What started as a part-time hobby in 2006 blossomed into a successful business for Brandi Lindsey.
Lindsey, originally from Knoxville, is the owner of Wildberry Catering and Café.
“My best friend, Cynthia, asked me to do the food for her sister’s wedding reception in 2006. I loved to cook, so I said, ‘Yes.’ She helped me and we decided to start a business,” Lindsey said. “The first advertisement we did was a booth at the Wilson County Fair. The business just grew from there. I never thought it would be where it is today.”
Cynthia helped Lindsey for a few years before relocating. Lindsey took full ownership of catering, with help from her husband. She said she never dreamed she would have a restaurant as well.
“I started catering because I honestly just love to cook. I love seeing people enjoy the food that I have created and I love being part of the special events in peoples’ lives,” she said. “It is always a joy for me to cook. I never get tired of cooking and creating new things. I never meant for it to become a full-time business when I started out, but the more we did events, the more and more we loved it and wanted to just do more.”
One day she was running on North Greenwood Avenue and saw that the building which formerly housed the Cuckoo’s Nest restaurant was for sale.
“I thought, ‘Wow. It would be amazing to open up a little café, but I could never do that.’ I really just thought about it and felt like I heard God whispering that we could do it and that He would provide the way for us,” Lindsey said. “I still can’t believe that we stepped out and did it. It was such a leap of faith.”
Lindsey admitted that she had never worked in a restaurant – let alone ran one – but the risk was worth the rewards.
“Wildberry has always been pure hard work and dedication at figuring out the right way to do things. I never went to school to learn how to cook or cater, just we just learned as we went. It has been such a great experience,” she said.
Lindsey has called Wilson County home for 17 years. She moved to the area to attend graduate school at Vanderbilt University and her husband, Josh, found a job working in Lebanon.
The couple met at church when they were in high school.
They have two children, Eva, 10, and Gracie Jo, 5.
They attend services at Joy Church. In her spare time, Lindsey enjoys gardening and doing crossfit workouts at IMA Crossfit.
She named several women who she admires.
“My Mammaw, my mom and my Aunt Kathy are all women that have taught me the value of family and keeping a peaceful, warm and inviting home. They also taught me the value of making memories and taking time to always be present with my family,” she said. “These are the most important things.”