A new startup accelerator helps breaking cultural and racial barriers. From Syracuse, With Love assists refugees from around the world in their work in the kitchen.
After six months, another chef steps up. The turnover is designed to showcase the cuisine of under-appreciated immigrant groups. Right after the November election, Syracuse, in upstate New York, coincidentally launched a restaurant incubator, a teaching restaurant that will feature a different food entrepreneur and national cuisine every six months. Onondaga Community College, in collaboration with Centerstate CEO, Onondaga Country’s Industrial Development Agency, acquired and renovated a former restaurant with the goal of training students, refugee chefs and entrepreneurs in the food service business.
With Love from Pakistan, run by Sarah Robins, is the first out the gate. The lines for her delicious food immediately went around the block. This summer, she will leave the space, planning to open her own restaurant, and another refugee chef from a different country will take her place. Syracuse is one of the poorest cities in the United States, with a long history of integrating refugee populations, among them those from Syria, Yemen and Bhutan. More than thirty languages are spoken in the With Love neighborhood. This incubator project is intended to revitalize a city zone, provide training for students and immigrants, and offer Syracuse an ever-changing array of delicious, authentic, vibrant eating experiences.