Joyce

After graduating from culinary school, my career began like all culinary students dream of, working in high-end restaurants next to big-name chefs. But there came a point in my career when I had to make a decision for my health, both physical and mental. When I reached the position of Sous Chef, my body and mind took a toll, and I was no longer handling the intensity of it all. I had some serious health issues that ultimately made me quit my position. I decided to step back and rethink how I would approach the culinary world, and simultaneously as a sign, covid arrived, and with it, my deep dive into sourdough.

Not long after, an opportunity arose to work as a Chef in a Latin kosher cafe. It was a small, locally owned business that had served the community for a long time, and the new owners were looking for a chef. I took the opportunity, but I didn’t know what that would mean for my future. To be sincere, it was not the initial idea I had in mind or the culinary trajectory that they teach us to strive for. I had to fight many times with the idea of serving high end, being on the top, and being in the press. It made me focus more on the quality of the food, on the community we served, and how we were making an impact through small yet meaningful steps. I helped to achieve a good balance in their restaurant by being a good chef and an excellent consultant to the point that they offered me the chance to partner up with them. This partnership changed the way I thought about things.

I find myself now in my next phase in life. I have broken so many beliefs and stigmas in the industry that now, I’m shifting towards a journey to strive to be a better person, prioritizing health. I have always wanted to be more than a chef and understand the nutritional aspects. So I want to learn more about it and offer a more grounded experience to the people in our community. I want to offer food that feels good, that makes sense, that not only tastes great but that is good for your body. So this is the next step in my journey. Not only to get to know all this for myself but for other people.