APRON, Inc. Launches Chef in a Box Initiative

Support local restaurants through this nonprofit organization

 

By Elizabeth Scinta
Photos by Dan Dry

 

APRON, Inc. launched its Chef in a Box initiative on August 5 to raise funds for food and beverage industry professionals who need emergency financial assistance.

Founded in 2011, APRON, Inc. has been helping provide emergency financial assistance for independent food and beverage industry workers in Louisville through tasting events, fundraisers and now the Chef in a Box initiative. Over the past two months, APRON, Inc. has been able to help more people than ever before thanks to the generous donations they’ve received during this time.

“At the very beginning of the pandemic, we were sitting with our regular amount of money in the bank, but we didn’t know how much money we would now need. Between the community and corporate support, we raised a quarter of a million dollars. It came as a complete surprise for us. The money just appeared. The people and corporations in Louisville are so generous, and we’re a fairly small charity, so it was astounding,” said Gary Fox, president of APRON, Inc.

Those in need of assistance can apply online through their website, aproninc.org. For those interested in volunteering with APRON, Inc., you can contact them via phone, 502.403.5683, for the opportunities available.

Every week there will be a different chef and restaurant providing the items for the “box,” which is a reusable bag provided by APRON, Inc. The “box” will include a tasting selection of the restaurant’s specialty dishes, a favorite dish, a recipe card, a gift card or promotional swag.

“Caroline Knopp and Dan Dry came up with the idea and presented it to us and we thought it was a great idea. It’s a wonderful way to fundraise and both promote and help our local restaurants since some of the money goes back to them,” said Fox.

There will only be 50 boxes available for purchase each week for $50 a box; $25 will go back to the restaurant and $25 will go to APRON, Inc. to help provide relief for independent restaurant workers.

APRON, Inc. encourages Louisvillians to support their local restaurants while tasting some of the best food local chefs have to offer.

The boxes will be available for pickup from the restaurants every Wednesday of the week, and the items featured in the box will be released on their Facebook page, Chef in a Box Lou, the Friday before. The Facebook post will also provide information on how to order a box and instructions on how to pick it up.

The first box was created by Chef Josh Moore of Volare Italian Ristorante and features a caprese salad kit including fresh farm tomatoes from his garden and a $25 gift card.

Chef Josh Moore of Volare Italian Ristorante.

Chef in a Box with caprese salad kit and $25 gift card from Volare Italian Ristorante.

Next week’s box will be created by Chef John Varanese of Varanese and River House. As of right now, he plans to include a gift card and shrimp ceviche, a dish River House is known for. “We chose this because all of the ingredients are in season and will be coming from our garden. It’s something that’s light, fresh and inspiring,” Varanese said.

Chef John Varanese or Varanese and River House.

There are chefs booked through the first week in December and a full schedule of the restaurants and chefs participating on their website, aproninc.org/chef-in-a-box.

“It’s a really innovative thing that the organization came up with during really trying times. I applaud them for thinking outside the box for coming up with what they did. Hopefully it’s really successful and people continue to support it,” Varanese said.

The Chef in a Box initiative is in memory of Chef Dean Corbett and his dedication to the local restaurant community and being one of the “founding fathers of APRON, Inc.”

Chef in a Box List

Aug. 5 – Chef Josh Moore of Volare Italian Ristorante

Aug. 12 – Chef John Varanese of Varanese and River House

Aug. 19 – Chef Allen “Smooth” Hubbard of Martini Italian Bistro

Aug. 26 – Chef Anoosh of Noosh Nosh and Anoosh Bistro

Sept. 2 – Chef Ellen Gill McCarty of Gill on the Go

Sept. 9 – Jereme McFarland of Bourbons Bistro

Sept. 16 – Chef Andrew McCabe of Bar Vetti

Sept. 23 – Chef Edward Lee

Sept. 30 – Chef Chris Williams of Four Pegs Beer Lounge

Oct. 7 – Chef Christian Garay of Lou Lou Food & Drink

Oct. 14 – Susan Hershberg of Wiltshire Pantry

Oct. 21 – Crowler Catering

Oct. 28 – Chad Coulter of Biscuit Belly St. Matthews

Nov. 4 – Chef Allen Sims of Buck’s Restaurant and Bar

Nov. 11 – Chad Coulter of Louvino Middletown/Douglass Hills

Nov. 18 – Dallas McGarity of The Fat Lamb

Nov. 25 – Thanksgiving Eve, No Chef

Dec. 2 – Chef Geoffrey Heide of Fork & Barrel 

Dec. 9 – Chef Roland Wong of Tea Station Bistro

Cloud Based

Tory Burch sleeveless blouse, $38; Elevenses jumpsuit, $38; Vintage hat, $32, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique. Sheer blouse from stylist’s personal collection.

Photographer  |  Andrea Hutchinson
Stylist  |  Miranda McDonald
Styling Assistant  |  Sarah Levitch
Models  |  Aaron T. Hunter, Daquesha Jones,  Kaelyn Lyverse

 

St. John blouse, $105; Diane von Furstenberg skirt, $52, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Vinci sweater tank, $66, available at Mamili. Vintage headband with veil, $32, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique. Belt bag from the model’s personal collection.

Danini men’s blouse, $89, available at Mamili. Liverpool blazer, $59, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Douglas Hannant pants, $38, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique. Robert Jensen tie, $155, available at Rodes For Him.

Ann Taylor blazer, price upon request, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Diane von Furstenberg top, $328, available at Rodeo Drive. Lafayette 148 pants, $38, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Vintage hat, $48, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique.

Byron suit, $895; Eton shirt, $285; Eton tie, $155; Torino Leather Co. belt, $155, available at Rodes For Him.

Boglioli wool sportcoat, $1,095; Eton printed shirt, $270; S.M.N Studio jeans, $288; Torino Leather Co. belt, $135; Edward Armah lapel flower, $45, available at Rodes For Him. Tie from stylist’s personal collection. Vintage Pizitz black hat, $32, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique.

 

Beauty Reboot

Reflecting on how Coronavirus changed the local beauty industry

 

By Elizabeth Scinta

 

For three months, Louisvillians’ beauty routines halted; their hair grew long, their weekly blowouts were canceled and they adapted to the new normal. Not only were the clients thrown off by the sudden change, but salons across town closed their doors and quarantined away from their salon families for an undetermined amount of time. “One day you’re open and have 50 plus employees in here with over a hundred guests, and the next the parking lot is empty. It’s like flipping a light switch,” said Kelli Campbell, owner of Joseph’s Salon. Although the inside of her salon had to close, Campbell did not let that stop her from continuing business. Joseph’s Salon did curbside orders, over the phone consultations and assisted their employees in whatever way they needed during the unprecedented time. “We were open for the customers because we wanted to stay connected to them as much as we could,” said Campbell.

Clique Boutique was able to continue their online sales from their skincare line, Clique Beauty, during quarantine which helped them maintain their retail sales, according to Janna Flowers, owner of Clique Boutique. They also switched their Instagram, @cliquebeautyboutique, to be more educational featuring posts with how-tos and information on the best products for your skin type. “We tried to focus on educating and not selling people stuff because people were already feeling nervous about all the changes happening in their life. We tried to do anything for the community that came at no cost to them,” Flowers said.

Drybar employees participated in Zoom calls to hold on to their tight-knit relationship and brainstorm new ideas and products for the salon. “There were 28 staff members that had no idea when we were going to reopen. We’re one big happy family, so we did Zoom calls to stay engaged and help each other with the unemployment issue,” said Mandy Vine, an operating partner of Drybar.

Both of these salons used their time in quarantine to stay connected with clients and employees, but also began to plan how they would be able to open safely when Gov. Andy Beshear allowed it. Bennie Pollard, owner of NOVA Salon, used the time to look towards the future and how they can continue to improve his salon. “It was a weird time, a sad time and ironically a productive time. Sometimes when you’re super busy, it’s hard to sit still and reflect. But we were allowed that time to look at our processes and systems,” Pollard said.

For Lindsey Pincus and Allie Wood, co-owners of Cat & Lou Salon, this time was filled with a lot of anxiety, wondering if their new salon would get the chance to open. Scheduled to open April 1, their plans were halted when the city shut down. “We were a little behind to open in the first place, and it all slowed down because the contractors couldn’t all work at the same time [during quarantine]. It did give us time to prepare [for the opening], but for the most part, it slowed us way down,” Pincus said. When Gov. Beshear allowed salons to reopen on May 25, Pincus and Wood eagerly opened the doors to Cat & Lou Salon for the first time. “We were anxious about making sure we followed the regulations with COVID and it being a new business, but we are so excited to be in our space and have it the way we wanted. Our salon was already spread out, so hopefully, our clients feel comfortable and safe,” Pincus said.

Salons in Louisville also had to adjust the layout of their spaces and how a typical day would run due to the new regulations. This includes mapping out six feet of distance between customers, implementing a texting system instead of a waiting room, installing sanitization stations around the salon and providing face masks for customers, according to the Healthy at Work requirements.

Drybar also opened on May 25 with new safety procedures and a smaller capacity of 50% mandated by Gov. Beshear. Vine was happy with the busyness of the first day, even though business was being run a lot differently. Vine requires all clients and staff to wear a mask during appointments, get temperature checks at the door and they deep clean appliances and the space between every client. “We’ve got an abundance of supplies because I’m that kind of person, so we’re ready. We would not have opened if we didn’t have everything from hand sanitizer to masks for clients to a touchless thermometer,” Vine said.

Campbell waited to open Joseph’s Salon until May 27 to prepare her team for what a new normal workday would be like. According to Campbell, their priority is safety, so although there are new restrictions, Joseph’s Salon is doing the best they can to keep everyone safe. “The amount time it has taken to be somewhat successful and safe is exhausting, not to mention expensive,” said Campbell.

It’s difficult for the salons to adjust to the new regulations, but it’s also difficult for their clients. Three months without pampering can make many clients eager to get an appointment as soon as the salons reopened. With this mindset, all five salons had every appointment filled for their first day back. Although some clients are still a bit apprehensive to go out in public, most of NOVA Salon’s clients were happy to be back in the chair, according to Pollard.  “A large portion of our business is hair color. We were touching up lots of roots those first few weeks,” Pollard said. NOVA Salon has experienced a large growth in new clientele since reopening, according to Pollard. He’s hoping to grow his team and add five to six new hairstylists in the next six to eight months.

With Cat & Lou being a new salon, Pincus and Wood were eager to see how their clients felt about the new space in general. “Some clients have wanted to wait and ask what protocols we’re taking, and some are so excited to see you and get their hair done that they’re okay with wearing the masks and the new protocols,” Pincus said.

Flowers said the hardest thing about reopening Clique Boutique has been trying to rekindle the relationships they had formed with their clients before quarantine happened. The technicians have to be cautious about navigating their client’s feelings and giving them that same friendship they had before the new guidelines. Drybar, Cat & Lou, Clique Boutique, NOVA Salon and Joseph’s Salon said their clients’ general emotions are excited to be back in the chair getting a treatment they love so much. Being able to go back to their routine of appointments is helping them to feel like themselves again during an uncertain time. “Blowouts create happiness and confidence. Our goals are to create beautiful blowouts and happy people,” Vine said.

Some clients have taken the three-month hiatus as a chance to try something new with their hair completely, according to Pincus. Some are okay with keeping the grey in their hair because they’ve become used to it; others are ready to go back to the hairstyle they’ve always had. “At the end of the day, the hairdressing and beauty industry for a lot of folks hasn’t been taken that seriously. But hairdressers are extremely important, and it took this terrible event for people to notice this,” said Pollard.

Designing Your Dream Home

A backstage look into Homearama’s “Southern Comfort” home

 

By Shirelle Williams
Photos by
Kathryn Harrington

 

Tammy Randall.

Prospect’s Norton Commons is a residential favorite offering a charming neighborhood, uniquely built luxury homes and a communal environment. Its continuous innovation in development and landscaping attracts many, including this year’s Homearama. While the anticipated annual event is only occurring virtually this year, interested parties can still view all participating homes online. One competing home gained spotlight on “My Southern Home,” a locally televised show for Louisville, KY and Nashville, TN, hosted by Executive Producer Kimberly Greenwell.The Voice-Tribune had the chance to tour the home, go behind-the-scenes on set with Greenwell and spoke with the building team, Mason Construction and designers LL&A Interior Design about the home they are calling “Southern Comfort.”

Kyle Haskins, John Barber and Kimberly Greenwell.

This traditional build complemented with Southern charm is 3,720 square feet with three-stories and four bedrooms and bathrooms. Guests are greeted by a true Southern staple; a deep wraparound front porch with ceiling fans throughout. The interior brings together multiple design concepts creating an open, bright and warm home feel. “It’s an eclectic mix of traditional and Southern styles, with a little bit of Tommy Bahama flavor,” said Tammy Randall, lead interior designer at LL&A Interior Design. “This house is fun and unique because it was already sold from the beginning. We were given parameters by the owners for what we could do and luckily our taste and the homeowner’s blended perfectly together,” said Randall.

Beyond the front door is an open floor plan with ceilings reaching 10 feet high, with double brick archways that are lightly brushed white. “The homeowners wanted the openness of a design from a previous Homearama event in Norton Commons, but they wanted the rooms to be more defined and the layout changed. We accomplished this by separating the kitchen and dining room from the great room by building the brick archways. The archways almost make you feel like you’re walking through an Italian villa,” says Owner of Mason Construction, Dan Perkins. Natural light pours into the space as French doors and a bay window are just off the rounded dining area. In the great room, there are built-in window seats and lit glass hutches on either side of the fireplace made from the same brick as the archways. There are also multiple textures in the home, from its wallpaper accents to the plants placed throughout. “Plants and greenery breathe air into a space. It’s also very Southern and creates a clean, crisp and natural feeling to a room,” said Randall. Other amenities of this home include a study and a mudroom on the main floor, and a loft converted to a cozy living space on the third floor.

The team behind “Southern Comfort” believes that multifunctionality is important and attainable for any home. This is especially evident in the home’s multifunctional basement and main floor study. The basement is equipped with a home theater including a projector, a large screen and two bars to entertain guests.  As an additional feature for socializing and relaxing, the bar even offers adjustable seating. “A unique feature is the second bar between the two columns that you can turn to view the projector screen,” said Perkins. Upstairs on the main floor, the functionality continues in the homeowner’s study. “The owner is a writer, so she requested a quiet space where she could go and work,” said Randall. The team at LL&A Interior Design kept details in mind when bringing this room together. “The study has glass walls that also function as sliding doors, a quirky twist with a vinyl wall covering made from old newspapers and built-in bookshelves that she can fill completely with her collection of books.”

Creating your dream home is something anyone can achieve is a recurring message that Greenwell teaches her audience on her show, “My Southern Home.” Greenwell said, “I’m really passionate about helping homeowners with their dream home, no matter what that dream home is.” She feels fortunate to be able to marry her education in broadcast journalism and brief experience in marketing to home building, design and renovation today. Her career in home tours and television production started with the Building Industry Association of Greater Louisville as the former host of “Your Kentuckiana Home.” She is now thrilled to educate viewers through the shows “My Southern Home” and “Behind the Build” on the best contractors, builders, tips and tricks to create the perfect home for you.

Greenwell also encourages homeowners to transform their small spaces to meet their dream home goals. “Our main goal is to educate and inspire. We don’t want people to be afraid of their homes, you just have to decide what you want your house to look like. That’s why we have people on the show who are going to help you create that desired space,”  said Greenwell. Greenwell shared that she still lives in her first condo purchase from her twenties. “It’s only 1,000 square feet with a small patio that I landscaped and added a love seat, flowers and a wind chime my grandmother gave me. It’s all about making it your own space and that’s what I did. That’s what my show “My Southern Home” is all about; helping people make their space their own by connecting them with the right contractors to help them do it.” According to Greenwell, all sizes and design features can provide inspiration to transform or create a space. “The study in the Homearama home is average in size compared to most homes, but inspiration can be found in the details; from its built-in bookshelves to the beautiful hooks in the cabinets to the wallpaper. You don’t always need a large space to make your home beautiful.”

The Southern Comfort home is available to view virtually at homearama.com. To see Kimberly Greenwell in action, you can watch “My Southern Home” on Sundays at 10 a.m. on the WBKI-CW 58 in Louisville, KY and Saturdays at 10 a.m. on MYTV 30 in Nashville, TN.

A Time to Renew

Barrett Freibert.

How to practice self-renewal in the age of uncertainty

 

By Barrett Freibert
Photos by Andrea Hutchinson

 

“When you come to the edge of all the light you’ve known and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: you’ll have something solid to stand on, or you’ll be taught to fly.”

— Patrick Overton

Renaissance is a French word for “rebirth.” It marked a passionate period of artistic, economic and cultural “renewal” following the Middle Ages — a time of darkness, which consisted of the bubonic plague, unrest and little growth. Sound familiar?

With the COVID-19 pandemic, violence and major unrest across the globe, it feels as if we are living in modern day medieval times. The good news is we can choose to practice self-renewal and grow, even when the future is thick with fog.

As the world re-opens and returns to pre-quarantine routines, this is the perfect time to marinate on how you would like to return to the world post-COVID. You may ask yourself, what have these dark times taught me? What does my ideal renewal look like? How can I take something old and make it new? 

Renew means “to restore to freshness or vigor. To begin again.” The first thing I associate renewal with is my family log cabin, Old Pond Place. Thirty-one years ago, my father had a dream to build a log home completely from salvaged wood and stone. My parents visited old abandoned cabins across Kentucky and what many saw as dilapidated homes, my father saw as an opportunity to practice renewal.

Growing up at the cabin, my brother Bart and I would race to the bottom of the lake to pick up fistfuls of muck on summer dares. The cabin taught me that silence says more than words themselves; that listening to my breath and birds’ songs is a breath of fresh air; that watching the sunset bleed cotton candy colors between tree branches is sweeter than Derby Pie.

The simple and free moments have had the biggest impact on my sense of vigor in this age of uncertainty. Here are seven tools to practice self-renewal, get clear on what you do want and get comfortable sitting in the discomfort of the unknown.

1. Meditation

This is the simplest, most effective tool I know to calm the mind and ground yourself in the present, which is where joy lives. Meditation is imperative in nebulous times. Research now shows that the benefits of meditation are endless. It alleviates anxiety and stress, promotes stronger memory, focus and creativity, promotes a sense of peacefulness, deepens sleeps and cultivates joy.

Many friends and clients have told me, “I don’t meditate because I am not good at it. I have too many thoughts.” But having thoughts is being human and also part of meditation.  If you are new to meditation, there are many free apps available. Insight Timer and Calm are two of my favorites.

Abica, owner of YOGAST8 yoga studio in Louisville, says her meditation practice gives her a sense of renewal in these dark times. “Any time I sit down and meditate, there is a sense of renewal. I feel revived. We have to charge our phone every night or it will die. And we have to recharge ourselves too or we will stop running. In the chaos of watching the world crumble and having zero control of it is terrifying. Meditation or getting on the yoga mat is a calming reset. You can take the chaos in the world and find your calm. You can’t control all these big things, but you can control the little things. In understanding that power, there is a renewal and less worry.”

2. Holy Pause

Before you roll out of bed and beeline to your caffeine fix, pause and scan your body. Notice, do you feel refreshed or tired? Choose your waking thoughts wisely as they set the stage for the rest of the day.

Throughout the day, check-in with yourself and take 90-second pauses. Notice, is my breathing shallow or deep? Am I shrugging my shoulders or furrowing my brows? What emotions are bubbling under the surface? 

Like meditation, a holy pause or check-in also grounds us in the present, which is where joy and creativity live. In Western Culture, we are conditioned to believe that humans can embody the energizer bunny with one more cup of coffee. But research shows that taking small breaks to check in with yourself not only promotes productivity, it also cultivates a deeper relationship with ourselves.

When I take my pauses, I like to imagine myself as a little girl. This helps to cultivate compassion for myself. I wouldn’t tell a little girl who is tired to “push through” or “drink an energy drink!” I would suggest a nap or lying down to read.

3. Time Blocks

Time flies, especially since quarantine. If we are not intentional with our time, it sinks like quicksand. Bart Freibert, co-founder of Reign Together, a CBD skincare company, says creating time blocks helps him stay sane and productive. “Time blocking is a form of scheduling, where every hour is accounted for. It’s a way for me to stay on track to create a productive and fulfilled day. It’s important for my sense of sanity. During quarantine, I started doing time blocks, because the days fly by. I am going to get distracted at home because my routine is disrupted. When I have scheduled time blocks the night before, the next morning I get out of bed and don’t snooze because I know what I am doing.”

Planning our days helps us to feel renewed and accomplished. These little milestones make the big ones seem in reach, which is imperative in these strange times.

4. Mindful Movement

Exercise is not just about looking good, it’s about feeling good. And who doesn’t want to feel better when the world is in mayhem? Kelly McGonigal, health psychologist, says exercise, “sensitizes your brain to pleasure. It teaches your brain to expect things to be pleasurable and enhances your brain’s capacity to enjoy everything from good food to a beautiful sunset, to interactions with your kids or friends. It makes everything that feels good feel better.”

Abica reflects this sentiment when she said yoga helped her feel renewed mentally during the pandemic, “it’s not as much the physicality of yoga, but the mental side of yoga that was forced to come out [in quarantine]. The softer side of yoga, like breathing and stretching, was so helpful to clean out my muscles and clear out my mind.”

I grew up a competitive swimmer. After I quit, my fitness decreased. So I began exercising daily because I wanted a beautiful body. What kept me committed and then inspired me to make a career out of fitness was not the physical aspect, but the mental one. That every time I showed up I felt lucid, joyful and courageous.

5 . Reflect to Renew

In order to know where to focus, we must know what we want and reflect — to learn from our mistakes and our successes. Take a holy pause, feel, reflect and renew intention.

Baba Serikali, founder of Nu Chapter Tai Chi Chuan & Qi Gong Institute says, “Especially with the pandemic, people are more mindful of where they go, who they are with, what is working and what isn’t. It’s called adapting. Success comes through our habits and our habits are what make us go forward. Having the ability to change, our mission is not to change the world, but to change ourselves.”

In order to change ourselves, we must get quiet and reflect to move forward with purpose. One of the best places to reflect or simply be is outdoors.

6. Spend Time in Nature

During challenging times, nature always offers me peace and clarity. At the cabin, I love to lie on our wooden porch and gaze up at green foliage that sparkles in the sunlight. Many times I see red-tailed hawks soar above me and am reminded to keep a bird’s eye view or to see the big picture. Watching baby buds bloom in spring and burst in summer reminds me you cannot rush a good thing. Watching the orange, yellow and red leaves fall in autumn reminds me that the only constant is change.

Bart Freibert says, “Louisville has amazing trees throughout the city. There are many different kinds of trees and beautiful canopies. Take time to appreciate them. It’s summer and the leaves are out and the trees are renewed.”

Science now shows that spending time outside expedites healing, reduces stress, improves cognitive ability and renews us with vigor. So leave your phone inside, take a holy pause and commune with nature. Nature has so much to say. And in silence, answers appear.

7. Back to Basics

Dr. Andrew Bourne of Bourne Chiropractic says he associates renewal with this quote, “‘Mastery is basics at their finest.’ Let’s get back to the basics. We need to get back to nature, creativity and whole foods. This shut down gave me a lot of time to do things that gave me joy that I had neglected. Got me back to my grassroots.”

Renew yourself and your perspective by getting back to the basics. Try a healthy new recipe from the internet and play your favorite music while cooking and singing along. Go on a hike and make friends with each tree, plant and bird you see. Take a pause to see how plants change color in dusk’s light. Slow down enough to notice how much nature has to say without using one word.

Louisville Legend Bids “Adieu”

Kathy Cary retires from her 46 year culinary career

 

By Liz Bingham
Photo by Andrea Hutchinson

 

After nearly half a century of cooking in Louisville, being the first Kentuckian nominated for Best Chef Southeast six times by the James Beard Award and leading the local “farm-to-table” movement, culinary legend Kathy Cary, owner and head chef of Lilly’s Bistro and La Peche, is hanging up her chef’s coat and retiring from her lifelong career. “The whole thing was a very hard decision, very hard,” said Cary. “But I keep telling myself I know I’ve done the right thing for me. After 46 years of cooking in Louisville, it’s been great, Louisville’s been great to me, but it’s time for me to do something else.”

Cary attributes her initial interest in cooking to growing up on a working farm surrounded by a variety of fresh ingredients. From an early age, she learned to care for and utilize chickens, beef, fresh fruits and vegetables, a skill she carried throughout her career. In middle school at Louisville Collegiate School, Cary and her sister made fudge sauce from her grandmother’s recipe to sell at recess, “before the principal shut us down,” said Cary. In high school, she loved reading Gourmet magazine, poring over the photos and recipes. “That’s when Gourmet was high-end cuisine with great stories, great writers and beautiful pictures.” At that time her mother was taking cooking classes from local celebrity chef and author of “The Heritage of Southern Cooking,” Camille Glenn, and frequently hosted parties at their home. Cary developed a fondness for watching and learning from the caterers, amazed by what they could create and was inspired to teach a cooking class on Saturday mornings for several students in her class. “I loved it,” said Cary. “We made things like quiche and homemade mayonnaise that were easy to make and just delicious.” When she and her family traveled, she was always interested to see the various menus and diversity of what each new place had to offer.

After graduating high school from Collegiate, Cary decided to take a year off and go to Washington, D.C. to join a friend. While working at a local boutique, she saw an ad in the Georgetown paper for Cordon Bleu cooking classes taught by a woman named Barton Connett. Cary called to inquire about the classes, and upon learning their high cost, Connett invited Cary to her home and offered her a job as a cooking assistant, and if she accepted, she would reduce her tuition to half the cost. Cary accepted her offer and worked under Connett for the next year, and because Connett was married to a man who worked in international foreign affairs, many of the women taking Connett’s cooking classes were wives of foreign diplomats who had a need for catering. Cary recognized this need and decided she would start catering for the women in the classes, using the recipes she learned under the instruction of Connett. Cary says, “I did parties where Tom Brockaw and Ed Bradley were there.” When the movie “All the President’s Men” starring Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman was being filmed in D.C., Cary befriended Shirlee Fonda, wife to Academy Award winning actor Henry Fonda, who was considered for a role in the film. When her catering business took off at the young age of 19 thanks to her newfound social connections, Cary decided that her next step was to gain restaurant experience. She was hired at an upscale restaurant in D.C. called “The Big Cheese,” where she says American politician Henry Kissinger had his wedding reception. “I was a line chef and learned really quickly,” said Cary. “When you throw yourself on the line, you have to throw yourself in the fire and see if you survive, and I survived.” During this time, Cary was also a part-time student at George Washington University.

Not long after, Cary went home to Louisville for a visit where she met her now husband of 44 years, Will Cary, and said, “basically I fell in love with Will and decided to move home.” At the time, Will was working downtown in the Weissinger-Gaulbert building where he learned that a new restaurant called The Fig Tree would be opening. Cary was introduced to the owners and did an auditioning dinner and was hired on the spot. Cary said, “At that time in 1974, there weren’t a lot of young women chefs around.” At the age of 21 in her new role, Cary was in charge of changing the lunch and dinner menus, hiring an entire front of house and kitchen staff and had to earn the respect of suppliers. “As a 21-year-old gal, I didn’t really know what I was doing. I was a caterer, but I didn’t know how to manage an entire restaurant.” After a few minor staffing issues, the restaurant was a success, featuring French and Southern inspired cuisine. “A lot of people from the Courier-Journal and the Brown Theater would dine with us. We had a real captive crowd. It was hopping,” said Cary. After a year of working hard at The Fig Tree, she decided it was time to move on and open her own restaurant. “I said to Will, ‘I’m never working in a restaurant ever again unless I own it.’ It’s just too hard.”

After leaving The Fig Tree, Cary took a hiatus from cooking and was the fashion director at Stewart’s Department Store in Louisville for several years. During her time at Stewart’s, Cary got back into catering and started a company called Creative Cuisine with a friend once they both left Stewart’s to cater full-time. She moved the operation to her and Will’s Highlands apartment kitchen which she quickly learned was not sustainable. Will then found her a place in 1974 that was 800 square feet to house her new and very successful catering business. When it came time to rename the new space for her gourmet-to-go, Cary said, “No one thought I should call it La Peche because they said no one is going to understand French and they’re not going to get it. And I said, ‘Tough! The peach is the most perfect fruit with its color, texture and flavor. I’m calling it La Peche.’ Sure enough, people did start to understand it.” So on October 13, 1974, Cary opened the doors of La Peche.

In 1975, Katherine Nash ladles some tomato soup into a blender. | Photo by Robert Steinau, the Courier-Journal.

Approximately ten years later when Cary was pregnant with her first child, Lilly, she decided it was time to expand and moved into the space where Lilly’s Bistro currently resides. Soon after, Cary purchased the entire building to house the bakery, offices for her business, La Peche and the Lilly’s Bistro dining room by 1989 when her second child, Will, was born. La Peche was doing so well in the Highlands location, Cary opened a second East End location in the Holiday Manor Shopping Center where it thrived for over a decade. Cary then briefly opened La Peche Express on Longest Avenue behind Carmichael’s Bookstore that was open for five years. She began to feel like she was spread too thin, and closed all locations other than those located in the original building at 1147 Bardstown Road. In 2006, Cary brought her story full circle and had both Lilly’s and La Peche in the same building once again. “I learned that sometimes growing and expanding isn’t always all that great. Sometimes it’s better to stay put. This building has been a great spot for us and is really conveniently located,” said Cary. She continued, “It’s been a great time here, with so many loyal customers, great friends and great staff. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot from my staff. When you work in the kitchen with people day in and day out, you get to know them pretty well. But now it’s time to take care of me.”

When asked about her secret to success, Cary said, “A strong work ethic and a sense of pride in what we did is why we survived for 43 years. Your name is on what you create, so when you cater a party, it’s your food that you and your staff make that people remember. I held high standards and word of mouth is the best method of advertising. I also like to think we always stood for quality food, fresh ingredients and supported local farmers as much as we could.” Cary said it’s also important to designate time when you’re not working, no matter how brief. “Will and I made a rule that I wasn’t allowed to talk about work at home on Sundays so we could take a break from it.”

Being in the business for nearly five decades, Cary said, “The most rewarding part of my job is feeding people and seeing people happy with the food you create, that’s why I got started.” Cary said people always came back because they felt a sense of place at Lilly’s and had many fond memories there, like it was their own dining room. Guests also enjoyed the various food and wine pairings Cary offered. “And that takes work,” said Cary. “It takes work with other chefs, creativity and always trying to come up with new ideas. We were big on changing the menu frequently and even the decor every four years so it was fresh. Even people who were regulars knew it wouldn’t always be the same.” Cary also traveled frequently and enjoyed incorporating her culinary experiences abroad into the menu at Lilly’s. “The more I traveled, I would bring ideas that inspired me and guests would look forward to it.”

Reflecting on the past 46 years and what the future holds, Cary said “The great thing about being a chef is you’re always learning and experimenting. It doesn’t stop, you don’t ever know it all. I can’t wait to start cooking for me and Will and to do things I haven’t done in a while because often you don’t have time when you’re working 24/7 in a restaurant.” Cary plans to start hosting small dinner parties at her house once it is safe to do so. “I’m going to miss the social part of the restaurant scene, all the people I see every day. I’ve told a lot of our friends and customers, ‘Don’t worry, I’ll have you over to our house! We’ll sit outside, four to six people and we’ll be fine. I can cook for small crowds and I can cook for 500 people, so I know I can cook for a small group at home and keep exploring new ideas for things I’d like to make that I haven’t done in a while.”

Cary’s advice for the next generation of aspiring local chefs is, “Have a real passion for cooking and don’t go into it thinking you’re going to make a lot of money. Your passion must be stronger than your desire to make money. You need to be willing to work really hard and to learn the many skills needed to open and own a restaurant — cooking, prepping, baking, cleaning, maintenance — know all the aspects of it and try to be a leader who can teach people. And be patient and slowly grow. Don’t start with a menu that has too many things on it and is overwhelming. Start slowly and build up your success so people have trust and faith in you and that you’re making something amazing. Build on that.” Cary encourages all current and future chefs to use as many locally grown ingredients as possible. “And try to do things seasonally so it’s more interesting for the guests,” said Cary. “It’s great for the local farmers and it’s great for the staff because, as you change up the menu, they learn too.”

The building where Lilly’s Bistro currently resides is for sale and the Cary’s have already been in talks with a few interested parties. “We put 43 years of love into this building and have taken care of it really well,” said Cary. “I would hope that, for the community, someone buys it and keeps it a nice restaurant and makes it something we would respect. It’s a great neighborhood restaurant and we’d like to keep it that way.”

Betting on Derby

Sheridan: Catherine Malandrino dress, $59, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Fascinator, price upon request, available at Carol Bader Design. Gold hoops available at Kathy’s Shoppe, price upon request.
Jasmine: Polka dot dress, $88, available at Von Maur. Vintage Forme pillbox hat, price upon request, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Lele Sadoughi pearl earrings, $135, available at Rodes For Her.
Izzy: Milly dress, $99, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Couture striped fascinator, $590, available at Carol Bader Design. Lele Sadoughi pearl earrings, price upon request, available at Rodes For Her.

Photographer | Andrea Hutchinson
Stylist | Liz Bingham
Styling Assistant  | Mariah kline
Hair and Makeup | NOVA salon
Models | Jasmine Bennett, Claudia Coffey, Sheridan Gates, Izzy Grass, Matt Jamie
Location | Kentucky Derby Museum

 

Ralph Lauren dress, $295, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique. Hermès scarf, price upon request, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Yuzefi purse, $475, available at Rodes For Her. Jewelry available at Merkley Kendrick Jewelers, prices upon request.

Yoana Baraschi jacket, $72; Top and pants set, price upon request, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Stereo clutch, price upon request, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique. Attitudes by Angie “Emma” fascinator, $750. Jewelry available at Merkley Kendrick Jewelers, prices upon request. Shoes from model’s personal collection.

Carlisle Collection suede top, $59, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Lilly Pulitzer lace pantsuit, $238, available at The Peppermint Palm. Gucci purse, $1,129, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Woven fascinator, price upon request, available at Forme Millinery. Jewelry provided by Merkley Kendrick Jewelers, prices upon request. Jimmy Choo heels, $198, available at Stella’s Resale Boutique.

Matt: Byron jacket, price upon request; Eton shirt and tie, prices upon request; PT trousers, $445, available at Rodes For Him. Cole Haan shoes, price upon request, available at Von Maur. Watch from model’s personal collection.
Claudia: Herve Leger top, $849; Tulle skirt, price upon request, available at Belle Monde Boutique. Fascinator, $67, available by request from Tiffany Woodard. Jewelry from Merkley Kendrick Jewelers, prices upon request. Blue metallic clutch, price upon request, available at Rodes For Her.

Outfits provided by Kiddo Boutique, prices upon request.

Essentiel dress, $515, available at Rodeo Drive. Forme Millinery fascinator, $575, available at Forme Millinery. Feather purse, price upon request, available at Mamili. Jewelry available at Genesis Diamonds, prices upon request.

PatBO top, $375; PatBO skirt, $595, available at Rodeo Drive. Fascinator, available by request from Tiffany Woodard. Basket purse, $68, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Lele Sadoughi pearl hoop earrings, price upon request, available at Rodes For Her. Shoes from model’s personal collection.

Essentiel dress, $346, available at Rodeo Drive. Carol Bader fascinator, price upon request. Teal purse, price upon request, available at Rodes For Her. Jewelry available at Genesis Diamonds, prices upon request. Shoes from model’s personal collection.

Claudia: Rachel Zoe jacket, $295; Rachel Zoe pants, $245, available at Rodeo Drive. Coach pumps, $32, available at Sassy Fox Upscale Consignment. Gucci purse, $1,790 available at Rodes For Her. Forme Millinery feather headband, $460, available at Forme Millinery. Jewelry available at Genesis Diamonds, prices upon request.
Matt: Jack Victor blazer, price upon request; Ted Baker shirt, $120; Southern Tide tie, $79.50; Cole Haan shoes, price upon request, available at Von Maur. PT trousers, $445, available at Rodes For Him. Watch available at Genesis Diamonds, price upon request.

Outdoor Dining Reopens

Amy Higgins, Brenda Apple and Allison Cosat at Brasserie Provence.

Photos by Andrea Hutchinson
and
Kathryn Harrington

 

As restaurants begin to reopen for the first time since the onset of COVID-19, guests eager to leave their kitchens and experience the pleasure of dining have started to venture out to various outdoor patios on these warm Kentucky summer nights. Among the restaurants with patios open for guests are Brasserie Provence, Equus Restaurant & Jack’s Lounge, Grassa Gramma, Gustavo’s Mexican Grill, Le Moo, Lou Lou Food + Drink, Mayan Café, Porcini, River House, Seviche, Varanese and Volare Italian Ristorante, all of which you will see pictured here.

Letter from the Editor

Liz Bingham at Cat & Lou Salon. Dress available at Rodeo Drive. Shoes available at Rodes For Her.

August has been a month of change, of rebirth and of anticipation. Our daily routines have started to go back to normal (somewhat), restaurants and stores are opening and, of course, there’s the most asked question in Louisville right now, “Will Derby happen?” We have a new Health section writer this month, Lisa Groft, from Baptist Health/Milestone Wellness Center, who offers advice on ways to get back into a “new normal” routine. We’ve brought back our society pages for the first time since March that feature locals dining on restaurant patios around town. We also decided to include the fashion editorial we originally planned for our April Derby issue, before Derby was rescheduled. We aptly named it “Betting on Derby,” because the decision to run a Derby-themed fashion editorial when we’re unsure whether or not Derby will happen is definitely a risk. So, if you’re reading this now and Derby has been canceled since this has been printed, my apologies, we lost the bet, but I hope you enjoy the fashion nonetheless!

Speaking of fashion and anticipation, another highly anticipated spring event that did not take place is KMAC Couture. Instead of their typical live runway show, the designs will be presented in a video that The Voice got an exclusive, behind-the-scenes look at the development of that you will find on the pages of this issue. We also have a feature on a new initiative focused on improving Louisville’s West End called Grow West, one on how our local beauty industry has been affected by the pandemic, a newly designed Norton Commons home and location for the tv show “My Southern Home,” beautifully photographed by Voice Staff Photographer, Kathryn Harrington, a Q&A with legendary hat maker, Angie Schultz and an article on the culinary career of Kathy Cary and her recent retirement.

The August issue also includes the regular columns by Liz Gastiger and Kevin that describes the significance of farmers’ markets, Steve Humphrey’s second article on time, and new contributing writer, Barrett Freibert, who comments on her recent Renaissance of self and how others can achieve this renewal. I took a step back from fashion this month which enabled local stylist, Miranda McDonald, and Voice Staff Photographer, Andrea Hutchinson, to run wild with their creative talents that delivered a stunning, one-of-a-kind fashion editorial.

My goal for this issue was to provide stories, information and visuals that will hopefully inspire a rebirth in each of you and will help keep us all optimistic about the future no matter what the world throws at us next.

Sincerely yours,

Liz Bingham

Editor in Chief

Letter from the Publisher

Photo by J. Edward Brown.
Chapeau by Angie Schultz, Attitudes by Angie.

Welcome to the August issue of The Voice. Our editorial team works diligently to discover innovative content to capture your interest and keep you engaged with what’s happening in and around our community. This month, we focused on the reopening of businesses and refer to this as our Renaissance issue, a word first used and defined by one of France’s greatest 19th-century historians, Jules Michelet. Renaissance means rebirth in Old French, from “re” meaning “back or again” and “naissance” meaning “birth.” I recently spoke with Erica McDowell, owner of SKYN Lounge Boutique Spa, about the Renaissance and relocation of her business that began in March when the pandemic was escalating rapidly. Erica said of the experience, “We are so blessed to have been able to re-open. During the shutdown, it gave me some time to re-group, re-structure and come back stronger than ever. Of course, we are doing our part by sanitizing, cleaning constantly, wearing masks and following all the mandates. Our clients have been with us for a long time and they were ready to visit us again and receive some much-needed pampering. The new location offers a serene environment where you can escape from the world for a while.”

My gratitude goes out to our loyal supporters and advertisers that continue to contribute to The Voice month after month. Without you, we could not do what we do so well. From the entire team at The Voice-Tribune, THANK YOU.

Truly yours,

Janice

Publisher

Grow West Movement

Katie Lee Jones of Grow West with Apollo.

Uplifting Black Louisville with business mentoring, fresh produce and domestic needs

 

By Sarah Levitch
Photos by Andrea Hutchinson

 

It all started when the Kroger in the West End closed. Fueled by a passion to help and a bit of rage, Demi Gardner, a West End native, and Katie Lee Jones joined forces to begin collecting dry goods and donations to provide food to the neighborhoods in need of resources. Without setting intentions to, their grassroots efforts evolved in June from Gardner and her boyfriend hauling food from Sam’s Club and distributing directly to approximately 100 volunteers. The volunteers met every Monday to pick up fresh produce bought with donations from Rainbow Blossom, to organize the produce into bundles at the Please & Thank You in Portland and then distribute the bundles at various locations in the West End.

After I volunteered one Monday and expressed interest in writing an article, Jones buoyantly expressed to me that there was much more to the Grow West movement than providing fresh produce. Gardner and Jones have also been collecting clothes. Partnering with the Laundry Basket to launder the clothes before distribution, Jones spoke of their plans. “We’ll do a back to school event with the YMCA. After that, we’ll take monthly donations and have events around wardrobe sharing instead of drop-offs.”

Lastly, Jones described her relationship with five local Black-owned businesses. Working for 18 years as a multi-faceted stylist, producer and artist, Jones is “helping build structural integrity, gathering the moving pieces and helping them make a plan for the future.” Whether mentoring professionally or personally, Jones insisted I speak to the following five business owners as their missions and efforts were just as important, if not more, than her own.

Demi Gardner of Shinobi Pictures.

Demi Gardner is a recent graduate of Western Kentucky University. Growing up in the West End, Gardner developed a love for her neighborhood, as well as documentaries and films. After making short documentaries on the West End when in high school, Gardner pursued a degree in film. She graduated in May and established her production company Shinobi Pictures, a homage to her granny, in June. “It’s always been my dream, and I thought I would do it when I’m 40. One of my film professors said just do it, which sounds like a Nike commercial, and it’s the silliest thing but it’s true,” Gardner said. With a mission “to uplift and cultivate a creative voice to those who have been silenced,” and a go-getter attitude, Shinobi Pictures is headed towards a bright, expansive future.

DeAnna Coles of Melodic Elements.

DeAnna Coles is a one woman show behind Melodic Elements, a natural beauty and body products line “to help everyone embrace their natural life flow.” Coles remarked that the business “fell into her lap” six years ago after creating her own natural deodorant and sharing a Facebook post about it. With enough success to keep going and a great passion for making natural products, Melodic Elements evolved from deodorant to sugar scrubs, soaps, body butters, body and hair oils and a men’s beard grooming line. Coles desires to expand even further by first getting her products “shelf-ready” to put in local salons and boutiques. After solidifying a presence in Louisville, Coles will relocate and possibly procure a space for storage and manufacturing. An advocate for networking and open-mindedness, Coles hopes her business can help educate other small businesses.

“Soul” or Kisha Lea of SoulDoll.

Soul, as she prefers to be called, or formally, Kisha Lea, is a Milwaukee native, who entered the Louisville scene with her one-of-a-kind, funky and colorful designs and a passion for clothes and energies that lead her to create SoulDoll. Despite 20 years of experience, Soul said that in moving to Louisville, “I felt more courageous. I took risks that I wasn’t taking before, and that was due to peace.” Soul draws inspiration from her overall outlook on life and her philosophy is simply, “more is more.” Operating out of her apartment, her designs are mainly online, with occasional pop-up shops and fashion shows. Possessing a “go with the flow” attitude, Soul has visions of her business’ future but doesn’t hold onto them too tightly. “I’m an Aquarius, so I don’t know if there is such a thing as expansion. It’s ever-changing. When my bills are paid, I’m perfectly fine, but the creativity doesn’t stop.”

Stephen West with Ag in the City.

Stephen West earned his undergraduate degree in philosophy and graduate degree from Tennessee State University. After moving to Louisville several years ago, West noticed gaps in the city’s agriculture. This inspired him to start Ag in the City in 2018 as a Facebook page to keep his gardening and agricultural photos, as well as a farmer’s market at French Plaza in June of 2019. West also maintains a five-acre community garden and a greenhouse with a hydroponic system. His vision is to “unite people and inspire healthy communities by encouraging, supporting and developing programs to increase the availability of healthy produce and food throughout Louisville and beyond.” West’s most recent efforts are boxes with 15 to 18 items of fresh produce worth $40 for $25, and optional products from his vendors at the farmer’s market. Moving towards the future, Ag in the City strives to “cultivate a philosophy of togetherness, cooperative economics and economic empowerment.”

Al Shumake with For The People, Love Always and The River City Drum Corp Cultural Arts Institute.

Al Shumake, who has always had an immense passion for music, “from my parents playing classical music for me while in utero, to me beating on the desks to entertain my friends in elementary school.” After discovering his love for turntables, Shumake started DJ Always and, “dedicated much of my musical attention to the art of weaving songs together to unlock the healing power of music. As a DJ, I have discovered that I am both an artist and a scientist. Similar to a chemist, it is my job to create interactions and combine forces that allow people to come together to share their common experience.” As a member of the DJ collective For The People, creator of hand-sewn apparel for his brand Love Always and Executive Director of The River City Drum Corp Cultural Arts Institute, Inc., Shumake moves into the future with his musical career “to create an environment of inclusivity and unity.”

Moving forward, the produce portion of the Grow West movement started by Demi Gardner and Katie Lee Jones will partner with Stephen West of Ag in the City. Gardner and Jones are confident that passing the leadership to West, an expert in all things agriculture, will be the most efficient and effective way to follow through with their original mission to not only provide food but also to inspire and grow Black businesses and leadership.