Handmade beverages and food go hand-in-hand with philanthropy at Convivium Marketplace, a new food boutique located at 628 Main Street.
Convivium features items made with sustainability and health in mind and has a campaign to help the underserved in Longmont. A boutique grab-n-go market, Convivium features food, beverage, and cosmetic items all made on site.
Each of the shop’s co-founders come from the food industry and restaurant business. Martha Kohlhagen, COO of Convivium, believes the combined experience of the co-founders brings an enriched and thoughtful approach to the items sold. She says the products are high quality, but wants customers to feel the products are accessible. There is another message she wants customers to note – one of community.
“We want to celebrate togetherness,” says Kohlhagen says. “‘Convivium’ means ‘gathering’ in Spanish,” which she says pays tribute to the building’s 100 plus history of a marketplace and gathering of Longmont’s diverse community.
Kohlhagen emphasizes that although it is a boutique shop, the store sells traditional homecooked food like chicken pot pie and hot ham and cheese, modernity and tradition sit together on the shelf. Martha’s Preserves (her trademark preserve brand) sits near CBD oil products.
“Locals will love that we carry Racheli’s Italian products,” she says. Joseph Racheli bakes several take out items using his family recipes. Many Longmont locals might recall the favorite Italian restaurant. Now, the hometown favorite is still available, to pick up and take home to bake.
The journey from global travel to Longmont shop owner was not a linear one. Kohlhagen worked in Fort Collins before her career took her to India, where she lived on a farm for eleven years. On the land, produce was abundant. She learned traditional recipes and used fresh items to create preserves and baked goods. Neighbors and friends benefited from her cooking hobby, and soon people began to pay for her homemade goods. A new career blossomed. Personal issues called her back to Colorado, and she resettled in Boulder.
“We’re all in this together,” Kohlhagen says of her business motto. “How can we develop business and be a part of the community?” was an important question as the store came together. She approaches Convivium’s opening as a social enterprise, a mission which is apparent on the store’s website and inside its walls.
A “Giving Jar” sits on the shelf, collecting donations for Longmont residents in need. A portion of all product sales are given to the Longmont Community Foundation, specifically to help people in need access healthcare. The community message of the market continues with its partnerships with Blue Forest Farms, Longmont Community Foundation, Experience CoWorking, and Sugarbeet.
Variety and intrigue are key to the shop’s appeal. Boocha Products‘ gourmet beverages are handcrafted by co-owner Ariel Wishkovsky, co-founder and CEO of Convivium Marketplace. Wishkovsky also traveled the world before bringing his recipes and experience to the market. Boocha Products (the beverages) are sold in repurposed wine bottles procured from local restaurants. One of the beverages is a tepach-e-booch, which is a combination of kombucha and tepache, touted as a “festive complex drink” on the market’s website, which is being updated to feature upcoming events and new inventory.
Kohlhagen reminds customers that the store’s website will offer easy order and take out service soon. She looks forward to knowing customers by name, and having more seats available for customers to sit and enjoy Boocha Products or gourmet coffee with her homemade baked goods.
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