We had the good fortune of connecting with Laura Posiak and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Laura, what is the most important factor behind your success?
When I look back on the timeline that brought me here, I think of all the different parts of the food industry I sought to experience; feeling the thrill of the line in the kitchen of a top San Francisco restaurant, spending hot summer days on a tractor tilling fields for next year’s crops, making skin sausage alongside an old Italian butcher. Though all that time it felt wrong not to commit to one specific trade, I now know each experience was an essential building block of the business, and having them was imperative to being where I am now.
What should our readers know about your business?
Starting my own business was surely the biggest leap I have taken in my life. Leaving the security of a stable job and putting my ideas out there was terrifying but I knew I had something to offer. I wanted to do something that sprang from my dedication to honoring the whole animal through artisanal butchery. Upon moving to Steamboat Springs my dream was to create a niche market that would share my delight in the butchery/charcuterie world and complement rather than compete with existing businesses. I began with Laura The Butcher, upscale charcuterie board catering delivered right to your door. This business allowed me to start small and didn’t involve the large investment of a brick and mortar. The business became successful enough to pursue full time. After a year of growth and an amazing response from the community and visitors, I was able to find my own space, expand my menu and open MEATBAR.
Having worked in the culinary industry for over 20 years I know how easy it is to get sucked into a work-only lifestyle. This has been the biggest challenge for me. But I’ve learned the more I make an effort to make time for myself, the more everything in my life thrives, including my business.
MEATBAR is a very special place. I love the concept of uniting big city flavors with small town charm. Nothing thrills me more than seeing a customer delight in having something they’ve experienced in their travels or something they have never eaten before.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
The energy that Steamboat Springs harbors is contagious, it doesn’t take very long to understand why people come to visit and then stay to live. The community is welcoming and it can feel like home very quickly. The perfect time in Steamboat for me always involves a balance of activity, food and drink. There are endless mountain biking and hiking trails that always end with a beer at Storm Peak Brewing company or a burrito on the river at Taco Cabo. For night life it’s fun to walk around downtown and pop into some of my favorite spots, a pre-dinner cocktail at Standard Gallery and Wine Bar or at Besame. Brunch is a must at Yampa Valley Kitchen and of course at some point there will always be a soak at Strawberry Park Hot Springs.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I dedicated a huge amount of my success to the WWOOF organization (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms). This organization allowed me to travel to several different countries, integrate into communities and learn about food directly from the source. This experience allowed me to find my passion in whole animal butchery and charcuterie making while working on a small farm in Italy.