SpringRidge Residents Savor New Dining Experiences | Senior Resource Group

SpringRidge Residents Savor New Dining Experiences

At SpringRidge at Charbonneau, residents are savoring new experiences through the active retirement community’s varied dining program and relishing opportunities to shape the dining offerings. 

“It’s essential for residents to have a voice,” said Executive Chef Keith McCrea, who joined the SpringRidge team more than a decade ago. “One of the many ways we solicit their feedback is through our monthly ‘Let’s Dish’ sessions. It’s a way for them to provide invaluable feedback about the menu which rotates every four weeks and let us know if any adjustments are needed.”

The “Let’s Dish” sessions are now aired on SpringRidge’s in-house television station to adhere to social distancing guidelines. Residents can also submit comment cards and use the community’s suggestion box. 

Although SpringRidge’s maintenance-free lifestyle means freedom from cooking, Chef McCrea understands residents may have family recipes or other favorite foods that may not be found on the SpringRidge menu.

“I feel so good when I’m able to do something out-of-the-box to grant a resident’s food request,” he said. “A great example of our team going above and beyond was when we delivered sautéed, pan-fried oysters to one of our residents who was in a rehabilitation center. He was thrilled to not miss out on them while away from the community.”

Another area where residents can personalize their dining experience is choosing when they prefer to enjoy breakfast and dinner. SpringRidge’s “Dine Your Way” enables residents to dine early or late, and Chef McCrea takes great pride in the dining department’s ability to honor residents’ choices amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

“We’ve had to make adjustments to adhere to social distancing guidelines and safety precautions, but flexible dining was something we felt passionate about not changing,” he explained. “Everything is made-to-order, based on residents’ preferences.”

For dinner, for example, residents can select 2-3 options and the timeframe they’d like it delivered to their residence. Each entrée includes a choice of soup, which is made-from-scratch, a delicious dessert, and a beverage of choice. Residents may also order from the FreshZest menu which features nutritious, yet delicious, plant-based options. Chef McCrea said shrimp scampi, Asian chicken stir-fry, Atlantic salmon and country-fried chicken are among residents’ favorite dishes. 

“Our goal has been to maintain consistency with everything - from using the freshest cuts of meats and seasonal fruits and vegetables to providing a variety of menu selections each day. The only thing we’ve significantly changed is the delivery. Instead of dining in our onsite restaurant, residents enjoy gourmet dishes in the comfort and safety of their residences – delivered with a smile by a member of the culinary team.”

The culinary team continues to work closely with SpringRidge’s Health and Wellness (Zest) Department to celebrate special holidays and occasions such as Independence Day and a virtual trip to Hawaii by providing themed menus to add to the festivities. 

“It gives me and my team a great sense of satisfaction when residents say they can’t figure out how we’re getting things done during COVID-19 since there has been very little interruption  to the quality of their dining experience,” said Chef McCrea, a graduate of the prestigious Culinary Institute of America. “That says we’ve adapted well and are exceeding their exceptions!”

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