December was hectic beyond our expectations. We learned a lot about what to expect this year for the holidays and the energy was high. Every week resulted in new records set and new lessons about how much inventory the little store could go through. The Saturday before Christmas we ran out of sampler bottles and there were some disappointed last-minute shoppers looking for stocking-stuffers. All told though, we managed to put smiles on so many faces as the hours and days flew by.
This month should afford us time to catch our breath and look ahead to our second year. We have our first Northern Hemisphere Extra Virgin Olive Oils and are kicking off the season in style. The Arbosan from California is creamy and mild with artichoke tones and just a hint of green apple. On January 19th, NH Chronicle re–aired our episode from February of last year. What a difference! Seeing the store before the expansion reminded us of how far we’ve grown. The excitement of it being just two months old brought back memories and the sudden explosion of ideas and growth was fun to revisit.
On Thursday, the 22nd, Monadnock Table Magazine sent a reporter and photographer to do a feature on the store. We wanted to show the accession of the mission statement from simply healthy oils and vinegars to a unique tasting showroom. Melissa from Attar Herbs and Spices stopped by to discuss the Herb and Salt bar and Benjamin Meijer, our German Cheese maker arrived with a cooler full of custom cheese. Coincidentally, Chef Joe showed up to prep for the cooking demo later in the week and added to the interview.
Our monthly cooking demo series took a break in December but we came back in style on January 24th with our old friend Chef Joe serving up some healthy Super Bowl Snacks. It was a varied menu; Toasty Walnuts, Black Bean Dip, Fruit quesadillas, Salmon Roll-ups, Pistachio Stuffed Mushrooms and Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin Medallions.
Mother nature was against us and we awoke to heavy flurries and newscasters admonishing folks to stay off the roads. We were off to a slow start but that actually worked to our favor as our guiding “Queen Bee” Jodi from ImagineThatHoney arrived to film our first in-store video for us. She is a very talented lady on so many levels. Melissa was back to man the Herb and Salt Bar. She and Joe are a perfect complement for cooks looking to add some taste to healthy alternatives. When the hearty souls did clomp through the storm to our door they met with a merry crowd of folks having fun and eating wonderful food. Kim got her “feet wet” behind the camera filming Melissa with Jodi, while Korey, Kelly and I filled bottles for customers. Joe’s food was spectacular! I will have recipes up on the site at: http://www.monadnockoilandvinegar.com/full-recipes.html
It has been a year of total immersion into cooking and good health. Our customers have brought ideas and support allowing us to constantly hear, “This is my new favorite store!” every day. What a wild ride!