Thursday, December 5, 2013

Chef Adam Hegsted launches Kickstarter campaign for two Kendall Yards restaurants

Posted By on Thu, Dec 5, 2013 at 10:34 AM

click to enlarge Yards Bruncheon, scheduled to open in February, under construction in Kendall Yards on Wednesday. - LISA WAANANEN
  • Lisa Waananen
  • Yards Bruncheon, scheduled to open in February, under construction in Kendall Yards on Wednesday.

Chef Adam Hegsted is opening two new restaurants in Kendall Yards next year, and he just launched a Kickstarter campaign that offers the most detailed picture yet of what to expect.

Yards Bruncheon, a diner-style breakfast and lunch spot, is expected to open as soon as February. Wandering Table, a Northwest-centric tapas and cocktail restaurant, will open soon after.

In the campaign, Hegsted explains how the project got its start four years ago with the Wandering Table supper club concept, which creates meals entirely with local and seasonal food:

“I won't say it was all easy, it started a little rough and a little unrefined, but people could see the passion, creativity and love for what we do. Slowly as we grew, honed in on our technique, service and ability to create a restaurant on a beach or in a park, the "restaurant" got better. We now have a chance to create two restaurants with real walls and floors.”

The Kickstarter goal — $34,000 — is modest compared to the total cost of construction, so this seems to be more about community buy-in than financing the operation. It says: “For us to be able to create these restaurants we need help with funding our beginning inventories.”

click to enlarge Detail from Yards Bruncheon conceptual drawing.
  • Detail from Yards Bruncheon conceptual drawing.

Rewards for people who contribute include truffles, tickets to the pre-opening party and full 12-course dinners. For just $10 you can get your name on the wall of one of the restaurants as a supporter.

Hegsted, currently executive chef at the Coeur d' Alene Casino and Resort, also writes about the challenges of moving to something that’s entirely his own:

“We are going from a stable restaurant world on to our own projects which are a little tough at first. Obviously this is a huge undertaking and is a little frightening to go out on my own. I am willing to risk this for a chance to create in an uninfluenced atmosphere where food is the leader and will guide our decisions.”

In the past, Kickstarter has had the reputation for giving long-shot ideas a chance. This year we’ve seen an increase in established companies using it as a way to fund new projects or side ventures, from Sante’s trip to the James Beard House in New York to the new game from Cyan, creator of Myst. Batch Bakeshop, a farmers market favorite, has a campaign right now working toward an actual storefront sometime next year.

The Yards/Wandering Table campaign wraps up at the end of the year, with a Dec. 31 deadline.

Look for an interview with Hegsted later today in this week's Entree email newsletter (or sign up here.)


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