Happy New Year: goodbye to 2017
In 2017, I said goodbye to two of my favorite local southern California businesses, my neighborhood bakery + coffee shop and my favorite local brewery. Both were places that made exceptional products, but they could not survive despite that.
Looking ahead to 2018, there's good news and bad news. For Christmas, I received an espresso machine as a gift, a well-timed gesture considering my favorite coffee-sipping spot shuttered on the 1st. While I have long dreamed of pulling espresso shots at home, I will wholeheartedly miss the communal act of walking to my local coffee spot and lingering over good magazine articles and pie. As for the brewery, we officially have just one bottle of their beer left, purchased in their last days. It's hanging around in the back of the refrigerator, prolonging a final farewell and reminding us what we're missing. I plan to welcome many new routines in the New Year, but I can't help but mourn the end of this era.
The food industry is notoriously risky, and I thank all the small business owners who strive to execute their dreams so our local communities can benefit. During culinary school, we often discussed the realities of running a small business, the high costs of labor and operating expenses, and how challenging it is to turn a profit. I know it's anything but easy, so I'm very thankful to all the entrepreneurs who give it a go so we can have better specialty coffee, hoppier beers, and flakier pie crusts. This year has been a reminder that we are surrounded by local businesses who rely on our word of mouth and our wallets. If there's an independent business you really love, remember to support them in 2018. Happy New Year everyone!
p.s. Any recommendations for favorite espresso beans? Please leave me your tips in the comments.