2013 Carolinas Rising Star Katie Meddis of Rose's Meat Market and Sweet Shop
Rose's Meat Market and Sweet Shop
121 North Gregson Street
Durham, NC 27701
Katie Meddis started her culinary career as a teenager and found real passion along the way. After working at Aurora in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, she made the move to attend culinary school in the Northeast. Her pastry degree proved a pivotal move, in more ways than one: while a pastry chef for the Hospitality Management Group Restaurants, Magnolias and Blossom, she met her husband-to-be and future business partner, Justin Meddis.
If the Northeast was important, work in Charleston was life-changing for Katie, opening her eyes to the importance of local produce and developing relationships with ranchers and farmers. And while she eventually moved with Justin to San Francisco to develop their careers—he on the savory side, she working as a pastry chef at Chez Panisse—Charleston would eventually call the couple back.
Marrying their talents and ideals (and, previously, each other), Katie and Justin moved back to North Carolina to plant their roots and ply their respective trades at Rose’s Meat Market & Sweet Shop in Durham, a burgeoning, creative, and very hands-on culinary community where the couple’s hand-crafted, responsible culinary style fit right in. From a series of fundraising pop-up dinners to a Kickstarter campaign that exceeded their goal, Katie and Justin have become part of the Durham community, now enriched and sweetened by Katie’s innovative, comfort-driven pastry and confectionery skills.
I Support: Interfaith Food Shuttlewww.foodshuttle.org
Why: Besides food distribution to the needy, they also focus on culinary and agricultural job training to help people find jobs.
Interview with Pastry Chef Katie Meddis of Rose’s Meat Market & Sweet Shop – Durham, NC
Antoinette Bruno: If you could do anything over again, what would you do differently?
Katie Meddis: I would’ve moved around more when I was younger and spent a year or so in as many kitchens as I could.
AB: What drives you to cook:
KM: Nothing makes me happier than market bags full of beautiful produce from the farmers market.
AB: What’s the biggest challenge facing your shop?
KM: Getting people to try cuts of meat that are new to them. It requires a lot of discussion about cooking procedures, but in the end a lot of people seem happy with their new meat knowledge.
AB: What were your first jobs in the industry?
KM: At Aurora in Chapel Hill when I was in high school, working garde manger. The chef, Gwen Higgins, was my first mentor.
AB: Where did you stage when you were coming up?
KM: Woodlands, Summerville, SC Boulevard [in South Carolina], and Range in San Francisco.
AB: Who are your mentors?
KM: Gwen Higgins, Donald Barickman, Mia Ponce, Stacie Pierce, and Mary Jo Thorenson.