Janet Bleck and her husband Martin along with son Kelsey moved to Oregon in 2008 from tropical Miami, Florida to fulfill their dream of living in the most beautiful state in the nation and to participate in its vibrant and burgeoning food and wine scene. Martin, a chef, and Janet, a caterer, come from the world of high-end, off-premise, full-service event planning. Janet founded Creative Tastes Catering in 1984 and grew it to one of the largest event catering companies in the South Florida area, with a star-studded client list and a pristine reputation. In 1991 a young man named Martin applied for a prep cook job, and the rest is history! Their second company – Garden Café Catering – was formed in 2004 to provide all the food service needs at an 83-acre tropical garden venue named Fairchild Tropical Garden, including an award-winning Café, a seasonal restaurant, catering for festivals, groups and events, and much more.
Although a fine dining restaurant was really not in the plans, when Janet and Martin saw the location of Subterra they realized the potential in opening an affordable white tablecloth restaurant. Subterra – A Wine Cellar Restaurant, was conceived and opened in January of 2010.
It didn’t come as a surprise to Janet and Martin that they were drawn back to their catering roots, and in 2010 they formed The Rogue Gourmet Catering Company to offer the Willamette Valley both their years of experience in event coordination, and high-quality food and service provided by a local company. In comparison to the fine dining provided by Subterra, The Rogue Gourmet Catering Company is able to meet a much broader range of budgets and service a larger community.
Janet and Martín are active in the local community through Rotary International, the Chehalem Valley Chamber of Commerce, various vineyard/winery trade associations, and various foundations for the arts and music, and charities. Because their son is majoring in Jazz Studies at University of Oregon they understandably tend to lean their philanthropic efforts towards education, specifically music education!