This Former CPA’s Coffee Is Sold at Whole Foods Across the Country—Here’s How She Did It

Naomi Seifter understands the wrestle of consuming out when you have got a meals allergy, so she created Picnik, an Austin-based restaurant that makes scrumptious, modifiable dishes for anybody who offers with a meals allergy or intolerance. In 2013, Naomi opened a meals trailer, promoting gluten-free breakfast and lunch choices, bone broth, and butter espresso, which finally turned their best-selling merchandise and is now bought in Whole Foods shops throughout the nation.

Picnik’s reputation in Austin grew shortly, they usually opened their first brick-and-mortar restaurant in Austin in 2016. Naomi attributes the success to Picnik’s big selection of choices, from paleo to carnivore to choices for choosy youngsters. We talked together with her about how she took the firm into shops, how she relieves stress, and all about her well-known butter coffees.


Identify: Naomi Seifter, Founding father of Picnik
Age: 30
Present Location: Austin, TX
Schooling: Musical Theatre, BFA — Syracuse College


What was your first job, and the way did you land it?


My first job was working for a CPA in Olympia, WA (Frost & Co.) as a courier, doing financial institution runs and errands as wanted. I interviewed for the place at age 15 so I might begin the day I turned 16.



How did your diploma put together you for the job you finally have?


My diploma was distinctive in that it targeted round being on stage and appearing. It has been very helpful by permitting me to be snug being the face of the firm — interacting with friends, conducting interviews, and doing movies. Nevertheless, that is the first time I’ve been “on-stage” as myself, as an alternative of being on-stage embodying a personality. There’s a number of vulnerability in that.   


When you might change something about your begin in your profession, what would you modify and why?


I don’t assume I might change something about the early days. I’m a agency believer that there are not any accidents. Each time I’ve failed or struggled, I’ve discovered a helpful lesson and moved ahead with new consciousness. It’s simpler to fail once you’re small, so study as many classes as you’ll be able to in the early days.



How lengthy have you ever recognized you needed to personal an organization?


Since 2010 once I lived in Miami, FL. My good friend Patty owned a small juice bar referred to as Beneath the Mango Tree, and it actually impressed me to be an entrepreneur. I keep in mind standing in her retailer and declaring I needed to do one thing alone like that someday.


What piqued your curiosity in meals?!


Once I was a child, we by no means went out to eat, apart from to an area Chinese language restaurant. We ate actually lovely, home-cooked meals, however I didn’t begin to expertise the restaurant business till I used to be about 15. That was the first time in my life I noticed the spectrum of what meals could possibly be like. How flavors, colours, textures, and aesthetics might play off of one another — that was extremely inspiring to me. We spent such little time going out to eat once I was rising up that once I received into the culinary scene, it gave me all types of “aha” moments.



How did you’re taking Picnik from a meals trailer to a restaurant with a full menu in three years?


Once we began the meals trailer, we shortly gained a strong status because of our distinctive espresso menu. Nevertheless, I additionally needed to concentrate on serving meals that’s wholesome and that made our clients really feel their greatest. There was one thing I considered basically lacking round the expertise of consuming therapeutic meals, and normally, it tasted bland. I had discovered the way to prepare dinner at house out of necessity, and I knew wholesome meals didn’t need to be boring. I needed to share my meals philosophy with the world, and that was finally the catalyst for opening Picnik.

As a result of the infrastructure of the trailer, our meals idea was comparatively restricted. Though the menu was of the highest high quality, it didn’t precisely lend itself to any modifications, because it was ready in a grab-and-go format. We have now discovered that modifications are essential to us at Picnik. Our clients have many various allergic reactions, preferences, and sensitivities, and we really feel it’s necessary to have the ability to cater to these people. I shortly realized that if we really needed to be inclusive and serve nice meals, we must make it occur in a restaurant setting. Because of these discoveries, we made the leap to open our flagship restaurant in August 2016.



What’s the secret behind the “butter coffee”?! How is that this totally different from our ordinary caffeine repair?


There are 4 pillars to Picnik’s espresso: direct-trade espresso, grass-fed butter, grass-fed whey protein, and MCT oil. Typically when individuals eat common espresso, they’ll expertise a jolt of power adopted by a caffeine crash. Our components work magically collectively in a approach that gives a sluggish, sustained launch of caffeine. The butter and protein are satiating and make you are feeling full and alert after consuming a cup. Throw in some MCT oil, which has been confirmed to extend metabolism and enhance cognitive perform, and also you’ve obtained a latte that provides you every part you want for a productive morning. There’s a number of science to it, however you actually need to attempt it for your self to really really feel the distinction.  


We will purchase your butter coffees in Whole Foods! What was the course of like placing your product into shops?


I’ll begin by saying that it took three years to get it proper. Our first Picnik café acquired a gaggle of regulars who started asking for a option to entry our butter espresso when touring outdoors of Austin. This — together with curiosity from native retailers — led us to create our bottled butter espresso line. The primary iteration was developed in the type of what I referred to as “buttercups” Just like a Cadbury Egg, it was a cacao shell that was full of butter, MCT oil, and collagen protein. Ideally, clients would be capable of drop a buttercup in scorching espresso, shake it up, and, voila, they’d have butter espresso. Nevertheless, we confronted some stability points, particularly in the Texas warmth. A Whole Foods Market purchaser who was a buyer at Picnik stated that if we made a ready-to-drink beverage, Whole Foods Market can be serious about promoting it, so we took that as an indication to pursue this new platform for innovation. We confronted an entire new set of challenges in making an attempt to supply this first-of-its-kind product, however lastly made it by means of the different aspect. We really need as many individuals as potential to expertise the practical results and scrumptious flavors of our butter espresso, so making this product helped us attain an entire new group of Picnik clients outdoors of Austin.  



For these of us who can’t make it to Picnik in Austin, what’s your recommendation for these with meals allergic reactions and intolerances?


Begin by an elimination food regimen. Fill your buying cart with plain, actual, single-ingredient meals. Meats, fish, fruits, greens, clear oils (like olive oil), ghee, herbs; and natural, soothing spices. Hold it plain and easy in the starting till you cease having reactions. From there, slowly, discover including new meals again in to your weight-reduction plan, specializing in including just one new meals at a time. In the event you want a system or confirmed protocol to comply with, The GAPS eating regimen is an extremely highly effective elimination food plan, and I can’t advocate it sufficient to somebody who’s struggling. For those who purchase dairy or want to hold it in your food plan, hold it as clear as potential, sourcing solely components like uncooked cheese or natural Bulgarian yogurt. For those who love grains, attempt swapping our white and wheat flour for protected gluten-free grains like white rice and quinoa.

A important piece to therapeutic that too few individuals speak about is that you want to discover ways to prepare dinner for your self. Get snug in the kitchen, and also you’ll really feel so a lot better. Eating places are recognized for shortcuts and cost-saving strategies, like utilizing dangerous oils, pre-made sauces with less-than-ideal components. The extra snug you get in the kitchen, the extra management you’ve got over what you set in your physique. Finally, this has the potential to dramatically change how you are feeling.  


You went via yoga coaching after you graduated and lived and labored in Canada and India. How has your information of yoga helped in your profession path?


I’ll hold my yoga teachings with me ceaselessly. There are loads of extremely helpful instruments that I’ve acquired by way of my trainings, like respiration methods and meditation. These practices are nice in occasions of excessive nervousness, they usually actually assist me to stay in stability. I all the time lean on them as wanted. I even have discovered via the “mind-body” connection of yoga that what you eat has the capacity to influence not solely your bodily physique, however your thoughts, too.



What recommendation would you give to ladies hoping to develop their enterprise nationally?


Begin small. Don’t overextend earlier than you’re prepared. It is best to fail if you find yourself a regional model, as the errors could be less expensive. As well as, these errors will turn out to be worthwhile studying instruments that may aid you to stop different missteps as you develop.


What recommendation would you inform your 22-year-old self?


The identical recommendation I might give my 30-year-old self immediately: Make your mantra “I trust in divine guidance, and I’m always safe.”  

I’m a agency believer that there are not any accidents. There appear to be hidden classes in our experiences, and it’s necessary to all the time search for the larger objective. I might additionally inform my youthful self to be resilient and affected person. Our life doesn’t all the time occur the approach we think about it, however should you work each day in the course of your goals, you’ll have a enjoyable, joy-filled journey forward of you.



Naomi Seifter is The Everygirl . . .

What’s your energy outfit?
Upside-down dutch braid top-knot, purple Alice & Olivia jumper, candy tights, and thigh-high leather-based boots.

Go-to pump up track?
Your Love, The Outfield

By no means depart residence with out . . .
Earl Gray Tea

What’s your preferrred Saturday?
Happening an journey with my husband and our canine or doing one thing lively at the home, like gardening.

For those who might have lunch with one lady, who wouldn’t it be and why?
My mother, as a result of she’s fantastic, and I don’t get to see her as a lot as I’d like. If it might be completely anybody apart from her, I’d decide Alice Waters.


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