Helping Red Seal Chefs Pivot to Virtual Cooking Classes

by Communitech   |   March 19, 2021   |   Share this:  

The Culinary Studio is a partnership between Red Seal trained Chefs Jody O'Malley and Kirstie Herbstreit. Jody & Kirstie have been in the food industry for over 20 years. After both completing University degrees, they set off to culinary school, in Stratford & Calgary respectively to feed their need to cook. After restaurant apprenticeships and college-level instruction, they came together to open Kitchener-Waterloo's premier recreational cooking school. Classes and services are informative and entertaining and will guide participants through all aspects of the recipe, from the preparation to cooking with technique, to tips and tricks of the trade and then finishing with plate presentation.

Their pivot to offering cooking classes virtually came immediately after the initial COVID lockdowns. For Jody and Kirstie, the Digital Main Street, Future Proof Program was an opportunity to refine their brand, strategy, and operations to offer cooking classes online. 


The Transformation Team helped refresh the brand by refining the original logo to incorporate The Culinary Studio’s new direction — virtual cooking classes. The team also provided strategic recommendations for the website and created a social media handbook to provide a step-by-step guide to create engaging social media posts.

Here’s what Jody and Kirstie had to say about the program: “The Transformation Teams program has been an accelerator for us to execute on our new business model. It has given us a roadmap that will see us through the Pandemic and beyond. We feel we are really on our way to what is the 2.0 version of our business. We’ve seen an immediate elevation of our brand, and now, we’re reaching a larger audience and filling our classes.”

Our Digital Main Street Future Proof partner in Waterloo Region is Communitech. See how they can help.

About Digital Main Street

Digital Main Street was created by the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) with direct support from the City of Toronto. DMS is also supported by a group of strategic business partners, including Google, Mastercard, Shopify, Microsoft, Facebook, Intuit QuickBooks, Square, Yellow Pages and Lightspeed.

A $42.5-million investment from FedDev Ontario brought together the Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas, Communitech, Invest Ottawa and the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association to expand the Digital Main Street Platform in order to support more businesses going digital as a response to the impacts of COVID-19 in Southern Ontario.

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