Hello, my name is Andrea. I’m the owner/operator of Kitchen 1437. I’m asking for support from the community, friends and family, foodies, or anyone who wants to see a woman-owned small business survive and succeed!
My fantastic staff (really, they are like family) and I have worked so hard six days a week for two years, developing one or more new restaurants. But now the costs of opening an unplanned business (more on that to follow) are piling up. We risk becoming another small business to shut down in these difficult times.
I created this company spontaneously out of love and survival. But unfortunately, this does not turn out to be the best business plan.
I worked with my love, Chef Tomas Rivera, for over 10 years. He had a successful restaurant business here in Los Angeles for 16 years. Enter March 2020, catered events have started to cancel and nothing new has happened. Social gatherings and events were over. There would be no way to continue paying rent and kitchen or staff expenses. He had to close his business.
Thomas and me
But I saw a ray of hope. In 2017, Tomas launched 2 “virtual restaurants” in the kitchen, born out of 2 closed restaurants that the community loved, Bronzed Aussie and AMMO. He adapted their menus and made them available for delivery or takeout through various delivery apps. Win-win for loyal customers and additional income for his business. When the pandemic hit I said give me a chance to keep them open and expand them and then maybe we could keep the kitchen and our staff could stay employed.
Long story short, I asked him to help me create menus for a few other concepts I’ve come up with, so we have more to offer and can continue doing what we love: feeding people delicious food. And this eventually became “Kitchen 1437 -A Virtual Food Court”, consisting of 7 virtual restaurants. It worked perfectly with COVID and the massive need for food delivery. In the fall, I started a new LLC, took over the lease, utilities, and everything that goes with a business. I felt so satisfied knowing that all might not be lost. Not only do I hope to save the kitchen for Tomas to take over catering when events return, but I hope to have a relevant and exciting new business for the future.
I started with this
With a small budget, I turned it into this
Fast forward to today, it didn’t go as well as expected. I managed to keep the kitchen open, but there were complications:
* A year ago, Tomas underwent major emergency neck surgery and was unable to resume catering as social gatherings returned or helped me in the kitchen
* Delivery apps such as Doordash, GrubHub, etc. are ideal for meeting new clients. However, they take 25%-50% of EVERY sale (from new and returning customers) to cover marketing and delivery commissions. In addition, the promotions necessary to have visibility on their applications.
* COVID ended, but inflation started. Costs for food, packaging and labor have skyrocketed.
I feel overwhelmed.
* I put all my savings into the business and had to take out a few small business loans and a credit card to cover business expenses and sometimes payroll or unforeseen repairs
* Like so many others during COVID, I’ve fallen behind on utility bills, business licenses and taxes
* I need funds to repair appliances.
* I was not eligible for any SBA relief loans as I opened after the pandemic.
* I sacrificed having a stable income, any personal life, enjoying time with my family and even my health.
And yet, the only thing I regret is that all I have done may not have been enough.
We have such amazing clients! I feel so honored to be able to carry on the legacy of Bronzed Aussie to all who have supported lovely Australian founder Samantha Bryan since 2011 and then found us in our new location. Nothing is more satisfying than giving a homesick Aussie or Kiwi a pie, a sausage roll or a lamington!
We also continue to feed many AMMO by SALT customers with the new ANI & SALT brand. And have fun with the Wich Bich brand, founded by Chantal Govashiri. Filled with delicious oversized sandwiches, all named after iconic and strong women. I also partnered with viral YouTube sensation Mr. Beast Burger to boost sales (cover photo with staff was when we made “partner of the month”)
(With Bronzed Aussie founder Samantha Bryan.
Watch our YouTube video with epicurean Eric)
Our growing sales, increasing customer base and fantastic food reviews confirm that we are onto something unique and special! The ability for friends, groups, workplaces or families to choose from 7 menus in one order makes delivering or ordering takeout a whole new experience. Everyone gets what they want.
Kitchen 1437 was born out of necessity and love in the toughest times. I ask for your help so my staff can stay employed, we can keep the kitchen space I worked so hard for, and continue to serve the community we have come to know and love.
To be completely transparent, here is what is due/necessary:
* Loans/credit cards = $41,741
* Utilities/gas = $12,087
* Tax = $14,700
* Health permit fee = $2732
* Supplier payments due = $7,535
* Repairs/replacement of appliances=$4300
I am struggling to make monthly payments for these debts as well as ongoing monthly expenses. I am confident that if I could catch up, combined with the new marketing efforts planned, we could survive and hopefully one day thrive!
I humbly ask for help before it’s too late. I’m beginning to feel how quickly a business can fail. It only takes a month or two to fall behind and the pressure is starting to kick in.
Any amount would be greatly appreciated and could make a difference. Please consider sharing this with family and friends on social media or via email if you cannot donate now.
Thanks for reading our story. I’m blessed that you took the time.
All my wishes,