MyNorth News Service
(Press Release provided by American Spoon)
PETOSKEY: American Spoon, the artisanal fruit-preserving company founded in 1982, has been named a 2015 Good Food Awards winner for three products. In a blind tasting, judges selected the Petoskey, Michigan-based company’s Wild Thimbleberry Jam, Wild Blueberry Compote, and Ramp Kimchi, a collaboration with The Brinery in Ann Arbor, from among 1462 entrants for this prestigious award honoring craftsmanship and sustainability. This is only the second time in the history of the Good Food Awards that one company has won for three products, and the third time in four years that American Spoon’s Wild Thimbleberry Jam has been named a Good Food Awards winner.
Christopher Dettmer, American Spoon Culinary Director, accepted the award on January 8, 2015 at a ceremony in San Francisco.
On January 9, Dettmer and his colleagues, Vice President Noah Marshall-Rashid and Marketing Director Megan Feeley, participated in the Good Food Awards Marketplace held in San Francisco’s iconic Ferry Building, where they shared tastes of their quintessentially northern preserves and kimchi with hundreds of good food enthusiasts, including famed Chez Panisse chef Alice Waters.
The thimbleberry is a tart, aromatic fruit that grows wild in northern climates, thriving in areas with cool summer temperatures and rocky soil. The berries grow on wild, thornless shrubs with large maple-like leaves and are found across Michigan’s western Upper Peninsula. They have a tangy taste reminiscent of currants and raspberries and their soft seeds release a unique nutty flavor when chewed. American Spoon contracts with local residents of Michigan’s Keweenaw in the Upper Peninsula to pick these precious berries for its Wild Thimbleberry Jam.
The berries for the company’s Wild Blueberry Compote also hail from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, gathered over a three week period around the Hiawatha National Forest by just one dedicated forager, who delivered the tiny wild berries himself to American Spoon’s Petoskey kitchen.
American Spoon Culinary Director collaborated with The Brinery, based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, to create their Ramp Kimchi, a naturally fermented spicy cabbage mixture made with wild ramps Dettmer collected himself in and around Petoksey, and vegetables grown by independent farms near Ann Arbor.
For over thirty years, American Spoon has worked to build direct and personal relationships with Michigan’s independent fruit growers and foragers. Fruits are prepared by hand and preserved in American Spoon’s copper kettles using twice as much fruit as sugar.
ABOUT AMERICAN SPOON
American Spoon is an artisanal fruit-preserving company located in Petoskey, Michigan. Founded in 1982 by Justin Rashid and New York chef Larry Forgione, the company crafts fruit preserves, condiments, and sauces in small batches using primarily locally-sourced fruits. American Spoon products are available at the company’s six retail stores, through its website and mail order catalog, and through a variety of national specialty food retailers. Additionally, the company showcases some of these products along with its authentic house-made gelato at the American Spoon Café & Gelato adjacent to the original American Spoon retail store in Petoskey, Michigan.