When every Rhode Islander’s phone buzzed with the alert that the Washington Bridge was partially out of commission due to a “critical failure” this past December, many of us felt defeated in the face of gridlock woes, and others got creative. Rhody Roots owners Cassie Brimmer and husband Luis Cruz were in the latter camp.
“Our motto is community, not competition. We want all the small businesses to succeed,” says Brimmer. The duo hit social media with the question of “how can we help?” They offered up their Main Street brick-and-mortar as an East Bay drop-off and pick-up site for businesses impacted by the bridge backup to make holiday shopping easier, along with promoting and spreading the love on Instagram. “New and existing businesses will bring people that wouldn’t necessarily come to our little town organically, which means more exposure for all of us, so why not support any business that we can?”
The couple’s dedication to uplifting others may stem from the love the East Bay community showed them at the beginning of their culinary journey. Rhody Roots first emerged on the Warren dining scene as a food truck, and it didn’t take long for eaters to take note. “We wanted to gauge if there was as much of a need for this as we assumed prior to opening a brick and mortar and it turns out that there was!” Brimmer recalls.
Rhody Roots has found their niche in devising a menu inclusive to food sensitivities and allergies, with sandwiches and shareable fare that don’t sacrifice flavor. “We love being able to see gluten-free guests enjoy their fried chicken along with their loved ones who have no restrictions. It really is a tough find and we’re happy to be able to offer this,” says Brimmer. And with the holiday of love upon us? Chocolate-covered strawberries and champagne are on the menu. “Valentine’s Day isn’t just for couples. We’re all about the whole Galentine’s Day vibe, too, so come in with your bestie and treat yo’ self!” 511 Main Street, Warren, RhodyRoots.com
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