Underground UK: DV8 Kitchen serves cinnamon rolls and second chances

DV8 Kitchen’s popular cream cheese cinnamon roll.

Megan Brown

DV8 Kitchen on South Broadway cares about the fresh ingredients on their menu as much as the people serving them.

The restaurant offers second chance employment to those recovering from alcohol or drug addiction. Co-owners Rob and Diane Perez opened the restaurant six months ago and were inspired by Rob’s own struggles with addiction as well the “wonderful people” in their lives who lost their battle with drugs and alcohol.  

According to Rob, DV8 stands for “deviating from their past lifestyles.” The restaurant is an opportunity for recovering addicts to change the direction of their lives, and 33 percent of employees working at DV8 Kitchen are currently in recovery.

The restaurant has a vocational training program that offers employees educational courses not only in basic restaurant operations but also fundamental life skills. Through the education program, employees learn important restaurant functions, such as specific food stations, managerial skills and food safety.

Weekly workshops teach employees anything from interviewing and budgeting to honesty, teamwork and discipline. To contribute, customers can donate money, time or their “treasures” according to Rob. For more information, customers can visit DV8 Kitchen’s website or the restaurant’s FacebookInstagram or Twitter.

The made-from-scratch food is “life changing” for everyone at the restaurant. DV8 Kitchen serves fresh breakfast food all day as well as salads and unique sandwiches, like a grilled peanut butter and jelly or orange marmalade chicken. The restaurant also features a jam and butter bar with a variety of spreads for customers to top their biscuits with.

However, according to Rob, customers come for “the best burger in town” and the cream cheese cinnamon roll. DV8 Kitchen has limited-time specials as well, such as maple bacon and caramel latte cinnamon rolls. To learn more about specials, customers can visit DV8 Kitchen’s social media.

“We believe we give 20 percent better food, service and atmosphere than our competitors,” said Rob about what makes their restaurant unlike any other in Lexington.

Although the restaurant has only been open for half a year, Rob explained one of his favorite parts about serving the Lexington community is “the relationship with the staff and customers.”

One chalkboard wall in the restaurant is lined with quotes that echo DV8 Kitchen’s mission of recovery. The “Prayer Wall” contains inspirational Bible verses and quotes, such as the famous C.S. Lewis quote that says “hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extraordinary destiny.” Customers can write on the wall to offer reforming addicts glimpses of hope and strength at the end of recovery.  

The restaurant accepts UK Plus account and is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

DV8 Kitchen proves you can never be too full for a second helping or too undeserving of a second chance.