Soup is a comfort food for many people, especially come the cold weather and winds of the fall. The Soulful Spoon is a husband-and-wife team made up of Chef Adam Cude and his wife Emily and the pair is set to expand into a new location soon.
Every chef has a story and has likely worked at more than one restaurant serving different cuisines and Adam is no different. “He has always been drawn to hearty, homey southern style comfort food. He was in Toronto for a decade learning French and Italian cooking techniques and more recently at Mango Salad in Ingersoll and the Brickhouse Brewpub in Woodstock, but he has just made a move to be the sous chef at the Oxford Hills golf course near Mt. Elgin under well-known chef Eric Boyer.”
Emily says her role amounts to taking care of everything but the food. “I order supplies, maintain our web presence and social media along with graphic design. I pick up the little jobs.” She is no stranger to running a business after nearly a decade as a bridal wear designer. “The pandemic put that to a quick end,” she adds.
The business was born mid-pandemic last December by sharing some space with Heavenly Sweets in Ingersoll as the ice cream shop was looking at closing for the winter. “We were selling soups hot at that point which has always been our vision along with the jars. We paired it back to just the jars as the weather warmed up.”
There were things that led the couple to opening a business focusing on soup. “We wanted a food we could package easily for consumption at home. We have always wanted to be in the food business, but we didn’t want to run a restaurant, so it was the idea of chef creations that are simple, heat up well and be transportable.” When Adam was at the Brickhouse, he was getting a tonne of positive feedback about his soups. “People were coming quite a distance to eat it; they were calling all the time and it really became a thing. He realized its one of his talents and we went with it,” says Emily.
What soup has been the most popular to date? “Our creamy mushroom is the staple of our business. When we first opened, we ran it for the first six months and always sold out of it and it’s maintained its popularity. Our next would be the crossover soups we do with Upper Thames Brewery. We have one featuring their Back Paddle Blonde Ale and we do a beer cheddar with bacon with that and its very popular. We also do a beef stew using their Timber Beast Brown Ale.”
Oxford County food producers not only sell food made by other local companies, but they also utilize them in their products. “When we saw how much people loved our crossover products with other local businesses, we ran with it. We love to use Gunn’s Hill Cheese and their Smoked Five Brothers is in our creamy mushroom. For our squash soups we have been going to Fleming Farms which is just down the street from where we cook our soups now,” says Emily who adds she has been so impressed with the comradery among small businesses in Oxford. “You can be competitive with each other, or you can help each other out. We’ve teamed up with Louie’s in the past and put their baked breads in a gift basket with our soups along with Gunn’s Hill Cheese. Everyone is willing to partner up together and the public is more than pleased to support more than one local business at a time.”
The business has just announced an exciting new plan to expand their food selections and move into a new location. “We have a nice little storefront just off Dundas Street on Main Street in Woodstock and it will be hot soup to go and an always changing menu of sandwiches and salads to pair with the soup. We are just getting over the last few speed bumps and will be announcing an opening date very soon!”
For more information on the Soulful Spoon and their delicious products, go to https://www.thesoulfulspoon.ca/