We had the good fortune of connecting with Francis Schneeweiss and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Francis, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I had always dreamed of being involved in the food and entertainment business. As a child, I saw myself being a Taquera in Mexico City, where I come from. As an adult, along with being a professional educator, I have worked on and off in restaurants and food businesses. I came up with the idea of doing a catering company that combines the love that I feel for teaching my Mexican culture and the love that I have for preparing and eating good food. Volcan Azul focuses on bringing the Mercado Experience to your events. Thus, allowing participants, guests to feel like they are in a Mexican Mercado. Where colorful booths, each with a server preparing food right in front of your eyes, engages you in an experience of seeing, hearing, smelling and tasting the dishes being made. Furthermore, I want this catering company to become a Cooperativa (Cooperative). Like the mercados in Mexico, this idea incorporates shared ownership with all it’s workers.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Volcan Azul Catering is a unique company that sets events as Mexican Mercados. We bring a cultural experience to events that is catered to individual desires. In some cases, we bring a loud Mercado Experience, where a DJ and Animator engages with guests, as much as our food stations’ servers shout out about the dishes they are making. In other parties the desire is for the Mercado booths and servers to look uniformly elegant and to engage with guests discreetly. We strive to showcase beautifully designed booths and dishes, and we know that our flavors are a delight.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Colorado is known for it’s mountains. So many day-hikes will be part of this trip. Some favorites year by Longmont are Longs Peak, the Royal Arch in Boulder and Heil Ranch. Of course, the bike trail along the St. Vrain River in Longmont is a must do. Getting off to have a beer at Left Hand Brewery! As a matter of fact, all the breweries in Longmont are great places to chillout. I would also take my friends to Denver for about two days and walk through the Capitol, the murals and some of the museums. As for upper mountains, I would take them to explore around Breckenridge to Leadville. This would include towns and nature hikes. Another area of Colorado that I love is the Southwest. I would take them toward the Sand Dunes, stopping in smaller towns to sleep for the night and explore the areas, like Bishop Castle.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to thank my family, my partner Allison and my sons Alexei and Max for always being there for me. Also, my family in Mexico, mi Ama y Apa (parents), mis hermanas (sisters) and mi tia y tio (aunt and uncle). I extend my gratitude to my awesome friend here in Colorado who have supported me from the start: Jessica from Opening to Possibilities, and to my neighbors that come to eat my food from the Volcan Azul Foodtruck. Of course, thanks to all my costumers that follow me when Volcan Azul Foodtruck is at a brewery, and to those clients that have hired Volcan Azul Catering for their events. Thanks to EforAll – EparaTodos for having me participate in their accelerator program. Through them and my EforAll mentors, I continue to learn about running a business efficiently.
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