Oser Communications Group

Gourmet News Special Edition for 2016 Winter Fancy Food Show

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GOURMET NEWS www.gourmetnews.com n JANUARY 2016 n GOURMET NEWS 1 3 0 instrumental hands-on approach, which harkens back to his youth growing up on the Sonoma Valley estate. The eldest of winery founder Bruce Cohn's four children, Dan became involved in the family business at an early age, work- ing in the cellar alongside B.R. Cohn's highly-regarded winemakers and later in sales management. His lifelong appreciation of Northern California's abundant food and wine offerings provided him with the ideal foundation to bring the family's successful Sonoma Valley operation to new markets all across the country and the globe. Although still a young man, Dan brings years of expe- rience in the ultra-premium wine industry through his role as the B.R. Cohn Winery and Olive Oil Company President and Chief Executive Officer. Dan, his wife Ashley and their daughter live in Glen Ellen. As the second generation of leadership at B.R. Cohn, Dan Cohn uses his extensive in- dustry experience and entrepreneurial vision while leveraging the renowned vineyard and historic Picholine olive grove to take B.R. Cohn to the highest echelons of gourmet food and wine. His background is grounded in fine wine, the legacy of his family's Sonoma Valley estate and a deep connection to music and philanthropy. Today, Dan Cohn works with the olive oil team throughout the year, tending the rare es- tate Picholine olive grove. "Our 150-year-old Picholine olive trees are considered to be the finest olives to press into oil," said Cohn. "We can get about 25 gallons of olive oil for every ton of olives picked, compared to some of the larger growers who might pro- duce 48 gallons per ton. Because of its low yield, not many people make olive oil from Picholine olives. It's exceedingly laborious, making the B.R. Cohn Estate Picholine Extra Virgin Olive Oil rare and unique." Dan also leads the brand's olive oil and vinegar product development. With years of tasting experience and a sensory evaluation from UC Davis, he culls through countless samples from across California to create blends of olive oils and vinegars worthy of carrying the B.R. Cohn name. Although time intensive, this meticulous process ensures B.R. Cohn continues to craft extremely high quality and consistent products its customers have come to love. For more information visit booth #704, go online to www.brcohn.com or call 888.933.9675 BR Cohn (Cont'd. from p. 1) Deli Department Innovation with The Better Chip By Lorrie Baumann The Better Chip is bringing new energy to the deli department with a gluten-free snack chip that comes in flavors that complement the premium cheeses, cured meats and the dips already in the deli cases. The product fits in well with the transforming role of the grocery's perimeter, which has become a destination within the store for grab and go meal and snack shoppers who want quick sustenance but who don't intend to sacrifice their nutritional goals by resorting to fast food as well as those who regard the deli department as their resource for food to serve when they entertain. Now The Better Chip has extended its line of five flavors of better-for-you veg- etable chips: Sweet Corn and Sea Salt, Jalapenos and Sea Salt, Spinach & Kale and Sea Salt, Beets and Sea Salt and Chipotles and Sea Salt with a smaller package size, a 1.5-ounce bag that's easy to drop into a lunch kit or a sandwich clamshell for an of- fering that enhances the value of the grab and go offering. "Everyone wants to offer something a little different. We feel like that's something different they can offer that you don't get at sandwich places," says Andrea Brule, Vice President/General Man- ager of The Better Chip. "We found that ac- counts were interested in a smaller bag they could use in their lunchtime program. Be- cause our chips are doing so well in their big bags, they thought that, in a smaller bag, they might be able to use it in their lunch program." Of the five flavors, which continue to be offered in 6-ounce family-size bags, the Spinach & Kale is far and away the com- pany's best seller, Brule said. The Jalapenos and Beets Chips are tied for second place. The Better Chip will announce two new fla- vors early in 2016. The chips appeal to consumers who are looking for a better-for-you snack that's a gluten-free alternative to the crackers and bagel chips that are often chosen in the deli to accompany dips and hummus. In addi- tion to being gluten free, The Better Chip snacks are non-GMO, gluten free, vegan, whole grain and made with fresh vegeta- bles. They appeal to deli manager because they're an innovation that can add new en- ergy to the category. "They get the ring on the sandwich, but when they [shoppers] come back to buy more, they get that ring in the deli. That's as opposed to, with other chips, that ring goes to grocery." Brule said. The 1.5-ounce bags retail as a separate a la carte offering for $.99 to $1.19. Produce Springs Forward By Micah Cheek Spring's bounty will be headed to shelves in just a few months, and customers will be looking for the most Instagram-friendly op- tions for their plates. In addition to the usual snap peas and asparagus, the more exciting options for spring produce have never been better. Interest in foraged produce is continuing to increase. 'On the specialty side the most typical produce would be morel mushrooms and ramps. Next would be fiddlehead ferns. You've got a bunch of peripheral specialties there [too], miners lettuce and nettles,' says Justin Marx, CEO of Marx Foods. Morels are a traditional spring favorite in the northwest, becoming available in April. "Morels just knock it out of the park," says Kim Brauer, Culinary Concierge at Marx Foods. "In the Northwest, a lot of us survive winter be knowing that morels will be com- ing out." Now that wild vegetables have moved from a restaurant favorite to a foodie phenomenon, they are expected to remain on the minds of consumers. "The ramps and the nettles, I'm seeing more cooks look for those," Brauer adds. Ramps and stinging nettles will be available for their limited growing season from April to May. Edible flowers like pansy blossoms and orchids have been a popular garnish in fine restaurants, but producers are beginning to see interest from retail outlets as well. Marx says, "As they become more affordable and available, it'll just become more common. A lot of them have culinary merit and fla- vors that deserve their own merit." Brauer notes that people want to use them as gar- nish for regular meals to make them feel like they have a restaurant quality meal. Squash blossoms are seeing interest as they make their way out of the restaurant and on to the dinner table. For retailers, Marx Foods usually supplies a single species of edible flower, followed by a variety if there is greater interest. Another interesting edi- ble flower is the Szechuan button, named after the Szechuan pepper for the numbing and tingling sensation both products induce. "It's a little yellow flower that tastes like electricity," says Marx. Cocktail parties can also be livened up by edible blossoms, as an attractive and unusual garnish. For Easter, the classic fresh vegetable choices are expected to remain robust, so much more so if those veggies are minia- ture. The cipollini onions are being joined by baby beets, carrots and radishes, says Karen Caplan, President and CEO of Frieda's, Inc. A violaceous variety will be available for Frieda's "Power of Purple" promotion in March. A monochromatic medley will be promoted, including purple snow peas, cauliflower, artichokes and a new breed of purple sweet potatoes. For late winter and early spring, an in- creasing variety of citrus will become available. 'In the winter and spring, we do a bang-up job in all the citrus categories,' says Caplan. More specialty options like Meyer lemons, Buddha's hand (a fingered variety of citron) and finger limes have been finding their way into popular recipes. The same goes for some non-citrus tropical fruits. "Dragonfruit has just become the darling of American consumers," Caplan adds. Follow Your Heart Cracks the Egg Problem By Lorrie Baumann Demand for a vegan product that scrambles like a real egg has exceeded the expectations of its maker. "We've never had a launch like this on a product. Stores are selling – one sold 700 in the first week. Another ordered 500 and sold out in a week. The volumes are just through the roof," says CEO and Co- founder of Follow Your Heart Bob Goldberg about VeganEgg. Goldberg is no stranger to product launches. Follow Your Heart products in- clude Vegenaise, an egg-free, dairy-free mayonnaise alternative and Vegan Gourmet cheese alternatives. "But there was a missing piece. No one had come up with a good re- placement for an egg, although there were substitutes that could be used in baking," Goldberg says. "A lot of people made tofu scrambles, which was a way of filling that gap, but not really well.... The challenge was an authentic representation of what eating scrambled eggs was." After several years of thinking about the problem, Goldberg learned about research with microalgae three or four years ago. By manipulating growing conditions and feed- stocks, scientists were able to manipulate the algae to make a lot of different effects, from fiber to vegetable oils to complete protein foods. "The particular product that we use does not use genetically engineered algae be- cause that's against our ethic here," Goldberg says. "Everything we do here is non-GMO." VeganEgg came out of that research, in which the scientists found that in addition to creating plant-based foods that did a good job of replicating the experience of eating animal foods, they were making foods that are sustainable in ways that other foods aren't. For instance, 100 VeganEggs can be made with the same water that's re- quired to produce just one chicken egg, Goldberg says, adding, "A lot of chemical fertilizer and pesticides are used to grow the chicken feed necessary for egg produc- tion. All of that is avoided with a plant based egg substitute. Even the water in the process is recycled.... It's a very sustainable product, leaving aside all of the issues having to do with animal wel- fare and factory farm- ing, which is an issue for a lot of people." The product appeals, not just to commit- ted vegans, but also to those who are think- ing about ways to remain omnivorous but still reduce the amount of animal products they're eating for a variety of reasons. Fol- low Your Heart's target market for Veg- anEgg includes people who care about a wide range of issues: people who are look- ing for a healthier diet, people who are con- cerned with animal welfare and humane treatment of animals and people who are concerned about the environmental degra- dation from the way that much of our food is produced, Goldberg says.

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