Erin Wade Of Vinaigrette Restaurants: How To Successfully Ride The Emotional Highs & Lows Of Being An Entrepreneur

Authority Magazine Editorial Staff
Authority Magazine
Published in
18 min readJul 9, 2021

--

Positivity is infectious, and it makes people want to come to work and do a good job. This is invaluable for any company.

Erin Wade is a farmer and restaurateur who has opened six restaurants and two farms (that grow food for the restaurants) in three cities across two states since 2008 when she opened her first restaurant. Before her life in food, she graduated from Harvard College with a BA in English & American Literature and Language, interned at Harper’s Bazaar, and studied fashion design in Milan. Erin still writes the menus and tests recipes for her restaurants Vinaigrette, Modern General Feed and Seed and The Feel Good.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?

I am the owner/founder of six restaurants and two sustainable farms in New Mexico and Texas. My company includes three locations of a full-service upscale salad restaurant Vinaigrette, two retail-restaurant hybrids called Modern General Feed and Seed, and a little wine bar inspired by my amazing grandma called The Feel Good. And we’ve got more restaurants and related businesses in the works. But I started as a total outsider to the industry. I went into college as a pre-med student, with plans to become a surgeon, like my dad. About halfway through, I realized I had a problem. I did not want to be a doctor when I grew up. I didn’t know what I wanted exactly, but I knew it was something more dynamic and creative. At first, I thought that something was fashion — so I spent a summer interning at Harper’s Bazaar, and then after graduating moved to Milan to study fashion design at a little school called Istituto Marangoni. I loved living in Italy, but I was homesick and also nature-sick. I didn’t want to live in big cities anymore as I had been for the past five years. So, I moved to ten acres in rural New Mexico (I had spent the summer before moving to Italy working in Santa Fe, where my Aunt lived), worked a smattering of odd jobs, and taught myself to farm organically, drawing on…

--

--