Richmond Times Dispatch – 09/27/2018

We’ve all been there. After a long day, there’s no energy left to cook a wholesome meal but also no desire to venture out to eat.

You want the perks of a restaurant experience — good food prepared by someone else — but in the comfort of your own home while wearing sweatpants.

For those nights, there’s The Big Kitchen, at 1600 Altamont Ave. in Scott’s Addition.

The folks behind the popular Tazza Kitchen restaurant have been busy, primarily thinking up an entirely new dinner concept that complements the restaurants (there are three Tazza locations around Richmond and three outside Virginia) but involves fully prepared meals that consumers order and pay for online, then either pick up at The Big Kitchen or have delivered. The Big Kitchen is scheduled to launch in mid-November.

These are not meal kits, in which consumers receive the ingredients and then prepare the meal themselves. The food is cooked at The Big Kitchen and then kept chilled, and packaged in containers that allow for a pop into the microwave or oven once at home.

Craving Tazza’s signature meatballs? How about pork carnitas, shrimp and black-eyed peas, crab cakes, fresh salads or a big bowl of pasta?

“We care about good food, about eating with our families,” said Susan Davenport, one of the partners behind The Big Kitchen concept and its new umbrella company, Big Kitchen Hospitality. Other partners include her husband, John Davenport, as well as Jeff Grant and John Haggai.

“We’re all really busy and we wanted to develop a menu that was well-suited for picking up and then reheating at home,” Davenport said. “We don’t want people to have to pull out five pans” to cook, she added. “We’re really excited to make it as tech-savvy and convenient as possible.”

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