Cooking up a Business from Scratch (podcast)

May 5th, 2017 | By | Category: Featured Articles, the show
Cook's Nook

The Cook’s Nook is open for business. Photo: Joi Chevalier

Cooking up a Business from Scratch

Nearly every home cook I know has a culinary specialty that receives validation from family and friends. It’s not uncommon for tasters to encourage the cook to take their creation or concept to market. As anyone who’s been through it can tell you: That process can be a long, frustrating and lonely journey.

But not if Joi Chevalier has anything to say about it.

Joi is the founder and owner of the Cook’s Nook–a culinary incubator for food professionals. She cooked up this this bright and inviting two-building complex located on the thriving east side of Austin, Texas–from scratch–to provide kitchen space, co-working, business development, entrepreneur development, and channel and capital access for food entrepreneurs in the food and tech industry.

With close to 20 years in the tech industry, and a degree from the Auguste Escoffier School of Culinary Arts, Joi has the skillsets necessary to guide food entrepreneurs. But even she doesn’t work alone. Joi has a cadre of coaches, mentors and business people ready to help mold budding businesses.

They offer business development and networking tools to make their members’ businesses successful.

Joi and her team help entrepreneurs understand their product, market, and whether they actually have a business and a product, or just a product.  Entrepreneurs learn what questions to ask of themselves and of others, and how to find the answers they need to keep moving forward.

The Cook’s Nook is a  member-based model. In addition to members having access to production hours and space, Joi says there are member-peer meetings to discuss and solve problems that are common in early stage growth, and she may also bring in other chefs to consult on the product, recipe, or costing. A current member of Cook’s Nook, the non dairy Kokonut Yogurt is already available around town. While entrepreneurs receive as much support as they need, they’re still the ones doing the heavy lifting.

“Because in the end,” says Joi, “it’s still their business.”

And Joi Chevalier and the other professionals at The Cook’s Nook culinary incubator for food professionals, want it to be successful.

The Cook's Nook Ribbon Cutting

The Cook’s Nook official grand opening is Wednesday, May 24th from 1-3pm with a ribbon cutting with The Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce plus food and drink! It’s limited to 75 guests. Register to attend here.

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3 comments
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  1. As a proud parent, I am so happy to see Joi’s dream come to fruition. She has diligently worked against all odds to build a product that would make the Austin community proud.
    Thank you for giving The Cook’s Nook well deserved exposure.

  2. Congratulations Joi! You bring a much needed component to the Austin Good Food EcoSystem!

    Celeste – we can see why you’re proud! Joi is literally a joy! Couldn’t resist that!

    All the best, your friends at AFI,

    Curt, Jarred, Eric, & Gene

  3. I’m so proud of you, Joi. You’ve worked hard to build a place for people to learn, share ideas, and build their businesses. Kudos to you. I know the Cook’s Nook will be hugely successful!

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