We had the good fortune of connecting with Jeanne Cheng and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Jeanne, what makes you most proud of the business you’ve built?
What makes me most proud of the business I built is our ethos that is embodied in the KyeRito. It’s extremely rewarding to create something that is totally original with a strong purpose, to enliven consciousness. We care deeply and this can be felt in our food. We believe in inclusion and celebrating diversity, including diet diversity, so we make it a point to offer something for everyone: vegan, meat eater, paleo/keto, gluten free…Using the best clean ingredients – local sustainably farmed, organic, grass fed, wild caught, free range. We list every ingredient we use for full transparency. Each KyeRito has a vegan/veg option and is listed on the menu in a way that brings awareness to the choices we make. The power to enliven consciousness is in the physical experience of how we feel after eating food that is satisfying but also healthy and clean, that supports the body. We offer thoughtful and intelligent food that satisfies the Yin (nourishment) and Yang (enjoyment) of eating, with ingredients added for extra nutrition and mindful cooking techniques like macro pressing veggies, using good oils, cookware, and cleaning products. We are a green certified business and are trying to make a difference in the food industry. During these important times, we’ve focused on ways to help our community while staying in business with the intention of being part of the solution instead of part of the problem. Our business core is love, connection, and contributing to improving our quality of life on this planet. Everyday, we feel we are adding value to our diner’s lives and it’s super rewarding. I love it! Recently we’ve been making food for seniors through the Great Plates program, and several of our clients are in their 90s and have given us feedback that they feel SO much better after eating our food. It’s very fulfilling.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I started out in the sciences and healing arts and owe my foray into restaurants to my son Kye, thus the name. Focusing all my life experience into nourishing and growing a food sensitive child gave me the inspiration and a deep sense of purpose to create Kye’s. It has been a very challenging journey having no business or restaurant experience to guide me, but I’ve learned a lot and am very happy with the result. I think it helped that I didn’t know how hard this business is and that I didn’t even consider failure. It definitely takes perseverance, grit, a solution oriented mindset, and heart. Meditation has been invaluable in providing an unshakable feeling of okayness inside and the biggest lesson I learned and am navigating daily is to not let the doing take me out of my being and to check in that my actions come from love and support our purpose. I’m proud to be a female minority owned, managed, and >50% employed green certified business. Our current global circumstances has forced us to pause, reflect, and listen, and has opened up the opportunity for accelerated change. I intend to make the most this transformative energy in my own life and am hopeful that many good things will come out of this important time for humanity.  

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Pre-Covid, if my best friend was visiting, the first thing we would do is grab a couple of KyeRitos, jump on some cruisers, and bike along the beach, stop for a picnic and swim, and hang out till the sunset. The next day we would grab KyeRitos and go for a hike probably Los Leones or Rivas Canyon, then do some restorative yoga or go to a sound bath healing or breathwork class, then have dinner at Plant Food Wine. The next day we would have lunch at True Food and go to Tikkun Spa or trek to Olympic Spa for Korean scrubs and maybe Genwa or Gracias Madre if we’re over there. Saturday, Kate Shela’s dance class is a must, then we would go back to the beach…I’m an ocean girl.  Sunday the Brentwood Farmer’s market then paddle boarding in the Marina and Cassia for dinner. Truth be told, I would probably cook most of the time, but these are my favorite restaurants. 

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Gratitude for the support and expertise of Lynn Miller, owner of Oseyo

Website: kyesmontana.com
Instagram: @kyesmontana
Linkedin: Jeanne Cheng
Twitter: @KyesMontana
Facebook: @KyesMontana
Yelp: Kye’s

Image Credits
Marie Buck, Edward Baida