Specialty Food Magazine

OCT 2012

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

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Parrano. The cheese ® FOODS IN FOCUS from Holland that thinks it's Italian. berry melba sauce is easy to make at home, Raffetto is a brand popular for its authentic flavor. Shannon McCall, manager of Savory Thymes in Boon, N.C., agrees that fruity syrups are being used more widely to boost flavor. She notes that Stonewall Kitchen's Raspberry Syrup is a "widely popular sweet topping" often drizzled on pies. For dramatic presentations on ice cream or cakes, cat- egory specialist Roger McElroy of Straub's Markets in St. Louis talks up Wild Hibiscus Flowers in Syrup from Australia for its crim- son color and tart, rhubarb-like flavor. McElroy also sees the savory influence growing. "Customers like salty with their chocolate, like Stonewall Kitchen's Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Sauce," he notes. Danny Denzer, grocery buyer at The Epicure Market in Miami Beach agrees. "Anything with salted caramel has been fly- ing off the shelf," Denzer says. Another sweet-savory dessert topping McElroy has his eye on is Sabatino & Co.'s Fior di Pistacchio Cream, a 2012 sofi Gold Winner, made with Sicilian pistachios, that works on options from croissants to risotto to ice cream. "This is an amazing product," he says of the gourmet spread that sells for $21 per 7.4-ounce jar. "But once you exceed the $10 mark on a product, customers might balk," he warns, noting the dessert sauce category has seen modest growth over the past year. Classic brands such as Sanders Candy's Dessert Toppings, which has been around since the 1920s, could help bridge that price gap and draw attention to the specialty des- sert topping category. The company, based in Clinton Township, Mich., has seen an increase in product demand from specialty retailers, including mid- to high-end gro- cers who are growing their stores' specialty sections as well as specialty stores such as upscale gift and wine. "The cheaper national brand will always have a demand, but we are noticing growth in the consumer group look- ing for better ingredients, taste and value and people who just want to treat themselves to a better-for-you product," says Tiffany Van Hemm, account executive and director of public relations. Sanders' dessert toppings are priced competitively, at $4.29 and $6.79 for a 10- and 20-ounce jar, respectively. OTHER FUN TOPPERS R Aged for five months, Parrano has the alluring, nutty flavor of a fine aged Parmesan with the smooth texture of a young Gouda. Perfect on a cheese platter or sliced, shredded or melted into your favorite recipes, Parrano is sure to be a crowd pleaser at your next gathering. Visit wwwwww.DAIRYDIAL.com to learn ways to incorporate Parrano into any meal of the day. 30 ❘ SPECIALTY FOOD MAGAZINE ❘ specialtyfood.com etailers and manufacturers are getting creative with ice cream and dessert toppings, too, going beyond rainbow sprinkles and other traditional garnishes. Christopher Wier, purchasing director at Marczyk Fine Foods, Denver, says he doesn't carry much in the way of topping-specific products (like sprinkles); instead he sells Peanut Butter Jenny crumbles, a house-made peanut butter bar with a layer of Valrhona chocolate ganache. "We crumble it and sell it in containers," he says. He also recommends grating a bar of Askinosie chocolate or whipping some Morning Fresh Whipping Cream for a high-quality touch on pie or ice cream. Chris McMahon, Braswell's marketing director, suggests adding Braswell's Praline Mix to whipping cream to top pie or to make a coffeehouse-quality cappuccino. For ready-made whipped cream, Blosm offers hormone-free, natural flavored whipped cream in Cinnamon Praline, Blackberry Amaretto, Dark Chocolate Mocha, Toasted Marshmallow (pictured), French Vanilla and others. Suggested uses include coffee, ice cream, pie and even martinis. For a caffeinated kick, Keuka Lake Coffee Roasters offers Java Sprinkles (pictured), a gourmet dessert topping made with finely ground Italian espresso; raw, cane and brown sugars; cocoa; and cinnamon and other spices.

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