We had the good fortune of connecting with Jenn Roose and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jenn, career-wise, where do you want to be in the end?
In terms of where I want to be by the end of my career, I want to know that I have made a difference in people’s lives, that I’ve added happiness, inspiration, laughter, beauty and kindness. Sounds odd to talk about kindness when I create food to look beautiful, however every event or graze is thoughtfully designed for each person with so much heart behind every detail.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My motto is “Bringing People and Food Together”. I’ve always gained so much joy from bringing people together especially over good food and wine; Gather and Graze USA, is able to capture amazing moments, memories, laughter and joy all centered around this motto. Now dealing with COVID, this motto seems more meaningful now than ever. Being creative to bring people together and have to let people experiences grazing has been my mission. With that said, I just started a YouTube so that I can reach more people. I am currently teaching people, at no charge, how to build beautiful graze platters, great wine and food pairings, amazing food combos and more. Here’s my back story: I work full-time as a PE/Dance teacher at a middle school and have been teacher for the last 14 years. Food, wine and health have always been an obsession of mine and I continued to live in the kitchen every moment I could. I chose education because I didn’t want to get stuck working nights and weekends as a chef in a restaurant, however the kitchen was always a longing I had that I couldn’t shake. I created several small food businesses that failed; I struggled to keep them afloat. In 2014, lululemon caught wind of my cheese platters (which I know refer to as grazing platters), and asked me to make a giant display for one of their events. It was that day that I knew this could be something huge and at the time no one was doing what I was creating. I create beautiful grazing platter, grazing tables, I teach workshops online and in person. Although I respect privacy and despise a name drop, I have done work for huge artists, celebrities and some extremely prestigious people. I have faced many challenges along the way, but I have looked at every challenge/issue as a blessing, challenges make you grow and they make you better. I wouldn’t be where I am today without challenges. My favorite grazes to make are grazes that have fun themes; I love to be able to add in my creative twist and bring some happiness and laughter to a group. I want the world to know that I am thankful to share my gifts and talents with them, I am not stingy and I love to share. If I can add some beauty to a home, a smile to a face by teaching someone how to create something beautiful, that is fulfilling. Most of all, I am so fulfilled by bringing people together, to connect people and to gather with amazing food and wine. It’s the simple things that bring me joy.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My mother has been my number one supporter of Gather & Graze USA since the day I started. Countless times she has poured her blood, sweet and tears into helping me. I would like to dedicate my shoutout to the number one person, friend, and support in my life: Susie.
Other: Amazon Shop: https://www.amazon.com/shop/gatherandgrazeusa
Images were taken by Susan Lee Photography