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A fork in the Silk Road - Missoula Independent Sept 8th, 2014


A fork in the Silk Road

POSTED BY  ON MON, SEP 8, 2014 AT 9:25 AM

The Silk Road is an upscale tapas restaurant open every night of the week on the Hip Strip. And it’s a catering service that provides food for some 30 weddings a summer and for other events throughout the year. And it’s a line of Asian and African spice blends that are available in some 90 stores around town and as far away as Alaska and Colorado. And it’s a lot for Abraham, Sam and Elise Risho to handle. Abraham and Sam are brothers, and Sam and Elise are married. They own and operate the Silk Road together, and they have decided to make some changes to help the business—and themselves. 

“A restaurant’s a pretty consuming business,” Sam Risho says. “It was not giving us the time to focus on all aspects of our business and, you know, our families. When you’re working seven days a week, you’re pretty occupied.

So starting in October, the Silk Road won’t be open every night. Instead, it will offer dinner four nights a week, from Wednesday through Saturday. The Rishos aren't rearranging their operations to create three-day weekends. They are planning to immediately fill their free time with an increased focus on catering and on their spice line, adding marinades, sauces and new spices and increasing production.

“We’re still gonna cook for this town,” Sam Risho says, “but [the change] will allow us to put a lot more focus into catering our events and we will be doing a lot more of our speciality products as well.”

Risho says he expects to retain everyone on the Silk Road’s current staff of 30 employees and to open the restaurant more nights a week during the summer season, when business tends to pick up. For now, he anticipates the Silk Road retaining all three of its businesses under its existing roof on Higgins Ave. But that could change.

“We’re going to keep doing our production for our spices and our next lines that come out as well—we’re going to keep doing that right out of here at the restaurant until we’re literally bursting at the seams," Risho says. "And when that happens, we’ll probably have to get an actual warehouse or another facility to keep doing it.”

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