Lifetime in the Kitchen Leads Jackson to Sensational Sustenance

By Precious Battee
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – La’Trece Jackson’s path to opening Sensational Sustenance Eatery has been a nearly lifelong journey. It started with her mother and grandmother, she says, in the family kitchen when she was 8.

“My grandmother was an amazing cook. She taught me how to make tea cakes. She had different desserts she would make, and I would also watch. Then anytime my mom was cooking I was right there,” she says. 

And with family cooking comes holiday meals and the sensations that come with it. It’s those feelings that Jackson wants to deliver through Sensational Sustenance, her startup meal delivery service.

“At Christmas time there would be about 15 different desserts lined up around the table. That feeling when the food is there and the family is there, there is an atmosphere,” she says. “So that’s why when I make food, I want people to get that experience.” 

Jackson started a catering business in 2009 and, earlier this year, moved into the Commonwealth Kitchen Incubator to develop Sensational Sustenance and a companion delivery app. The app, she says, will make her food available within 15 miles of Youngstown. Currently, her food is available at her food truck at the incubator near Wick Park.

“We’re getting the app created so that it’s easier. You can log in, pick your starch and veggie. You can pick the day, and the time that you want to have your dinner, and it has to be one day in advance,” says Jackson. “You can switch up your dinner options however you want. All of your children might now want mashed potatoes. Someone might want rice; somebody might want green beans. It’s different and it only costs $10.49 a meal.” 

Jackson treats developing her business like raising a child, she says

“You always hear having a baby is expensive. The expensive part comes in trying to figure out what’s right for that child. You can’t give up on the child. You have to figure out what works best for them,” she explains. “Whatever things you’ve got to do, whatever changes that must be made, you do what’s necessary for the business to keep a heartbeat.”

And through her journey to opening Sensational Sustenance, Jackson says she’s also been guided by her faith.

“I pray over everything, from the food that people are going to consume to the atmosphere.” When a person buys from me, I pray that they receive sustenance,” she says.. 

Eventually, Jackson wants Sensational Sustenance to grow into a full-fledged restaurant with space for entertainment. Though that stage of her business isn’t here just yet, she already has a vision for it. 

“Something where it’s an escape, when you come and feel like you are somewhere else,” she says.

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.