Hey Pretty Birds;
This autumn will mark 10 years of Tamu’s Café, a very special episodic production from me and my team, and I would like to ring in this anniversary with an explanation of this project’s origins… and its destinations!
Our first episode featured food content creators Riccardo Casiraghi and Stefano Paleari of The Gnam Box, and launched as a vehicle to share the deep conversations we love to share with friends over a great meal made with joy and love.
My most enduring memories are informed by meals shared with loved ones. A famous family tale recounts me demanding my own whole steam fish as a toddler. At the time, I lived with my grand-aunt Irie in Kingston, Jamaica, and to say that Irie doted on me is an absolute understatement. “I want a fiss,” I would demand, and off she would dash to the market to pick our dinner from that day’s catch. In line with my family’s testament of how determined I was as a toddler, I always insisted on eating my entire fish by myself, and one evening over my fish dinner, I swallowed a bone. I vividly remember working that bone out of my air passage in silence, in an effort not to alarm auntie Irie at the risk of cutting myself off from personal whole fishes in the future. Choking averted, my aunt thereafter began the meticulous task of deboning and shredding the meat of my whole fish so that I could enjoy it risk-free. My heart is always warmed when I think of her devotion to my favourite meal.
I know that many of you have love stories connected to dishes prepared by your most cherished - your grandmother, your aunt, uncle. You fondly recall the affectionate energy the preparing hands put into each dish. This is the exact energy Tamu’s Café strives to bring into the kitchen when we invite our friends to break bread. Food, much like style, is a supreme connector, and it is my honour to enjoy some of my guests favourite dishes over deep conversation.
I have always been very social, and I always aim to surround myself with like-hearted individuals. The world of Tamu’s Café is a space where guests can come, feel at home, stay for hours, connect with our team members and move through the meal as conversation unfolds in a candid way. We aim to create a moment of peace and connection while poring over ingredients, or even just unpacking and plating a decadent takeout meal. Over our meal we deepen our knowledge of guest’s passions, life experiences and our connection.
Throughout the seasons, we have discussed topics ranging from same-sex marriage, to racism in Italy, self care practices, building a business from the ground up, remaining true to vision, operating from a place of humility and the the art of couture. Most recently, in Issue #1 of our new format, we discussed June Ambrose’s illustrious career and journey through motherhood. In Issue #2, we brunched with author Raquel Willis, who offered a brilliant underscore to the urgency of fighting for transgender rights. And piping hot for your pleasure, Issue #3 includes my personally highly-anticipated Chinese takeout meal with social entrepreneur Rachel Cargle, who explains that the element of humanity in asking for help opens up limitless possibilities for community building.
Tamu’s Café will always be luminous, warm, nonjudgmental, introspective - and tough with love, where needed. We hope that every forkful we share will make its way to your palate, mind and your heart. I hope these stories will resonate with you, inspire you, accompany your healing, validate your journey and most importantly make you feel seen and welcomed. Tamu’s Café is an experience for the community, and we specialise in comfort food that is crafted for your soul.
Love and always love,