When we heard that The Challenger's Boys and Girls Club was looking for a restaurant to host the final day of their Manhood Program so that the young men could apply what they had learned about table manners over dinner, we jumped all over it. I'm pretty sure that we badgered them to use The Salon as their venue because at that time they didn't particularly know us (see the dinner here) and we really wanted to change that. Since then we have regularly been going to their space in South Central to teach cooking and nutrition classes. We continue to be inspired by the work and the mission of what The Challenger's provides for children who don't catch many breaks, and we feel very honored to be a part of their team now.
This year we took to formulating close ties with several small humane ranchers who work sustainably and with great integrity. It's expensive to raise meat this way, but it is an investment in our health and our conscience and our environment. We are anxious to continue our work to raise attention of why supporting these types of ranchers is so critical to our food system. See more here and here and here.
Every Monday for the majority of this year, my friend Caleb (featured here) has been coming to our kitchen to water plants, walk one of our dogs (the only one that likes to walk), and offering up team support in general (he says this a lot: "Good job, Matt!"). He brightens our day when he walks in because he just has the kind of big personality that says Hello! until you say Hello! back. He's gaining a lot from working here and so are we by having him.
Our team is tight. The above photo does not represent all of us, just some of us (we have 27 employees now). We have all worked especially hard this year to create a cohesive operation that is respectful of each other and ambitious to keep improving in all aspects of our business. I am so freaking proud of our team.
Um…... The New York Times. That felt good, real good. Thanks everyone for helping to make 2013 our best year yet. We are so excited to cook for you in 2014! Happy New Year!!!