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This Restaurant Run by Grandmas Will Melt Your Heart

03/09/2017 at 2:15 | Sarah Harley // Freelance Writer
Photo Credit: SylvieBouchard / ThinkStock

Located in Staten Island, New York, Enoteca Maria is restaurant run by grandmothers! Each woman working at the location help to bring home cooked and authentic meals from around the world.

 

Enoteca Maria was founded by Joe Scaravella. Growing up in Brooklyn, he used to eat his grandmother’s home cooked meals on a regular basis. Missing her cooking, he came up with this fantastic concept. Scaravella states that “growing up I realized that my grandmother had been the repository of our family culture and identity and I found out that, like her, millions of grandmothers all over the world pass down their heritage to their grandchildren.”

 

 

Nine years ago, he opened the restaurant and needless to say, it has been a hit. Originally focused on strictly Italian cooking, Scaravella broadened the restaurant’s horizons to all cultures. In 2016, he added grandmothers from Liberia, Columbia and Sri Lanka to his chef line-up.

 

 

Each night, a different cook “is matched with an advocate, or sous chef.” The New York Times states that on a Saturday night, Yumi Komatsudaira was the chef. She is from a small town outside of Tokyo, Japan. Even though she is not a grandmother, the restaurant was willing to make an exception for her. That night, she was pair up with a sous chef from Siberia.

 

Komatsudaira stated that the behind-the-scenes atmosphere is wonderful. Women are wiling to share cooking tips and hints while making food. Each chef may be from different areas all over the world, they all have one thing in common; food.

 

#enotecamaria #statenisland #nonnasoftheworld #deliciousness

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Wondering how a non-grandmom could be a part of the location? She visited the restaurant in January and asked to learn how to cook Polish food. Not only does Enoteca Maria offer food, but they also have free one-on-one cooking classes. The classes are taught by different women from all over the world. As noted by the New York Times, the classes are only for women, are taught by women and often book up months in advance.

 

Hosting a private cooking lesson during my pop-up dinner at #enotecamaria yesterday. My wonderful student Elaine learned a few tricks of the trade that make Japanese food so delicious- #dashi stock. Dashi is the foundation to all authentic Japanese cooking that gives #umami, full of natural amino acids that creates deliciousness. 昨日のポップアップディナー。日本の家庭料理やお出汁の真髄を学びたいと言う生徒さんの参加もあり楽しいイベントになりました。お出汁の持つ自然な旨味に驚かれていました! #vegan #rawfood #heathly #lifestyle #わかめ #昆布 #お出汁 #クッキングラム #wellness #cleaneating #feedfeed #seaweed #glutenfree #elleatable #detox #thekitchn #yahoofood #foodandwine #instafood #antioxidant #popupdinner #lin_stagrammer #海藻 #plantbased #delistagrammer8 #japanesefood #だし教室

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After her free lesson, owner Scaravella was impressed by her skills and asked her to make Japanese menu. One item currently on her list is Japanese friend chicken.

 

Right now, the restaurant is currently booked to capacity. However, people looking to dine at the location can be placed on a wait-list and altered if a spot opens up.

 

 

Sarah Harley is a Hufflepuff living in the NYC area. When she is not talking to random animals or collecting stickers, she is a comedy writer working in television production. Tweet her at @lumpyspacederp

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