After 10 years, Ben Salmon of Kitchen a la Mode in South Orange announced that he has sold the store to fellow South Orange entrepreneur/retailer Catherine “Cat” Fisher, proprietor of Sadie’s on Valley Street.
Salmon, a former Board member of the South Orange Village Center Alliance, made the announcement on Facebook (see below).
For her part, Fisher told Village Green, “I am excited to bring my 15 years of retail experience to Kitchen Al a Mode focusing on continuing the mission of a community based all in one kitchen destination and bringing more community partnerships and events to the store.”
Fisher added, “I am really excited for the future and the future of downtown South Orange.”
From Ben Salmon:
As you can imagine, this announcement comes with some mixed emotions but I’m really excited to share some big news with you all: Kitchen a la Mode has been purchased by a talented local entrepreneur and retailer who I’ve had the fortune of knowing for a number of years.
Cat Fisher, the owner of Sadie’s in South Orange, has taken my helm at the shop. Her energy, passion, business smarts, easy going nature, retail instincts and impeccable organizational abilities will be an asset to the business; I believe she has the skill set to continue the incredible growth we’ve seen throughout the last decade. Kitchen a la Mode has been successful because of all of you and I don’t know many folks that value a shop’s community as much as Cat does. I know the business is in very capable and steadfast hands, especially in conjunction with Kathleen Gage and Evie Crawford, whose 15 years combined experience at the store has made it a huge success and will continue to do so.
Personally, I have so loved being intertwined with Kitchen a la Mode for the last ten years. My customers, my vendor partners and my fellow retailers from across the country are a big part of who I am today. I wouldn’t trade it for the world. With four kids ages nine and under, I am ready to have some more consistency in my life, the ability to go to their soccer games on Saturdays, be present during holidays and generally look forward to the concepts of benefits and paid time off. Don’t worry, I don’t intend on going very far. South Orange and this industry are both very much my home. The sale of the business happened so quickly that I am just now beginning to explore my next steps, likely brand management, product development, buying or merchandising on the vendor or retailer side. Anyone who has ever talked to me about food or product knows the passion for it runs through my blood.
I hope you can take a moment to welcome Cat into the Kitchen a la Mode family. Stores like this are the lifeline of downtowns and the hallmark of customer service and the retail experience. If you can, I ask that you commit to buying at least one holiday present from the shop this season. It is a special place and as difficult as it will be for me to not be there every day, I intend to visit and shop frequently!
I look forward to watching Kitchen a la Mode grow and evolve over the years and continue to garner recognition and awards from the industry. Keep an eye on this space for an introductory post from Cat Fisher!
With sincerity and appreciation,