Tania Woolery

Tanayia Woolery – The Social Entreprenuer

About Woolery Kitchen

The Woolery Kitchen, a form of social entrepreneurship; is a one-of-a-kind movement in Jamaica. Citing the leakage effect, which refers to the way revenue generated by tourism is lost to other countries’ economies; the Woolery Kitchen wants to make it possible for local tourism to prosper. Through the use of online marketing, the Woolery Kitchen uses food to connect the local community to a larger audience.

Table and Balcony View at Woolery Kitchen in Chalky Hill St Ann Jamaica

Tell us more about What you do

I am the founder of Woolery Kitchen an underground dining club based in Jamaica. People can make a reservation to enjoy a meal with our family for the day. We aim to connect travelers to Jamaica to Jamaican culture through food. Our mission is to empower our community by creating meaningful experiences that drive economic opportunities.

Who inspired you the most to choose to start this business?

I have three major inspirations. Anthony Bourdain has been a major inspiration because he has shown me, and the world, that it’s possible to travel with purpose. I was directly inspired to create Woolery Kitchen by the underground dining scene from my travels to Buenos Aires and my mother-in-law, who runs Woolery Kitchen and is my muse.

Jamaican Food from Woolery Kitchen on a White Plate

What’s the best part about your career or business? and What’s been the most challenging part?

The best part of creating Woolery Kitchen has been the encouragement that I received through friends, family, travelers and even strangers. There is nothing more encouraging than having people tell you that they want what you have to offer in the world.

The most challenging part is having the patience to see your vision all the way through. It can be tough to get through the daily grind of trying to get somewhere you can see clearly in your head but you aren’t quite there yet.

What tips do you have for anyone who wants to start a business or find a career that aligns with their passion.

Make a mission. Figure out what’s important to you, write it down and let that be your guiding light. Once you have that make a plan. It will help you have a place to start. It’s okay to go off plan, but just make sure you’re always staying true to your mission.

[Tweet “It’s okay to go off plan just make sure you always stay true to your mission.”]

finding work and life balance that works with backyard office computer desk and cell phone

What is your biggest challenge when it comes to work & life?

When you’re working towards a vision that’s led by your passions the line between work and life starts to disappear. It can be challenging to unwind because you’re always thinking.

What tips do you have that help you to carve out time for family life and personal time?

If you’ve committed to spend time with someone, be committed to really being in their presence. Don’t multitask.

What is one technology tool or app you can’t do without?

My iPhone and my MacBook Air are my best friends.

How do you manage technology distractions?

I purposely don’t have notifications turned on for any apps on my phone. If I don’t receive a phone call then I know it’s not urgent.

unwind escape in a hammock an open book or a house on a cliff overlooking the beach

What’s your favorite thing to do outside of work?

I love to eat and watch movies with my friends and family, preferably at the same time.

What is your favorite book/TV show? Or what’s the most recent book you read?

My favorite book is The Alchemist. I love reality TV and documentaries. I always have at least 5 books that I’m in the process of reading, but the last one I finished was book about Black vampires that a friend wrote.

How do you define success?

I don’t have a definition for success. The closest thing I can think of would be achieving your goals, but it’s tricky because my goals often change and once I achieve one goal I’m on to the next one.

[Tweet “There’s a very thin line between success & failure”]

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about success and failure?

There’s a very thin line between them.

Not quite there yet - TW

Share one of your personal habits that contributes to your success?

Planning that includes goal setting is essential.

Up Next

Tanayia will be a guest on The Carry On Friends Podcast. Do you have a question for Tanayia that you’d like me to ask during the podcast? You can send your questions by:

1. Leaving a comment below;

2. On our Facebook page or via Twitter using the hashtags #carryonfriends #cofinterviews

Submit your questions by February 20th.

Learn more about Woolery Kitchen by visiting their website, Woolery Kitchen and on Instagram.

UPDATE: The podcast has already been recorded.  Click to listen to episode #5 with Tanayia as guest. 


Kerry-Ann Reid-Brown is Founder & host of Carry On Friends one of the first podcasts dedicated to the Caribbean American Experience. She is leading the way for Caribbean Podcast as the founder of Breadfruit Media, the first Caribbean podcast production company; and founder of the Caribbean Podcast Directory a place to discover podcasts by people of Caribbean Heritage.