A mother and daughter duo are digging in and planting some roots for their popular Med City specialty food businesses.
Amy Lorber and her mother, Linda Lorber, launched Gardenaire in 2016 to sell infused syrups, spice mixes, flavored “shrub” drink mixers, teas and other organic creations they make mostly from locally grown ingredients from their Rochester garden and elsewhere.
They are regulars at the Rochester Farmers Market and their products can be found in dishes and drinks at local restaurants, including Le Petit Cafe.
Now the Lorbers are taking a big step to give their business a brick-and-mortar footprint in southwest Rochester.
“We’re very excited and a little terrified,” said Amy Lorber.
They are working on launching Figue — the French word for fig — at 1190 16th St. SW, on the west end of the Apache Shoppes center. That’s the spot last occupied by Cook’s Pantry.
The hope is to open the doors of Figue by late July or early August.
Like a multiple course meal, Figue will feature a variety of elements for “people who love food.”
First, it will offer a variety of flavorful specialty foods including Gardenaire products, cooking gear and even related home decor items for sale.
“We feel you need a retail element to make it all work,” said Amy Lorber.
It will also have a demonstration kitchen for area cooks, such as Tiffany Alexandria of ChooChoo-Ca-Chew, to host classes on how to create their favorite dishes.
“We have such a great melting pot here … all of these people from all over the world. What a cool thing to get to learn about their special local dish,” said Amy Lorber.
Figue will also house a commercial kitchen that will give the Lorbers a permanent place to produce their Gardenaire products and possibly be available for others to use.
“There is a real need for small food producers. Commercial kitchens are at a premium locally,” said Amy Lorber.