Carmen Lambert opened Medicine Hat’s first oil and vinegar tasting room in 2016, The Hat’s Olive Tap. Overtime, she’s shifted her retail store into a market and cafe and now serves a full food and drink menu, while also displaying organic skincare, spices and salts, and locally-made pottery.
Lambert has wanted to add fresh pressed juices to her menu for years, but the quality machinery came at an expense she couldn’t yet invest in.
She applied for MHBIG and was approved in 2021. Three new commercial products were added to her business, a cold press juicing machine, countertop display cooler for the bottled juices, and a BlendTec that would assist Lambert and her team in serving fresh, raw smoothies in a timely manner.
“It’s comforting and encouraging to know that Entre-Corp is thinking of our best interest locally, because they don’t want to see people close their doors,” says Lambert. “I also love that those who received the grant were encouraged to support another local business in the process, because that demonstrates the ripple effect. It shows how we all benefit when we’re supporting each other.”
Lambert sourced the display cooler and her BlendTec from Terralta and Air Tech, a local business in Medicine Hat. To be able to access machinery that aligns with her purpose of providing high-quality products to the community, while also growing her business, is something she is very thankful for.
“I believe in the importance of consumer awareness, and these additions were really a win-win for both the business and the community who supports us,” says Lambert. “It was always part of our dream to add on cold press juicing, and the grant was so wonderful in helping bring that to a reality for us.”
Through The Hat’s Olive Tap and its products, Lambert shares knowledge about being more proactive with health and nutrition, because she believes that’s our way forward. She also has a return bonus for the glass-bottled juices, oils and vinegars that speaks to this.
“We’re waking up to sustainability for our resources and this reward system, while also moving away from plastic,” she says. “I believe that the more we can share the awareness of good health and nutrition, the more we’re all going to benefit as a community.”
The Hat’s Olive Tap can be found online at https://www.thehatsolivetap.com/.