Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a great holiday season, spending time with family and friends and eating amazing food, especially cheese. As the calendar turns to 2016, I have refocused my efforts on the shop, including finalizing a location, expanding my cheese knowledge and increasing my social media presence.

Finalizing A Location

As you may already know, I am interested in a spot in the Gordon Square Arts District that I believe has many unique aspects that can only be found in this particular location. The problem is it needs to be built out and I am not sure my budget allows for such an expensive process. I am currently working with the landlord, architects and contractors to see what my buildout vision would cost and, unfortunately, if that is too expensive, how to lower the price. If I am unable to afford even the most basic buildout, I must move on and start looking for a new location. With the holidays past, I am hoping to have all of these unknowns figured out sooner rather than later so I am not spinning my wheels on a location that has so many unknowns.

Expanding Cheese Knowledge

With wanting to open a local foods shop that specializes in Ohio cheeses, cheese knowledge is obviously priority #1. As I work through the business aspects of the shop, I plan to visit local grocery stores and the West Side Market, purchasing and learning about various cheeses. I plan to report back via blog posts and social media. I have already sampled many cheeses via my grilled cheese blog (and book), but there remains many more types/varieties to explore. Just today I purchased Challerhocker and Cypress Grover’s Lamb Chopper. As soon as I have researched and sampled both cheeses, I will write a new blog post highlighting each cheese and explaining their unique attributes. Stay tuned.

Increasing Social Media Presence

My social media presence began when I started GrilledShane.com and until recently, I have never known anything else. That is until I started Twitter and Facebook accounts for locavoreCLE and essentially stopped using my GrilledShane social media accounts. I am walking a fine line between my locavoreCLE accounts being too personal or too corporate. Once the shop opens, I will have regular items to tweet, but in the meantime, as I build my social media following, I must find interesting subjects to tweet. Examples include sharing all of my cheese tastings, as mentioned above, any updates to the shop, as well as any Cleveland or cheese related items I stumble upon. I hope to make my accounts more informative and entertaining in the new year.

There is a lot to be done ahead of my goal of opening, but, with renewed focus and increased passion, I know I am well on my way. Here is to 2016 being the year of locavoreCLE.

Photo Caption: E4th Street as taken by yours truly