Vovo Cantina

Our food is a homage to the culinary festivities held across Brazil which at their heart celebrate community, unity and family above all. Vovó Cantina serves traditional Brazilian family favourites, as well as other dishes inspired by the big, bold flavours of Latin America.

Asterisk Asterisk


Vovo Cantina founders Ana Dobre Trentin and Jason King!

How did you get the idea for your business?

Well, the idea for our Brazilian street food business actually stemmed from our personal connection with Brazilian cuisine. We have a deep love for the vibrant flavours and diverse dishes of Brazil. Ana is a Brazilian national, and I myself, having spent some time in Brazil and noticing the lack of authentic Brazilian street food options in my area, saw an opportunity to share these delicious flavors with others. It felt like the perfect way to combine our love for cooking with our entrepreneurial spirit.

What's the first thing you did to bring that idea to life?

The first step was conducting thorough market research. We wanted to understand the demand for Brazilian street food and the potential benefits from competition with local offerings. Once we had a fair grasp of the market, we started developing our menus. We spent time refining recipes and testing them on a small scale, seeking input from Brazilian friends and family. This helped us build confidence in the quality and uniqueness of our offerings.

What's the best part of running your own business? What's the hardest?

The best parts are the sense of fulfilment and creativity they bring. We get to share our passion for Brazilian cuisine with others and see the joy on their faces when they try our dishes. Building brands from scratch and watching them grow is incredibly rewarding. Additionally, the freedom and flexibility of being our own bosses are quite liberating.

However, the hardest parts are the constant juggling acts. Running a food business is highly demanding; it requires meticulous planning, long hours, and sometimes dealing with unpredictable challenges like supply chain issues or weather-related trade limitations. The responsibilities for every aspect of the business, from sourcing ingredients to marketing and finances, can be also overwhelming at times.

What would you say to someone considering starting their own business?

First and foremost, follow your passion. Starting a business can be incredibly challenging, so it's essential to be deeply passionate about what you're doing. This enthusiasm will keep you motivated during tough times. Secondly, do your homework. Research your market thoroughly, understand your target audience, and be aware of your competition. A solid business plan is your foundation for success.

Networking is also crucial. Build relationships with others in your industry and seek advice from experienced entrepreneurs. Don't be afraid to ask for help or guidance; there's a vast community of business owners willing to share their knowledge.

Lastly, be prepared for setbacks and stay adaptable. Business often involves trial and error, and not every idea will work out as planned. Be open to adjusting your strategies and learning from your mistakes. Starting your own business is a challenging but immensely rewarding journey. If you're passionate, well-prepared, and persistent, you can turn a dream into a thriving reality.

Asterisk Asterisk