New generation heads famous Pepe group

New generation heads famous Pepe group

Four generations after Gian Antonio Pepe’s great-grandparents arrived at Ellis Island, the youngest member of Pépe International, Inc. is rolling up his sleeves. And getting to work leading the Carmel, Calif. restaurant group into the future. In an ongoing quest to refine menus, manage post-pandemic staffing issues, and create a warm Italian family ambience in their restaurants and bakeries, the young entrepreneur continues traditions harkening back to his old family get-togethers in New Jersey and Italy, even while he puts…

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‘What can’t you put on a deviled egg?’

‘What can’t you put on a deviled egg?’

Raechel van Buskirk’s bustling gastronomic venture started with a $35 budget and a mission to feed Sunday regulars at a dive bar in Omaha. “I was working behind the bar at a dive in Omaha one weekend when the owner said he wanted me to come up with something we could offer people to snack on as we tried to build up our Sunday business,” van Buskirk says. “We didn’t have a kitchen, and I had a tiny budget, but…

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Tech exec helms paddleship biz

Tech exec helms paddleship biz

A Maryland software entrepreneur has aimed her tech skills at a diesel-powered, 1800s paddleboat concept to pilot ship and crew into a whole new world of shipboard dining. Michelle Wyatt sold her Mid-Atlantic software business CadmiumCD, and Maryland home, to move with her family to set a new course in the Sunshine State. And six weeks ago, Wyatt’s ship came! On Sept. 7 she reopened St. Johns Rivership Company as its new owner. And on Sept. 8, the 1800s replica…

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Vikre Distillery makes waves on Lake Superior

Vikre Distillery makes waves on Lake Superior

Before the pure, cold water of Lake Superior swirled in Vikre Distillery’s vodka, Emily and Joel Vikre scaled a high bar of entry into a highly competitive and regulated space. As Vikre Distillery rings in its 10-year anniversary as distiller and distributor of artisanal spirits, gins and vodka, the microbrand continues to build a loyal customer base to its brand and business. From a 120- year old historic building near the famous aerial-lift bridge spanning a shipping lane in Duluth,…

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A culinary oasis in food desert

A culinary oasis in food desert

In a food desert in Northwest Kansas, The Elephant Bistro & Bar has become a watering hole for foodies traveling 100 miles to enjoy the international flavors prepared with classical French methods of executive chef & owner Emily Campbell. When it opened in 2018, The Elephant was quite literally the third restaurant to open in the one-streetlight town of Hoxie, population 1,200, according to recent figures. But Emily and her husband Doug had “big dreams” to bring a foodie oasis…

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A Hobgoblin Comes To Boston

A Hobgoblin Comes To Boston

“A hobgoblin,” explains hospitality entrepreneur Jamme Chantler, “is a term that loosely translates into house elf.” According to Scottish lore of which Chantler is so fond, the house elf would work in a castle or cottage in exchange for food. The idea of it tickled the fancy of Chantler, who with his partner and son Nick, opened Hobgoblin Gastropub in Boston’s historic Downtown Crossing neighborhood in July. In a restaurant bedecked with gargoyles and commissioned artwork depicting 1400s paintings of…

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Latin-fusion fun in Idaho

Latin-fusion fun in Idaho

In the heart of potato country along the Spokane River a Latin American concept now flourishes. For its third season, the Terraza Waterfront Café has served unique, light Latin fare and creative cocktails in a sweeping, modern interior and exterior space along the river. Thirty year Coeur d’Alene resident Doug Johnson was inspired by his memories of his grandmother’s cooking, not to mention his Mexican genealogy, to introduce his upscale terrace restaurant, which was designed to feel like it’s in…

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Lessons in agility

Lessons in agility

A leader in Washington state’s $9 billion wine industry, L’Ecole No. 41 Winery recently won its 17th international award for excellence. Named by Wine and Spirits Magazine as one of the world’s top 100 wineries for 17 years, the 30-year-old historic winery in Walla Walla Valley continues to differentiate itself in the most competitive packaged consumer goods space there is. “At the height of pandemic L’Ecole was a different winery,:” says COO Ryan Pennington. “E commerce in the wine industry…

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‘We were pot committed’

‘We were pot committed’

In Autumn 2019, restaurateur BJ Lieberman and his wife Brownwyn Haines were bursting with excitement as they left the restaurant life they knew and struck out for Columbus, Ohio. Leaving Washington, D.C. and the fine-dining restaurant scene where Lieberman had worked after culinary school, the couple had a well-planned dream to build a comfort food concept with the help of chef friends who were all-in on the idea. “We moved from Washington, D.C. in September 2019, and at the same…

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