as a former restaurant owner, i know more than the average person about what it takes -- from financial management to employees -- to run a cafe. we have been closed for over a year and our lives couldn't be more different. we really miss our employees and our customers, but the stress? uh, not so much.
i was reading this month's issue of Cooking Light and came across an article on a little restaurant in denver called SAME Cafe - SAME is an acronym for So All May Eat. intrigued, i read further and saw that what they do is they have a very limited menu of all -- get this: ORGANIC foods -- and what is asked is if you don't have the money to pay for your meal, you donate an hour to help clean or prep the restaurant, or there is a donation box for you to put $$ into on your way out the door.
more on this wonderful couple who began this cafe :
The Birkys developed this idea through volunteer work over many years. The two were so touched during this service they decided to do something WONDERFULLY DIFFERENT. Over the course of their years working at food banks and shelters they saw the growing number of people needing assistance: hardworking single moms, the elderly who cannot retire, the educated and the uneducated. Some even work 40 hours a week on minimum wage and cannot make ends meet. It is the Birkys' sincere hope that through SAME Café they can make a difference to all who walk through the door, whether it is a person seeking help or a person seeking to help.can you even imagine? really cool idea! i have the site linked above and they also have a blog. their only request (other than financial) is that you only take as much as you can eat, but you are also welcomed to go up for seconds. with a menu that features items such as White Chicken Chili, Roasted Red Pepper & Sun-Dried Tomato Bisque, Quinoa Salad w/ Cherries & Almonds, Sweet & Spicy Pepper & Sausage Pizza - i'd be tempted to take tupperware!
for your further information, they have a "wishlist" on their blog for items they truly need, and if you are unable to donate an item, they have paypal button available on their main site if you wish to contribute.
(oh you know you want to...)