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Archive for the ‘Grocery’ Category


Shakirah

From Your Yard to Our Shelves: PUBLIC Label Meyer Lemon Preserves

spreading meyer lemon preserveWe all know the old adage of when “life gives you lemons”, but when our guests enthusiastically answered our call for Meyer lemons, we went beyond the “lemonade” route. With a little help from our neighbors Kristy, Carolyn, Denise and OneTree.org, we’re proud to feature two new additions to our PUBLIC Label line: Backyard Meyer Lemon Preserve and Rooftop Honey Lemon Marmalade.

Over the course of two months, we received over 130 lbs. of beautifully fragrant, ripe Meyer lemons grown in the backyards of our guests. Even our friends in Berkeley got in on our social experiment; we received lemons from Michael Pollan and his wife, Judith Belzer. All were jazzed to support our ‘urban gleaning’ effort to tackle local fruit waste. As a professional preserver, I love the inherent community and connectivity in canning; my conversations with our gang of urban growers ranged from methods of preserving to maintaining lemon trees.shak eating jam

The preserves I created for this PUBLIC Label project will start your morning with a zing and add brightness to many a recipe. Our Rooftop Honey Lemon Marmalade is sweetened with honey from the beehives on the roof of our 18th Street Market. With lovely, honeyed ribbons of tender peel, this marmalade is sweet with serious, citrusy bite. The Backyard Meyer Lemon Preserve is a bit different than marmalade; it’s thicker and richer, well-balanced by the tang of the lemon peel and sweetness of organic cane sugar. This preserve only has two ingredients (lemons and sugar) and little goes a very long way.

Pair each of these delicious preserves with a nutty alpine cheese and crusty sourdough bread for the best grilled cheese EVER or baste on chicken halves for a lovely glaze. Or, try my favorite remedy for springtime sniffles – a spoonful in a piping cup of earl grey tea.

Now we’re excited about this radical way to connect folks to their food by functioning as a small scale retail outlet for urban agriculture—stay tuned for more like this in the future!

 


Easter Basket Alert: Peep These Chocolates!

Boy will we be lucky if this coming Easter Sunday is as beautiful as the day we’re having right now! It’s supposed to be, so we’ve stocked our shelves with heaps of adorable AND tasty Easter chocolate for your springy spread. Here are just a few to get the basket-making juices flowing:

easter1Vosges Goose’s Golden Eggs: Redefining bacon and eggs, five dark chocolate half-eggs nestle in a straw-filled pink gift box, each filled with soft bacon caramel.

easter3Vosges Alice’s Rabbit Lollipop: For those who love to imagine chasing their own white rabbit, this pop is available in either 45% dark milk chocolate with peanut butter and pink Himalayan Salt or 62% dark chocolate with caramelized puffed millet.

easter 4Fran’s Milk or Dark Chocolate Foil Bunny: In single-origin 65% Venezuelan solid dark chocolate or single-origin Venezuelan solid milk chocolate.

easter2Vosges Barcelona Floppy Eared Bunnies: This deep milk chocolate bunny will win you over at first bite with its exotic interior of hickory smoked almonds and grey sea salt, enrobed in a custom blend of milk chocolate with just a touch of dark to deepen the flavor.

 

 


Raph

PUBLIC Label Recipes: Marinara & Puttanesca Sauce

Public Label LogoEach time we introduce a new product to our PUBLIC Label line, we like to share recipes that incorporate it into your home cooking. Our new tomato sauces are so versatile on pizzas, in pasta, or however you like to use them–here are just a couple ideas to get you started. Visit our PUBLIC Label page to find out what it means to turn the “private” in “private label” upside down.

Roasted Cauliflower with PUBLIC Label Marinara Sauce

Serves 4 as a side

Ingredients:
1 head cauliflower, broken into florets
1 cup Bi-Rite PUBLIC Label Marinara Sauce
1 cup grated ricotta salata
1 tsp chili pepper flakes
2 tbls Bi-Rite PUBLIC Label Extra Virgin Olive Oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 tbls chopped fresh Italian parsley

Directions:
-Preheat oven to 425 F
-Toss florets with olive oil, chili flakes, salt and pepper.
-Put in baking dish in oven for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally
-Lower temperature to 325 F, stir in Marinara Sauce
-Top with ricotta salata and bake for 10 minutes

birite public label

The PUBLIC Label line keeps growing!

Sicilian Meat Balls with PUBLIC Label Puttanesca Sauce
Serves 4

Ingredients:
1 ½ lbs freshly ground beef
½ cup breadcrumbs
¼ cup whole milk
1 large egg
¾ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
¼ cup ketchup
2 tbls fresh Italian parsley, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 small yellow onion, chopped finely
1 jar PUBLIC Label Puttanesca Sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
-Put a rack lined with parchment paper in the center of the oven and heat to 375 F
-Mix the breadcrumbs and milk in a large bowl, then set aside for 5 minutes.
-Mash and squeeze the breadcrumbs so that they make a smooth paste.
-Whisk in the eggs.
-Add the Parmigiano, ketchup, herbs, onion, garlic, 2 tsp salt and ½ tsp pepper; stir to blend.
-Break the beef into small chunks and add to the bowl.
-Mix gently but thoroughly; over-mixing will make the meatballs tough and dry.
-When all of the ingredients are evenly combined, use a small ice cream scoop to form 24 balls, placing each on the baking sheet
-Bake for 15 minutes (or internal temp of 120 degrees)
-Warm PUBLIC Label Puttanesca Sauce in heavy saucepan.
-Once the sauce is simmering, drop in the balls and simmer together for 12-15 minutes.
-Sprinkle with a little grated Parmigiano and chopped fresh parsley and serve on their own as an appetizer, or with spaghetti

 

 


Bi-Rite Divis is Open!

b-man with divisadero lineThought I’d never say this….but we’re open on Divisadero Street! Please come visit us 9 am – 9 pm today and every day. Store location, hours and parking info (yes, we do have one hour parking for our guests!) is here.

Salty_Ginger

Salty Ginger Sundae, Divis contest winner!

We’ve spent about three years working towards this moment, so today is all about celebrating the long, winding path that brought us here. And what better way to do so than by treating ourselves to the newest additions to our Divis menu: the winners of our Divis Sandwich and Sundae contest!

The Giuseppe: Fra’ Mani salami and mortadella, provolone, lettuce, red onion, tomato, dijon mustard, pepperoncini, and lemon aioli on an Acme Rustic Baguette (congrats to Joseph Slattery!)

naima

Opening is so sweet!

The Salty Ginger: Ginger ice cream, ginger snaps, sea salt, chocolate fudge, and whipped cream (congrats to Zoe Byl!)

Now that the construction is complete, it’s time to start the important work of building relationships with our guests. Our 60 Divis staff members are eager to meet and feed you. Plus, a bunch of our passionate food makers are joining us to give out tastes of their cheese, jams and more: check out the Divis events on our calendar here.

See you soon! And now more than ever, please let us know how we can better serve you.

P.S. You’ve gotta check out this video of neighborhood pup Trotter on his first visit to the store!

 

 

 


Patrick

It’s Time: Bi-Rite Divis Opens March 13th!

birite-divis-logoRefrigerators delivered: check

Divis Sandwich and Sundae contest  entries in: check

60 new staff members hired: check (almost)!

Guess this leaves only one thing…Opening March 13th!

divis team floor

Pre-opening Divis staff meeting

We can’t even wait to open our doors at 550 Divisadero (at Hayes). Just like our 18th Street Market, Divis will be open every day from 9am-9pm and will be a one-stop shop for farm direct produce, a full-service butcher counter, deli with prepared foods from our on-site kitchen, natural wine & spirits, fresh bread, local dairy… and of course important doodads like toilet paper and deodorant.

shak its time

It’s time!

What took us so long? We renovated and retrofitted the interior of the building –which was one of the original Safeways—while taking care to preserve the art deco façade. And we’re upping the ante from our 18th St. Market: Divis has an old world style cut-to-order cheese counter and an ice cream scoop shop right inside (yes, Sam’s sundae with chocolate ice cream, Maldon sea salt, bergamot olive oil and whipped cream will be here)!

We hope you’re ready to give us feedback on what dishes and items you love and what we can do better, so we can evolve together. We’ve got a 30 year lease, so we’re planning to be around for a while and we look forward to feeding the neighborhood for years.

Big thanks to our new neighbors for weathering the construction. And thanks to everyone who has already made us feel welcome—from the other Divisadero Merchants to school and church leaders from the Western Addition, Haight, Fillmore, and Hayes Valley neighborhoods that so richly intersect here!facade feb

 

 


Raph

Blooming in Time for Valentine’s Day: Dandelion Chocolate Joins our Neighborhood

Are you as excited as we are about Dandelion Chocolate opening a factory right around the corner from our Market?? We asked Alice from Dandelion to tell us more about their craft and luscious final product…just in time for Valentine’s Day! Here’s what she had to say:

dandelion 1

Molly DeCoudreaux Photography

My name is Alice, and I help run the community and cultural pieces of Dandelion Chocolate. I began working here a little more than two years ago, in a garage, learning how to make chocolate.

At Dandelion, we make chocolate bars from the bean. We roast, crack, sort, winnow, grind, conch, and temper small batches of beans and then mold and package each bar by hand. Our whole process is about the bean — we work hard to source great beans from around the world, and then we get out of the way. We want the flavor in our bars to be bold, distinct with each new bean, and unadulterated. We don’t add any additional flavorings or ingredients to our bars, just cocoa beans and cane sugar.

dandelion2

Molly DeCoudreaux Photography

We recently moved into our factory + cafe space at 740 Valencia Street. It’s been such an exciting move, and a long time in the making. Dandelion’s two co-founders, Todd and Cam, found the space almost three years ago. Permits and construction took quite a while, but we’re finally into our space, and the reward is huge! It’s been so exciting to open our doors. Guests can come in, order a hot chocolate, mocha, or a pastry, and watch our production team in action. Soon, we’ll have tastings, classes, and tours as well. A lot like Bi-Rite and 18 Reasons, we want our customers to be able to learn about what they’re eating. Seeing chocolate-making in action is pretty rare and we hope that it’s a treat for guests.

dandelion3

Molly DeCoudreaux Photography

Our next big holiday is Valentine’s Day, and we hope it’s a chocolatey one! We’re starting the celebration early, on February 7th, by selling our bars at the Mission Community Market. Then, we hope to have a few special offerings in our cafe on February 14th. We’ll also have Pam of Shotwell Paper Mill outside our cafe from 12 PM – 5 PM making letterpress cards for guests to take home to their loved ones.

Then, in the next few months, I’ll be focusing on settling us into the neighborhood. I hope our space becomes a place where people love to spend a day lingering and learning. I’ll be working on all sorts of programs that connect the cafe and factory. Overall, we hope to inspire curiosity in our guests and to give them plenty of answers about how to make chocolate. It’s an exciting time and we have big goals!

 


Interview with Tipu’s Chai Founder Bipin Patel

Tipus 1

Bipin with his popular brew

We asked Bipin Patel, the founder of Tipu’s Chai, a few questions to learn more about his story and the process behind his amazing Chai tea blends.

Tipu’s Chai is a new product for us at Bi-Rite Market. Where does your chai recipe come from and what makes it so unique?

I was born and raised in a large Indian family in Uganda. I grew up drinking my grandmother’s masala chai. She brought it with her from her native Gujarat in northwestern India. Our chai recipe uses several ground spices like ginger and cardamom, which we specially blend with a strong organic black tea, such as Assam, to create a rich, spicy and robust flavor.

Can you tell us about your newest Chai products?

We offer a variety of quick-brew chai products for chai lovers on the go or for relaxing at home. All the products are made using all-natural ingredients with no preservatives. They are also certified kosher and most are organic.

  • All You Need is Water is our quick-brew chai tea latte made with black tea, organic spices, organic non-GMO soy milk powder, organic evaporated cane juice and ginger. This product is also vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free, certified kosher and includes four grams of protein per serving. Chai fans simply add hot (or cold) water for a chai tea latte on the go.
  • The Simple Life uses soluble microground Black Chai tea without sweeteners or milk products. It is pure black tea, organic spices and ginger.

tipus2What prompted you to start your own chai company?

In many ways, it came naturally. I opened a vegetarian Indian restaurant in Missoula, Montana called Tipu’s Tiger (named after Tipu Sultan) in 1998, using mostly family recipes, one of which was my grandmother’s chai recipe. We used to make between 10-15 gallons of chai every day. Before long, local cafes and restaurants wanted to serve it to their patrons, so we developed various chai products to serve their needs. Tipu’s Chai was born! A few years ago, I sold the restaurant to focus on the chai business.

So, Indian chai vs. coffee?

Well, chai definitely has more healthy ingredients, and the tea offers more anti-oxidants. Chai is also easier on the digestive system and has lower levels of caffeine. All the spices we use in chai have a health value. For example, ginger helps with digestion; cinnamon increases circulation; and cardamom is known to benefit the lungs and heart.

What are some new trends you are seeing in this category?

I believe strongly that people will continue to want authentic and natural/organic products. As people travel the world more and taste authentic chai in India they will search for companies locally that are creating this same experience. Also, today’s consumers are looking for food and beverages made without artificial ingredients or preservatives, and we definitely do this!

Visit us for a taste of Tipu’s authentic Indian chai this Saturday, January 19th from 10am-1pm: meet Mark Lannen from Tipu’s Chai and learn more about this exciting new company from Montana!


Shakirah

Be the WHO on our PUBLIC Label

Our PUBLIC Label products are totally transparent. Each jar contains ingredients sourced from our favorite farmers, and is made with recipes created by our talented chefs in our partner kitchens. And all of this information is right on the label: we tell you WHO grew the key ingredient, WHERE it was grown and HOW it was turned into the final product you hold in your hand.

So now, we’re reaching out to YOU, our network of backyard and front yard farmers (did you know that the Mission micro-climate was once farmland?), to participate in our next new thing: a PUBLIC Label Meyer Lemon Marmalade. Bring us your Meyer Lemons and we’ll make them shine! And if you have another fruit tree we gotta try, let us know! We’ll take your lemons from now through Tuesday, January 15th.

Bring any amount of lemons you have (minimum of 15 lbs); if you bring more than 25 lbs and we use them, we’ll put your name on our label as the “WHO” behind the marmalade! We’ll pay you market rate for good lemons—by good, we mean ripe and juicy, without green shoulders—to ensure a flavorful end product.

Email me if you’re up for bringing us your Meyers—we’ll work out a time for you to drop them off. And of course, I’ll let anyone who brings me usable lemons know when the marmalade’s ready so you can come take a jar!


In the Market Now: Our Holiday Menu!

Drop off a new and unwrapped toy, book, or piece of sports equipment at our Joy Drive before Friday so we can give them to Arriba Juntos families!

Our Christmas & New Year’s Menu is available starting today! Come by the Market to pick up our kitchen’s favorites…and to save yourself some effort, give us a call (415-241-9760) to order dishes for your holiday feast today so you can focus on family and friends next week!

Our Full Christmas and New Year’s Menu

Turkey Time: We’ve heard from some of you that you’re looking for turkeys for your holiday feast. Rest assured, we have Bill Niman’s fresh (never frozen) Heritage and Broad Breasted turkeys available for order. Our guests had delicious things to say about Bill’s turkeys last month:

“My partner’s a dark meat eater, and he was blown away by how moist the white meat was on Bill Niman’s broad breasted bird!”

“Our Bill Niman heritage turkey was delicious, such a treat….So much flavor and a nice toothsome texture, we were very happy and it made excellent turkey sandwiches and turkey salad sandwiches later in the week. “

You won’t be able to get ‘em again until next Fall, so give us a call (415-241-9760) to reserve yours today! Check out page nine of our Holiday Guide for details on both of these delicious, locally raised birds.

Want to know another way to stress less? Place your order for pick up on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, since Christmas Eve (Monday) will be busy here on 18th Street!

Holiday Hours, Parking Info, Menus and More


Announcing the Good Food Awards Finalists…Our PUBLIC Label Kohlrabi Kraut included!

Aren’t we fortunate? The Good Food Awards team announced this year’s finalists and not only does the list includes our own PUBLIC Label Kohlrabi Kraut, but we’re proud to stock about 15 of the other finalists on our shelves! Hmmm, now I’m thinking how cool it would be to gift a bag of all of these for the holidays….here’s the full list of finalists you can find on our shelves:

Pickles

Bi-Rite Market PUBLIC Label Kohlrabi Kraut

Emmy’s Pickles and Jams Bread n’ Butter

Charcuterie

La Quercia Borsellino Dry Sausage

Chocolate

Askinosie Chocolate Dark Milk Chocolate Bar + Fleur de Sel

Dandelion Chocolate Dominican Republic 70% & Madagascar 70% & Venezuela 70%

Lillie Belle Farms Most Awesome Chocolate Bar EVER

Rogue Chocolatier Hispaniola & Sambirano

Coffee

Sightglass Coffee Ethiopia – Yukro Gera

Preserves

INNA Jam Pretty Spicy Fresno Chili Jam

Sosu Srirachup

Cheese

Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese, Petit Frere

Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Co., Bay Blue

Uplands Cheese Company, Pleasant Ridge Reserve

Beer

Bear Republic Brewery, Racer 5 IPA

View the full list of 2013 Good Food Awards Finalists here. 

Finalists are those entrants that rise to the top in the Blind Tasting and are also able to clearly articulate how they fit the Good Food Awards industry-specific criteria of environmental and social responsibility. Finalists attested to responsible production by detailing their efforts to eliminate or reduce pesticides, herbicides and chemical fertilizers, source ingredients locally where possible, implement water and energy conservation, ensure traceability to the farm level, practice good animal husbandry and exercise fair and transparent treatment of workers and suppliers.

This year’s 182 Finalists were chosen from among 1,366 entries from 31 states in nine industries. In geographic trends this year, Washington, D.C. is emerging as a hub of Good Food, with 14 Finalists hailing from its food shed of Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania. Colorado (10), Washington state (10), Wisconsin (9) and Texas (9) all had strong showings. California had the largest number of finalists (43), followed by Oregon (22) and New York (16).

The Good Food Awards celebrate the kind of food we all want to eat: tasty, authentic and responsibly produced. For a long time, certifications for responsible food production and awards for superior taste have remained distinct—one honors social and environmental responsibility, while the other celebrates flavor. The Good Food Awards recognize that truly good food—the kind that brings people together and builds strong, healthy communities—contains all of these ingredients.

The 100 winners will be announced in a 400-person ceremony at the Ferry Building on January 18, 2013, followed by a 15,000-person Good Food Awards Marketplace on January 19. Winners will sample and sell their winning products at the public Marketplace, which takes place alongside the renowned CUESA Ferry Plaza Farmers Market. Tickets and details will be available at www.goodfoodawards.org in mid-December. See you there!


Raph

Sweet Gifts During Sweet Weeks

Sweet Weeks is upon us!  Today through December 16th we’re giving you 10% off any 6 or more confections or chocolates to make them that much more gift-able.  This includes any of the items in our tantalizing wall-o-chocolate (the gauntlet you walk by on your way to the registers).  The sale also includes chocolate and caramel sauces, drinking chocolate, marshmallows, and hard candies.

Here are a few of my absolute favorites made special for the holiday season–stock up on stocking stuffers and host gifts while we’re sweetening the deal!

Askinoise Peppermint Bark $29.99/300 g $14.99/150 g

Made from single-origin dark chocolate, layered with buttery white chocolate and topped off with crushed bits of natural peppermint, this bark is hand-crafted in small-batches and packaged in rustic boxes.

Michael Recchiuti Dragée Winter Sampler $29.99/12 oz

Toasted nuts and dried fruits are coated with custom blended chocolate, burnt caramel and fleur de sel in this box of Michael Recchiuti’s four most popular dragées: Burnt Caramel Almonds, Cherries Two Ways, Burnt Caramel Hazelnuts, and Peanut Butter Pearls – each in their own compartment within the box.  Made in San Francisco.

Pralus Barre Infernale $24.99/160 g

This chocolate bar contains handmade hazelnut cream, making it so smooth and creamy it immediately melts in your mouth. It’s such an addictive chocolate that it’s referred to as the “infernal” bar.  Available in LAIT with toasted hazelnuts or NOIR (75%) with toasted almonds.

Droga Gingerbread Chookies $16.99/4.5oz

Chookies (chocolate covered cookies) are made with soft, delicately spiced gingerbread covered with rich dark chocolate.  Dressed up in limited-edition, festive boxes with hand-drawn designs!


Casey

The Label as Site of Intervention

A visual icon Americans have shopped for for decades

As 18 Reasons’ curator, my mission is to weave together the visual arts with the shopping, eating and cooking experienced in our Market, Creamery, and Farm. In that vein, I’m struck by the opportunity we have this month to begin shifting the visual culture of food shopping from the commercial to the behavioral—public health intervention through design.

In 1955 Berkeley, beat-poet Allen Ginsberg wrote his legendary poem, A Supermarket in California. In it, Ginsberg uses a fictional account of a visit to the supermarket as a metaphor for his dissatisfaction with issues such as economic materialism, domestic life, commodification, and sexual repression. Because I don’t have the space to properly divulge into such issues in this short post, I’d like to focus solely on the poem’s second line and bring its relevance into the present time.

Ginsberg writes, “In my hungry fatigue, and shopping for images, I went into the neon fruit supermarket…”

What a tragic tone he casts—a society grown so estranged from its food sources that it is left to shop for images, simulations of food. But in 2012 a similar statement can be made regarding our grocery shopping habits. Shopping for images, for better or worse, has become the primary way in which many consumers hunt and gather their food today. Removed from the source and reliant on the package, labeling has become one of the main places where we meet the story of our food.

As we walk down the grocery aisles, visual identifiers such as slogans, logos, distinguishable colors, fonts, and buzz words jump off packages in an attempt to grab our attention and increase product sales. We seek Chester the Cheetos Cheetah because he is familiar. We seek words like “natural” and “fresh” because they have subconscious ecological, social, and health-based connotations. Although this detached relationship to our food is unfortunate, and largely caused by the predominantly industrialized food system, this vision-based form of harvesting remains a central part of our grocery shopping experience.

A visual icon we may be able to shop for more often if Prop 37 is passed

But here in California, in 2012, we have an opportunity to reimagine this visual relationship as more than just a marketing strategy, to reimagine our food packages as more than a place for a company to sell consumers its products. The label can become a site of intervention.

Prop 37, the initiative to mandate labeling of genetically modified foods, if passed, affords us this chance. By voting Yes on Prop 37, consumers get one step closer to having full, transparent disclosure regarding their food products.  Voting Yes on Prop 37 does not mean you are casting a vote on whether or not GMOs are good or bad; voting yes simply declares that we as consumers have a right to know how our food is produced. Voting Yes declares that we as consumers crave conscious choice.

The importance of voting with our forks has been stressed, but many times before the food reaches our forks, we must vote with ours eyes at the supermarket. And in order to accurately vote with ours eyes, we must vote at the polls.