Spade & Spoon — a new meal kit delivery service — found a way to support small businesses, practice environmental awareness and celebrate the best local food Denver has to offer. After its November 26 launch on Small Business Saturday, Spade & Spoon now caters to the greater Denver area and collaborates with regional producers to create chef-designed meal kits — all while keeping its local-first mindset at the forefront.
Founder of Spade & Spoon Joy Rubey explains that her “hyperlocal” company strives to connect people with food from local farmers, ranchers and bakers. After growing up surrounded by those who farm, Rubey gained an ultimate appreciation for creating meals for her family with the best ingredients possible. Her team opened Acme Farms & Kitchen in 2011 — the Pacific Northwest’s first local-first meal kit. Since its inception, Acme Farms & Kitchen has sold more than $24 million worth of local food in the Pacific Northwest, working alongside 70+ local producers. She quickly realized that if you can make life easier for the producer, you can make life easier for customers. With family in Denver and a constant push to move, Rubey decided that the next best place to test this business model was a no-brainer.
Spade & Spoon collaborates with dozens of Colorado food producers to provide more than 900 chef-created seasonal dishes from the mind of accomplished chef Andrew Clarke. Customers can choose from more than 18 weekly rotating menus for each meal kit delivery, as well as pre-selected box themes like Vegetarian, Family Classics and Gluten and Dairy-free. Every week new meal kits and pantry items from your favorite farmers market vendors are available, including Sfoglina, Not Bad Cooks, Hearth Bakery, Five Freedoms Dairy and Switch Gears Farms.
Rubey explains that one of the things that genuinely sets Spade & Spoon apart from other meal kit delivery models is the environmental impact of the business. The team is not only choosing local because its products taste good but also because it makes others feel good. Those who try this service can support a group of local producers in just one delivery — adding a new way to encourage small businesses in the Mile High.
“There’s also just that environmental factor of not having a bunch of wasteful packaging. We’re not going to bag everything in your box because it’s never touched by anyone else. It’s not being breathed on by other people and just going in,” Rubey elaborated. “You know that the environmental component is just as important to us as how we treat people, our producers, animals and how we treat everything. There is a way to do it right. And it’s a little hard to believe that we can do all those things and check all those boxes, but we’ve proven it. We have done it. We’ve done it for 12 years. We just have to do it at scale.”
Spade & Spoon strives to place the vendors, customers and environment all on the same playing field. The goal is to meet customers’ needs by delivering precisely what they need and nothing more. “If the customer only needs a quarter of a head of cabbage, we will literally cut the cabbage and give them a quarter, so we’re massively reducing food waste in the stream. By the time the last order goes out, maybe only one rack of stuff gets donated to the food bank. And that’s very important to us because food waste is such a huge deal, and when you see it on a grocery level, it’s enormous,” Rubey explains.
In addition to its regularly scheduled rotating meal kits, this service offers seasonal specials. Keep an eye out for its 21-day New Year Reset box, Valentine’s date night and jolly Halloween kit. All its options are packed with flavor and nutrition while providing that delicious local Colorado taste. Next time you are on the hunt for a new meal kit, give Spade & Spoon a try and directly offer a helping hand to your neighborhood producers.