Part 2 - The planning begins
Updated: Nov 24, 2021
To back track a little bit and answer the most asked question, Why Gotland? Erik and I first came to Gotland on vacation in 2014 (1 year and 1 month after we first met). We had planned to do a trip to Sweden, which Erik had not been to since 2004. We had decided to start with Gotland as it required the most pre-planning and then do the mainland, going to Kalmar, Nörrkoping and then Stockholm (including a trip to the Absolut Ice Bar of course). By the end of this trip, it was clear that Gotland was the favourite and oh so magical!
So when we returned to the US were discussing the wedding; which we had already planned to be as a beachfront ceremony in Florida (including the venue deposit).
We began to seriously rethink this plan and decide instead to do something memorable for just us and whoever could come would come. We researched the probability of getting married in Visby in May 2015 and decided on the church (Helge And) one month before invitations were to go out. Talk about a quick turn around. Thank goodness I was a bridesmaid so many times I had a pretty good idea of what we wanted and didn't want to do. So we began the planning. In the midst of the wedding planning we started talking about buying a vacation house on Gotland. It seemed romantic to be able to come back every year and celebrate our anniversary. This is what lead Erik to go looking at the Fastighetsbyrån website for a summer house, and surprisingly stumble on Gothems Fiket.
So, now back to the restaurant, the trip back from visiting our friends in Fort Lauderdale was filled with discussions about the Gothems Fiket. How much did it cost? Where was it? What were we going to make? Where would we live? We immediately started googling Gothem on the map and realized how completely in the middle of nowhere it was. Then we looked at tourist draws; Was there shopping nearby? Historical landmarks? Beaches? What would bring people here? I began to get excited thinking about my bakery concept and how this could finally happen. However, Erik dumped cold water on that idea by mentioning how low the margins were for baked goods and how high the volume would need to be to be profitable. He then mentioned an article he had read, as he was researching food trends in Sweden for our concept, and there he found that Mexican was the most popular international cuisine in Sweden. However, it seemed based on quick search of Mexican restaurants in Sweden that authentic Mexican food was still pretty scarce. He had already experienced my families recipes, as I had made him tortillas, enchiladas, tamales and tacos before and he felt that this was the concept that would be most successful. As I felt fairly confident in cooking this type of food and believed I could pull it off, despite having ZERO professional kitchen experience or culinary training, we went full speed ahead with this concept. From the moment we had defined the concept we had the menu, uniform, logo (which also happened to be our wedding symbol-Yggdrasil), recipes, business cards and early plating designs completed in the first few weeks.
Which takes us to planning our first visit to see the property on Thanksgiving Day 2014. To be