The gourmet and specialty foods market is booming across the country. Consumers are looking for quality products coupled with a shopping experience to match. Many large cities have entire communities dedicated to ethnic foods and culture but the same can’t be said for small town America. So armed with our foodie mentality, passion for this niche, and desire to participate in the growing culinary district of East Dundee we set out to bring you The Uncommon Palate. A shop dedicated to inspiring you with personality, good eats, full bodied beverages, and culinary adventures. We hope to become a local go-to for residents close by, visitors checking out the area, and people shopping online for dinner on their lunch break. The future is bright and the possibilities are endless for what will be a staple East Dundee business.
A Bit About Us
The mission of The Uncommon Palate is to provide unique, specialty foods and beverages produced in small batches for freshness and flavor! We’re proud to carry clean label items (15 familiar ingredients or less) from around the world and by local providers as well as fresh brewed coffee and tea, wine and craft beer. We also have a variety of gift and houseware items that pair perfectly with our authentic food and quality drink offerings. Stop by, rest a while, and see what your taste buds have been missing!
Venice roller skater and surfer girl turned sales executive turned small business owner; Lisa’s history is one to envy. Her beachy upbringing lead her to partner up and open the first roller skate rental shop in Venice Beach in 1976. At the peak of the roller skating boom, Lisa capitalized on a local need and desire to make it accessible to everyone and opened “Cheapskates” right on the boardwalk.
12 years later, amidst other business experiences, she packed up and headed East to New Hampshire. It was in a small mountain town that she would open a hugely successful Hallmark brand store which would segue into a long time career in giftware sales. The passion for business ownership of course never escaped Lisa as the opportunity to have a small coffee shop at a ski lodge in Bretton Woods, NH presented itself. She is a go-getter by definition and so she’d take her two daughters after a 40+ hour work week, head 2 hours north, and run a coffee shop on the weekends. For the next 25 years Lisa would climb the corporate ladder all the way to Vice President of Sales at a Chicago based company selling barware and beverages. Her expertise in the sales industry paired with her knowledge and passion for business ownership made opening a local cool concept store in an easy choice.
What better way to spend your retirement than by returning to the source of your happiness? Lisa’s long list of qualifications has made for an incredible opportunity to share simply good food, wine, beer, coffee, and gifts with the locals and those from afar. Come on in and say hi and see what all the buzz is about. The buzz that only someone like Lisa Opfer can create!
When Lisa isn’t working she enjoys kicking back in the pool, gardening, cooking at home, watching ABC network shows, and spending time with her small, close-knit family. Some of her favorite things are peanut butter, Jack Johnson, and hearty laughing! Her joy and contagious personality is obvious from the moment you meet her. She is a welcomed ambiance in the area and will make a permanent, lasting impression on East Dundee!