Island Soul’s owner, Theo Martin, is featured in a full write-up in this month’s Seattle’s Child. In addition to highlighting the restaurant, author Caitlyn Flynn explores the important role family and food play in Martin’s philosophy and business. Click here to read the whole thing.
For Theo Martin, owner of Island Soul restaurant in Columbia City, cooking is a joyful and rewarding family experience at work and at home. Theo’s parents were also in the restaurant business, and “serving others is what makes food a very spiritual and happy field,” he said.
Theo’s children, ages 14, 22 and 25, grew up at the restaurant and his two oldest kids now work there as a bartender/cook and a manager. It’s “a true family diner,” he said, adding that his brothers and nieces also work at Island Soul.
Through hands-on experience at the restaurant, Theo’s children learned the ins and outs of running a business at an early age.
“Teaching kids how to run a business is something you see in a lot of other cultures, but not as much with American families,” he said. “It’s about how to manage money, and how to outright talk about things and not hide or ignore them.”
Island Soul, which opened 15 years ago, has a loyal customer base. Theo’s favorite meal to serve is Saturday and Sunday brunch, because that’s when families come in…