The seeds for Kured, a new business opening next month at 83 Charles St. (formerly Fastachi) that specializes in the delivery of charcuterie bouquets, were planted in Madrid, Spain, where the company’s founder and owner, Gillian Rozynek, studied abroad during her junior year at Boston College.
“When I was in Spain, I learned about the charcuterie landscape, which is obviously super ingrained in European culture,” said Rozynek, a Cape Cod native who graduated from BC in 2020 with a business degree. “I found fairly quickly participating in a culture like this taught me a lot about myself, and my biggest takeaway was that charcuterie kind of facilitates and symbolizes bringing people together and empowering real conversations.”
So when she returned to her college campus, Rozynek began making charcuterie boards and selling them to her friends groups for Friendsgiving and other special occasions.
“I knew when I returned home, I didn’t want to leave [charcuterie culture] behind and wanted to find some way to permanently implement it into my own life and spread it to people I was close to,” Rozynek said. “I used charcuterie as way to do it and as a symbol of bringing people together.”
Rozynek estimates she sold about 50 charcuterie boards to her classmates during her senior year before the pandemic struck and BC’s campus closed, forcing her to move back in with her parents in Falmouth. And with “nothing going on” last summer, she got involved in Soaring Startup Circle (SSC) Venture Partners, a summer incubator program at Boston College, she said, and launched Kured as a startup company serving Boston and Cape Cod.
Rozynek quickly came to three realizations as a fledgling business owner, she said, including that “buying all the ingredients is super expensive”; that “building the product itself is super time-consuming”; and that there had to be “an easier way to make charcuterie more accessible to people, both from a price and a timing perspective.”
The experience was also encouraging for Rozynek in that she also soon saw the fertile market for a charcuterie business.
“I really saw an opportunity here to create something like the Sweetgreen or Chipotle of charcuterie,” she said. “If Sweetgreen can do it with salads and Chipotle can do it with burritos, why can’t I do it with meats and cheeses?”
Moreover, Rozynek added: “People don’t have to go out to the grocery store and spend tons of money and tons of time. People can come into the space and get ready-to-eat boxes in five minutes and at prices that makes sense – that’s the opportunity I saw.”
Like Sweetgreen, Rozynek said Kured would have “premade menu items boxes or people can customize their boxes by going down the line and taking the meats and cheeses and extras they want, and we’ll assemble it for them.”
And customers would be charged a flat rate, she added, with different price tiers depending on what meats and cheeses they select.
Kured will also nurture local artists through what Rozynek calls its “Artist Package Concept.”
Not only will the business provide physical space for artists to display their work on the shop’s walls with rotating exhibits, as well as digital space on its social media, said Rozynek, Kured will also give artists the ability to design their own charcuterie boxes and, once they’re sold, the artists will receive a royalty fee from them.
“The whole idea is to get artists to do what they love and give them the space to do it, all while being compensated and recognized for doing that,” she said.
Rozynek is an artist herself, mostly working in linear art and graphic design, so she said that Kured combines her two greatest passions – charcuterie and art.
“Charcuterie is a raw art form, quite literally,” she said.
“There’s a subtle synergy between charcuterie and art, as silly as it seems. Both charcuterie and art are built on the foundation of conversation.”
As for why she chose to bring Kured to Charles Street, Rozynek said she was attracted by its abundance of “mom-and-pop stores,” as well as a business community that welcomes and supports newcomers.
Kured also expect to do a lot of business through catering, she said, so its location will also be convenient to downtown businesses.
Kured is slated to open in mid- to late May, Rozynek said, with a hard opening planned around Memorial Day.
For more information on Kured, visit www.kuredinc.com or @kured_inc on Instagram, or email Gillian Rozynek at [email protected].