HOW WE BEGAN
Jae Sim, or “Mr. KOJA” (as UPENN students knew him as), started KOJA Grille in 2003 in a small food truck on 38th Street… the lone truck in between Walnut & Sansom Street. Truthfully, the location wasn’t all that great… across the street from the campus and separate from all the rest of the food trucks on 38th street.
However, the KOJA truck soon became one of the most popular food trucks around the UPENN campus. KOJA was known for “having the friendliest service” and serving up “some extremely tasty Korean fare.” Some students would dedicate a certain day of the week to KOJA. Three neuroscience grad students made Wednesdays, the “Unofficial D Floor KOJA DAY.” Some doctors from blocks away even made trips down to the truck to eat.
Waiting for your food at some of the food trucks used to be pretty unpleasant and sometimes even took up to twenty minutes if there was a line. KOJA was and still is the ONLY food truck that has accommodations for their guests… nice IKEA benches, a beach umbrella to block the sun or rain and reruns of “America’s Funniest Home Videos” shown through the glass display (yes, really!). Twenty minute waits just seemed to fly by for most.