Lester Gouvia

“Balanced Fear”

I have lived in various cities in the United States. I have seen these cities grow and change for the better, and I fully believe that Detroit’s future hinges upon bringing people together from different backgrounds, cultures, and experiences. For me, there is no better way to bring people together than with good food. Also, food tells a story. My food speaks of Trinidad, Vermont, Detroit, my parents, my children, my home, and all of the moments in between.

My first entrepreneurial venture was in the cherry business – a new concept that would blend the distinct flavors of Trinidad with northwest Michigan’s staple, the dried tart cherry. A secret ingredient from the Caribbean made the cherries unique and certainly gourmet. I got to work on my first company infusing one world with another, and the result was delicious. Propelled by my desire to take part in Detroit’s future, I named my company Demitart (De for Detroit, MI for Michigan, and Tart for the cherries) and used the tagline “Good things do come from Detroit.” Demitart would be my contribution to Detroit’s revitalization.

L CookinThis past March I began another venture, born out of my love to cook for others. Cooking for others brought me so much joy, that I decided to start a catering business. Of course, I kept the name: Demitart Gourmet – Fine Caribbean Cuisine.

Authentic Caribbean cuisine is a blend of many cultures, as are the Caribbean islands themselves. I enjoy bringing my cuisine to people as a way to recreate the culture, atmosphere, and experience I remember from Trinidad.

Detroit_Lester Gouvia photoWhile my catering company grows, I am launching a food truck to take my cuisine to the streets. It’s called Norma G’s. Norma G’s is first and foremost a tribute to my mother and her cooking, and an opportunity to share her with others. Whether the dish was simple or complex, she made a tasty, filling, and nutritious meal – all the time.

All in all, the experience of building a business and the challenge of creating my own revenue stream brings to my daily life a balanced fear. My days are filled with excitement and the hustle of never-ending tasks, and a fear of the uncertainty of tomorrow. I feel a freedom and self-fulfillment since embarking on this gourmet journey, and am empowered with each step I take in building something new. Here’s to good food and sharing, and thanks to Norma.

I’m going to get back to my work infusing one world with another – and hope the result is not only delicious, but welcoming.


Follow Lester on twitter to share your experiences with his food and to find out where his food truck will be (set to hit the streets in late February!)

Food Truck: @normagscuisine

Catering Company: @demitartgourmet


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