How are you doing on this wonderful Wednesday?
I'm doing fantastic as always thank you :)
I'm going to use the time I have to blog today to talk about my new job at Olive, an urban dive! Below you will find a long yet shortened explanation of the restaurant itself and how it works, pictures of my work attire, and photographs I took of the restaurant just yesterday! Lets get started shall we?
What exactly is Olive all about? What kind of food do we serve at Olive? What makes Olive so awesome? Why am I telling complete strangers located all over the globe where I work and where to find me?
I can answer the first three questions.....but the last one I'm not too sure about.....I just pray that none of you are insane curly headed stalkers or anything of that nature. Dear sweet Jesus what have I done!?!?!?!
All jokes aside - Olive is a locally sourced Dayton, Ohio restaurant that brilliantly fuses Mediterranean, American, fine dining, and diner food all into one. Just about every single item in our kitchen is fresh within the last few days. Our chickens were killed yesterday, our eggs were laid yesterday, our herbs were picked organic today, the cow that produced our gallons of milk were milked this morning, the bread was baked at a local bakery a few hours ago, and so on and so fourth.
You WILL NOT find a can opener in our entire restaurant. We do not own cans. Our beans are dried, our tomatoes are fresh, our veggies are fresh, absolutely nothing is canned. This restaurant is legit. Every single item on our menu is made from complete scratch. Nothing is ready made. Yes, making everything from scratch does make prep a very very long and tedious process, but it's totally worth it when you're making the freshest food you've ever tasted. Lest us not forget that all of the leftover food/waste is either used for stock or it is composted and given to a near by garden!
I could go on and on and on for days about how amazing our food is, how fresh it is, how almost every single item in our walk in was purchased from local Dayton farmers, bakers, etc. but I think you should come into the restaurant and see for yourself. Im so proud of the food I'm making right now. This is the reason why I wanted to be a chef, so I could create dishes like the ones I'm making at Olive for people every day. We are the only restaurant in Dayton Ohio taking local/organic/fresh to this sort of extreme. We are (for lack of a better term) on some next level shit. You can thank the owner Kimberly for this next level status. She is a marketing guru and a woman who knows exactly what she wants. Kimberly has been kicking ass and taking names in this city for months and months.
When customers walk into the restaurant for the first time.............
they all "Ooooh" and "Aaaaah" and say things like "Oh my goodness isn't this just the cutest little restaurant I ever did see!" When people like myself walk into the kitchen for the first time they say "OH MY GOD THIS IS THE SMALLEST KITCHEN I'VE SEEN IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!!!!!!! WTF there isn't a walk in cooler? Where are we going to store all of this food?! Oh my goodness the storage space is the size of my bedroom closet!!!"
This reaction is absolutely no exaggeration at all whatsoever. The kitchen is tiny. When I say tiny I mean TINY. The entire kitchen is the size of the soup station I worked at when I was employed at Walt Disney World - no joke. The storage space is the size of a small closet. There is absolutely no walk in cooler- just a refrigerator. We do not own a dish machine so we take turns washing everything by hand. We have little to no work space.....I think you're starting to get the picture lol.
We are spatially challenged to say the very least, but for some reason it works! We've managed to become quite acclimated to the very small space we must work in. It will always be a challenge/game of tetris trying to figure out where food fits in the cooler, what we can stuff in the freezer, etc. To be quite honest I thought I was going to despise working in such a tiny kitchen, but after two weeks of working nonstop I'm starting to enjoy it very much so! It doesn't hurt that our family like staff gets along so well, which is completely unheard of in a kitchen.
When Kimberly hired me she stressed more than anything that Olive was going to be a drama free restaurant......
No drama, no attitudes, no arguing, no fighting. It's been stated very clearly on numerous occasions that the first one to make a dramatic move will be gone in a heart beat. Good thing this isn't an issue with us at all what so ever! Our staff pretty much consists of three cooks, one chef, three waitresses, one owner, and about four or five other employees/friends/family members of Kimberly's who help out on a daily basis. All 8-15 of us get along so well it's insane. If you work in a kitchen for a living then you know first hand that there is ALWAYS a war between the cooks and the waitresses. Someone is being bitchy to someone, this person isn't cooking fast enough, that person is talking about this person, this person is threatening that person, blah blah blah blah blah. We are the happiest staff I've ever seen. I mean it's eerie how well we get along, but I'm not complaining! Not in the least bit! We've only been working together for a couple of weeks, and the chemistry is just beyond amazing. Kimberly didn't hire a staff - she hand picked a family. I am so happy to be apart of this team that I seriously get choked up lol. What can I say - I'm a bit of a cry baby sissy girl sap when it comes to stuff like this......
When we have our grand opening in a few weeks...............
we will be serving lunch Monday-Friday, Dinner Thurs-Sat, and Brunch on Saturday and Sunday! Walk ins are welcome but I suggest you make a reservation. People are going to be lining up when the doors finally open, and I wouldn't want any of my readers to be left behind!!
A fellow named Anthony was actually the person who introduced me to Olive, and pretty much talked his way into getting me the job in the first place! Who is Anthony? Anthony is an awesome chef, CCH reader, and culinary school friend I've kept in touch with ever since graduation! In the beginning of June I wrote about how I was moving back to Ohio and asked readers who live in Dayton to let me know if any places were hiring. Anthony got a hold of me immediately and told me all about Olive and after a few phone calls, and a lot of pep talk on his end, I was sold.
I wanted to work at Olive more than anything, but I wasn't really sure if I was a good enough cook to actually be hired and hold up my end of the kitchen, but Anthony assured me I was and that it was the perfect fit for me. Well turns out Anthony was right! I owe him my job for sure. Not only did he tell me about the job but he directed the owner, my new boss, Kimberly to my blog! I'm assuming Kimberly liked my blog, and the way I conduct myself on CCH, because she wanted to set up an interview right away! Thanks to Anthony, and thanks to this little thing I like to call Chronicles of a Curly Head - I now have the absolute perfect job for me :D
The Olive look.....
The Olive t-shirt! The short sleeve t-shirt is gray, and the long sleeve is black. Both shirts say "Olive" on the sleeve in our store colors. (In this photograph it looks backwards because this picture was taken with my laptop camera lol.)
The back of our t-shirt looks like a band T where you would see all of the cities, venues, and dates, but instead ours lists all of our local purveyors! Not only does the shirt look rad, it's super comfortable too! Gotta love American Apparel.
Whenever I go to a restaurant I always ask the owner/manager before I start snapping pictures everywhere, because I know a lot of restaurant owners do not care for the hubbub and all of the baggage food bloggers can bring. You must be thinking "What baggage do food bloggers bring Jenna?" A majority of food bloggers spend so much time taking pictures of the food that it's cold by the time they actually eat it. Then they complain about how cold it is and want another plate. This as a cook really pisses me off lol.
I've been told "No, you can't take photos of the restaurant" on a couple of occasions. But I find it usually puts them at ease when we start to talking and they find out that I'm not only a food blogger but a culinary graduate, and a complete and utter food lover as well. Owners tend to take me more seriously when they see that I'm not just some twenty year old girl pretending to know everything about food. Don't get me wrong, a lot of owners like the attention and welcome photographs, interview, etc. but I could name a handful who really reallly don't.
Long story short - Taking photos at Olive wasn't a problem at all what so ever! Kimberly (the aforementioned owner/mastermind/woman behind all of the wonderful madness at Olive) is a really awesome person and knows all about CCH and how I'm a food blogger extraordinaire. So when I asked Kimberly if she would mind me taking pictures of the restaurant for my blog yesterday she gave me the green light!
I now present you with the photos I took of Olive - the tiniest restaurant in Dayton Ohio......or the world.....I'm guessing the tiniest and cutest in the world :)
I pulled a major Jenna move yesterday and took pictures of every single thing in the restaurant, and outside of the restaurant BUT the front of the building lol. Nice one Jen. So I had to do a little internet research, and I managed to find a very old picture of the building itself (via A Drive-By). Due to the fact that the Wympee building is such a huge Dayton landmark, Kimberly decided it was imperative to keep the exterior of the building looking as is. So yes the building will say Wympee for historic value/reasons but it is in fact Olive!
On to the back of the building.....
That's me :)
Behind this door lays back patio seating and an herb garden!
Entering through the exit is what all of the cool kids do these days.
Haven't you heard?
Almost every single thing you see behind this door was done either by the hands of Kimberly, or the hands of one of her family members. The ceiling tiles, the chairs, the tables, the painting on the walls, the beautiful wooden bar, etc. This is ALL Kimberly's vision/creation. Hats off to her for a beautiful and unique restaurant.
This is a photo taken from one side of the dining room (seating will not be set up like this every single day btw).....
And a mere twenty steps away is a photograph taken from the other side of the dining room!
I told you it was cute and tiny didn't I? :)
When Kimberly presented Ben (a fellow cook) and I with this quote on the wall the other day we both shrieked like little girls. This is my favorite quote of all time, and I'm pretty sure it's Bens as well. We took this as a sign that we were meant to work for Kimberly in this restaurant. "One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well." -Virgina Woolf - Ahmen to that sister!
The wood for this bar has been in Kimberly's family for a very long time. Her grandfather cut this tree down sixty years ago - and now it's a beautiful bar!
Oh.....what's that back there?
Could it be? Yes, yes I believe it is! It's the tiniest kitchen in all of the land!
Yes this is a small kitchen, but oh lordy is it long!
I've been running around like a mad woman back and fourth lol.
I think I'm man enough to handle the job alright lol.
Gotta love a kitchen with a ton of natural light.
My favorite kitchen gadget goodies.....
One last picture before I started cooking for the day......
And there you have it boys at girls! Thats Olive, an Urban Dive.......
I'm not going to lie - I was really nervous when I began writing this post, because I want nothing more than to do this restaurant and Kimberly justice by writing an awesome blog post. I hope this post not only described the logistics of this establishment in a eloquent manner, but also the passion that the owner and my fellow employees have as well.
I tried my best to describe Olive in a way that Kimberly (and my fellow co workers) would be proud of, because after all it is her creation, her love, her baby, her restaurant. I would hate to think that I missed out on a key note, or mixed up any of my facts anywhere within this post, so if you ever get the chance/find yourself in a situation where you can actually have a conversation about this restaurant with Kimberly then I suggest you do. She describes it in a way, and with such a passion that I can hardly emulate in the slightest. Although I do my very best :)
Kimberly and the Olive family are extremely passionate about food, about our local community, and about the health of one another. We are doing our best to create the best dining experience in Dayton Ohio and I think we're doing a very good job of that thus far. Kimberly is definitely paving the way for us all.
I cannot wait to open so we can finally start to feed the masses! If you live in the area please stop by and try out one of our many delicious dishes. If you don't care for food, then at least stop by for a good time. If you don't care for fun, then stop by to look at how beautiful the restaurant is. If you don't care for looks, then for the love of God just stop by to support a local business that is not only representing the community in such a lovely way, but is also doing wonderful things for the community every single day (like how I rhymed that? lol).
Well it's time for me to drive my happy self to work.
I hope to see you there :)
For more information/daily updates check Olive out on Facebook: Olive, an urban dive