Chamber Insider Blog

SBA Spotlight: The Conche

Thank you to The Conche for answering a few of our questions.
Congratulations on being named a finalist for Loudoun Destination Business of the Year!
The 24th Annual Loudoun Small Business Awards will be on November 1, 2018 – Tickets/More Info Here

1. Tell us your story of how your company got to where it is today? 

We have been living in Loudoun County for the past 10 years, and I use to commute to DC for almost 10 years to my other Restaurant, I was exhausted with the long commute and long restaurant hours.

I always wanted to open a restaurant close to home so I could spend time with my family, Our concept is very unique and everything is evolved around chocolate,  So we started to get some help from SBA and did some survey to see if our concept would really work in our area, we received great feed back from the survey results, that gave me confidence and finally the time had come to start looking for locations, we found the perfect location The Village at Leesburg.

It was quite challenging to find staff, even though we had a rough start, we were very fortunate to find our awesome staff, who believe in me and my products that we are very proud off, they made my dream come true, we have built a happy customer base and they have spread the word for the unique and amazing experience at The Conche to be a destination place.

2. What would it mean to you and your company to win a Small Business Award?

The Loudoun community has graciously welcomed us and show their support. I am honored and very excited the we have been being selected as one the finalist, I feel with our hospitality we are able to make a difference and create exceptional memories for our guest, We have inspired many kids and adults with our chocolate making classes.

We feel very special and privileged to be chosen for this award, Personally wining the Small Business Award means awesome and its recognition that I am on the right path, that following my dreams does work, that what i love, what i am passionate about works.

Professional it means I can connect with more people on a bigger scale, help more people, create positive change on a bigger scale.

3. If you weren’t running your own business/working at this business, what would you be doing?

Well I am definitely looking for that day where I am not working or running a business, I would be helping the Cacao farmers in some of the remote plantations to assist with aid and provide better facilities for farming and harvesting and help them receive their fair share.

4. What book are you reading right now?

Chocolate Nations, Living and Dying for Cocoa in West Africa.

Chocolate -the very word conjures up a hint of the forbidden and a taste of the decadent, yet the story behind the chocolate bar is rarely one of luxury,

from the thousand of children who work on plantations to the small holders who hardest the beans, Chocolate Nations reveals the hard economic realities of our favorite sweet. This vivid and gripping exploration of the reasons behind farmer poverty includes the human stories of the producers and traders at the heart of West African industry.

Provocative and eye opening, Chocolate Nation exposes the true story of how the treat we love makes it on to our supermarket shelves.

5. If you have 24-hours off, and your family was out of town, what would you do?

I would most most likely to our my motor bike for a long ride, which is been sitting in the garage asking me to ride

6. What is the smallest thing that has made the largest impact on your business?

Our genuine caring, warm and friendly staff has made the largest impact on our business. People love us, and we have made great impact to their dining experiences creating exceptional memories.

7. What did you want to be when you grew up as a child? / What was a childhood dream that you had?

I wanted to be a Pilot in the Air Force, Since no one in our family were in Military or Air Force, my parents did not support that decisions, I also enjoyed cooking as a kid, so i chose my other passion to be a chef.

8. Who is the one person that has influenced you the most in your career?

Well I had two people, one is my Mother, as growing up i watched her cook, and end up being grocery and produce shopper for the house, I discovered my love for cooking, as I became in expert for sourcing quality grocery and produce, and see how my Mom turned those thing into delicious dishes.

During my first job, I was working with a Chef form Switzerland, he was a genius chef and a great chocolatier, and chocolate was my favorite thing, I must say this was a turning point in my career, that this man inspired me to follow my dreams and never look back.

9. What is your favorite thing about running a business in Loudoun County?

It’s awesome to live and work in a community where there are so many thriving small businesses.  I love the camaraderie between all of the businesses and how people truly want to help each other succeed and grow as individuals and business owners.  I also feel extremely fortunate that I am able to utilize my skills and experiences to help others in the community both personally and professionally.

10. If you’re not in the office where can we find you?

When I’m not in the office, I am either working on a new menu and also I am planning to open another restaurant concept so either way I will be working on developing the business.

11. What is your favorite weekend activity in Loudoun County?

I don’t get to take off on weekends, if i am not working during the weekend, which rarely happens, we go out to Topgolf, the movies or to visit friends.