Four Creative Ways Charlotte Chefs Recast Their Operations This Year
From subscription services to cocktail kits
Pastry chef Jossie Lukacik opened her hands-on baking classroom, Sweet Spot Studio, on Monroe Road two years ago. She shifted to online classes in March and sold take-home cookie kits throughout the spring, but she couldn’t sustain her setup without in-person baking classes. So she closed her doors in June and spent the next three months restructuring her business and the space in which it operates. Lukacik relaunched in September with mask and social-distancing rules and a knee-operated sink. She added a baking supply store to the studio and a subscription service, Cookie Club, that provides students with everything they need for online classes. sweetspotstudioclt.com
After restaurants and bars halted dine-in service last spring, Stefan Huebner and his team at Dot Dot Dot introduced a rotating menu of $25 cocktail kits. Each kit includes everything you need to make eight to 10 cocktails at home (except the alcohol). Make classics like Old Fashioneds and Mai Tais, or Dot Dot Dot’s signature “Lily Wants a Pony,” named after Huebner’s daughter. For the complete experience, order some cocktail hour bites like cheese and charcuterie boards, marinated Spanish olives, pepper mash pecans, and bourbon glazed snack mix. Place your order online and select a pick-up time Thursday through Saturday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Options change weekly, so check the website for seasonal specials. dotdotdotcharlotte.com
After Upstream closed in June, General Manager Patrick Garrivier returned to the kitchen to prepare the French and Mediterranean dishes that distinguished his previous restaurants, Aix en Provence and Le Cochon D’Or. In July, he kicked off Patrick’s Gourmet, a meal delivery service. For $29 per day, you can select three-course gourmet meals from Garrivier’s weekly menu and have them delivered to your home. The menu changes every two weeks, so if you miss a dish one week, you can enjoy it the next. Some highlights include duck confit, seared tuna salade niÇoise, and French-style cheesecake. Order on his website or Facebook page, and expect delivery between 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. the next day. patricksgourmetclt.com
The pastry chef and owner of Wentworth & Fenn introduced Thursday Thrills, a weekly flash sale of a different baked good from the Camp North End bakery. Allen announces it on social media before 10 a.m., and the price per item is always $10 or less—walk-up purchases only. Look for seasonal Bundt mini-cakes, cake by the slice, fresh bread, and cookie sandwiches. Her treats sell quickly, and once they’re gone, they’re gone. wentworthandfenn.com
Photos submitted or by Peter Taylor.