We are happy to announce that our newest brewmaster/barista was born this past Thursday! Welcome to the team Saxon Timothy Toomey!
I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, I started Glenda’s Kitchen when I was 25 with a passion to bake! It all started with my mothers recipe for my sister who couldn’t eat gluten! I didn’t really know what gluten was and 5 years ago the gluten free industry was agent! I started doing my research and trying other gluten free products, when nothing could compare to my mothers recipe I got down to business. I woke up one my 25th birthday, came downstairs and asked my mother for her top secret Gluten Free cookie recipe! I called the health department was on the phone for hours trying to figure out how to start a cookie company. I spent my whole birthday and weeks after that, working 3 jobs, getting my business off the ground! Out of respect for my mother I named my company after her, 5 years later we are in over 100 stores and restaurants throughout NJ, NY, CA and growing!
What motivated you to become a business owner?
I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, Ive worked so hard and so many jobs for so many people where it finally clicked one day! I could be working this hard for myself and reaping the benefits, and thats when I started working harder to save my money and start my own business. I also really wanted to create jobs for people and be a leader, not a boss where people love coming to work.
If we’re sitting here a year from now celebrating what a great year it’s been for you, what would you say your biggest achievement?
My biggest achievement, like I think most entrepreneurs I believe will say is getting people to try my product! I would be no where if people didn’t try and love my product, especially Gluten Free! People are already weary about trying gluten free products being that most of the time they are not good, & they’re expensive!
As a business owner what are somethings you don’t like to do?
Theres always something you have to do or pay business is like a rollercoaster, you have your ups and downs, it makes it exciting and scary sometimes. When I have my downs thats when it gets scary! I don’t have anything to fall back on but that just keeps me motivated to work harder and keep it up! Another thing is I don’t like telling people what to do that might be one of my faults with business but it always seems to work out!
How do you balance your personal and professional life? What have you sacrificed (both personally and professionally) at each stage of your career?
I sacrificed so much of my time I still do but its a little easier now! No one said starting a business would be easy. You need to prioritize, I might have lost some friends along the way but the good ones stayed and supported me! When you start a business you need to eat, sleep, and breathe your business if you want it to be successful! And yes that means maybe not going out for happy hour, skipping out on Sunday funday or saying no to a vacation, the light might be the size of a pin hole in the beginning but if you sacrifice your time for your business there is a light at the end of tunnel! I promise. In the beginning there was no balance, it was just work work work work, now I spend more time with the people who love and support me! Usually Friday Saturday nights & Sunday Days ( like normal people) are my time to see friends and family. I still work Saturdays but find time at night to hang out!
Who is your role model, and why?
My father! My father started his own business when he was 18 years old, dropped out of high school sold his car and went to work! He is the hardest working man I know and I always wanted to be independent like him! He had nothing growing up, absolutely nothing to fall back on and no family support. My father put me to work when I was 13 years old ( I couldn’t even get working papers ) and always taught me to work for what I wanted and to never get hand outs! I wouldn’t be where I am today with out my fathers work ethic!
What’s your superpower, or what’s your spirit animal?
Hmmmm this is a tough one.. my super power is my faith in God! Some people may think different, but when times get tough I look up and God gets me through it! My spirit animal must be an elephant ! They are leaders, smart ;), and they stand strong but still have compassion!
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The Web: www.glendaskitchen.co
Church St. Brewing Co.
Church St.: So Amanda, what’s your story, what motivated you to become a business owner?
Amanda: I have always loved coffee, the smell the taste, and how it makes me happy in the morning! After meeting Denis and being introduced to his cold brew, I quickly became obsessed. During Death Before Decaf’s rebranding to Church St. Coffee Co., I assisted Denis in making the transition between the two and we became partners. Although, being a business owner kind of fell in my lap, I would say my biggest motivation now is when we have our sit down meetings and we come up with a game plan for our brewery going forward. I love being able to learn about so many new things, whether it’s researching new products, learning about different origins of where coffee comes from, or learning about the many different beer brewing methods it’s all so exciting.
Church St.: If we’re sitting here a year from now celebrating what a great year it’s been for you, what would you say is your biggest achievement?
Amanda: I would say my biggest achievement would be learning how to brew beer, and signing the lease to our coffee shop/ nano brewery! Beer is so interesting, I never realized that there is a so much science behind how beer is made, to the different hops and grains to the fact that you can brew beer with just about any form of liquid is pretty amazing! Also, knowing that in a few short months the brewhouse will be opening and I’m super excited to see that part of our business grow. I have so many ideas for what we can do with the space, from different ways to bring entertainment to the brewery and how Church St. can plant seeds in our community.
Church St.: As a business owner what are some things you don’t like to do?
Amanda: I would say one of my least favorite things to do is saless. I’m pretty shy at times, so reaching out to potential clients and locking in new accounts is something I have found to be challenging. It’s a very important part of our business as we have grown I am getting better, but practice makes perfect.
Church St.: Who is your role model, and why?
Amanda: I would say my parents, they have taught me to always work hard and always give 100%. I feel like this made me become more of a go getter, I always have been when it comes to working on my education and my career.
We are so stoked to announce that we will be bringing back our cold brew bottles! After a high volume of emails requesting bottles we decided that it's to make a come back! They will be available for pick up at our shop or a quick click away on our site! More details on this coming soon!
We have had new heating units installed in our space and soon the new ceiling lighting will begin next week! We are so grateful to see things moving along again after a major set back in our emergency fire sprinkler systems. We still do not have an opening date. Trust us, we are just as excited as all of you are, but we do have to consider the time of year that the keys will be handed to us. After the holidays, money is tight. For that reason we are still deliberating the usage of our space during production hours.
Our West Coast IPA will be ready in another 2 weeks. Amanda our brewmaster has carefully been monitoring temp control, and recording data to insure consistency!
Speaking of Amanda, our Babes Build Empires have come to a bitter sweet end it's time to let ya'll know that the ladies only crewneck sweatshirts will be available online in two weeks! We are allowing sneak peaks of these bad ass sweatshirts but you ladies have to DM us and with that you get an automatic discount if you pre-order! We would like to thank everyone who has participated in the articles we launched in our blog! These ladies are the future and we hope they are highly motivating and inspiring. This was so much fun and learning about how it is to be a woman entrepreneur made some stellar reading. We hit record number visits on our site and received messages from business owners and women who have worked their butts off to be where they are today, expressing how they truly enjoyed the fun interviews we posted!