In early July, F&M closed to afford our team a much-needed break. As a result of this time away, I realized Field & Main was ready to evolve. We had spent the previous 4 months shifting almost daily in response to the phased restrictions imposed by quarantine. It was time to stop reacting and start growing.
F&M needed to grow to survive. We needed to grow in order to fulfill our mission. We needed to build a restaurant that could naturally adapt to the needs of our guests, pandemic or otherwise. I needed to move past my own fears of survival and figure out what was needed to allow us to thrive.
I was inspired by all of you, our guests. As I listened to your own stories of thriving and surviving, I empathized with your experiences. I realized we now had the opportunity to serve three distinct groups.
Pre-COVID you were all our guests, plain and simple. Once COVID arrived, a new group formed for whom take-out was the only safe option. Others were ready to dine again, but not inside. The final group are those who are ready to dine inside assuming proper sanitation and distancing protocols are observed.
As I thought about specific guests and which group they fall into, I realized the restaurant I had operated for three and a half years was not adequately equipped to serve all three groups.
We had a choice to make. Continue to operate as we had been before COVID and potentially say goodbye to part of our community or evolve and expand in order to continue serving all of you. The choice was easy. The hard part was execution. Growing pains are real and we have been doing a lot of growing these last few weeks.
We expanded our hours, opening six days a week for both lunch and dinner. We also continue to offer a To Go Menu and Market. In addition, we built seven cabanas on the back lawn for any guest who wishes to dine but does not want to do so inside.
Tables have been removed to provide adequate space to dine comfortably and safely indoors. We closed the bar and removed the counter seating in the kitchen to ensure your safety and that of our team.
I officially stepped into the role of chef.
This causes me to pause as I write this. I left a government job nearly twenty years ago to attend culinary school so that one day I could own and operate a restaurant, develop relationships with farmers and artisans, serve their wares, employ two dozen people and make an impact on a community.
It took a pandemic for me to realize I had all of this and that it was time for me to fully assume my role in the vision I have had for this restaurant for two decades.
If you have been away, I invite you to return to F&M. You will find that we are here to serve you in whatever way is best for you. For those of you that are dining with us already, I thank you. F&M is experiencing record sales thanks to your patronage.
Together we are proving that the bonds formed through food and drink are enduring. The relationships we have forged need not be supplanted by circumstances. We need only change how we do what we do so that we can continue to actively support one another.