Jordan Hamons is the owner of Tablespoon Cooking Co. When asked about her passion for cooking, she says simply, “I’ve loved cooking for as long as I can remember.” Since she was a kid, Jordan would play in the kitchen and try different experiments. Her excitement went from reading cookbooks as a hobbie in elementary school to training to cook professionally. Now she is a successful chef and teacher of popular cooking classes here in Cincinnati.
– How did Tablespoon Cooking Co come about?
Tablespoon Cooking Co. was established in September 2016. After graduating from business school and culinary school, I worked as a corporate chef at a local Fortune 500 company. I left that job because I wanted to work for myself. I had a blog for awhile and started to teach cooking classes. After teaching at a few local cooking schools, I wanted to be able to offer my own classes that had a different vibe. This was right around the time Findlay Kitchen was opening so I signed up to become a member and started teaching classes.
– How is it being in the food industry in Cincinnati?
It’s good! Customers are eager to try new things and support local businesses, fellow chefs and food producers are supportive and generous and our city has experienced a revitalization in the urban core, where many food businesses are located.
– What were some struggles you faced in starting your business and how did you overcome them?
As a business owner, I face new challenges every day. It could be little things like our deliveries coming in late or it larger issues such as finances or managing my staff. I focus on learning every day and I live by a concept called 1% Infinity — trying to improve by 1% every day for infinity. For me, the ideal of continuous, gradual improvement makes challenges seem easier to overcome.
– What advice do you have for other cooks who want to get into business?
My advice would be to work in a restaurant or food service operation before you start your own business. Whether you serve, host, or cook on the line, it will help you see how how the industry really works.
– What’s been the most important moment in your career so far?
There are a few moments that have proven pivotal for my career, even if I did not realize it at the time. The first moment was receiving a full academic scholarship for college from the Carl H. Lindner Honors-PLUS program at the University of Cincinnati. This allowed me to graduate without any debt or loans and provided freedom to take some risks post-graduation. That scholarship truly set me up for the path I am on today. One of those risks was choosing to go to culinary school while I was finishing my business degree, which then led me to a career in the culinary industry. Another moment was leaving my job at American Financial Group to go out on my own. I ended up starting a blog, which led to teaching cooking classes, which led to the creation of Tablespoon.
– What have been some of your biggest accomplishments so far? What did it feel like to achieve them?
My biggest accomplishment has been the steady growth of Tablespoon. We started by doing only 1 class a month and have grown to doing 4-5 classes a week, along with a robust private events and catering business. Additionally, I am proud to have a majority female staff in an industry that has long been dominated by males. One of our mottos is that a diverse kitchen is a delicious kitchen.
This year, the goal I hope to accomplish is moving Tablespoon into its own brick-and-mortar space (we currently operate in a shared-use facility).
– Anything else you want readers to know?
We would love for you to come join us for a class! Tablespoon’s classes are hands-on and taught by professional chefs. We focus on having fun and our classes are like a party!