An unhurried nightly dinner is one of the most enjoyable rituals out there. Done right, it’s a time of reflection, analysis and companionship. The disappearing family meal is consistently held up as a shortcoming of modern society, and even though that argument is usually accompanied by gag-inducing gender commentary, research indicates that shared dinnertimes lead to better nutrition, school performance and communication skills.
Sweet Roots NYC, a New York–based company that delivers fully prepped ingredients to your door, does the menu planning, shopping and chopping for you. You choose sophisticated meals based on your own dietary restrictions and they take care of the rest. The company was born in CEO Marisa Smith’s parents’ kitchen, and in the past few years it has grown quickly.
This week they’re changing their name to Ritual, an allusion to dinner table nostalgia and a subtle hint that their service is meant to be used regularly. They’ve also dropped the “NYC” as a nod to their next step: expansion beyond the city. “The ritual is about making dinner a little more special, a little more connected and mindful,” said Stephanie Downes, Ritual’s growth strategist.