Are you one of those people who always complains about the lack of quality, locally-made food products? Probably. And if you aren’t, maybe you should be. Thanks to 2013’s change in California’s long-antiquated cottage food industry laws, Angelenos now have more access to locally-made products than ever before — but it’s still a far cry from a lot of other major cities, and there are lots of corners of the consumer food market left virtually untouched.
That’s how Leah Ferrazzani felt when she began making her own extruded pastas from her home last year. Armed with plenty of restaurant kitchen experience and the name Semolina Artisanal Pasta, Ferrazzani began making a variety of dried pastas using only durum semolina flour. The early launch has been a success, thanks to local retailers like PopProduce and online giants like Good Eggs, but Ferrazzani has quickly reached capacity in her small hillside home. Enter L.A. Prep.
The soon-to-arrive Lincoln Heights warehouse space is still under construction, but will in short order become filled with cottage industry folks like Ferrazzani, looking to expand their reach and become full-on retailers of the products they believe in, and make themselves. The L.A. Prep model is to lease individual spaces to tenants where food production can take place, as well as offer flexible cold storage solutions, a test kitchen and co-working space and even provide guidance from an overall management team.
The Semolina Artisanal Pasta Kickstarter is currently seeking $25,000 for associated costs of moving production out of Ferrazzani’s house and into L.A. Prep. While the latter provides a lot of overall help, there’s still the need to purchase and install equipment, plus get the whole operation up and running to prepare for expanded production.
The ladder of potential rewards includes exclusive recipes from the likes of Nancy Silverton, Jason Neroni and Micah Wexler, and there’s even the option for a private pasta dinner from former Osteria Mozza chef Chris Feldmeier. The campaign launched yesterday and will run for the next month.