Renee Allen knows her way around a kitchen.
“When I was younger, my mom taught me a lot,” Allen said.
She's never gone to culinary school. But, the 33-year-old owner of “R&R BBQ Catering” has done her fair share of recipe research. “I do a lot of trial and error. I look up something online. If it's not right, I tweak the recipe a bit,” she said.
It seems to be working.
Business has been steady since she opened on South Main Street in Eden several months ago. She specializes in barbeque and comfort foods like macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes.
The road to opening a catering business hasn't exactly been easy. In 2017, Allen opened a restaurant in Cheektowaga and later that year, it was destroyed by fire. “To see it all disappear like that overnight. It's difficult.”
Allen said she took time to re-evaluate her business goals and decided to go the catering route over rebuilding the restaurant instead. She said this gives her more free time while allowing her to still do what she loves: cooking. “It's a really good feeling when they send me an email and say it was a big hit. Everybody loved it.”