Woman On The Edge: Kate Galassi

01/14/2015 8:40 AM |


Kate Galassi
Co-Founder of Quinciple

There’s certainly no shortage of farm-to-doorstep grocery delivery services available in Brooklyn, all of which seem to offer the same 15 different varieties of apples and 20 varieties of organic, borough-made granola or whatever. But that’s where Quinciple is different: It offers, well, no choice at all. Instead, Quinciple focuses on shipping out weekly, highly curated boxes featuring the very best of the greenmarket, cherry-picked by co-founder (and former produce buyer for the Spotted Pig and The Breslin) Kate Galassi. “My goal was to develop a model where home cooks could get a hold of the same superior ingredients as restaurant chefs,” she explains. “So instead of providing 500 options, we’ll send you only the very best meat, fish, vegetables and bread, along with recipes, prep, storage and cooking tips. All of the items pair well together, and each has a story around it, meant to help chefs tackle different ingredients, be inspired, and get them into the mood in the kitchen.” In order to ensure quality control for Quinciple’s customers, Galassi is adamant about putting her purveyors first, organizing delivery schedules in order to give them enough lead time to fill orders, paying at the market upon pick-up in order to increase their cash flow, and even occasionally driving to farms herself, when they’re unable to ship out produce due to inclement weather. And while Galassi is both competent and committed when it comes to hands-on nature of her leadership role, she admits she’s often questioned as to her ability to regularly push around thousand-pound pallets of potatoes, or even operate a freight elevator. “When it comes to physical parts of this job, as a female, it’s easy to feel undermined at every turn,” Galassi shrugs. “But on a higher level, meeting with investors or farmers, I never run into those issues. When it comes to exercising my brain, I always get given the opportunity to prove myself.” So now that she’s more than established the viability of Quinciple’s business plan, what advice would Galassi give to budding entrepreneurs? “When you’re starting a company with limited resources, there’s a mindset that you have to do everything yourself. But what ends up happening is that you inevitably do certain things poorly, that are really fundamental to running your business,” she says. “For example, I have no background in marketing and hate social media, which is important when it comes to building a community of loyal, likeminded customers. So the moment I realized I shouldn’t be doing it myself, and simply hired on someone who actually loves doing it, everything worked a lot better!”