Monday, July 26, 2010

The Rain Couldn't Stop Us

From May 23 to the 30, the owner and staff members of eve the restaurant-Ann Arbor, Michigan's finest dinning location-journeyed to Honduras for a seven day service trip. This is a partnership that without a doubt has proved to be fun, unique and life changing for UMF, the restaurant and all those involved. I will leave the description of the trip up to those who went on the trip. The following insert can be found on the tables in the restaurant. If you live in Ann Arbor or are just passing through, stop by, read it for yourself and enjoy some great food!

"We are so excited to announce the eve / Frita Batidos joint adventure/volunteer work/educational staff field trip to Honduras was an inspirational success!!! Thank you to all who helped make this trip possible – from purchasing bags of microloan coffee to making donations, to extending your interest and support in so many ways - We look forward to sharing our stories with you all now that we are back home!

From torrential down pours and swollen rivers, to beautiful mountain passes, mud brick homes and the hard working people of the La Union Municipality, the trip was an inspiration for us all. Never have we felt so far from a paved road, but never have we felt so close to a sense of family, community and survival that is rarely found in our daily lives.

As a staff we spent a week building 12 stoves in homes in the small village of San Augustin, one of the most impoverished areas of Honduras. We also got to know and work with the coffee farmers of La Union and learned about the microfinance model of UNION MICROFINANZA and their dedication to improving the the conditions in this area of the world. We learned about the coffee cultivation process first hand from the planting of the seeds, to the harvesting , depulping , drying and roasting of the beans - from seed to cup! We are now working with these beans at Frita Batidos and drinking this very coffee at home - it is an amazing feeling personally knowing where the coffee comes from, the farmers who put their labor into the cultivation and doing something we care about and believe in.

We are very proud and excited to use these beans in developing our own signature blend for Frita Batidos, where intense, complex, Cuban style coffee is going to be central!!!! (along with Fritas, Batidos and great bread!)
Frita Batidos, our new creative venture, will be a very casual restaurant/sandwich shop inspired by the spirit of Cuban culture – revolving around a fantasy inspired by two traditional Cuban culinary elements – The FRITA – a Cuban burger made from spicy chorizo served with shoestring fries on top in a soft egg bun and BATIDOS – Tropical milkshakes made with fresh fruit, crushed ice and a drop of sweetened milk – with or without rum. Like burgers and shakes, Fritas and Batidos are a natural pairing and the menu is the result of dreaming about these two dishes for years!

The people we met may have been poor, but never have we heard children laugh so much, people be so welcoming and life be so much about the essentials. I am sure we as a staff will all take something from this trip that is uniquely our own.
However, it is not our intent to leave our thoughts and experiences in Honduras. We hope to take our experiences and memories and apply them as an inspiration to what we do here – to our work ethic, the way we treat and care for people, the way we cook and the perspective we have on our own lives and culture . Not only will the knowledge from our trip be a part of the food, but we plan to establish a lasting partnership with this area of Honduras. WE PLAN TO GO BACK! IF YOU WISH TO JOIN US, PLEASE LET US KNOW!

Thanking you and keeping you posted!"


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