It’s becoming harder to find food these days, say nothing about good food.
Before we opened our doors last year, we had the usual sales calls from businesses trying to sell us their products, things like Yellow Pages, insurance, alarm systems and so on. The food distributors were the best, however, at misunderstanding our concept all together.
Any good salesperson takes the time to understand the customer first, and then should assess whether or not to waste their effort barking up the wrong tree. So when the food guy comes to my door with a catalog of countless pre-made, pre-packaged, mostly frozen items (I hesitate calling it food), I can see quickly that I, not the salesman, am the one that needs to step in and say that this is not going anywhere.
I say “That’s fine, but what do you have in the way of high quality flour, baking chocolate, and spices, you know, basic raw ingredients?”
I get a puzzled look, a pause, and a regress back to the original pitch, “but we have some really nice cheesecakes, frozen, individually portioned….”
I get this look because fewer places actually cook any more. What passes as cooking is nothing more than heating or thawing. Open the box. Nuke the container. Tear open the bag of a product that someone else made in a corporate kitchen hundreds of miles away from your location and trucked in for ease and convenience, serve it and call it good. What’s more amazing, that restaurants can get away with this approach, or that people have lowered their standards and actually settle for it?
I don’t expect that we will change much of that; folks will still concede to believing that Alfredo sauce as a powdered mix is an adequate substitute. But we will stick to our commitment to bring you food that we believe in and love to eat. Our kitchen is small, so we won’t be able to offer a lot of options, but what we do make will be something we’ve imagined, assembled and prepared for you from an ingredient list, not a catalog.
We’ll set the table; you bring the conversation.