Blog

Mantry Scouts: Smoky Mountains, TN

Mantry Scouts: A place, a plate and a product from a cool town in 5 seconds.

Reagan Mill TN Reagan Mill // @wallpaperish
 

Benton's Country Hams Benton’s Country Hams // @bentoncountryhams
 

Blackberry Farm, TNBlackberry Farm // @blackberryfarm

 

 

Mantry Scouts: Phoenix, AZ

Mantry Scouts: A place, a plate and a product from a cool town in 5 seconds.

Antelope Canyon, AZ
Antelope Canyon // @Rob Etzel

 

Pizzeria Bianco
Pizzeria Bianco // @mantry

 

Hayden Flour Mill
Hayden Flour Mill // @haydenflourmills

 

 

Mantry Scouts: Asheville, NC

Mantry Scouts: A place, a plate and a product from a cool town in 5 seconds.

Blue Mountains Ashville
Blue Ridge Mountains // @abounding-happiness

 

Biscuit Head Ashville
Biscuit Head // @bonappetit

 

Smoked Trout Hash Recipe | Garden and Gun
Sunburst Trout Farm // @sunbursttrout

 

 

Mantry partners with City Harvest to donate 1% of profits

When people think of New York, they probably think of tall buildings, busy streets, expensive rent and high end fashion. While all these things do certainly exist in NYC (the high rent certainly does), there are also a large group of New Yorkers who wonder where they are going to get their next meal.

According to the non-profit organization City Harvest, nearly 20% of New York’s population live in poverty. Founded in 1982, City Harvest decided to take on part of the problem, by rescuing good, healthy food that would otherwise end up being thrown out from grocery stores, restaurants, corporate cafeterias, farms and more. Like a cross between Robin Hood and Anthony Bourdain, they seek out the best food in New York that is going unused, and redistribute it to individuals and families in need all around New York.

Collecting, moving, and redistributing this food takes a lot of work! City Harvest employs more than 150 people, and has over 8000 volunteers to move food from 2000 food donors, but they also need cash donations to help fund the operation. For every dollar donated, they can rescue 4lbs of food, and they are super efficient – 93 cents of every dollar donated goes directly to hunger programs.

We decided at Mantry that we had to help support this amazing organization keeping people in New York fed. We’re proud to announce that we will be donating 1% of our annual profits to City Harvest, helping them to rescue tens of thousands of pounds of food over the next year. If you’re interested in learning more about City Harvest, you can check out their website here.

 

sofi Awards 2015 – the Oscars of Artisan Food

Every year in June artisan makers from all over America, and the world for that matter, flock to New York for the Fancy Food Show. At Mantry we love visiting makers on their home turf whenever possible, but for us the Fancy Food Show is the best chance to catch hundreds of amazing makers in two (very busy) days.

Run in parallel with the show are the sofi awards, which are basically the Oscars for artisan food. Split into 30+ categories, the awards receive over 2,700 entries – that’s a lot for the judges to taste!

We tried most of the finalists’ products this year, and wanted to highlight a few of our favorites (who knows, they might end up in a Mantry crate this coming year…) So in no particular order:

Owl’s Brew White and Vine – Winner (Cold Beverage Category)

Owls Brew White & Vine

photo courtesy of specialtyfood.com

Owl’s brew didn’t have to fly far to attend this year’s show, and head honchos Jennie & Maria upheld hometown pride by bringing home gold. We sent their concoction ‘The Classic’ out in January and a recipe to make boozy Arnold Palmers, and our members loved it. ‘White & VIne’ is another tea infused take, featuring white tea with pomegranate, lemon peel and watermelon juice. We tried it, and think if any drink has can take the title for the official drink of summer, this is it.

Lark Burnt Sugar & Fennel Shortbread – Finalist (Cookies, Brownies & Cakes Category)

Lark Burnt Sugar Fennel Shortbread

photo courtesy of specialtyfood.com

The love of licorice is often reserved for aging men and the Dutch, and taste cousin fennel can be enough to give adventurous snackers pause. These delicious shortbread cookies by Lark Fine Foods challenge even the pickiest eaters to say they don’t like fennel. Expertly paired with the taste of burnt sugar (think toasted marshmallow), the fennel in these cookies comes across as delicate and tasty.

Callies Cheese & Chive Biscuits (Winner Breads, Muffins, Granola or Cereal)

callies cheese and chive biscuits

photo courtesy of specialtyfood.com

Capturing the essence of fresh hot soul food in a pantry product can only be achieved by the greats, and Callie’s Biscuits out of Charleston is the Meryl Streep of the artisan food world. Combining sharp cheddar and fragrant chives in a light and flaky pastry, Callie’s stole out hearts (and our stomachs) from the first bite.

This is by no means an exhaustive list, and we look forward to featuring even more sofi finalists and award winners in our coming themes for the Mantry subscription service. I can’t wait until the winter show in San Fran, and in the meantime, check out some recipes from 2014 sofi winners featured in last year’s Mantry crates: Coop’s Hot Fudge Sundae and Pok Pok Tamarind Drinking Vinegar Cocktail

Hello World

When you start a company, there is always the question of which channels you are going to focus on to engage with your audience. Should we have a Pinterest? Should we connect our Twitter to Facebook or the other way around? How do I use Snapchat anyway?

When we first started Mantry it was no different. Eventually we settled on setting up a Facebook, an Instagram and a Tumblr, and we figured we’d be able to communicate with other food lovers on these channels as well as through our mailing list and our printed material we include in every Mantry crate.

Well, almost three years later, we’re finally deciding it is time for a blog. There’s a lot of cool stuff we come across that doesn’t really fit in an Instagram post, or doesn’t really belong in a crate, but is still useful in our ongoing conversation about American artisan food. So this will be the platform for some of those conversations. You’ll find makers we love, trips we take across the country, thoughts on business and the food space in general, and probably the odd Nicholas Cage photo.

Bon Appétit!