The Gift

Sometimes gifts arrive in the most curious of packages. So curious, in fact, that it can take a few moments to even recognize it as a gift. We’ve recently had the experience of receiving an expected, unrecognizable gift.

Our business was taken away from us.

Truly, did not see that coming. Six weeks before we were ousted, we had signed a lease on a new restaurant. We all met and planned and chatted excitedly about possibilities. And then, we were out. And, for awhile, it was ugly; the gift that causes waves of nausea, fear and confusion, is really, really hard to recognize as a gift.

But, as a bit of time passed, and we were able to start to see the glimmers of possibility. We began to experience a shift in our vision. Maybe we want to do more than run a restaurant? Alex and I have been in the restaurant and hospitality industry for a very long time. He has been a chef for 25 years, we opened our first restaurant together 15 years ago. We have catered every kind of event imaginable, from a 4 person private event under a tent where the guests arrived by boat to many 200 person sit-down weddings to 5,000 person dinners in a field. We have run an intimate, open-kitchen bistro, a fun and packed lounge, a butcher shop… We have toured and cooked. We have done tv, radio and magazine articles. We have cooked for our friend living with cancer and her celiac husband. We have said “yes” to every special request that came our way. We have mixed cocktails and grown our own veggies and herbs. We hosted our very first dinner party when we were 20 years old, complete with a theme and 4 courses. For years, we hosted a weekly Friday night dinner of about 20 people, where everyone threw $5 in a pot to cover the food costs (this was a few years ago…) and we sat in the glow of each other’s company and unpacked our long weeks together. We catered our own wedding. Seriously. For 30 years now, we have lived food, drinks, and hospitality. And for the past 15 years, we have focussed on running our own restaurants. Maybe the time has come to shift our gaze. To lean deeply into the parts of food culture which often get pushed to the side when running a busy place: writing about food, creating recipes, talking about cookbooks, spending time with farmers, hosting events. And talking with other people about it all.

For as long as I can remember, community has been key to our lives. Being connected to people and experiencing life together is so very important to us. We hope we are going to be able to create community here. We hope to answer questions, learn about so much, provide support, and have a really good chat. Our website is intended to be dynamic and engaged with the community. We will write about our food experiences, we will take pictures, talk, cook, laugh, love and share it all with you.

Food and community, what else is there?

Thank you for coming to our website.


Author: Chef Alex

Have Knives, will travel.

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