[Market-farming] Restaurant update

Richard Stewart rstewart at zoomtown.com
Wed May 23 08:40:59 EDT 2012


Carla

I think that its important that we think of the business we are doing with the chefs as an extra hassle for them.  They have been used to working with a short list of vendors for their produce and meats.  The more local, the more unique, and the more seasonal they lean the more vendors they need.  Often times they want to cover their bases so they might have several sources for the same product.  Now a chef that is sourcing local might be sourcing from 30 different sources not including beverages and meat and dairy when they might have just dealt with two or three national suppliers.  That takes a skilled person to juggle all those vendors (farmers).

We decided that we would try our hardest to be THE source for about five produce items and a host of herbs.  I think working with chefs falls short when you try to source everything for them and then tell them you are out and they have to go somewhere else even though that item is in season.  It also means that they remember you more than the sketchy farmer that communicates poorly or goes in and out of availability and you become an A-List supplier for them and less likely to be forgotten in the middle of a crazy day.

I think you are seeing though, that like us growers and farmers there are a wide range of different chefs.  Some folks cannot stand working within a system like this others will flourish.  You'll love working more with some chefs and less with others but they are all a source of income for your business and be treated as equally as possible (especially in pricing).

Richard Stewart
Carriage House Farm
North Bend, Ohio

An Ohio Century Farm Est. 1855

(513) 967-1106
http://www.carriagehousefarmllc.com
rstewart at zoomtown.com

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