By MICHELLE Love | Workers Author
Etricia Robinson is the first to inform you she is a perfectionist. As the owner of the catering business and foods truck Gumbo to Geaux, Robinson does her pretty finest to make positive each individual customer’s experience is fantastic.
“I want every little thing to go exactly correct,” she said. “I want matters to be ideal. If it’s not particularly fantastic, I consider it is awful. Individuals will appear up to me and say, ‘That function was so fantastic!’ and I’ll be like, ‘Eh, could have been better.’”
Gumbo to Geaux has been serving typical, manufactured-from-scratch Cajun dishes to the people today of Birmingham and Shelby County given that 2014. Robinson’s enjoy for foodstuff, having said that, began several many years right before that.
Her lifestyle has been distribute during the South, remaining born in Natchez, Mississippi and splitting her time expanding up among there and Louisiana. Her father was from Baton Rouge and she had other relatives members in New Orleans. It was her grandmother, Sadie Williams, who taught her the importance of sharing food with other folks.
“She mainly cooked for our full community,” Robinson claimed. “She had an in-house daycare, but on Sundays she would cook for every person. I constantly instructed men and women, ‘If you’re at any time hungry on Sundays just go by Sadie’s household.’”
Her grandmother cooked anything and every little thing, but Robinson said she loved building vintage, southern ease and comfort food stuff. “I experienced to shell out for culinary university to master it’s possible about a single-third of what I could [have] discovered spending awareness to her,” Robinson wrote on her web page.
She arrived to Alabama to attend the College of Montevallo, and immediately after that built her way to Helena to open her first restaurant, a Cajun fusion cafe known as 122 Tree Lane. The cafe was thriving but when her mom took sick, Robinson went back again to Baton Rouge to aid her relatives. When she came back again she understood her heart wasn’t in the right position for a cafe. Gumbo to Geaux catering was then born.
Robinson reported when she built the final decision to start a catering business, almost everything started to fall into spot. “I discovered the title Gumbo to Geaux on the net,” she reported. “I beloved it and I needed to trademark the title and when I went to appear at the availability it was not only available, the lifeless date was my birthday. I was like, ‘Oh, it is intended to be mine!’”
They started executing catering for company activities and slowly began setting up their consumer base. Robinson commenced securing clients at a local logistics company and at regional hospitals, which finished up lying heavily in her favor once the pandemic strike.
“Luckily for me, individuals consumers were being crucial employees and I finished up catering for them. The logistics corporation was 50 % ability so it was only 125 folks, but that’s however a ton when it will come to catering, and the clinic staff, given that they couldn’t depart they were being ordering much more lunches than at any time,” she reported.
Although their catering thrived during the pandemic, the stars aligned yet again when Robinson went to revisit a previous desire to locate a foods truck.
“I did not want to invest in a truck on the chance I ended up hating it,” Robinson stated. “So, I held carrying out catering and just one day I got on Fb just randomly and I uncovered a truck for rent.”
She commenced renting the truck in October of 2020, and they are now so productive they are in the course of action of buying a truck of their personal. Robinson explained the Gumbo to Geaux truck is one of a kind in that they are providing new foods with generous, filling parts.
“I glance at other foods vans and they are all either barbecue, tacos, or wings,” she mentioned. “We’re bringing you gumbo, pasta, shrimp and grits, authentic food! We’re like a cafe on wheels for actual. We do have burgers but we have real, hot food items that is made to order for every single person human being. I simply cannot stand when I wait in line at a truck and my foods is cold.”
Robinson explained a further rationale she thinks their foods is so well-liked is due to the fact there are so handful of alternatives for real, from-scratch Cajun food in the spot.
“When I came again [from Baton Rouge] there had been a few little destinations that had opened and were providing Cajun food, but it was nonetheless a specialized niche industry. I indicate if I was promoting gumbo in Baton Rouge, forget about it, but right here it’s different for the reason that there are not that numerous Cajun areas.”
She reported she’s not worried about the level of competition. “We’re all loved ones, lagniappe and all that things,” she reported. “We’re all in this article to do the very same point.”
Irrespective of whether it’s a marriage, a birthday, or a corporate function, Robinson just has 1 intention: to convey comfort by way of superior meals. “We just want persons to get pleasure from on their own,” she explained. “Food is not supposed to be challenging. It is just something that would make you really feel comforted, and I want men and women when they eat my food items to be comforted.”
For much more data on Gumbo to Geaux, check out their web-site at www.gumbotogeaux.com.