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Chefs of Baltimore Restaurant Drove 6 Hours To Cook For Terminally Ill Customer

Two men standing beside the back of a pickup truck with food supplies while wearing masks as they prepare to deliver takeout food to terminally ill customer
March 24, 2021

Steve Chu, owner of Ekiben in Baltimore, received a unique request recently.

The son-in-law of one of his customers asked for the recipe to his broccoli tempura so he could make it for his mother-in-law who has terminal lung cancer. Brandon Jones’ mother-in-law had become obsessed with the dish over the years of her visiting Baltimore; Rina Jones told The Washington Post that her mother even jokingly asked her to bring the dish last Friday when she was on her way to visit.

After reading Brandon Jones’ email and the story behind it, instead of simply handing over the recipe, Chu decided to exceed everyone’s expectations. On March 13th, Chu, employee Joe Anonuevo, and business partner Ephrem Abebe packed up their supplies and made their way to Jones’ mother-in-law’s home to make it themselves.

However, there was one catch. Jones’ mother-in-law lives in Vermont.

The 6-hour drive didn’t stop the Ekiben chefs; the three were more than happy to brighten the loyal customer’s day. They set up their hotplate in the driveway and got to work making enough food to last the family a few days. When they were done, they rang the doorbell, handed over the food, and made their way back to Baltimore.

Rina Jones told The Washington Post that all her mother could respond with is, “I don’t understand — you drove all the way up here to cook for me?” She added that “It’s something we’ll never forget — I’ll carry that positive memory with me, always.”

You can check out Ekiben’s Instagram below. If you’d like to support this amazing business, they have two locations in Baltimore, one in Fells Point and one in Hampden.

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