Under perfect circumstances, opening a start-up business is a level of risk that many people just can’t tolerate. Among start-up categories, a restaurant is one of the riskiest.
But Dmitry Gorin had left a law practice in Siberia in 2010, moved to the U.S. to pursue the American Dream even though he spoke no English, and decided to take the leap to go into business for himself by opening a restaurant in Rehoboth, Delaware. A move like that is assuming risk on a whole different level.
With the help and support of his wife, Oleysa Kochegura, and his friend and business partner, Yauhen Yurhelevich, Dmitry ventured into a niche category (more risk) – opening SEED Eatery in Rehoboth in 2019, targeting vegan and vegetarian diners and consumers seeking healthy alternatives to meat and dairy meals. The menu features all local ingredients, is gluten-free, egg-free, sugar-free, and dairy free.
Since coming to the states, Dmitry had amassed extensive experience in eight years working in the restaurant industry in a variety of small cafes, medium sized restaurants, and even in large chains such as Hilton Hotels.
At the same time, Yauhen, who had been a Chef in Belarus, was honing his skills and refining his palate in countries across the world. Coming back to the states, he spent six years as Sous Chef and Chef, and developed a reputation for excellence at Rehoboth’s popular Houston White Co.
Dmitry needed a loan for start-up capital, and after contacting three banks, he realized he needed a funder that would take a calculated risk on a startup. True Access Capital was that lender.
SEED opened in February, 2019, with a business model to serve 60 percent take-out meals and 40 percent dine in. Within a month, indoor dining was prohibited because of COVID-19. Unfazed, Dmitry jumped into action to create the technology for contact-free full take-out, including a creating website, integrating with the point-of-sale system, and a building a phone app in just two weeks.
And then it was back to business, and the take-out business was booming.
“I certainly wouldn’t call COVID a good thing,” said Dmitry, “but it did force us to create the technology we need to keep our business moving. With the ability to move into full takeout mode, we stayed busy and built a loyal local following.
“We created Seed Eatery for people who appreciate wholesome, balanced meals with colorful vegetables, whole grains, healthy fats, and lean proteins. Everything on our menu is fresh and made from scratch with organic and non-GMO ingredients, without coloring or preservatives. We take a lot of satisfaction from knowing that people can eat healthy and safely at Seed Eatery,” Dmitry said.