Following nearly three decades of bringing the Middle Peninsula and Northern Neck community natural, organic and homemade foods, fine wine, and craft beer, Kelsick Specialty Market is pleased to announce Yorktown-native Paige Drewry as its new owner.
“A natural born foodie, I’ve worked in food service, studied culinary arts and business, and traveled throughout Europe studying wine,” Drewry said. “I felt called to Kelsick Specialty Market and just know that I’m supposed to be here, in this community, ushering the market into its next chapter.”
Beth Haskell finalized the sale of the market she founded to Drewry earlier this week and plans to retire in the area.
“It has been an incredible adventure serving the community from our kitchen and shelves for so many years,” Haskell said. “I made incredible friends, memories with so many, and had some of the best times of my life. Paige is bringing in that same level of excitement to serve, along with some exciting fresh ideas, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to see her take the reins of Kelsick Specialty Market.”
Twenty-three-year-old Drewry is no stranger to Gloucester having been born and raised just across the York River in the Seaford region of Yorktown. She also knows her way around a kitchen, fine wines and business operations.
While attending York High School, Drewry spent her junior and senior year in the New Horizons culinary studies program. Having fallen in love with food and the culinary arts, Drewry went on to attend Johnson & Wales where she studied culinary arts, food service management, business and marketing, as well as wine.
“I did a wine internship and studied abroad in Germany where I was fortunate to try more than 500 different wines, visit 15 different vineyards and really hone my appreciation and love of wine,” Drewry said.
Drewry always knew she wanted to open her own business, but was waiting for the right sign, the right opportunity.
“I really had a passion for owning a vineyard,” Drewry said. “I wanted to become a master sommelier. I was applying to every vineyard around here, doing everything I could to get a job in wine, but that wasn’t what God was calling me to do.”
She was being called to Kelsick. Drewry learned about the opportunity to purchase Kelsick Specialty Market in 2018, the week of her 23rd birthday.
“My Dad had learned about the opportunity and came home and told me about it,” Drewry said. “At first I was unsure. I had started a photography business, focusing a lot on food photography, and was working events at my church. Then I came up and met with Beth, did a walk through, and I knew it was perfect.”
Drewry loves everything about the store, from the wine and beer selection hand-selected by the team, to the cheeses and food brought in for customers.
“It’s everything I love,” Drewry said. “And it’s local. I’m all about healthy, organic food and have always admired any chef and business owner that can support local farmers and growers. From the first moment I walked in here, I knew it was my calling.”
In the coming months, Drewry plans to spend a lot of time getting to know the community, the customers and the operations of the store.
“I’m excited to build it up and put my own special touch on it and make it my own place,” Drewry said. “We have some plans for right away and have some plans for down the road.”
The store will remain named Kelsick Specialty Market, Drewry said.
“We have to keep the name,” she said. “There is 25 years of history here and I want to honor that. The community here is so unique and the people so very loyal. I’m delighted to become a part of it all.”
Kelsick Specialty Market is planning a grand opening under its new ownership and ribbon cutting event later this spring.