RFD Santa Monica, Biblical and historical milestones…
A big event this past week really got me looking back to the beginning …
RFD in Santa Monica opened its doors on the summer solstice, June 21, 1993.
Having given birth to a few babies, I can say the lead up and the morning of was like giving birth. All my juices were flowing, my mother was there to hold my hand, my husband was the proud papa and the young gals I hired to open the store with me were like angels. At that moment, little did we know what RFD would grow into. We conducted a Feng Shui ceremony, burning the skins of oranges and with flutes and fire we walked the tiny original space of 514 chanting blessings. These chants worked as RFD has grown into an ever-evolving and thriving restaurant. At 17 years and 4 months, its an an entity unto itself. – I like to say, it is Biblical as we have folks eating with us today who have been eating with us since the beginning.
In the first fifteen years, we spent a lot of time contemplating taking over the neighboring restaurant space. Somehow, it never seemed the right time to take this plunge. We were busy opening a second location in West Hollywood; I had a few kids, wrote a cookbook, filmed a two season cooking show and dealt with the day-to-day pressures of running restaurants.
In 2008, the time seemed right and we took the neighboring space, renovated it and opened RFD’s Bakery Café, showcasing our very fine gourmet desserts and health supportive baked goods. After a lengthy process with permitting and legalities, we’ve connected the two spaces by knocking through an opening in the front dining areas.
The wall has come down, now, it’s historical!
Why did we do it? (Aside from the fact that we always wanted to.) Efficiency is the key word with an easier flow through, as the people who are dining as well as out amazing staff can move easily from side to side. It’s also cool and exciting and watching the faces of people who see the connection for the first time – that has been really cool. Of course, now, I think what took me so long!
Here are a few captured moments, from the morning after we tore the wall down.
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