Gray Jay Provisions – opening this Fall at 1311 South High Street – is a sandwich shop and market excited to share the culinary arts with the beautiful Shenandoah Valley! They will offer sandwiches on house-made sour dough, and locally sourced goods for your pantry. Think house-made kimchi, krauts, pickles, and more…delicious!
Soula Pefkaros, Gray Jay’s marketing manager, was kind enough to answer my questions.
What inspired you to create this space?
We are all passionate about food that reflects attention to skill, ingredients, and process. We love how delicious, fresh, well-prepared food can light up a person, satiating them from the inside out. The heart of our inspiration is more than an appreciation for good food, though. The three of us share a belief that food can be a powerful force; that how we eat can support and build individual and community nourishment and inspiration.
So much of our modern way of eating is about convenience that sacrifices health and has devastating impacts. It doesn’t have to be this way! We believe that we can create something different in our business by staying true to our values that are about honoring the integrity of people and planet; this can have a broad-reaching impact, all while filling people’s bellies with the most scrumptious food. And we believe that we can make this kind of good food widely accessible to people.
What are you most excited about for when you open?
We really just can’t wait to be putting good food in front of people, especially our bread! We are excited to offer our Harrisonburg community food that is uniquely delicious in a space that has been designed with the intention to inspire, comfort, and nourish. Our daily menu is going to feature expertly crafted and innovative sandwiches on house-made sourdough; our market will offer a finely curated selection of both day-to-day pantry needs from local makers and growers as well as special house-made treats. We can’t wait to get some fermentation projects going such as pickles, krauts and kimchis. We will also be offering housemade products such as fresh ricotta cheese, aiolis, frozen soups and stocks and much more.
We are super excited for our our once-per-month multi-course pop-up dinners which will be such a special and elegant treat. Our space is going to be casual and comforting while delivering absolutely exceptional food.
What will set Gray Jay Provisions apart from the many other eateries in Harrisonburg?
1. Our chef: Seth Amsden. Seth has over seventeen years of experience in the restaurant industry including 12 years in the Boston fine dining scene. He has serious culinary chops, skill, and innovation. What this means is that customers can expect our sandwiches to feature expertly executed components that make every one of our sandwiches a delicious and special treat. A simple sandwich can be so satisfying even with just a few components so long as those components are designed with a refined palate and skilled hands. Seth has both.
2. Our sourdough bread is made in-house over a two day process. It is absolutely scrumptious!
3. We are seriously committed to supporting our local makers and growers, to sourcing our food locally, and providing the customer with the freshest, seasonal ingredients. This means that our menu will be changing multiple times per season so our customers are always experiencing new flavors and combinations.
4. We are a casual eatery that does not sacrifice quality of product. There are some great places to eat in Harrisonburg but almost all of them are sit down restaurants that require more time and money. There aren’t many independent places to get a quick and quality meal. We are going to deliver on that.
5. Our space will inspire. We are giving so much careful thought to the design of our space. Folks can take their food to go but we bet many of our customers will want to camp out for a while, eat, work, drink coffee, because the space will be comfortable and will make people feel good and inspired.