Two new small business owners collaborated this past weekend to host their second bi-monthly mind-body event. Entrepreneurs Mike Tobin of Fresh Catch Poké Co. and Megan Castleveterea of Raw Renewal Yoga crossed brands once again to create the unique Fresh Flow experience. Mike launched his restaurant in Williamsville January of this year, shortly after his friend Megan opened her yoga studio in downtown Buffalo. Although starting up separately, the two realized they shared similar entrepreneurial passion and values. In the last year, their friendship has evolved into being each other's greatest business supporters.
Fresh Flow Event Details. Festivities took place Sunday morning at Fresh Catch Poké Co. Attendees received as part of the $30 admission cost, one hour of Buti Flow yoga, options to build their own poké or açaí bowl, bottomless mimosas, a free studio pass for Raw Renewal Yoga, and entrance into a raffle for a Poké gift card. One goal of the event was to offer a welcoming accessible for newcomers to yoga. "One of my clients brought her husband in today. She said there was no way he'd go into a studio class," Megan told me later when I sat down to talk with her. She sees this event as an opportunity for people to step out of their comfort zones and try new things.
Yoga Style. Buti Flow is a vinyasa-based practice that vibes with less traditional yoga music. You're probably wondering, what is Buti? Megan sums up Buti Flow as: "Non-stop movement. We are not holding static poses, we are always moving, in constant motion." She goes on to explain, "When you hear a beat your body naturally wants to move. Music is the driving pulse to help you move through the practice." Everything she said resonated with me. I remember tuning into this rhythmic energy at the previous Fresh Flow event. It did not come naturally right away, but I eventually allowed myself to surrender to the beat and follow Megan's voice. I connected with my inner self and let my body glide through the movements, letting go of everything that weighed me down. It seemed as if I had drifted into a light trance, triggering a restful, balanced state. I remember thinking to myself: Wow! My body likes this! Afterwards, I noticed how relaxed the energy around me was. I felt at peace—the opposite of how I had felt waking up that morning, or even all week.
The Food. Everything on offer from Fresh Catch Poké Co was remarkably fresh. Tuna and marlin for the Poké bowls is flown in daily from Hawaii then filleted and cubed by Mike and his staff. Poké (pronounced Poh-keh) is a centuries-old traditional Hawaiian comfort food. It's often been compared to Americans' love for nachos, but Mike put it as, "Poké to Hawaiians is like what chicken wings are to Buffalo." He went on to educate me on Hawaii's easy access to deep-water fish, how he chooses seasonal ingredients, and on his approach to creating an eco-friendly eatery.
There's More. Mike has not limited his restaurant to just raw fish; antibiotic-free chicken, tofu, Keto diet-friendly options, veggies and more are available, as well. Tobin supports small businesses like The Grove juicery and local farm fresh eggs. "I do business with the Always Something Farm in Darien— I give the farmer table scraps for his chickens and he thanks me with chicken eggs that are used for Saturday brunch." This environmentally-friendly business venture comes full circle with cornstarch-based packaging and tableware that is biodegradable and compostable.
At the event, while people were mingling and getting their food, I spoke with Cait and Scott Cerny from Amherst. "This was our first time and we will be back again!" Looking around the room I was reminded of when Mike said, "It's our life, not just a business."