Last week we reopened our flagship store on Atlantic Avenue. I cried when we pulled the gates up. I was so emotional and happy. In 70 years, we have had only a handful of unplanned closures and none lasted more than a few days. This closure lasted over 2 months and it felt wonderful to be interacting with the customers again. No longer faceless numbers on our delivery partners' tablet, but real people in the aisles. The look on our staff’s faces said it all. “Welcome back, customers and friends!”
It took me a long time to write this post. Personally and professionally, we have all been hard hit by the current situation. As we tried to figure out this pandemic retail environment, family concerns and staying safe took precedence over marketing and building displays. Work became secondary and only continued because Sahadi’s is an essential business. People worldwide are figuring out what is important to them. Life changed for almost everyone everywhere.
By now we’ve all heard the predictions of an early spring, and I for one, am definitely looking forward to it. It’s been so gloomy these past few months, and I am eager for daylight savings time. I am also itching to get out in my yard for early planting. As I look at my Urfa peppers and Aleppo pepper plants germinating on my sunny kitchen counter, I am already thinking about the wonderful dishes I can make with the harvest this summer.
From the beginning we thought the Industry City store would be a great place to host classes of all kinds. The bright and spacious areas are perfect for a team building activity, a couples evening, or an opportunity to gather a few close friends to bond over a new skill. In the most Sahadi’s fashion, our first ever class ended up being a small family reunion of sorts! We put together a twisted cheesemaking tutorial for cousins. This group had noticed a Facebook video we posted of one of our talented staff showing the rest of our team how to twist cheese from scratch. The ringleader cousin asked about a private session and our class calendar was launched.
It is so cold and blustery here in NYC this month that all I can think about is eating hearty stick-to-your-rib foods that taste like they’ve spent all day on the stove. Unfortunately, between helping to get this new store up and rolling, doing recipe development, and being a wife and mother, there is no time for a dish that takes hours. The key here is to coordinate grilling the vegetables and cooking the eggs while the grains are simmering. This can all be done in 30 minutes!