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    As we navigate a new normal with COVID-19, we're finding new ways to get back to things and people we love. Read on as we chat with a local entrepreneur who recently launched a socially-distanced dining experience to safely celebrate life's important moments with small groups in a big way.

    The world is a much different place than it was at the beginning of the year, and the ability to gather like we once did is no longer an option. As we remain focused on keeping each other healthy and stopping the spread of coronavirus, we’ve suffered in other ways. 

    For some, dining out with friends and family is a beloved pastime that we’re unsure of when, or if, we’ll be able to do again. To help soften the harshness of not being able to go out and enjoy large dinners, Lindsey Huttenbauer of The Lindsey Baer Company launched L-EAT (pronounced ‘elite’), an elevated and socially-distanced dining experience for your inner circle of family and friends.

    “We promote intimate bespoke dinners for small gatherings with your nearest and dearest, with contactless service right to your doorstep,” she says. 

    The inspiration for L-EAT came from our sudden shift in socializing and the limitations that were put on something we once took for granted. 

    “Entertaining may have changed in recent times, but we all still want to be surrounded by those we love, now more than ever,” says Huttenbauer. “’How do we do that?’ is a question that we are often asked so we wanted to provide a new offering to allow our clients to enjoy one another in small groups while keeping social distancing in mind. Suggested seating options and other helpful hints are emailed following a purchase. We will also include social distancing signage along with a few other safety guidelines and tips in each meal kit. All staff, from the chefs and designers to delivery teams, will be following the recommended CDC safety guidelines while preparing each element of your experience. This includes wearing face masks and gloves, frequent hand washing, and social distancing from one another.”

    Huttenbauer teamed up with other experts from the entertainment industry including Renee Schuler from Eat Well Celebrations and Feasts, Maya LaLonde from Olive Street Creative, Kristen Folzenlogen from Poeme, and Kristen Sekowski from Yellow Canary Floral Design.

    The concept behind an L-EAT dinner is not just dinner but an experience. Dinners are $1,200 for groups of 8. The package includes place settings, custom dinner napkins and individual potted herbs – both favors for your guests, a festive playlist, personalized paper accents including menu and placecards, hang tags, custom cocktail napkins, social distancing signage, and more in addition to a delicious summer menu with hors d’oeuvres, salad, main course, and dessert.

    “We also include the option for additional florals and wine pairings from our Drink Spotlight Hart & Cru,” adds Hattenbauer. “The idea is to provide the host with all the needed elements to produce a lovely evening with little effort.” 

    Orders can be placed at lindsebaer.com/leat and are available for hands-free delivery Friday, September 4, or Saturday, September 5 only. Orders must be placed no later than Wednesday, August 26, so that the team has time to personalize each bespoke package. “Delivery is complimentary and only available within a 30-mile radius of downtown Cincinnati,” adds Hattenbauer. 

    You can learn more about L-EAT here. You can book a dinner by sending an email to L-EAT@lindseybaer.com