ShareKitchen Caters to Budding Food Entrepreneurs

Cathedral City location hosts open house



Specialty caterer Lori Cohen-Sanford of Nourishfoods says ShareKitchen has helped her build her business one step at a time.

Marcia Gawecki photos

 

The former Buddy Greco’s Dinner Club has lost its zebra carpeting, but not its Rat Pack charm.

The Cathedral City location has been transformed into ShareKitchen, a nonprofit commercial kitchen-meeting-educational space for budding food entrepreneurs.

Whether business owners are opening up a restaurant, a catering business or promoting a specialty product, they can tap into ShareKitchen for its commercial kitchen, banquet facilities and business know-how.

ShareKitchen will bring its story to the public with a free Open House from 4-8 p.m. Oct. 4.

“You’ll get a chance to see our facilities and meet business owners who can tell you what it’s like to work with us,” says Angela Janus, executive director.

Dreams of a Wine Bar

ShareKitchen began because Janus had a dream of opening up a wine bar.

She became a certified sommelier in Italy, and returned to Palm Springs to discover that she needed to take business classes before she opened anything.

“I knew all about wine, but nothing about running a business,” she says.

Like most students of Chef Steve Beno at College of the Desert, Janus gained experience in catering, and soon found her niche — open houses.

As the demand grew, Janus needed commercial kitchen space, but only on a part-time basis. So she looked into renting.

“Some restaurants agreed, but were worried about their equipment,” Janus says. “Later I realized that I needed pots, pans and trays, plus my own storage space.”

She spoke with several friends in the food industry. Some were working out of their homes illegally, while others were derailed because they didn’t have a commercial kitchen at their disposal.

That’s how ShareKitchen began. Janus pitched the idea to business leaders from the desert cities, citing educational opportunities and increased jobs, and earned her nonprofit status.

“Then we found Buddy Greco’s,” Janus says. “There were broken windows and graffiti all over the place, but it was basically sound.”

Business partner Haddon Libby, and Michael Fietsam, head of client services, soon followed.

A year later, ShareKitchen has about 15 clients, including street fair vendors, small product makers and specialty caterers, like Lori Cohen-Sanford of Nourishfoods.

A Head Start

“ShareKitchen gave me the push I needed to get started,” Cohen-Sanford says. “I contain costs and build my business one step at a time.”

ShareKitchen also offers training sessions, workshops and educational programs to help new business owners go through the often-daunting process of opening a business.

PS Underground couldn’t operate its business without ShareKitchen. The traveling supper club serves sumptuous dinners at unusual locations, such as the Moorten Botanical Garden.

“I’m a part-time bartender, so we only host a dinner once a month,” says David Horgan (pictured above). “But I would like to grow the business so I can do it full-time.”

“In a nutshell, we get them started, and send them on their way,” Janus says.

Like what you're reading? Then "Like" us on Facebook and "follow" us on Twitter.

 

VIDEO: Features Chef David Horgan with narration by Michael Fietsam, head of client services.

 

 

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Desert Guide
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Robert Duvall, "Birdman" Director to Receive Palm Springs Film Festival Awards

Decorated actor Robert Duvall will receive the Icon Award and Academy Award-nominee Alejandro G. Iñárritu will be presented with the Director of the Year Award for "Birdman" at the 26th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival's annual Awards Gala on Jan. 3.

Holiday Dining Reaches New Heights at Palm Springs Aerial Tramway

If you are searching for a special dining experience over the Christmas and New Year’s holiday season, perhaps you should look up to the Peaks Restaurant atop the Palm Springs Aerial Tramway.

The Palm Springs Hotel Reflects History, Design of Yesteryear

The Palm Springs Hotel, a renovated 1950s property, is a striking mix of midcentury modern meets industrial chic with a bit of European flair. Think clean lines, ceramic tiles, and adorable Parisian inspired cafe tables.

Terry Fator Celebrates Christmas With Fantasy Springs Show

Calling himself a total 'Christmas nut', comedian and ventriloquist Terry Fator brings a holiday-themed show Dec. 20 to the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.

Frank Sinatra Jr. Helps Bring in 2015 at Riviera Palm Springs

Frank Sinatra Jr. will help New Years Eve revelers bring in 2015 when he performs at the Riviera Palm Springs featuring songs from his legendary father and Palm Springs icon, Frank Sinatra, and his own.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions + Contests

Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
Fashionista Friends

Fashionista Friends

Experience the glitz and glamour of Fashion Week El Paseo 2015.
2014/15 Best of the Best

2014/15 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
Edit ModuleShow Tags