Listen as Sonya Cote, Executive Chef and Kayce Braden, Projects Manager tell us about the farm to table experience of their restaurant Eden East Austin, why it is important for consumers to care about where their food comes from, and how they are doing their part in building a better food system.
About Eden East Austin:
Located in East Austin, Eden East is a true farm-to-table dining experience. The restaurant serves a monthly prix fixe menu every weekend and an a la carte brunch on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Every Thursday, Eden East offers an a la carte dinner paired with live music or a DJ. Each month, chefs develop a menu based on the most vibrant seasonal ingredients from the farm, as well as local farms and ranches.
About Sonya Coté:
Sonya Coté is a perfect blend of chef, artist and storyteller. With a background in art and graphic design, Coté has had quite a vibrant career. Even as her culinary endeavors expand, she remains an artist. Each new plate is her canvas that tells its own story.
As many Austin diners know, Coté is the free spirit behind Hillside Farmacy and Eden East, the latter being located on an urban farm that her and her partner David are currently maintaining. At Eden East, patrons can dine al fresco under the stars on a menu that is based on what’s in season on the farm and as well as shop produce and local goods at farmers market.
Coté’s story begins in a coastal community in Rhode Island, where she grew up with a love for camping and an affinity for cooking. Her restaurants reflect her love of the outdoors and all things local. She first left Rhode Island for Dallas in 1989, being “fascinated by the Wild West and its stereotypes, but living in the city, I was surprised that people didn’t know their neighbors.” Since then she has planted roots in Austin and created an amazing community.
Coté has received numerous accolades, including recognition as one of Marie Claire’s “Women on Top. She competed on Food Network’s “Chopped”. Her restaurant Eden East was named one of Austin Monthly’s “Best New Restaurants.” Soon after, Coté was named one of Tribeza’s “People of the Year.”
About Kaycee Braden:
Kaycee Braden has a passion for food. From her earliest memories to her current daily activities, she knew she could find an outlet for her passion and how food is shared, sold & grown, within the food community. The recent “Farm to Table” movement became a way for Kaycee to share what she had learned through her travels & help grow this community in Austin by bringing healthy food resources & alternatives to “big ag”.
Fresh faced & starry eyed, she started her journey into the food scene by earning her Permaculture Design Certification with an emphasis on community development and ethno botanical horticulture in her early twenties. Wanting to dig deeper into learning more about food justice Kaycee found herself traveling across the globe study in depth small agriculture and the effects of the green revolution in Rajasthan, India. She then went on to graduate with her BA from Evergreen State College in sustainable agriculture & community development. She then set out to begin her life pursuing her passion.
Kaycee is a proud Texas native, a world traveler who has resided in many places. She has recently come back home to Texas to bring us her experiences and love of food culture to the everyday operations of a restaurant located in the heart of Austin. Austin Texas has quickly become a busy, thriving food community with deep roots. She began her employment at Eden East upon her arrival to the city while still attending culinary classes. Through the years, she worked through each department of the restaurant including kitchen, then ultimately ending up as the General Manager. After success in this role, she then became a valued partner to the business.
Her hard work and dedication has brought Eden East Restaurant & Farm much success. Through her education, guests & employees both can learn about the inner workings of a restaurant & an urban farm.