Brooke Hagerty celebrated her heat-and-eat and catering shop's grand opening on Nov 1, 2018, complete with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Members of the Westminster and greater Carroll County communities and the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce conversed over fresh pumpkin hummus and homemade tortilla chips, Maryland crab soup and pulled pork sliders with cole slaw on Thursday morning.
Brooke Hagerty, the mind behind The Food Chick — a catering and heat-and-eat concept — hosted her grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony with the help of her husband, Ken Lurie, the owner of Bud’s at Silver Run, and Commissioner Stephen Wantz, R-District 1.
“A lot of you know these past couple years have not been the best in personal life with the death of my son in a tragic drunk-driving accident,” Hagerty said, tears in her eyes.
Hagerty’s son, Zachary Pressman, died Feb. 1, 2016, at 24 years old.
“I wouldn’t be doing this if it weren’t for Zachary,” she said. “This is all for Zachary. To show him his mom is going to be OK and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.”
Hagerty, former owner of Gunner’s Grille in Taneytown, had already been serving cuisine under the name “The Food Chick” at the Westminster Farmers Market two years before her son died — but she said it was Pressman who inspired her to ramp up efforts to take the business to the next level.
“I wanted to go back to catering. Catering is what I really love — and now it’s taken on a life of its own,” Hagerty said Thursday morning.
“What the community is asking for, they want healthier meals. They want the ‘Hello Fresh’ but without the preparation and clean up. My motto for my heat-and-eat is: All you have to do is heat it and eat it.”
Hagerty had a variety of hors d'oeuvres and small bites for her attendees at 2 Washington Road, right on the corner of Main Street in downtown Westminster where Bill’s Seafood used to be.
A large batch of pumpkin white chocolate cookies were stacked on an oval plate next to one with herbed goat cheese pops.
All Time Toys, formerly located on Main Street in the recently rain-battered city of Ellicott City, has already moved to 2030 Liberty Road in Eldersburg, but Barnes and his staff are still preparing for their grand opening, scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 20.
Showcase refrigerators had ready-made food options including a 16-ounce broccoli and cheese soup for $11, various pickles — bread and butter, hot sour, jalapeño dill and fresh dill — priced at $5 per container, and black bean, Mexican turkey, Italian turkey and Mediterranean turkey burgers for $18 a pack.
Hagerty said the District 1 commissioner was like a brother to her, and so she was happy he was there for the ribbon-cutting. Wantz seconded the claim.
“She’s like a sister to me and I’m incredibly proud of all she’s been through, both personal and professional. I think she’s found her niche with The Food Chick. It’s fantastic. She’s doing wonderful and she gives back to the community,” said Wantz after the ribbon-cutting.
“Bill’s Seafood [was the last business here]. He used to sell crabs out of here and then it sat for quite a few years. When you can find great people who want to take these old buildings and help the Main Street community, that’s priceless.”