Food Business; What we know now but didn't know then.

January 17, 2017 from 6:30PM to 8:30PM @ The Aviary, Vancouver, BC


Local Talks No 8 | Vancouver . BC

Food Business: What we know now but didn't know then. 

Is a food business all it’s cracked up to be? Does owning a food business get easier over time? Join us, along side a few food entrepreneurs, each at a different stage in their business, as they compare notes and share their perspective on life as a small business owner. 


Lisa Skelton, The Wallflower & The Smallflower (est 2009) (Moderator)
Naomi Arnaut, Say Hello Sweets (est 2016) 
Emma Gemmer, Zimt Chocolate (est 2011) 
Kumiko Umeno,  Chicha (est 2013)  
Matt Hagarty, Whats up Hot Dog (est 2015)

The Schedule:

6:30PM - 7:00PM Doors Open
7:00PM - 8:00PM Session + Q&A
8:00PM - 8:30PM Social

What your ticket includes:

•  Refreshments & light bites
•  Networking with a bunch of rad folk just like you

Meet the line up:

Lisa Skelton, The Wallflower & The Smallflower

Owner of The Wallflower on Main street and The Smallflower Bakeshop in Gastown, Lisa Skelton has worked in Vancouver restaurants for over 20 years. Now on her third venture- working as a food equipment repair tech and equipment educator, Lisa is trying to bridge the gap between operator and equipment with an educational workshop series DIY restaurant. As a futurpreneur mentor Lisa donates time helping food business upstarts sharing her knowledge and experience. Outside of work you will find Lisa somewhere in east van hanging with her besties and canine companions Butter and Kita.


Naomi Arnaut, Say Hello Sweets

Naomi Arnaut quite literally started her business, Say Hello Sweets, by accident. It was an idea that came about, as a way to fundraise for her dog, who had gone into emergency surgery, resulting in staggering vet debt. Although she’d never made ice cream before, given the hot weather she decided to give it a try and hosted an ice cream tasting party, by donation to fundraise. The event was such a hit, that friends and family started placing orders! 

The positive feedback was inspiring. Within a few months she purchased an old, tired mail truck and slowly turned it into an adorable, hand painted ice cream truck all while working full time evenings at a local bistro.

Say Hello Sweets officially launched July 8th, 2016 at Bass Coast Music Fest.  

Kumiko Umeno, Chicha

Kumiko Umeno is co-owner/ general manager of Chicha Restaurant. Prior to starting Chicha Restaurant, she completed a BSc. in mathematics statistics from UBC and worked 6 years in the financial services industry.

Throughout her teens and twenties Kumiko worked as a server in many Vancouver establishments. She left the financial industry to try her best with a friend and a talented chef she believed in to open Chicha Restaurant in the challenging Vancouver restaurant industry in 2013.Four years later they are still friends and enjoying owning/ operating a restaurant in the challenging Vancouver restaurant environment.


Emma Gemmer, Zimt Chocolate

Emma Smith tried her hardest to be a good kid and went to get some post secondary education at a nice business school. Toward the end, however, she felt extremely unconfident in her ability to work for anyone, and to save others the pain of having her as their employee, she decided to work for herself. Thus began Zimt Chocolates- a specialty vegan, organic, coconut sugar sweetened treats company and an extremely interesting journey. Interesting journey and food business just go hand in hand- and the latter seems to be more appreciated as information about the former surfaces. Zimt Chocolates are sold across Canada in select retail locations and can also be seen cropping up in the US.

Matt Hagarty, Whats up Hot Dog

Matt Hagarty spent almost all of his adult life playing in touring punk bands, trying to promote something that not a lot of people were buying.  After 15 years in touring bands and 10 years working for the post office, he decided to try his luck in something almost as financially irresponsible as punk rock, the restaurant industry, and opened What's Up? Hot Dog! on April Fools day of 2015, which was a very fitting day to open a hot dog bar.  What's Up? Hot Dog! combines a neighbourhood pub in a fever dream feel with baseball, punk rock, and high quality hot dogs, burgers, wings and more. 


When: Tuesday January 17, 2017
Time: 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Where: The Aviary (see map)
Cost: $15 @ online  | $20 @ door

Tickets are final sale and are non negotiable. 

Venue sponsored by: 

Fresh Florals provided by: