Our Story. Growing up, I was immersed in the traditions of my parents' heritage, learning at the side of my parents, grandmothers, and aunts about Taiwanese culinary classics and customs. While attending school in NYC, I came upon the exploding food scene and found myself dreaming of a future in the culinary world.
Fast forward a few years, I took the leap and met my husband Andy. Despite our different backgrounds, we found a shared passion in food and were fortunate to join two great culinary teams - Andy at Chef Daniel Boulud's Dinex Group (www.danielboulud.com) and me at Blue Hill at Stone Barns (www.bluehillfarm.com).
The time at Blue Hill helped me make the connection between the culinary world, agriculture, and sustainability. It also made me realize that ongoing and lasting change could only occur if the market economics lined up.
With that came the idea of a "fast food" restaurant concept with a menu made from responsibly sourced ingredients designed for guests seeking a healthy, reliable source of nourishment to meet the needs of their busy, active lives. Through this business we could provide a reliable stream of revenues whose proceeds could be then be passed on to farmers, fisherman, and purveyors who invest in the same ethos to produce a sustainable ecosystem. Taiwan and its fresh "fast food" culture focused on great sourcing, high-quality ingredients, and deep culinary traditions were a natural fit for this concept.
We looked at a few different cities and finally settled on Philadelphia to work with my former CDC from Blue Hill at the acclaimed Farm and Fisherman BYOB where we had the great opportunity to work together again. It was after our time here, that we decided that Philadelphia would be where we would open our dream.
- Judy Ni