truck will be, visit the Steakburger Facebook page. Condon can be reached at (360) 989-5291.