SEATTLE — Frelard Tamales is a Seattle eatery that's still going strong during the COVID-19 pandemic, selling tamales through their walk-up window, and giving their community far more than a handmade meal.
We first visited owners and partners Osbaldo Hernandez and Dennis Ramey in 2018.
Osbaldo's mom and grandma handcrafted the tamales, and happy customers became extended family.
Today, the love continues: Mama Eva still makes tamales with her recipe, even though she has to wear a mask and work solo.
The eatery gives free meals to anyone affected by COVID-19.
And they are supporting other businesses by adding a side of flowers to their takeout tamales.
"People love flowers, and they're such a simple way to brighten up your home, and it is very exciting to load those and know that they're gonna be able to decorate and bring joy to someone,” said Ramey.
Frelard Tamales heard that local farmers who usually sell blooms at the now-closed Pike Place Market had flowers going to waste. So the eatery offered to deliver them with their tamales. You can a huge bouquet of fresh flowers for 10 dollars with an order of a dozen tamales. Or just pick up some flowers from their window for 15 dollars.
"We're really not doing this for profit, it’s really just more getting their flowers out to people and helping the local flower farmers,” said Hernandez.
Donate a tamale order to folks on the front lines and they'll get an extra boost of beauty.
“If you indicate on the form that the tamales are going to a first-responder or a healthcare worker we will add a flower bouquet for free,” explained Hernandez. Frelard Tamales is also taking requests from customers to provide free flowers to senior citizens who might need a bunch to brighten their day.
Tamales are Mexican comfort food - flowers give everyone joy. Frelard Tamales delivers that comfort and joy every Monday and Wednesday. A connection that continues to bloom. No matter what.
“I think while this has been a tough time for a lot of people, I think it's really shown a lot of the good in mankind, through how people are looking out for their neighbors, looking out for their community, and helping each other get through it,” said Ramey.
“We love being part of the community. The community embraced us from the beginning and so this is a little bit we can do to give back,” added Hernandez.