On March 24 I started working on a project called Take Out Only in response to the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on restaurants in my area. In my work as a food photographer, I work with a lot of restaurants, both established and new. This is a huge hit for them. When most restaurants fail in the first year, something like this can put even a restaurant that has been in business for years out of business...fast. The impact of this virus has touched so many industries, my own included.
I wanted to bring attention to the places that I've worked with, and the ones that I have never even been to. To let people know what they're dealing with, how they're still
operating, what they're doing to stay safe, both for themselves and their customers. Using what I can out of my talent set, this is my way of saying thank you, we know you're struggling, how can I help.
On the advice of Ki'Yen at Tiger Belly, I headed over to Fork & FIre in Farmington. Ki'yen knows some people. Thanks, Man! As soon as I walked in I was greeted by Ruvin Bogati, the manager. Turns out we're Facebook friends, but we'd never met in person before! So nice to finally meet, he has this inner happy that is infectious. Perfect :)
They were prepping for dinner and not much else was going on at the moment, and he recommended I come back at 5:30 when stuff gets going. I actually went out to my car and chilled until then.
By the time 5:30 rolled around Chef Jason Welch, Danny, Ruvin, and Nacho were revvin up for the night. I stood back and let them do their thing. Danny was putting together Old-Fashioned Kits to go. What a great idea. Comes with it's own little bottle of bourbon! They were running to the curb making deliveries, answering the phone and the kitchen was cranking.
I see these places looking so busy. But I don't know the usual volume the put out. I'm sure the takeout is not the usual numbers they do when people can come in and sit. But they're still there, still getting good food and drink out to people. People are supporting them in what they do. I feel like this whole thing has caused us to adjust. To adjust what we see as success, what is enough, what we need, what we can do, to slow down and reassess.
Thanks so much to Chef Jason, Ruvin, Danny and Nacho for letting me document them doing what they do at Fork & Fire.
A bit from their website: "We proudly serve Certified Humane Angus beef & Certified Organic Free Range chicken. Our mission is to provide our guests with humanely raised, environmentally-sustained animals, using no antibiotics, no pesticides, and no added hormones."
Fork & Fire is located at 838 Farmington Avenue, Farmington, CT l 860.255.7674
Please note: I practice social distancing guidelines, shoot with long lenses to look like I'm closer than I am, get in and get out to stay out of the way and do not go in to kitchen's unless invited, stay far back from food and I check my temperature before going out