Creating and managing content for restaurants has incredible perks. Perks that I’m assuming are pretty obvious. Being able to hang out with one of the newest restaurants in Charlottesville – Botanical – had other advantages. We had the chance to hang out with Ryan Becklund, and it was such a surreal experience for me. I’ve known Ryan for quite a while. We became acquainted during the phase of my life when I was obsessed with avocado toast.
Ok, ok, ok. The obsession is still going strong.
Ryan was working at Fruitive at the time. Their avocado toast was – and still is – one of my favorite go to meals. I will devour that whole grain, basil pesto, green goodness until I’m horizontal in the dirt. One of the things I really admired about that business model was their dedication to being 100% plant-based, or vegan. In a world where things can quickly feel trendy, Ryan’s belief in plant-based meals is different. As a lover of all things that lean toward “different,” I couldn’t escape the feeling that Ryan was going to transform what it means to appreciate vegan options.
Botanical is proof of that.
Ryan isn’t interested in cashing in on buzz words. The food that she is helping create is sincerely delicious. I had an existential revelation while eating the cauliflower. Don’t even get me started on the cocktails. But here’s the thing: it’s not just about good food for Ryan and her team. Botanical is creating an entire movement that transcends food on a plate and it all comes back to three words:
inclusivity, compassion, and sustainability.
When Ryan made her way to Charlottesville with the goal of creating a vegan, fast casual wonderland, she didn’t let her creativity and her heart stop at the edges of the menu. The Botanical team has created a space that is safe and pushing the boundaries of what it means to eat well. Eating is truly an act of communion and this place makes sure all people feel included at the table while also ensuring that their cooking practices don’t put extra strain on the environment. Their impact far exceeds the plate. We were thrilled at the chance to make a road trip for a photoshoot that came with serious nutritional rewards. Having Botanical as a formal Misty Saves the Day client is just the miso caramel on top of the brownie.
I joke that my business has organically grown to serve many restaurants. But when I really think about it, it’s not about food. Misty Saves the Day is becoming a business that caters to entrepreneurs who aren’t content to do things as they have always been done. They are expanding how their creativity impacts people within and outside of their four walls. The tables they set are slowly and beautifully shaping their communities.
When I really think about it, all restaurants won’t be a good fit for my team. We are much more interested in the heart and intent of the businesses we support. If you simply want to cook food and have people eat it, we aren’t the women (plus Chris) for you. But if your goal is to change the way we think about socializing around meals that are thoughtfully prepared…or if you want to expose your neighbors to the tastes of places they’ve not yet been to…or maybe your business is working toward changing the culture in the kitchen…then give us a call.
Because that is exactly the type of work we are interested in promoting.