Business of the Month

Business

Barrett Tree Service

Barrett Tree Service
93 Ashley Falls Rd. Sheffield, MA 01257
(413) 229 9914
www.barretttreeservice.com

Do all arboriculturalists drink green tea? Or is it only the crew of Barrett Tree Service? Founder and owner Winthrop Barrett laughs, “Yeah, we’re always drinking the green tea.” It’s by no means a profession-wide tradition, he explains, but it does serve a purpose. “It’s a performance drink. It gives you a nice steady buzz, whereas coffee brings you up and then you crash.” And when you’re in a business like tree care, you want an even keel.

 

Friday, April 1, 2016 - 10:15am

Teamflys

Teamflys
807 State Road, North Adams, MA 01247
(413) 862 9359

Teamflys offers a new perspective on the local economy: a bird’s eye view! Based out of the North Adams airport, Teamflys offers scenic flights, aircraft rentals, and professional flight instruction to locals and visitors alike – and they accept BerkShares! “We’re not a typical start-up business,” says manager Trevor Gilman, explaining that the business launched with zero money in the bank. “We found a principal investor who bought the airplane and then we started up the business and began to take on students.”

Tuesday, March 1, 2016 - 11:30am

Only In My Dreams Events

Only In My Dreams Events
(413) 528 0285
South Egremont, MA 01258


Oskar Hallig had so much fun planning his own wedding that he was inspired to start a business – planning other people’s weddings! Though matrimony was his entrée into the business, Hallig’s company, Only In My Dreams Events, plans all sorts of to-dos, including birthday parties, fundraisers, and memorial services. “We do everything from beginning to end, so to speak."

 

Monday, February 1, 2016 - 12:00pm

Ooma Tesoro’s

Ooma Tesoro’s
Windsor, MA
(413) 684-0898

"My grandmother never wrote down a recipe, not even on an index card,” says Michael Tesoro. Tesoro and his wife Robin are co-founders of Ooma Tesoro’s, a family business that makes premium marinara sauce based on the recipe that Ooma never wrote down. “My grandmother wanted me to say ‘Nonna,’ which is the Italian word for grandmother, but it came out of my mouth ‘Ooma’ and the name stuck.”

Friday, January 1, 2016 - 8:30pm

Dana Bixby Architecture

Dana Bixby Architecture
25 Swamp Road, West Stockbridge, MA 01266
413 232 7834

“It’s all about something that’s real, you can touch it, you’re there,” says Dana Bixby, owner of Dana Bixby Architecture, teasing out the threads of what inspires her to accept BerkShares for her architectural services. She might be talking about BerkShares, but you could almost say that she is talking about her own practice. “I do ‘spatial architecture,’ which is different from fictional or superficial architecture,” says Dana. “I want to create the possibility of experience, rather than a representation or idea of experience.”

Tuesday, December 1, 2015 - 12:00pm

Hosta Hill

Hosta Hill
273 Great Barrington Road, Great Barrington, MA 01126
Maddie: (413) 329-8389
Abe: (413) 429-6266

Imagine a currency that is backed by fermented cabbages, carrots, and garlic. Sound far-fetched? Here in the Berkshire Hills it’s a reality. Take a handful of BerkShares with you to the Great Barrington Farmers’ Market, for example, and you can quickly convert it to kimchi or sauerkraut.


“Hosta Hill is a cultured food business. We make lacto-fermented sauerkraut and kimchi and unpasteurized tempeh, and we accept BerkShares,” confirms Maddie Elling, who is co-owner with her partner Abe Hunrichs. “Our business is based in the Berkshires, and so accepting BerkShares is a really great way of ‘walking the talk’ of the local economy.” When you use BerkShares, Maddie says, “the money is happy wherever it goes.”

Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 10:15am

John Isaacs Design

John Isaacs Design
12 Willowdale Farm
Claverack, NY 12513
(518) 929-2296

John Isaacs has never been afraid to try his hand at new things. At 17, the Brit hopped aboard a Norwegian merchant ship, swabbing the decks as a ship boy. As a philosophy student in the mid-60s he found a summer job with an advertising agency, acquiring a fascination with typography and his first graphic design experience.

Later, he threw himself into filmmaking, then became the executive director of a publishing company in New York. Now he runs his own small firm in Claverack, John Isaacs Design.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - 11:30am

Gateway Berkshire Real Estate & Services

Gateway Berkshire Real Estate & Services
453 Stockbridge Road (Rte 7) Great Barrington
(413) 528-1009


Tom Doyle and David Thorne, co-owners of Gateway Berkshire Real Estate & Services, are in the business of introducing people to the Berkshires–and they have enlisted the assistance of our local currency! “BerkShares are a great way to quickly inform new entrants to the area about our local economy,” says Doyle, who uses BerkShares to take clients out to lunch. People are always really intrigued, he says, and the “best part” of Gateway’s gift at a closing is a starter set of BerkShares, along with information about where to spend them. “The directory is filled with the types of shops and services new homeowners will need, so it’s like a tutorial.”

 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - 4:00pm

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Kemble Inn & Table Six Restaurant
2 Kemble Street, Lenox, MA
(413) 637-4113

The Kemble Inn and Table Six Restaurant have grabbed ahold of BerkShares and they’re not letting go.  This 13-room boutique hotel and restaurant have been all atwitter since they started accepting BerkShares a year ago.

Located across from Trinity Church in Lenox, the Kemble Inn

December, 2013

“The pottery is very quiet,” insists Daniel Bellow, owner of Daniel Bellow Porcelain.  And if you see his work you’re sure to agree.  Its strength is not in being flashy or cute, but rather in its gravity, simplicity, and its feel.  “This is manufacturing,” Bellow says, “can’t you see the clay under

November, 2013

If you have BerkShares in your pocket and you feel like taking an autumn drive on the back roads of Berkshire County, this is a good time to visit Rawson Brook Farm. Even though most of Susan Sellew’s sales of Monterey Chevre are to local grocery stores and restaurants, selling

October, 2013

Trevor Cobb has been “racing and riding since he can remember,” says Olivia Norton, co-owner, with Trevor, of Treyson Racin,’ a parts and accessories service and maintenance shop on Route 7 in Great Barrington. Treyson Racin’ specializes in the vehicles that Trevor grew up with—ATVs

September, 2013

Can you guess which BerkShares business owes its existence to a fluke at a flea market? Phyllis Webb says The Magic Fluke Company would never have happened if her brother—a guitar player in the music industry—had not found a vintage ukulele at an L.A. flea market and realized “Gee, I could

August, 2013

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On a weekend trip to the Berkshires in 2012, Jeffrey Blaugrund entered a tried-and-true recipe from his New Mexico roots into a chili cook off at the then Meat Market in Great Barrington. To his surprise, and perhaps the dismay of some local contestants, his Carne Adovada dish won! At the suggestion that he begin selling the red chile pork stew, Jeff  became consumed by the idea of starting a business.

Moonlighting as a Crossfit coach, Jeff loved the routine and convenience of prepared meals that allowed him to maintain his fitness goals and made for quick desk lunches during his busy day. In thinking through his business idea, he realized that it’s not one great product that makes a business, but rather “the value proposition of quality sourcing, thoughtful cooking and a convenient, delicious result.” Enter Braise Worthy: a line of frozen meals that Jeff and co-founder Austin Banach say are “exactly what you want to eat when you don’t have time.”

These aren’t your grandpa’s TV dinners. Anyone who has ever braised anything knows the cooking process can take hours to develop flavors and tenderize meats. They'll also know it tastes best after a night in the refrigerator, so all meals are flash frozen immediately after production to preserve freshness and taste. Each of Braise Worthy’s meals showcase locally sourced high quality ingredients, masterful cooking, and creative recipe development. From the Beef Satsivi, a regional specialty from the Republic of Georgia, Mississippi Pot Roast with pepperoncinis and homemade ranch dressing, to the vegan Menudo that calls upon mushrooms to replicate the texture of tripe in the classic Mexican soup, Braise Worthy’s products respectfully honor the tradition of each dish while bringing it new life.

Braise Worthy has a unique business model, too. Through a direct-to-consumer subscription service, meals are delivered weekly to three pick up locations throughout the southern Berkshires. Jeff and Austin say this format gives them flexibility when it comes to research and development while sustainably scaling their business operations. In addition to feeding the masses at community events, their baby blue taco truck can be seen traveling around the county acting as a testing ground for new recipes. Braise Worthy will soon be releasing 7 more dishes, offering a total of 16 omnivorous and vegan menu items.  

Fundamental to Braise Worthy’s commitment to quality and consistency, is transparency. That’s why each batch of their slow cooked meals includes an ingredient tracker that allows customers to see exactly where their food is coming from. Jeff and Austin source their proteins and vegetables from local farms as much as possible, including fellow BerkShares businesses North Plain Farm and Mayflower Farm. The same commitment to transparency is why they decided to take BerkShares. BerkShares distinguish local businesses from global counterparts and makes visible how money circulates in the region. As they continue to iterate and grow, Jeff and Austin look forward to deepening their connection to the local economy and community.