“it’s such an amazing space, and we needed somewhere bigger. We had grown out of our old premises,” Sandra Ruge tells me proudly, admiring Waste2Taste‘s new community cafe in Shotover View in Cowley.
“There is a huge sense of community here and we want to provide a space and a sense of belonging”
Situated amongst a complex of homes run by BPHA for adults with care needs, Waste2Taste fits in beautifully on the Horspath site, and Sandra says the local residents are already hugely excited about having a new cafe right on their doorstep.
Famous for cooking with surplus food and catering for a hugely varied clientele, from those living in poverty to big events at Oxford University, Waste2Taste opens its doors on Tuesday (May 9) for the first time, and Sandra can’t wait.
“Lots of people are struggling so if people cant afford to pay we have a Kindness Menu and freezer meals to take away”
“There is a huge sense of community here and we want to provide a space where people can gather and bring the residents joy and a sense of belonging.
“We just hope all our regular customers will follow us here and continue to enjoy our food,” Sandra says.
So why move from their beloved site in Temple Cowley by the Ark T Centre? “Our catering arm has grown so much over the past few years and our previous kitchens just couldn’t cope with the capacity,” Sandra explains.
“We really want to make sure we are here for everyone”
“So when we were offered this space in Horspath, with its gleaming industrial kitchen we couldn’t believe our luck,” Sandra adds.
“Lots of people are struggling so if people cannot afford to come and pay we have a Kindness Menu and freezer meals to take away,” she adds. “We really want to make sure we are here for everyone.”
Think, coffees, cakes, toasties, soups and their famous budda bowls, and you’ll get a good idea of the wonderful offering there. Which is why Waste2Taste won the BEST CAFE award at the recent OXINABOX FOOD AWARDS.
Their produce is delivered by The Oxford Hub and Sandra devises her recipes and menus depending on the ingredients, which are always different.
“we are so excited about our future here and really hope everyone comes down to say hello”
Ably assisted by her staff and an ever expanding group of volunteers, the team also deliver free meals to those in need.
Hailing from Portugal, Sandra’s passion for food remains unabated since opening Waste2Taste in March 2017 with her partner Marie Lehri (Marie is currently taking time off to battle personal illness) and Sandra can’t wait to get stuck in at the new cafe and continue feeding the local community there.
“I feel very blessed that Waste2Taste has survived and is stronger than ever”
“It’s in the blood, my granny was a baker and my mother is cooking for 200 people in her village this weekend. So yes, Waste2Taste is always a challenge, but we are so excited about our future here and really hope everyone comes down to say hello and maybe meet some new people at the same time. We can’t wait.
“I feel very blessed and happy Waste2Taste has survived and is stronger than ever.”
Waste2Taste is opening on Tuesday May 9 and serving tea/coffee/cake. From Wednesday their full menu will resume. The cafe will be open Tuesday-Thursday 9.30am-2.30pm. For more details go to https://www.waste2taste.co.uk