Potiguar becomes the highlight of US gastronomy – 05/21/2022 – News

Leticia Medeiros

the reporter

Businesswoman Kliha Chait of Cerido de Cerro Cora is gaining more and more space in the Los Angeles food market in the United States. There, she and her husband Bill Chait run more than 20 haute cuisine businesses with award-winning cuisines under renowned chefs. His life story could easily be the focus of a Hollywood production. The path to this level was difficult. Without forgetting its origins, Clija’s newest business is in São José do Campestre, where the Precioso Supermercado opened this Friday (20th).

provided
Clija Chait operates four restaurants, three liquor stores and a chain of bakeries in the US.

Clija Chait operates four restaurants, three liquor stores and a chain of bakeries in the US.

Growing up on a farm four hours from Cerro Cora, Klicha notes that the teachings passed down by her grandparents, whom she refers to as her father and mother, were the foundation of her education, something essential to her training in gastronomy. “I grew up in the middle of the bush, picking fruit from a tree, cooking over a fire, and fishing by hand. We didn’t have refrigerators, my mom used ropes to hang the fish in the sun and dry it so it wouldn’t go bad. I learned all these gastronomic techniques and brought them into my life.”

At the age of 15, she moved to Natal against the wishes of her parents, where she began working as a nanny and also had experience working for the Guararapes company. She started in the gastronomic field as a waitress, and then worked in the administrative field in the Italian restaurants of the capital. “I have always had a spicy gastronomy and this entrepreneurial side of me. Mom sold the dulce de leche, and I took the rest, poured it into glasses and went out in the middle of the street to sell. I love to cook, but the administrative part is the most complete part of me.”

At the age of 24, she moved to Sao Paulo where she met her husband, the famous American restaurateur Bill Chait. “Before the move, I felt that a lot of negative things were going on. As a result, I got into the field of aesthetics, because I really did what I wanted. I didn’t have an incredible financial fortune, I was living right there on the bass and this new opportunity came up. I met my husband at a work meeting, because I also worked in restaurants there,” she says.

The relationship continued long distance until Klikha moved permanently to Los Angeles in 2016. During these six years, he completed an accounting course at UCLA (University of California at Los Angeles) and began working in the administration of the couple’s companies.

He is now 31 years old, since he left his parental home, he began to manage himself and appreciate this independence. Today, the biggest problem is missing your loved ones.

During the pandemic, this feeling has intensified. In addition, the out-of-home food sector was one of the hardest hit during this period. “It was very hard, it was painful to see our restaurants, built with so much work, love and creativity, close. And then we have two options: regret or run to make it happen. We found out what the government was going to do and got a financial incentive. The pandemic has really wiped out some of our restaurants while helping others. We have not closed a single block, but we have suffered,” he says.

In a competitive market like Los Angeles, a line designed by entrepreneurs to guarantee the quality of services and products is a differentiator. When asked about the possibility of opening a restaurant on the lands of Potiguar, Kliha refuses this option. “The absence of our presence in the establishment creates difficulties because we believe in excellent service, as well as in the delivery and presentation of excellent food,” he comments. The duties of a businesswoman also include organizing events for celebrities.

From Alex Atala to free-range chicken Dona Fatima

Klicha currently manages Tesse, Mian Taste, Caboco and Fanny’s restaurants. Cuisines range from Mediterranean to Chinese, from Brazilian to the Oscar Museum in Los Angeles. In addition, they are partners with Boutellier Wines and Tartine Bakery, an award-winning bakery chain with fourteen locations in the US and South Korea.

For her, gastronomy is not only about food, but also about experience. This view of the world comes from her childhood when she still lived with her grandparents, doña Ana Maria and Seu Joao Duarte, who were farmers and worked in the fields. “My biggest inspiration in the business was my father. He always encouraged me a lot, he had his own fields, and he allowed me to plant a small plantation. Everything that he did for him, he did for me, and my mother taught me the gastronomic part.

Klizha remembers moments from her childhood when she had little, but she felt that she had a lot. “Northeast being, our people is what we should appreciate. In rural areas, people may only have one plate of food, but even then they share it with those in need. You won’t see this in the United States. That’s why I eat food from the kitchen of Alex Atal, as well as Doña Fatima’s free-range chicken at the Totóia restaurant.”

At times, a movie is spinning in your head when you remember everything that happened and where you managed to get. Gratitude is the word that touches her. Years ago, he could barely pay his rent, ate almost nothing but noodles, and had moments of rebellion because something was wrong in his life. “I got on my knees and cried, asking God why, but I didn’t give up. I cried, and the next day I got up and walked again,” he says. As a girl at the age of six or seven, she highlights a particular episode in which she saw a plane fly by and heard her mother say that one day she would fly higher.

“I remember these lines, I remember with sadness the difficulties we went through. I remember how my mother waited for the rain to wash clothes on the rocks. Waking up and asking what was for breakfast, and she answered: “daughter, not today, go hunting, go look for guava.” Today I can help my parents, and everything I do, I do for them. I look at my past and see that God prepared me for real, from childhood when I ate dry piaba with flour, before I had the purchasing power to go to Michelin restaurants.

When she is not busy with business, among her other interests she loves to travel, meet new people and especially appreciate art and fashion. However, he jokes that he always strives to pull these topics and connect them with gastronomy. Despite everything he’s been through and for everyone he’s lived with, Klia’s feet never leave the ground. “My message is not to give up. Every day I wake up in the morning and if I have a goal I say it out loud so no one will listen because I want me to know about it. I say: “I will achieve, I want to achieve” and I will not stop until I achieve it, ”he concludes.

The new enterprise will appear in the countryside of the state

Passing through Brazil, this Friday (20th) he opened his newest facility: the first division of Precioso Supermercados in São José do Campestre. The concept of this place is a “boutique” at just over 300 m² with plans for expansion in other parts of the state. The business came about as a partnership between Klicha and her longtime friend, administrator Priscilla Costa.

The purpose of the enterprise is to give interior people a different idea of ​​what it is like to shop. To that end, Precioso has a wide range of products for groceries, gardening, cleaning and baking, as well as fair pricing and home delivery. The first block will employ local professionals and neighboring cities striving for excellence in service.

According to her, the idealization of the project exalts and glorifies the culture and history of the peoples of the Northeast and Sertanejo. “Priscilla has been working with me for a long time and we had the idea to do something together. I wanted to stay in the grocery business and we chose the supermarket. We prefer to start from São Jose do Campestre because that’s where she lives. We invested in something beautiful but accessible to the public because it was made for them. I intend to return to repay what people here have done for me during such difficult periods of my life, ”says the businesswoman.

Leave a Comment