Just a few days before my cookbook went to print, I wrote the very personal epilogue, which in part read: Being a small business owner requires resiliency, persistence, and flexibility. These traits have been called upon every day while operating my restaurant. This is even more true as I finish writing this cookbook from my living room at home. It is the spring of 2020, millions of people have been ordered to stay home, uncertain of what may come; many are sick, and many are struggling financially, all because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Now, we are heading into the Winter of 2020 and there remains a great deal of uncertainty about the pandemic, and the future of the restaurant industry. So many restaurants are hanging on and pushing to get through to the other side when dining rooms can thrive again. Many other restaurants have had to close the door and look for the next one to open. Sadly, we have made the decision to close our doors at 349 Bloomfield Avenue, the location that saw our restaurant rise and thrive in Montclair – a community that celebrated us every day and extended endless support and appreciation our way. I feel incredibly lucky for the experience that I’ve had in Montclair, bringing my passion to our space. Vanillamore will live on through my recently released cookbook, Sweet. Savory. Social. and our e-commerce items as well as through the incredible memories of all of the people that we had the pleasure of working with, celebrating with, and inviting into our Vanillamore experience.
I remain incredibly thankful to our staff, who put in the hard work to get us to our most successful months yet right before the pandemic. Though we may not be working elbow to elbow anymore, they will always be a part of the Vanillamore family. Though I am saddened that this door closes, I am hopeful that soon, I will open the next one. In the spring, I plan to launch a private event version of Vanillamore, providing chef-curated tasting menus and dinner parties. For now, I am going to turn my focus towards spending the winter and the holiday season in my kitchen with my family and 2-month-old son.