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The Grey Plume

The Grey Plume

Omaha, NE

Check Out Their Website: HERE

Key words: Team. Environmental. Community.

For a good time, (make reservations): Here

This restaurant’s service is great. They practice team service so everyone on the floor cares about every guest on the floor, they describe food at its presentation, and everyone is attentive and purposeful. It’s a beautiful thing.

There is one thing that this excellent service team has a passion for that we could all gain inspiration from. They are GREEN.

 

 

The team at The Grey Plume is a small and tidy one, which is perfect because the dining room seating ability is small and tidy too, seating around 40 guests at a time.

For those of you, most of you, who want to experience great service and stunning food all while supporting the environment, I strongly recommend you dine at The Grey Plume.

 

Pride, It’s a Contagion

 

The Chef and owner of The Grey Plume, Clayton Chapman, has been loving the restaurant scene since he was a young teenager. His love paved his decision to attend culinary school at the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago. Upon graduation he moved back to his home city of Omaha and practiced his strong and growing culinary ability at some local spots, V. Mertz being one of them.

After years of honing his craft, which is continued through a chef’s lifetime, he decided to open a restaurant with a concept that was his and his alone. In December of 2010 Chef Clayton opened The Grey Plume. Chef Clayton wanted to create a restaurant that showcased his excellent cuisine, provides great service, and is supportive of his values and beliefs which is sustainability and supporting the local community.

The Grey Plume was the first restaurant in the United States to become green certified under the Green Restaurant Association. The G.R.A. uses a points system to help restaurants determine if they are qualified to gain certification. There are different levels of certification; two, three, and four stars being the highest. Since The Grey Plume has been committed to being environmentally conscious and locally supportive from the beginning, it comes as no surprise that this year they’ve accumulated enough points to gain the coveted fourth and final star.

That’s a big deal and the staff knows it.


Every server and bartender that I spoke with was proud of this accomplishment and supportive of continuing the dedication. The general manager, Rachael Patel is among those who love what they represent. “We are so happy to be in a position to give back to the local community,” she tells me. But that attitude falls right in line with hospitality, doesn’t it? It’s similar to the lesson that Social in Fort Collins, CO taught us; genuine hospitality is the positive decisions one makes when they don’t have to. And this team doesn’t have to go the extra mile to be green, but they do anyway.

What started as a passion from Chef has trickled down to impassion every employee in the restaurant, and positively impact the entire Omaha community.

 

It’s not easy being green

 

The Grey Plume is green and has earned four stars from GRA, but they also do things that don’t earn them points. Being environmentally conscious and supportive of your community is done because you care, not just for accreditation.  Here is a summary list of some of the things they do.

 

  • The flooring at The Grey Plume is repurposed barn wood floor. (Next time you dine there, have a drink at the bar and look to the right. There is a picture of the barn the flooring came from.
  • All lighting is on a timer so when there is no motion for X amount of time, the lights automatically go out.
  • Old menu’s are shredded and used for bedding in local chicken coups.
  • All compostable food is donated to a local farm for compost.
  • All clean, un-used drinking water is used to water micro-greens and plants outside.
  • All wine bottles are either cleaned and used as water pitchers on the floor or they are picked up from a local artists who melts them down and turns them into side plates for the restaurant. (This is a labor of love. The bartenders use a toxic free gum remover to remove the wine’s label. Have you ever done this? It’s a nightmare and this team does it around 100 times per week.)
  • Many of the plates and platters are created by a local artist who gets his materials from a Nebraska quarry.
  • The dining room chairs cushions are stuffed with rapidly renewable soy foam.
  • The granite is from a local Missouri quarry.
  • They make their own butter and use the left over byproducts, whey and buttermilk, to make other in house items such as cheese.
  • 80% of their products come from an 80 mile radius.
  • The building where The Grey Plume lives is LEED certified, which is a certification process for the actual construction of the building.
  • All of their appliances are energy efficient.
  • The bartenders work with the chefs to utilize all the food products so there is minimal waste.

 

Is your head spinning?  Mine was. This team is serious about providing great food and service all while fostering a strong sense of community and doing the best thing for the environment.

This team teaches us that passion trickles down from the top and we can all do at least one thing to help support community and environment.

 

Thank you Rachelle Patel for allowing me to come and learn about your restaurant’s culture and Chef Clayton for creating a restaurant worth visiting. Special thanks to Derek, Daniel, Rachelle, Danielle and Angela for taking the time to explain what The Grey Plume is all about. Thank you Morgan, Kyle, Kathryne and the other team members I didn’t get the honor of meeting. Thanks for being part of such a great team and allowing me into it for a few hours.  You guys are great!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Comments
  1. One of the best if not the overall best dining establishment in Omaha. Food, service, ambience, surroundings all make for a perfect evening.

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