Happy Birthday Burke's Bites

How it All Began...

It's hard to believe 2 years ago today I decided to create BURKE'S BITES. Most of my friends and family knew I loved to cook but a lot of them don't know the back story of why the blog was actually created.

At that moment in my life, I had gone through a breakup and a death all in the same week. I was seeking some kind of creative outlet to keep myself distracted and occupied from the pain of loss and loneliness. 

I have always loved to cook and entertain but in the weeks, even months leading up to the creation of the blog, I barely had any time to do either of them. I was juggling taking care of a dying grandparent, a high pressured fashion designer job with crazy hours and trying to maintain a relationship/social life. All with a smile on my face. This left me with little to no time for myself or even time to just run to the grocery store and cook something up. Then, everything came to a screeching halt. 

After my grandmother had passed, there was a numbness that I just couldn't shake off.  I wanted to honor her in some kind of way, but couldn't find the outlet. My grandmother had taught me how to sew, helped me become a better artist, and showed me the ways of her Italian kitchen. Then it hit me! I could keep her memory alive by starting to recreate some of her recipes that she had taught me in a blog. It would not only challenge me to become half the cook she once was but also help me understand that when you cook, you cook with love and you share that love with the ones that you choose to feed. 

Grandma and I at her 85th Birthday! Doesn't she look amazing?! 

Grandma and I at her 85th Birthday! Doesn't she look amazing?! 

Although my appetite was slim to none at that point, which comes with the sense of loss, getting back in the kitchen helped me connect with her more than ever before. I was lucky enough to had inherited a lot of her cooking supplies like pots and pans and even some of her "vintage supplies". It was like she was there with me. The act of cooking and sharing not only her recipes but also my own with my friends and loved ones was an essential part of the healing process. One recipe led to another and before I knew it, my "healing process" of cooking had transformed into a passion. Two years later, now when I cook in the kitchen, I don't feel a sense of sadness, I feel like I have a date night with Grandma. 

Reservation for One Please! 

I am lucky I get to live in such a diverse culinary city. A city that has any type of cuisine I could have ever dreamed of. A city where Chefs are treated like gods, and if you are luck enough to get a reservation at an elite spot is like you've hit the jackpot. 

Since starting the blog, I have become fascinated with the culinary world. It runs parallel to the Fashion Industry, in which I work in. Fast paced, cut throat, and constantly changing. Perhaps that is why I gravitated towards it. You begin to learn that a plate of food can be transformed into a work of art and that dining out becomes an experience and not just a meal with friends. One of my favorite shows, which you all should be watching on Netflix, is called Chefs Table. It follows some of the best, elite chefs in the world and their journey on how they got to where they are in life. After binge watching each episode , I left feeling completely inspired and wanting to learn even more about this fast-paced tasty industry. 

Chef David Burke at Tavern 62 (no we are not related!)

Chef David Burke at Tavern 62 (no we are not related!)

I will continue to keep eating my way through Manhattan, and giving recommendations of where my friends and family should eat next time they visit the Big Apple. As I have continue to learn more about the cooking and restaurant hospitality world, I have a few things up my sleeve for this next year. Partnering with some of New York's Big restaurants to see what it's life to be an executive chef? You will have to stay tuned to find out!! 

What the Future Holds for Burke's Bites

PHOTO CRED: Matt Powers 

PHOTO CRED: Matt Powers 

Where do I go from here? Do I want to be an executive chef at a restaurant? Probably not. Do I want to continue to create yummy recipes that are practical for my viewers and friends? Absolutely. I am still getting the hang of all of this. Juggling social media, the website, cooking new product and adding recipes each week has become a full time side gig! But, I love it. 

I can promise you this. This year will bring more video tutorials, restaurant reviews, and experimenting with new cuisines. I even want to somehow incorporate what I do for a living, Fashion, into the mix as well (still trying to work through that in my head).

A lot of my viewers have also asked me if I would ever think about catering. To expand the brand and actually start to make some $$. Also, on the table of possibilities. 

The opportunities are endless and the sky is the limit!! I am excited for what this 3rd year will bring but I wanted to thank everyone for being such supportive subscribers to BURKE'S BITES. Without you, none of this would be worth it!

Cheers! 

xoxo

Alex