Saturday, August 10, 2013

Nope, We're Not Opening a Restaurant

We are converting this restaurant

into a produce processing facility.

We plan to offer various products, such as bagged salad mixes, frozen squash puree, dried greens, and zucchini chips, for sale to local institutions (like school cafeterias), restaurants, and grocery stores. Items will be made entirely with Upper Peninsula grown produce, some grown by us and some by other area farmers.

Playing with our new Dehydrator.
It's going to be a few months before we really have
products for sale, but drying greens is fun :) 
We'll use the existing walk in cooler to store winter vegetables such as potatoes, beets, carrots, rutabaga, celeriac and anything else we (and other area farmers) decide to grow and, as soon as practical, we plan to build more cold storage in this section of the restaurant:

I imagine there are still some head scratchers out there, people wondering just what, exactly, we are up to. The best term for the business we are undertaking here is regional food hub. That term is quite general, just as any given store will look different from the next, there isn't one specific definition of a food hub. If you would like to learn more about the concept, this USDA publication should shed some light: USDA Regional Food Hub Resource Guide.

So, I hope that answers at least some of the questions that are floating around right now. Stay tuned for more details as we get things underway!


  1. I almost bought that place seven years ago. I was living in Las Vegas at the time, but the economic slide was already well under way in 06, and I opted out. Good thing, too. I can remember eating dinner there with my family forty years ago. I'm glad to see something happening with the place. You should keep the bar though...

    1. I seem to recall being told that bars tend to catch fire out that way. lol o-O

  2. Hi,and welcome to the neighborhood,I live just a little east of your location. It will be great to be able to get locally grown food.Good Luck!!

  3. Wow, that's so crazy and exciting! What an awesome concept....hope you guys are hugely successful. :)

  4. We are so excited for you guys! Best of luck! Rick & Jeni

  5. Glad to hear of a nice place taking over the Candlelight club

  6. Sounds very interesting...Good to know the Candlelight will not be a vacant building and will use U.P. grown foods! Very exciting! Best of luck to you!!

  7. I've noticed a couple cars parked by the place and am so happy to hear about your taking it on for a Food Hub! Can't wait to stop in and shop!
    Congratulations and Best Wishes for much success.

  8. This is Andrew from the Summit just recently. Andrea and Scott I much appreciate your energy in the local food matters even though I also see the hidden exhaustion. This is a tough thing to take on. Corporate giants don't want it and you guys do it anyway. Good deal. Anyway we mentioned solar dehydration in our convos. This is the model I will be constructing this winter. If you don't build one too I will give you updates on how it works next year so you could upscale it to whatever your needs are. It is a pretty solid design but involves the patience to learn how to use it. Otherwise it seems to be an asset to humid dehydrator enthusiasts all around. Peace in the middle east. Hope to visit you guys at some point.