'Community-supported restaurant' planned
Owner Christine Ruch calls Fresh Thymes a "community-supported restaurant" that will be funded through member "shares" of $250 to $5,000 as well as through traditional investors. Ruch plans to start remodeling work in April and open sometime in June at 2500 30th St. in the Boulder Steel Yards, a mixed-use development.
The funding model is similar to that of "community-supported agriculture," or CSA, in which people buy a "share" of vegetables from a farmer before the growing season and get them delivered - usually weekly - during the summer months.
Fresh Thymes members will get special deals, meals and other goodies once the restaurant opens, according to information on the website, www.freshthymeseatery.com.
Fresh Thymes will focus on healthy takeout items such as "ingredient-conscious" salads, sandwiches and hot items. Customers will be able to pick up items or eat at the restaurant, which is the former Elephant Hut Thai restaurant location."
"We're not just allergen-conscious, but health supportive, and it's good food, too," Ruch said. "A lot of cultures in the world don't rely on flour, butter and dairy products."
Ruch has raised $20,000 of the $100,000 she plans to raise to open the restaurant. She is planning to add an outdoor seating area and hire a staff of 20 to 25 people.
Ruch said she was inspired to open the restaurant because of her personal struggles with food allergies and autoimmune disease.
She is the head culinary instructor of Bauman College of Holistic Nutrition and Culinary Arts in Boulder. The college is headquartered in Penngrove, California. She also has served as head chef for the Growe Foundation, a fresh vegetable food program in the Boulder Valley School District.
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