Author

About the Author
Mark Baratto has over 15 years of marketing and sales experience specializing in Psychological based Sales & Marketing, Story Creation, and Customer Acquisition. His expertise lies in understanding people’s psyche, what motivates them, and the behavioral science behind what drives their actions - using 30 years of tested & proven persuasion principles. He provides proven psychological skills that help his clients capture the attention of their dream customer, turning them into life-long raving fans.

Episode 7: Key West Pottery Talk with Artist Adam Russell

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Adam Russell, one half of the successful Key West Pottery, in his famed gallery on the doubly famed, Duval Street.

The audio is a bit dodgy on this episode, but there were too many brain nuggets to not publish it.

We talked about the artist journey and taking a leap of faith, moving cross country with nothing but a dream, and how his wife and co-artist Kelly Lever, got him started down the pottery rabbit hole.

We also discussed how he got his massive Instagram following, and how we all need to let our “artist side” out more often.

More on Key West Pottery

Key West Pottery is a love story. Originated in 2009 by the artists Adam Russell and Kelly Lever, Key West Pottery (or “Honest Works Island Pottery” as it was originally called) was always meant as a joint endeavor between two creatives for one succinct purpose— FREEDOM. Freedom in all the obvious ways we conceive of it; free use of time, financial freedom, creative freedom, etc… The resulting decade of intense collaboration has brought about the realization that we have also achieved another type of freedom— liberation from the confines of a single mind.

We are a unique blend.

Part traditional production pottery— tableware and traditional function. Vessels being created in house by the hundreds.

Part Fine Art Studio— monumental outdoor sculpture and interior decor to create places and visions.

Our Company has grown to include a small army of artisans, creatives, advisors, students andcollaborators who are working together with us to produce an authentic expression of this modern, coastal life — without relying on cliché. As the epitome of authentic artwork made in the Florida Keys, we carry a diverse selection of bespoke items — from the Island’s BEST coffee mugs to award-winning totems, visitors encounter the most well-rounded Gallery program on Duval Street. 

Over this last decade, we have developed a brand of tropical modernism that is unique and diverse enough to fit into any home or collection. Our Gallery, at the center of the Historic Key West Gallery District is the quintessential Key West Pottery experience, but we love to communicate and collaborate online as well.

We believe that you will find Key West Pottery to be a soulful and sincere art experience that ties you to the local’s perspective of coastal life.

Website: https://www.keywestpottery.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/Keywestpottery

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/keywestpottery

Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/keywestpottery

KEY WEST POTTERY
1203 Duval Street, 
Key West Florida 33040
Open Daily 10 -6
305.900.8303

Episode 6: Tricia Coyne Talks Southern Eats with a Twist at Firefly Restaurant

In the episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Tricia Coyne, the owner of the modern chef-driven Firefly restaurant.

We talk about Fireball shots, Great White sharks, her Bubba Award, and how she took her restaurant idea from a college dream into a successful Key West hotspot.

More About Firefly

Firefly is a modern, chef-driven Southern restaurant. They focus on using the best ingredients and a mixture of traditional and modern techniques to create the best possible versions of familiar dishes. Their extensive beer and wine lists feature the same attention to detail and unique products to create something that is at once old and new. They are located between Blue Heaven and Santiago’s Bodega on Petronia Street.

Tricia Coyne comes from a southern family from Louisiana and was raised in the foodie haven of Atlanta. With a love for the water and things with sharp teeth, she delved into a degree in marine biology from UCLA. After traveling the world to swim with sharks and work as a scuba instructor, she chose to revisit her love for all things edible. She found herself with a second bachelors degree in Food and Beverage Management with a specialization in wine.

Tricia sharpened her skills in the belly of Atlanta, including a management internship under acclaimed chef/owner Anne Quatrano at Bachanalia, one of the most revered restaurants in the south, a stint managing for Richard Blais of Flip Burger and Top Chef acclaim, and time managing with Genki Sushi.

After Atlanta, Tricia found herself Working at Key West’s well known Lattitude’s on Sunset Key as a manager. 

Tricia’s ideas for Firefly were conceived before she had finished her degree. With a plethora of experience under her belt, she bit the bullet in 2013 and Firefly has been serving up the best chef-driven southern cuisine in South Florida ever since.

Tricia’s love for Sharks has stayed with her, and she serves as Vice President of Reef Relief. In her free time, she enjoys Legos, wine, and the Oxford comma.

About Executive Chef – Russ Ferstle

Chef Russ Ferstle grew up in Detroit, Michigan, where his love of cooking began as a matter of survival since his mother was such a horrible cook. As Russ grew up, he continued into the restaurant industry in Michigan, apprenticing under French chef Tim Enfield. Eager to learn more, he moved to Chicago in 2003 to gain experience in Chicago’s food scene. He was hired as the sous chef for Sweets and Savories with David Richards, then stayed on with the company to open Barcello’s as chef de cuisine. In 2008, fed up with the cold, Russ relocated to Key West, where he became the chef de cuisine at the Upper Deck at Louie’s Backyard. In 2013, Russ left Louie’s to help open Firefly, where he remains executive chef. In his free time, Russ enjoys tattoos, silver coins, and conspiracy theories.

Website: http://www.fireflykeywest.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/fireflykeywest

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FireflyKeyWest

Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/firefly-key-west-key-west-4?osq=firefly+key+west

Episode 5: How Keith St. Peter is keeping the bar scene cool with GlitchCraft

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Keith St. Peter, the owner of Kojin Noodle Bar and once famed, “The Porch,” on his new venture, GlitchCraft. We talk about why he and his partners are keeping the bar scene cool and scratching their itch by creating a place they love hanging out at themselves.

It’s all about the locals and the community at Glitch, which you can tell, is here to stay for a very long time.

More on GlitchCraft by Keys Weekly

Walking into Glitch feels like walking back in time, maybe into your best friend’s basement, if your best friend was the coolest nerd in the school. The massive leather chairs, a wall of action figures, stacks of board games and craft beers galore on draft make it a happy amalgam of past and present. It reminds you of being a teenager, but it satisfies the desires of the grown-up: a perfect espresso, a comfy chair, some (relative) peace and quiet. A departure from the chaos of downtown was part of the inspiration for this Simonton Street retreat. Owners Keith St. Peter, Adam Levin, and Justin “Willy” Woods have been ruminating on the idea for years, but it only recently came to fruition.

Read the rest of the article here

Instagram: https://instagram.com/GlitchCraft_
Facebook: https://facebook.com/GlitchCafeandGameRoom/

Episode 4: Love In Bloom with Kristy Geary


In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Kristy Geary, the owner of Love In Bloom flower shop.  We talk about her days as a youngster at Sloppy Joes, how she took a leap of faith and jumped head first into a brand new business, and all her secret spots Key West.1

Love In Bloom Florist is a boutique flower shop that & has been locally owned and operated for over 10 years.  Kristy Geary followed her dream of moving to Key West in 2001. Kristy is a graduate of the University of Cincinnati Design Art Architecture and Planning school. Her background in 3 dimensional, 2 dimensional and digital design brings a unique perspective to the art of floral design.

After planning the perfect Key West wedding from afar, Heather Lamaine and husband Matt moved to Key West in 2012.  Heather is the main contact for our couples who are planning their destination weddings. Our top priority is to understand their vision and then guide couples in the right direction to make choices in floral décor that enhances the already beautiful and unique venues in Key West.  Heather is a graduate of Florida Gulf Coast University with a degree in Hospitality Management.

Together they have built a team of local design consultants and floral designers that are creative, enthusiastic and passionate about flowers. Clients can feel comfortable and confident knowing they are working with a local florist that has a close working relationship with the vendors and venues in Key West. We love destination weddings and are very experienced in working with the bride or client from day one through the big event.

You can find out more about Love In Bloom in the below places:

Website: http://www.loveinbloomflorist.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/loveinbloomkeywest

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/loveinbloomflorist/

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/loveinbloomkw/

Episode 3: Hotel Talk with Carol Wightman of The Marquesa Hotel

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Carol Wightman, one of the owners of the famed Marquesa Hotel to discuss what it takes to run a successful hotel, some famed guests that have stayed there, and what the “hotel life” in Key West really looks like.

Be on the listen for Carol’s favorite places to dine (besides Cafe Marquesa), and some of her other local favorites.

More on The Marquesa Hotel:

The Key West Hotel Marquesa and Café Marquesa are the finest small Key West hotel and restaurant on our island. Set in the center of the historic district of Old Town Key West, the Marquesa compound is set around a lush interior garden and sparkling swimming pools. Time slows down at the Marquesa where a quiet retreat awaits those looking for luxury, privacy, excellent food and service.

Hotel Website: http://marquesa.com
Cafe Marquesa: http://marquesa.com/cafe-marquesa
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/marquesahotel
Facebook: https://facebook.com/marquesa

Episode 2: Landscape Design Talk with Craig Reynalds

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Craig Reynalds to discuss how he created a widely successful landscape architect business on our small 2×4 mile island.  

Craig’s one of a kind hardscape and landscape design has set him up as HGTV’s Ultimate Outdoor Winner 2019.

MORE ON CRAIG via HGTV’s Interview

Craig Reynolds has 17 years of professional Landscape Architecture experience. He began his education at Ohio State University with a Bachelors of Fine Arts degree and continued on to complete a Masters of Landscape Architecture at The University of Florida.

After college he worked for seven years at Raymond Jungles, Inc. engaged in all aspects of design and project management for estate gardens throughout South Florida and the Caribbean.

In 2002 his experience inspired him to open his own design studio in Key West. He works throughout the Florida Keys and the Caribbean.

Craig Reynolds was a fine artist and then a landscape architect. That combination of art and science is at the heart of each garden. The completed gardens seamlessly integrate the hardscape and softscape, making them look as if they were always there. To achieve this whole experience, Craig prefers to design everything from the ‘doors out.’ In addition to the overall planting design, this includes hardscape elements such as the pool, spa, trellis and arbors, patios and decks, fountains and landscape lighting. All of which is set within a framework of native plants and indigenous materials to complete the experience.

For more on Craig and his services, you can visit his website and check out some of his work here: http://www.craigreynolds.net

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/craigreynolds.design

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lukesterr/craig-reynolds-landscape-architecture

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/craig.reynolds.landscape.architecture

HGTV Interview:  https://www.hgtv.com/profiles/professionals/craig-reynolds-landscape-architecture

Episode 1: Fantasy Fest & Event Planning with Nadene Grossman Or

In our first episode, Mark Baratto speaks with Nadene Grossman Orr who handles all of the planning for Fantasy Fest, the Annual Key West Songwriters Festival, and many more events through her company We’ve Got The Keys.

We go deep into why she moved to Key West and what she loves about living and working here, and some of her favorite spots in town to eat drink and be merry.

Nadene arrived in Key West Florida in 1991 just after Graduation from SUNY Geneseo. Looking back on her introduction to Island Life – she established a strong foundation with the best Key West jobs … Cocktail Server, Crew on the Catamarans, and Concierge! The 3 C’s! She learned the Island inside and out and made lasting friendships that grew into the professional relationships she has today with so many local business owners and industry professionals.

So in love with the Island Lifestyle – Nadene turned her passion into Business in 2004 – establishing We’ve Got the Keys – Wedding & Event Planners for the Florida Keys. We Coordinated nearly 800 Destination Weddings up until December 2015 when we changed our focus to Corporate Events, Destination Management and Producing City-Wide Festivals & Events.

With an eye for detail, Nadene’s focus is on designing creative Incentive Travel programs for our corporate clients, introducing visitors to uniquely Key West experiences, customized tours, one of a kind adventures and culinary delights – Nadene & her Team challenge themselves daily to delight, impress and inspire our guests!

Nadene is thrilled to be a producer for the Annual Key West Songwriters Festival – founded in 1994 – this event is the largest of its kind – bringing more than 175 Performing Singer-Songwriters to Key West each year to perform their original music on Key West’s intimate stages – including beaches, bars, theaters and boats!

One of the founding producers of the Annual Key West Film Festival, Nadene and her team at We’ve got the Keys helped to establish this new festival for Key West – founded in 2012 we worked with the Film Festival for its first Three Years.

With a deep sense of Community involvement – Supporting local events and non-profit organizations over the years has been an integral part of our work. In November 2015 Nadene proudly accepted the role of Event Director for AIDS Help Inc. – coordinating their annual local events, including Taste of Key West, Vintners Dinner, Tree of Hope, & The Coronation for King & Queen of Fantasy Fest.

January 2017 Nadene was selected to become the new Director of FANTASY FEST! The We’ve got the Keys Team took on their Biggest EVENT to date! Fantasy Fest is one of Key West’s largest and most iconic Festivals – originating in 1979 – this Festival is world-famous. Proudly partnering with Wonderdog Studios and expanding our Event Staff to take Fantasy Fest into the Future and Beyond!

We’ve Got The Keys: https://www.wevegotthekeys.com
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/wevegotthekeys
Twitter: https://twitter.com/wevegotthekeys
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/wevegotthekeys
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/wevegotthekeys
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/wevegotthekeys