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Colorado Sake Company partners with chef to teach cooking classes online and keep business alive

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Posted at 10:26 PM, Apr 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-11 01:33:09-04

DENVER— Small businesses are struggling to stay afloat due to the coronavirus — and to stay afloat during the financial blow, a sake brewery tapped into a partnership to bring business back.

Two years ago, the Colorado Sake Company opened its doors to the public. The business was starting to see real growth when COVID-19 swept across the U.S., restricting operations and putting in place a stay-at-home order.

“We had to close our taproom, which is a big source of what we do and our income,” business owner Heather Dennis said.

To keep the business open, the owners began thinking outside the box to increase sales.

“We have turned into a Sake delivery business as well as a sushi rolling house,” Dennis said.

The Colorado Sake Company partnered with Chef Taylor West after he lost his full-time job, in order to bring sushi classes and handcrafted sake into the homes of customers.

“People are opening their doors with the biggest smiles, and the widest arms and their kids are screaming, and they are like, 'thank you,'” Dennis said.

In the last couple of years, West taught cooking classes at breweries, so he took the same concept live online. Customers can ask questions during the class.

“We are seeing more success with the online format than actually having people coming to the brewery,” West said.

He says the cooking class helps people cope with the latest changes in life. For some, the sushi class is a getaway; for others, it’s family time or date night.

The classes are offered twice a week, Wednesday through Sunday.