After living in New York for the past decade, Josh Smith is trading his television and film career for a move back home, with plans for his highly anticipated first restaurant, Neon Greens, in The Grove. As is the case with many people, the pandemic and its supply chain issues caused Josh to think about the impact of food and where it's coming from. He started to grow his own food hydroponically to gain a sense of control over his food source.
What began as a simple tabletop setup evolved over time into a whole farm system in his basement. As this quest for sustainable, self-sufficient food continued, Josh became increasingly aware of how much he wanted to share his food with others. "I had all these ideas of creating a modular system that could take up all this useless commercial real estate that we have now," he says. And with that, the plan for Neon Greens began to take shape.
While this will be his debut in the restaurant scene, Smith's passion for food has provided him with years of experience feeding people. He has been known to prepare meals for large groups at dinner parties or in college, and he's always had a feeling he would find a way to share this passion on a larger scale.
He sees the connection between his artistic design background and the culinary world as a fluid one. "Food is just like another really beautiful way to communicate with people. And that's what I've been doing my whole life as an artist anyway, so it's kind of just another medium and that whole pantheon of storytelling."
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