Ryan Grizzaffi’s story is one part heavy metal, one part Cajun cooking, and one part business.
In Baton Rouge, Grizzaffi has pounded the pavement in the food and music scenes. Many know him as a guitarist in the local heavy metal band The Axes of Evil.
Others are getting to know the 26-year-old through his food.
Since 2014, Grizzaffi has been building a catering business and occasionally cooking up a few dishes at Spanish Moon. His business is called The Cajun Spoon.
“[The Cajun Spoon] started as a food truck,” he said. “I was getting an audience base that was tasting and sampling soups, jambalaya and gumbo. I was sharpening the recipe.”
Eventually, the path led him to creating dry mixes. And just last week, the young rock ’n’ roller released his line of mixes in the Baton Rouge market.
The Cajun Spoon’s gumbo, jambalaya, and shrimp and corn bisque mixes are now available at Bet-R Grocery near the Perkins Road overpass, Calandro’s Supermarkets on Perkins Road and Government Street, and Calvin’s Bocage Market on Jefferson Highway. The product is also available at thecajunspoon.com. The mixes are $2.75 each.
Grizzaffi is hopeful that Baton Rougeans will take notice of The Cajun Spoon — not only because of the recipes but also because of the business’ mission. For every box sold, a meal will be donated to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank.
“Our mission is to give back,” he said. “At the end of the quarter, we’ll make a bulk donation after we tally up the total sales.”
The reason for the donation was simple.
“As a business, you want to stand out and be different,” he said. “You want customers to feel good about the purchase. They’re not only feeding themselves when they buy this, they’re also feeding someone else. It’s what we think we should do.”
But Grizzaffi isn’t content to simply rest and watch what happens.
Not only is his business coming along with the mixes, he also continues to fill catering orders, preparing everything from pork tenderloins to sandwich trays for chemical plants in Geismar.
His band continues to perform and is working on a new batch of tunes. If he had his way, he would go on a “heavy metal food truck tour,” rocking on stage then in a small kitchen, preparing food for bands and fans.
Grizzaffi is also a new dad and is soon to be married to business partner/graphic designer Kristen Seneca. For now, he’s determined to get the mixes into more stores and at local farmer’s markets.
“We want to get this product in stores nationwide,” he said. “This has the potential to do something for Baton Rouge.”
Follow Matthew Sigur on Twitter, @MatthewSigur.