“My business idea was inspired by my love for cooking and seeing people’s reactions when they taste my food.” Rachelle RV Thompson of Ray’s Place in Port-of-Spain shares her story and photos of her mouth-watering Creole food.
Cooking Happiness! That is my tagline. My dishes are mainly traditional Creole food with a touch of ‘Ray’ on it. They can be enjoyed by all persons of any age group and all nationalities. You only need a love for what would be considered great old-fashioned cooking. I serve pelau, macaroni pie, red beans, lentil peas, chunky vegetables, fried rice, stewed chicken, stewed beef, mashed potatoes, coocoo, callaloo, fried fish, dumpling, salt fish accra, corn soup and many more delicious Creole food.
My plan to serve great Creole food
My business idea was inspired by my love for cooking and seeing people’s reactions when they taste my food. I realised I had a gift and wanted to share it. Approximately 4-5 years ago, I took the first step and registered my business name. I started making and selling pies and juices every morning to raise capital towards opening my restaurant. On January 25th, 2021, I quietly put things in place and opened the doors to Ray’s Place on Pashley Street, Port-of-Spain. We have meals to fit all budget ranges.
Breads and cakes at Ray’s Place
Apart from serving Creole food, I also make and sell breads and cakes. Baking is another hobby that I decided to use as a tool. In the near future, I would like to introduce breakfast and delivery for Ray’s Place. Eventually, I will like to open another branch. I would also like to get my breads and cakes into shops and groceries.
A love for being in the kitchen
I’m 31 years old and I am originally from Cumana Village, Toco. I have worked in the food industry for the last 11 years. I started as a team member employed with Prestige Holdings Limited, where I quickly worked my way to a supervisor within a year and then a manager 5 years after that.
I have always had a love for being in the kitchen. I am self-taught in this aspect however. I would always observe when I saw someone cooking and I would quietly retreat and try these dishes on my own until I was able to perfect them.
I sold food on my days off and took any and every catering opportunity that came my way, even the unpaid ones. I saw it as my practice. Finally, there was an opportunity to rent a space. After two months of praying on the decision to start my business, I decided to take a leap of faith. I felt that I had found my calling.
Bad and good experiences selling Creole food
A bad experience for me would have been a day or two where I got absolutely not one customer in an entire work day. At first, I was really heart-broken and briefly doubted myself. I quickly pulled myself together and decided to count my blessings instead. I was able to live my dream. Sacrifices sometimes have to be made.
A good experience for me would be when a first-time customer had purchased and returned half an hour later and commended me on my food. He also gave me some words of encouragement. Moments like these mean the most to me.
Contact Ray’s Place for Creole food and pastries
I can be contacted at 868-336-4397. My WhatsApp contact is 868-715-4843. I also can be found on Instagram as Raysplace2021. I offer Dine In, Take Away and Pickup services. Ray’s Place can also be found on Google Maps.