Soul Cafe

While The Epicurean Group suddenly terminates restaurant employees over the weekend, Soul Cafe is determined to stay up and running.

Photos via Soul Cafe Facebook

The Detroit Free Press reported yesterday that Metro Detroit-based hospitality company, The Epicurean Group, cut ties with its restaurants and staff.

Soul Cafe, a project of the Friendship Circle, was one of the restaurants forced to terminate its relationship with The Epicurean Group led by CEO Ryan Moore.

Rabbi Levi Shemtov, Executive Director of Friendship Circle, was shocked to receive the news Saturday night.

“Ryan Moore wrote us in an email saying management to the company is going back to Stan Dickson, but he didn’t discuss that with Stan Dickson,” Shemtov said. “Stan Dickson had no intention of running the business. As a result, we were left with nothing.”

“Right away we knew it wasn’t option to close down. We have too much going on,” Shemtov said. “Literally in the middle of the night we were working on a solution.”

The sudden change isn’t stopping Soul Cafe from doing what it does best — training those with special needs in the restaurant business and providing a welcoming environment.

On Monday, Soul Cafe opened its doors just like any other day. “We have such wonderful employees who work side by side with the special needs trainees,” Shemtov said. “We knew we couldn’t lose any of them. They’re really special people.”

At this time, Friendship Circle plans to keep the restaurant up and running.

“We are going to use the same management team that is there right now, including its general manager Shalom Shomer,” Shemtov said. “All of the back-office help, human resources, finances, et cetera, is being managed by one of our board members, Elliott Baum, until we figure something out.”

“Long term it is not our goal to own a restaurant,” Shemtov said. “We just want to make sure that it is stable and whoever manages it afterwards will be able to continue to run it.”

Soul Cafe is located at the Farber Center: 5586 Drake Rd, West Bloomfield Township, (248) 788-7400

Read more: Soul Satisfaction

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