Tess’ Kitchen Store celebrates five years with owner Steve Rosenthal
November 12, 2015
When Steve Rosenthal retired from a 30 year career in the tech industry, 27 of those years spent traveling the world for Hewlett Packard, he wanted a change. Not ready to sit home and play golf all day, Rosenthal wanted to be a part of the community in a big way.
Growing up in Boston, Rosenthal was often his mother’s sous chef when she entertained guests, which was often. He fell in love with cooking early and even perfected toaster oven meals while a student at Tufts University. Rosenthal wanted to run a small business, something that had intrigued him for many years, but knew that starting one from scratch was a difficult endeavor; 80% of small businesses fail in the first year. So he Googled “small businesses for sale in Grass Valley” and Tess’ Kitchen Store popped up on his screen. “Perfect,” he thought, and with one decision changed his life.
Rosenthal bought Tess’ in 2010. By the end of 2012 he had moved a few doors down to the store’s current location so that he could expand what the store had to offer, opened the commercial kitchen in the downstairs space and started offering cooking classes, which have been a huge hit and are often sold out weeks in advance.
The Culinary Hub of the Foothills
In his job at Hewlett Packard, Rosenthal had had the opportunity to travel the world and sample cuisines across the globe. He has brought a taste of the world to the community in the store’s cooking classes and monthly Chef’s Table events, in which chef Alan Tangren prepares gourmet meals for twelve using locally sourced ingredients as much as possible. “I have worked to make Tess’ the culinary hub of the foothills,” said Rosenthal. “From knowledge to tools to ingredients to serve ware, we have everything you need to be a great cook and entertainer.”
Part of being the culinary hub of the foothills is offering something for everyone. Whether you’re a beginning home cook, a professional chef or anything in between, Tess’ has three stories of quality kitchen products and a staff that can help you find just what you are looking for. The store also features gourmet food items, olive oils, and an impressive international cheese section as well as many locally made items and foods. Supporting the local economy is important to Rosenthal. “If it’s available local we buy it local. I expect business to support local and local to support business,” he said. “There’s no reason to go down the hill, we have everything you need.”
Contrary to popular belief, everything at Tess’ is priced competitively and is set at the manufacturer’s minimum price. They carry premium products at a fair price, oftentimes costing less than can be found at stores in Roseville. “There’s a perception that we’re expensive, but we’re not. We have expensive items, not expensive prices,” Rosenthal explained, adding, “Higher quality items will save you money in the long run.”
Tess’ is currently in the process of obtaining a license to sell beer and wine, and will offer a variety that will pair perfectly with any type of cuisine. They will also will expand their classes to include pairing wine and beer with food, learning your palate, and more.
In addition, Tess’ will continue to follow the latest cooking trends, such as Sous Vide, and offer everything you need to perfect new techniques as well as mastering the classics. And of course they will continue to offer the best products with exceptional customer service for many years to come. “We want to build a relationship with our customers and make sure they leave happy,” Rosenthal said. “So far it seems to be working!”