A Humbl start to Orlando
Matthew Kenney, celebrity plant-based chef, and Paul Mascia have partnered up to bring a new restaurant, Humbl, to Windermere Village. They sat down with Matthew Peddie to talk more about the concept, the plant-based dining, and Kenney's return to the central Florida area.
Mascia, CEO and founding partner of Humbl, says that his own experience of eating a more plant-based diet made him aware of a need that he is trying to solve with this new restaurant.
"Humbl is an all plant-based fast casual concept. Plant-based has grown beyond the early-adopter stage, it is now mainstream. Many many people are looking at healthier alternatives." Mascia said.
"I myself started eating plan-based, primarily, about sixteen- eighteen months ago and in that process, realized there really was not a viable fast casual convenient familiar option. And so Humbl was born out of that desire to be healthy and to bring this cuisine to families on the go, with all the trappings of fast casual and comfort and familiar foods. The research indicted that there was a gaping whole in this space."
This is not Chef Kenney's first time being involved in a restaurant in the area. Cafe 118 Degrees closed in 2015 and Kenney had been previously involved in menu consulting and its opening. Since then, he says the food landscape has changed.
"The bigger issue that will support Humbl is that the total landscape for plant-based has changed. Even internally, we learned to do so many things that we didn't know how to do back when I'd only been doing this a couple of years. We had to retrain ourselves with all the different techniques and methods and tools and equipment that we use to get this done, so its years and years of testing and experimenting. " Kenney said.
"So we've actually, over that time, developed a cooking language, almost like french cuisine as a structured type of cooking, we have our own structure."
Kenney also credits more public awareness and education of food from films like Forks over Knives as how things have changed.
Humbl in Windermere has opened and is planning to open a second location in downtown Orlando.