Chef Matt Prentice of Three Cats in Clawson is keeping his business afloat by bundling dinners to-go.
“Problems can be an opportunity,” said Executive Chef Matt Prentice. He recently found an “outrageous” way to maintain his Three Cats at Leon & Lulu during the coronavirus pandemic.
Three Cats in Clawson now offers upscale carryout dinners with optional delivery service. The noted veteran chef is betting this is a niche he’s uniquely suited to fill in Oakland County.
On the day Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order ended on-site service in restaurants and bars, Prentice regretfully laid off 40 from his team — 10 kitchen staff and 30 working the front of the house. It weighs on him.
“My goal is to get my people back to work,” he said.
While many restaurants offer carry-outs and deliver food, Prentice wanted an angle that would provide enough volume to rehire his staff.
“I thought, if I can find something people aren’t doing, then maybe I can attract a new kind of buyer. But I must exceed expectations.”
Prentice began offering dinners of fine dining quality for pickup or delivery, purchased three at a time. Each includes a starter, entrée and dessert made from scratch. Menus change often.
He set the price at $39.99 — $13.33 per dinner for the three dinners.
Daily dinners with a beef, chicken, vegetarian or fish entrée are listed on the website.
Bottles of wine are available. Orders are phoned in, then either picked up at Three Cats or delivered the following day. Depending on distance, the delivery charge ranges from $5-$20, but free if spending $200.
On the first day, March 23, one menu was Black Bean Soup; Sauteed Chicken with Royal Trumpet Mushroom Sauce, Pea Risotto and Asparagus and Blueberry Crisp.
Choosing his meals “takes away the aggravation of shopping and avoids the health risks of being around other people,” Prentice said.
Meals come in microwavable containers and may be refrigerated for up to six days. The dinners are special enough, he said, to “slide onto your prettiest china and claim as your own.”
Three Cats Carry Out & Delivery
116 W. 14 Mile Road Clawson