The Camel celebrates one year of employee-ownership

Photo by: Julie Tripp
Photo by Julie Tripp
Photo by Julie Tripp

In conjunction with The Camel’s one-year celebration of being employee owned-and-operated, the venue, restaurant and bar rolled out a revitalized menu. The new items aim to cater to a wider variety of patrons and while increasing The Camel’s notoriety as a place for good eats.

“We bought the place last July and have been talking about redoing the menu since,” said co-owner and bartender, Matt Hansen.

From July 18 through July 23, The Camel offered half-off their new menu and a longer happy hour.

“We offered half-off the new menu, and it worked,” Hansen said. “We’ve still got people coming in from that week (July 18 to July 23).”

Along with their new menu, the Camel introduced a delivery option for their patrons through Order Up, an online food delivery service.

“The Camel has some of the best food in Richmond, period,” said executive chef and co-owner Xavier Beverly. “Not a venue that has food, but as a restaurant, bar and venue.”

Beverly’s culinary inspiration stems from American comfort food, all made from scratch, he said. With more than a dozen vegan and vegetarian options, The Camel aims to better serve Richmond’s dietary landscape, too.

“I believe any customer can come in and find something they love,” Beverly said.

Before rolling out the new menu items, there were things that had to come first, including flooding in the basement, landscaping, interior painting and other maintenance issues, Hansen said.

“We collectively agreed not to take home a profit in the first year,” Hansen said. “All the returns have been poured back into the business.”

This commitment to the improvement of The Camel as a venue space has raised the stage and expanded the sound booth. In the coming months, the tables and chairs will be replaced and the patio overhauled.

“We host shows every night, but every show might not cater to everyone,” Beverly said. “Now people can still eat the Camel’s food, even if the show isn’t necessarily to their liking.”

Jesse Adcock. Photo by Julie TrippSpectrum Editor, Jesse Adcock
Jesse is a junior print journalism major and Arabic and Middle Eastern culture minor. He has walked in the valley with no water and bitten the heads off of snakes. //

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