Sure there are those useful life skills like, how to fix a hole in our clothes or how to bake a cake,
but they also teach us essential life lessons, like how we should be treated with respect and how we should stand up for what we believe in.
However, as many of you will know, there is another vital lesson we traditionally turn to our grandmothers for, that being how to cook.
There’s nothing better than our grandmother’s recipe – it’s one that’ll be passed down through the family for generations.
who truly gets this concept has done something special; they have turned ‘grandmother’s cooking’ into their speciality.
Enoteca Maria is a restaurant which only employs grandmothers.
Based in State Island, New York, the Italian owner of the restaurant, Jody Scaravella, decided at first to only employ nonnas (Italian for ‘grandmothers’) from all over the world.
Jody was inspired to open the restaurant after both his mother and his sister passed away. He found the idea of being surrounded by grandmothers to be very comforting.
But upon opening the restaurant, he noticed how many of his customers were visiting mainly to celebrate the Italian grandmothers, despite coming from a variety of cultures. All this love flooding in inspired Jody to hire even more chefs – and now, Enoteca Maria houses nonnas from all corners of the globe, including Sri Lanka, Japan, Russia, Colombia, Armenia, the Philippines.
‘There are probably somewhere between 30 and 40 grandmothers from different countries’, Jody told Great Big Story.
On a regular night, there are usually two grandmothers on a shift at a time – one of whom is always Italian.
Jody notes that there is always an incredible energy in the kitchen – that always passes through to the dining area.
He said: ‘When you walk through the restaurant, if you listen, every table that you pass by, they’re talking about their mothers, or they’re talking about their grandmothers.
‘It evokes a trip down memory lane.’
Not only are these ‘trips down memory lane’ setting a perfect atmosphere for diners in the restaurant, but being surrounded by such hard working women from various backgrounds is a great reminder to never give up on doing good.
And amazingly, these grandmothers are upping the game – by offering classes to their customers.
They are offering free one-on-one classes for other women, teaching them how to cook incredible meals from diverse cultures – therefore helping them both to become a master chef and also to educate them on cultures around the world.