Infusiast Spotlight: RGK Kitchen
As part of a recurring series, we’re shining a spotlight on infüsiasts to share their tips, tricks & infusion journeys. This month, we talked to RGK Kitchen about their catering business.
"Shortly after legalization started in MA I connected my culinary career with infusing in dispensary kitchens."
We spoke with RGK Kitchen about how she got started, how LĒVO has impacted her process, and her inspiration for cooking and helping others.
Read our interview with Personal Chef Rae Gabler-Kirbos below!
Tell us a little bit about who you are and how RGK Kitchen came about.
Hi! My name is Rae! I’ve been cooking since I could hold a rolling pin. (I have some really cute toddler pictures!) I loved it so much. My parents encouraged being in the kitchen with them. My mom did all the baking with me until she passed. My dad and I continued to cook together. Nothing crazy but he made it fun.
I always looked forward to making dinner together or just being able to watch. I was a really picky eater but everything was always interesting to see until I had to try it myself. When my father started getting sick I cooked for us. He’d walk me through things or sometimes I got to do it myself. After he passed, my Oma (grandmother) kept me cooking with her when I visited in the summers. I learned the most from her, from baking German cookies to roasting chicken. I got to spend time with her doing what I loved while being taught new skills and hearing stories about my mom.
When I graduated high school I went to school for public relations and I hated it. My roommate and my fiance, now husband, encouraged me to make the change to culinary school. We packed up and moved to Massachusetts. I graduated from Le Cordon Bleu and started my career. I worked in a couple restaurants, country clubs, stadiums, catering, and a bakery.
Right before COVID I was working in dispensary kitchens working with flower infused edibles. After COVID when many things were deemed non-essential I was at home trying to figure out what to do and saw some things about personal chefs. My husband encouraged me again to try it out and see how I liked it. I started RGKkitchen in May of 2020 and took our first client in June. Many of our first clients were bachelorettes. Before I knew it we were getting booked every weekend and I had to pull friends from the industry to help out. My husband became my business partner. We started getting weddings, showers, and anniversary parties. We pulled out surprise birthdays, date nights, and friends getting together for the first time since lock down. I blinked and we passed our 100th event.
How did you get started with infused creations?
I initially started looking into infused cooking after I had back to back surgeries. I was struggling with pain management and getting back to a normal life. Shortly after legalization started in MA I connected my culinary career with infusing in dispensary kitchens. A little different than what you do at home but it was a sciencey situation I loved. When COVID hit and I was home I went looking for another way to do things at home again when I came across LĒVO. After trying flower, I moved on to everything else I could infuse. I started doing garlic infused everything for a while. Different infused honeys, syrups, oils. We had jars of everything you could imagine.
How was your first experience with LĒVO?
Mind blowing! I was afraid it was going to be complicated but I had it figured out pretty quickly. My husband was hovering while also trying to work from home. We were both crouched down to counter height when I dispensed that first garlic olive oil. It’s funny because we both just looked at each other like "WOAHHH… okay let’s do another!"
So we moved on to our first flower infusion. It was insane that you could decarb in it and the whole house didn’t smell! Perfectly activated and the potency was amazing. We used super lemon haze in olive oil. Got down to counter level again like weirdos and watched it dispense. It was so satisfying to be able to do multiple things after just a quick clean up and reset. It was almost too easy.
(While those first batches were going I turned the shipping and machine box into a tank for our cat. She was also very happy with us experiencing LĒVO for the first time. She spent the rest of the lockdown in that tank.)
How has your business been impacted since starting to use LĒVO?
It’s given us a little extra something with our grazing boards and jams.
"Having not just a local honey on our boards but also being infused with thyme or hibiscus? Everyone is happy about that!"
How has LĒVO made your life easier? Are there any unexpected benefits you have experienced?
Definitely! I make all of our dressings and glazes from scratch. Being able to infuse the oil or honey and not having to babysit it is a game changer. I can set it and walk away to prep other things. Same for additions to our jams. Last year I did over 400 jars and a few of them I had infused honey added in with the sugar. It’s really nice using loose spices without worrying about fishing them out or straining before adding to the jam. Just dispense it and use it.
As a personal chef, what is your most requested INFUSED dish?
Brown butter garlic scallops! I make this multiple times a month, especially in the summer. The scallops get a nice crust in the butter and I’m not worrying about garlic burning in the pan because the butter is infused with it. They always come out beautiful.
Do you personally have a favorite traditional dish that you have elevated by using LĒVO? If so, what herb did you use?
Focaccia! I’ve been using garlic rosemary infused olive oil. Game changer. Perfectly garlicky and herby. Top with some flaky sea salt. Perfection.
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