Soulfood | Inspiring Cranbrook
Updated: Aug 11, 2019
Soulfood. A powerful name with strong principle.
A name that implies more than excellent food, it implies nurturing people and conscious dining. It embraces the idea of local sustainability. Tamara, Cristel, and Caitlin created Soulfood as a wholesome place to gather. The reality of this is unveiled by the gestures of each server and every plated meal placed on upcycled tables.
Many often say that Cranbrook is stuck in an era of lacklustre culture… and for years it was likely that I agreed with them. The history of Baker Street alone is begging entrepreneurs to bring new life downtown - and it’s happening. Soulfood was an integral part of that movement in their first location. Residents watched with glee as the ladies of Soulfood welcomed each one of us to display art, play music, eat shoulder to shoulder with our community and so much more.
As any strong partnership encompasses, each of them would be incomplete without the other. The strength these 3 women bring together was so evident as I sat with them one cool, winter morning. I inquired and listened as they spoke about the processes that brought them to this very place. We agreed that challenges became the crucial factor in the growth and adaptability that make Soulfood so powerful.
I personally am in such awe of the underlying selflessness of their purpose. Soulfood offers many benefits to the community, but my favorite is the welcoming of the homeless. Their suspended coffee and community breakfasts allow a wall to be removed between “us” and “them”. Reminding everyone present that we are all in this together, sharing the same space.
Coming from a very small, but cozy space - Soulfood now resides in an exponentially larger location; Yet impressively, it still embodies the same quaint, comfortable and welcoming feel. The vision put into creating this space is exemplary... With large booths, couches and cozy corners, Soulfood welcomes you to spend anywhere from mere moments to hours with them. As a freelancer, it is such a generous offer to work within such an inspiring change of scenery.
Unlike most, who create a menu first, and source the ingredients second... Cristel and the girls insisted on building their menu specifically around the produce, meats, dairy & grains that are available locally. As a result - they have some of the most ornate, flavorful, and unparalleled menu items this city has seen.
It's a difficult thing to do, to create a public space that radiates love the way Soulfood does. And to maintain a calm and passionate demeanor amidst the outside chaos... I sit in these reupholstered chairs, tapping my shoe on well-worn tile and think to myself: