Just down the street from her Urban Olive and Vine, Kay Timm is eight months into embarking on another endeavor in downtown Hudson. One that, along with co-owners Lynn Ulrich and Jane Wegand, she believes is reigniting a passion for cooking and filling a local niche.
Similar to her restaurant, Grand Fête at 512 Second St. offers an amazing assortment of gourmet olive oils and vinegars, along with personalized salt and seasoning mixes. The trio adds to the new store, however, a vibrant mix of kitchen accessories—everything from table dressings to pots and pans to creative gadgets that change with the seasons.
Perhaps most notably, Timm, Ulrich and Wegand listened to the voices of early customers who requested cooking classes; biweekly offerings dot Grand Fête’s Facebook page calendar, everything from wine and oil nights to pizza-making classes to kids’ culinary offerings.
Amidst the grand reception (pardon the pun), we stopped in to see what the buzz was all about, and discovered more than enough to fill a top five list—so these are just five of many favorites.
1. See? Salt!
Indeed, the seasonings counter at Grand Fête takes the cake, locally. Learn how each can be used in one of the many classes available throughout the month. Prices on seasonings range from $2.50 to $3.50 for pre-packaged seasonings and from $1.09 to $3.75 by oz., and classes average about $65.
2. A Variety of Picnic Baskets
Picnic baskets are about to come back into season, and these offer all sorts of arrangements, from date day to family outing, $65–$125.
3. All the Oils
Create your own smorgasbord of olive oils, a takeaway from co-owner Timm’s Urban Olive and Vine. A customized five-pack runs $19.95.
4. Utilitarian Items, like the World’s Greatest Double-helix Rapid Whisk Junior
Not alone in its usability, this silicone outer wire whisk is perfect for aerating dry ingredients with its inner metal double whisk, and small enough to be handy in almost any situation. $8.95.
5. Grill Thing, Pie Bird and Other Nifty Gifties
A novelty gift for just $4.95, this grilling tool is really a set of metal prongs, perfectly engineered, as the packaging claims, to “fit almost any wood stick you can find”—ideal as we approach spring camping season and Father’s Day. The store is robust in its eclectic offerings and a nice range of price points, including one for Mother’s Day: The Perfect Pie Bird has a convenient opening in its upward-turned beak to allow steam through while fruit and meat pies bake around it.
A full class list can be found on the Facebook page, Grand Fête, and sign ups can be done via the phone.