Annually on the first Thursday of December since 2010, The Cheese Shop of Concord has taken delivery of a gigantic wheel of Crucolo cheese, imported from a tiny hill town in northern Italy.
And each year, the festivities surrounding the cheese’s arrival in Concord, Massachusetts, have grown to include more and more segments of the town’s population. From students to selectmen; from merchants to the merely curious. But one thing is certain: No one can resist a cheese parade.
Beginning at 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, December 1 at the intersection of Main and Walden streets in this historic town’s center, the colorful and boisterous parade provides Concord and its visitors with a half hour of old fashioned fun and unity.
A team of draft horses and a cart haul the cheese down the street, accompanied by the blare of brass instruments and scores of high-spirited dancers from nearby Concord Academy, while the crowd cheers and waves Italian flags.
After a brief round of speeches, echoed Occupy-Wall-Street style, the cheese is ceremoniously halved and quartered on a raised stage for all to watch, and is sampled among the crowd.
Amazingly, the cheese – a mild asiago fresco made from cow’s milk — is sold by the pound and generally sells out in less than 14 days.
NOTE: For 2016, Concord’s Colonial Inn is offering a Crucolo Day Package to anyone who’d care to expand their parade viewing experience into an overnight. It includes a great rate, some local beers, and a half pound of Crucolo cheese.
Italian Foods Corporation is introducing La Piana® Romantica Happy Apple Condiment, a versatile apple cider vinegar-based product imported from the Emilia-Romagna region near Modena, Italy, for the 2017 Winter Fancy Food Show, where it will be available for tasting in the Italian Foods Corp. booth.
The new Happy Apple Condiment melds sweet and tart notes with a combination of apple cider vinegar and concentrated apple juice for a range of culinary applications, according to General Manager Francesca Lapiana-Krause. Packaged in tall, slender 8.4-ounce glass bottles, Happy Apple Condiment has a suggested retail price of $14.99.
The new condiment may be used traditionally as a dressing for fruit or lettuce salads and slaws as well as a base for apple or stone fruit sauces or compotes for pork, and when slightly reduced, makes a savory glaze for poultry. The versatile Happy Apple Condiment also can be used as a sweet and savory topping for pancakes, she said. In addition to the new condiment, Italian Foods’ Romantica line includes Gran Reserva Balsamic Vinegar of Modena and Rosé Condiment. The La Piana line also includes Bronze, Silver and Gold Balsamic Vinegars of Modena.
More information is available online or by calling 1.888.516.7262.
San Francisco Salt Company has partnered with Oriel Sea Salt, which is now accredited under the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), the most prestigious EU food quality register. Oriel Sea Salt is the second product from Ireland to be recognized under the PDO and is used to craft San Francisco Salt Company’s Whiskey Smoked Irish Sea Salt. The accreditation was received on August 31, 2016.
The PDO designates agricultural products or foodstuff that is exclusively determined by the geographical environment they are in. In order to receive the PDO certification, the product must be traditionally or entirely manufactured within the specific region. Preparing, processing, and producing a product in one region is rare and brings out unique properties in that product.
“The accreditation of the Oriel Salt being used in our salts is special because it allows us to create a gourmet salt blend that is high in quality and strong in taste,” says Lee Williamson, President and CEO of San Francisco Salt Company. “We are the only gourmet salt company in the U.S. to carry the Whiskey Smoked Salt and it’s exciting to see how much success we’ve had through the product.”
The production of the Whiskey Smoked Salt begins with smoking 90-year-old Nicaraguan oak kegs, which hold Teeling’s finest Irish whiskey during its last 10 years of aging. The smoking takes place just hours after the kegs are emptied. This process ensures retention of the rich whiskey and oak aromas, which are then subtly infused into Oriel Kiln-Dried Mineral Sea Salt. Oriel Sea Salt is known for its powerful taste that allows chefs to use less salt and achieve the same kick.
San Francisco Salt Company’s Whiskey Smoked Irish Sea Salt is available in bulk packages for restaurants, hotels, bars and other volume customers as well as three retail-sized package options: 4-ounce glass shaker bottles, 5-ounce stackable shakers, and 8-ounce glass chef’s jars with wooden scoop.
New from Wind & Willow and perfect for the holidays: Roasted Pecan Seasoning Mixes. Combine each mix with one egg white and pecans and bake for 22 minutes.
With the aroma that fills the kitchen, you’ll fall in love before you take the first bite. Once you pull them from the oven, the taste becomes the star of the show. Perfect on their own or in a salad, decorate a pumpkin pie, top ice cream, or make an over-the-top snack mix by adding dried fruit and candies.
Each re-usable and biodegradable burlap bag contains two packets so you can make two batches. After the first batch, you’ll be glad you have one left.
Flavors include Cinnamon & Sugar, Caramel Apple, and Cocoa & Cayenne. Each double-batch bag retails for $9.95.
Wind & Willow, Inc.
Gaucho Ranch Chimichurri Sauces are the perfect condiment for you if you’re tired of sugary barbecue sauces and miss the natural flavors of steak, chicken, seafood or pork. Gaucho Ranch Chimichurri is made of a complex and delicious mix of herbs, spices, garlic, oil and vinegar which tenderize and enhance the natural flavors of your proteins. It’s also very low in sodium, has no cholesterol, no trans fats and low calories.
Vegetarian? Gaucho Ranch Chimichurri Sauces are also excellent served over roasted vegetables, rice, couscous or as a dipping sauce for fresh bread. Four unique flavors cater to every possible occasion, all featuring a different herbal profile ranging from Rosemary and Oregano to Basil and Thyme or Cilantro and Mint. Whether you want to offer your guests a new and exciting chimichurri burger, or chimichurri shrimp kabobs, your friends and family will love your creation.
Gaucho Ranch Chimichurri is shelf-stable and packaged in 12.5-ounce bottles.
Sally Williams Fine Foods of South Africa, a premium purveyor of gourmet, hand-made soft textured nougat and related confections has opened offices in the U.S. in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, with plans to introduce and distribute to American consumers. Trevor P. Shevil has been named Chief Executive Officer, Sally Williams – U.S. Sally Williams, and will run its American operations.
In business for more than 20 years, the South African company currently sells its award-winning products at some of the most prestigious retailers throughout Europe
According to Trevor P. Shevil, “We chose Fort Lauderdale for the site of our U.S. headquarters because of the area’s easy access to the eastern corridor. Since we plan to launch Sally Williams on the East Coast first, the Florida area seemed a logical choice. We have also secured warehousing and distribution, outsourced to industry experts in strategic locations throughout the U.S.” Sally Williams opened its U.S. branch in September 2016 at 1234 NE 4th Ave, Suite B, Fort Lauderdale.
Sally Williams Fine Foods will make its debut in the U.S. at Kosherfest 2016. Kosherfest is the largest North American kosher food show, being held this year November 15-16, at the Meadowlands Expo Center, Secaucus, New Jersey.
Globally, Sally Williams is recognized as one of the most prestigious confectionery brands, particularly recognized as a purveyor of the finest honey nougat and chocolate offerings available today. It is a recipient of the International Great Taste Awards, acknowledged as the benchmark for fine food and drink and described as the ‘Oscars’ of the food world in the United Kingdom. Currently, Sally Williams is distributed widely in more than 20 countries and is sold at many of the finest retailer food halls, including Harrods and Selfridges in the UK.
Line up of Sally Williams Products:
Sally Williams Fine Foods products are manufactured using only the finest all natural ingredients, free of preservatives, colorants and gluten, and are certified kosher by the Orthodox Union. They are available in both non-dairy and dairy varieties. Sally Williams Fine Foods is headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa, with offices in London, United Kingdom and Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Nurture Life, the first and only subscription meal delivery service focused specifically on children, launches nationally this November. Created to serve time-pressed parents while meeting the evolving nutritional needs of growing kids, Nurture Life offers fresh, wholesome, organic, ready-to-eat meals delivered weekly, straight to the consumer’s door. The innovative service is designed for babies, toddlers and kids from six months to 18 years of age.
“Nurture Life fundamentally changes mealtime for busy families,” said Nurture Life Co-Founder Jennifer Chow. “Quick and easy often means compromises, especially when it comes to food. Nurture Life offers parents an alternative to hours spent cooking or tradeoffs in the quality and healthiness of frozen or takeout meals. We’re excited to offer parents time and peace of mind with our healthy, wholesome and convenient meals created for parents who want the best for their kids.”
Founded by tech-industry veterans and parents themselves, Steven Minisini and Jennifer Chow, Nurture Life was born out of their personal challenge to promote healthy eating for their kids while juggling busy schedules. With the guidance of the company’s culinary team and pediatric dietitian, the service incorporates the highest quality produce, proteins and ingredients into each meal. Organic and locally sourced, whenever possible, Nurture Life meals never include peanuts, tree nuts or shellfish and are free of artificial ingredients, refined sugars, trans fats and high fructose corn syrup. To eliminate cross-contamination on the most common allergies, meals are prepared, cooked and packaged on-site in Nurture Life’s state-of-the-art Chicago production facility.
Offering flexible plans that grow with families, Nurture Life’s unique subscription platform provides the convenience to configure and scale meal selections to fit a family’s needs over time. With multiple weekly plan options, including eight or 14 meals for babies and five or 10 meals for toddlers and kids, the service’s prices range from $45 to $119 per week. All meals are cooked and portioned based on the child’s age and nutritional needs, with weekly menu rotations featuring seasonal choices, as well as classic favorites so that kids can experience a variety of tastes and ingredients. Nurture Life delivers a week’s worth of meals tailored to the child’s feeding stage, such as Butternut Squash Puree for babies just starting solids, Pear, Apple, Quinoa & Cinnamon Puree for babies ready for combination purees and Salmon, English Peas, Golden Potato & Dill finger foods for babies learning to feed themselves. Toddlers and kids can enjoy Chicken Tenders, Mashed Yams & French Green Beans, Teriyaki Salmon over Brown Rice and Spinach Stuffed Gnocchi with Turkey Bolognese. Each order is packaged in an insulated box to maintain freshness. Meals are delivered cold, never frozen and simply need to be stored in the refrigerator until reheating.
A time and stress-saving solution for families of all shapes and sizes, Nurture Life takes the pressure and guesswork out of planning and cooking meals. Headquartered in Chicago, Nurture Life ships to the Midwest and East Coast, including major cities such as New York, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Dallas and Atlanta.
Little Red Dot Kitchen, whose Singapore street-style Hickory Smoked Spicy Candied Bacon Bak Kwa was named a 2016 sofi® Award winner, has leveraged that recognition for growth in distribution and at retail.
Little Red Dot Kitchen has seen growing interest in its line of five meat snacks since its Hickory Smoked Spicy Candied Bacon Bak Kwa was named a finalist and won the savory snack category in this year’s sofi Awards, according to Little Red Dot Kitchen CEO Ching Lee. The Bak Kwa meat snacks, which come from U.S. family farms dedicated to raising animals humanely and without antibiotics or hormones, have been added by Vistar, headquartered in Centennial, Colorado; Gourmet Merchants International of Gardena, California and Gourmet Goods Distribution of Belleview, New Jersey.
New retail placements include Barnes & Noble College stores through Vistar, and direct sales to Safeway for its San Jose, California, stores; Straub’s in Missouri and Foodstuffs in Illinois, Lee said. “Straub’s and Foodstuffs came to us directly because of the sofi Award,” she said, “We have seen interest from other large chains and additional distributors as more and more retailers across many channels are encountering consumers who want a higher level of snacking with more interesting and exotic flavors and better, cleaner ingredients.”
In addition to being produced from protein sources raised humanely and without antibiotics or hormones, Little Red Dot Kitchen’s Bak Kwa is minimally processed with most ingredients having non-GMO verification. It also is free from artificial ingredients, wheat, dairy and eggs. The Bak Kwa is available in five flavors, including Hickory Smoked Spicy Candied Bacon, which has no nitrates or nitrites, Spicy Chipotle Beef Bak Kwa, Pork Bak Kwa, free-range Turkey Bak Kwa, and Lemongrass Beef Bak Kwa. The meat snacks are available in resealable 1- to 3-ounce packages with a suggested retail price of $6.99 to $7.99. Cases include 12 of the 2.5- to 3-ounce bags and 18 of the 1-ounce bags.
More information about Little Red Dot Kitchen is available by calling 408.673.8227 or by connecting online at www.facebook.com/reddotkitchen, www.twitter.com/reddotkitchen, and www.instagram.com/littlereddotkithen.
Calavo Growers, Inc., a global avocado industry producer and expanding provider of value-added fresh food, has completed the purchase of a production facility in Riverside, California, in a transaction valued at $19.4 million. The newly acquired production facility will further enhance the national footprint for the company’s Renaissance Food Group, LLC business segment and position the segment to serve its growing customer base across the southwestern United States. The acquired facility, which totals approximately 128,000 square feet situated on about 11 acres, was previously owned and operated by affiliates of the former Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets.
The company described the new facility as nearly turnkey, which will allow RFG to quickly expand capacity and meet growing demand among current and new customers for its fresh, value-added packaged fruit and vegetables, ready-to-eat salads and prepared foods offerings. The facility’s state-of-the-art design allows for an efficient start up, optimal food-safety measures and quality production flow. Its physical location in southern California is highly sought after for its prime interstate highway and rail access.
Calavo Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Lee E. Cole stated: “This best-in-class facility aligns with and extends our company’s strategic growth initiatives to build a leading market position in the refrigerated fresh packaged foods category. The new facility enables us to satisfy demand from several key accounts in southern California, while providing the platform for deeper market penetration across the Southwest, including southern Nevada, Arizona and Utah. Quick-turn, just-in-time order fulfillment is a cornerstone of RFG’s operating success, along with the outstanding depth and breadth of its product portfolio.”
The new Riverside facility follows the recent addition of a 209,000 square foot production and distribution center near Jacksonville, Florida, and the new renovation and expansion of the 89,000 square foot production facility in Houston, Texas.
Kettlebell Kitchen, the New York City meal service with a focus on healthy eating, will launch home delivery this coming December. Founded in 2013 by former Army officers Joe and Andy Lopez-Gallego, and Chef Greg Grossman, Kettlebell Kitchen meals are currently available for pickup at 300+ gyms and fitness studios across the Tri-State area. The expansion will introduce Kettlebell Kitchen’s personalized, nutrition-driven meals to a wider set of consumers. Co-founder Chef Greg Grossman [OREYA Restaurant, recipient of an “Excellent” rating by The New York Times] will continue to innovate menu offerings and expand Kettlebell Kitchen’s verticals for healthy eating, weight loss, muscle gain, and sports performance.
“We know how stressed and busy New Yorkers can be. By providing one-on-one nutritional support and cutting out shopping, cooking, and cleaning time, we are bringing them a new level of convenience,” notes Co-Founder Andy Lopez-Gallego.
Kettlebell Kitchen provides consumers an opportunity to eat a variety of flavorful meals that help them reach their dietary goals. Every member of the program works with an advising nutritionist, who helps curate an experience that offers immediate results. Co-Founder and Chef Greg Grossman ensures the selection of offerings (including breakfast, lunch, and dinner) are high quality, featuring seasonal ingredients and chef-level preparations—engineered to fuel the body and provide energy and nutritional value.
“There’s a common misconception that healthy or fitness-geared food shouldn’t taste good. By using high quality proteins and fresh produce, we are debunking the myth,” says Greg Grossman.