Saturday, March 19, 2011

Midwest Culinary Young Chef Competition

I spent today in the company of many talented people. The Midwest Culinary Institute MCI, held the regional young chef competition. These young chefs are in the running to compete at the national level and then international level. As out of town guests, MCI offered the chefs and their families lunch featuring all local products. Wines, beers, and foods. Madisono's was invited to serve gelato and sorbet. The lunch also featured LaRosa's, Montgomery Inn and Skyline. Madisono's is a Cincinnati favorite. Each of the chefs were given a box of vegetables and fruit and the choice of leg of lamb or fish. They had to write a menu, prepare 3 dishes and do it within a certain time limit. Can you say pressure! A couple of these photos are blurry but to be honest these guys were moving so fast it was hard to keep up. They are judged on how they worked, what they saved, threw away and all kinds of things. Chef Jean Robert and Chef Chris Ropp from Kenwood Country Club were part of the judging panel. The chefs had to come up with a show plate and 3 others for the judges to eat from. I saw one of the young chefs finish with less than 5 seconds to spare. It was a great experience. Madisono's will be a part of One Night 12 Kitchens this year and we are looking forward to it. Here are some photos from the event.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Spring flavors and a new look

The Spring flavors are finally here. I have 4 new flavors to tell you about. You might be wondering where can you buy them? Great question. All are available at Findlay Market and are making their way day by day to our retail locations throughout the city. It might take a little time but they will get there. Before I get into the details on the new flavors I want to let you know about the new packaging. We are using a clear pint container with a very firm fitting lid. It is a # 2 recycle plastic and it is great for left overs. The most important part of this new packaging is that they are extruded in Streetsboro Ohio. That means Ohio workers produce and truck them which means a lower carbon footprint.
Our new label keeps the Madisono's look alive but now you can see into the gelato from the outside. You can see the vanilla bean specs, whole fruit and the zest peeking out. All new flavors and some of the others will get the new package. Eventually all flavors will be in the new package. So what are they?

Cherries Jubilee Gelato: Escoffier’s original dessert and served to royalty, Madisono’s version starts with our Madagascar vanilla base, Michigan tart cherries and Kirschwasser. We blend the cooked cherries into the finished gelato by hand for a marbled finish that is beautiful and delicious.

Honey Lavender Gelato: What’s all the buzz about? Local honey from The Beiersdorfer family farm in Guilford Indiana, real lavender and Madisono’s neutral gelato base yields a gelato that is so creamy and smooth it could be called royal jelly.

Lemon with Candied Ginger Gelato : Imagine if you started with 2.5 gallons of neutral gelato base made from scratch. Add the zest of 10 lemons, the juice from those lemons and a whole bunch of candied ginger from the famous Ginger People. Freeze it and put it into packages where you could see all of that goodness from the outside. What would you have? Madisono’s Lemon with Candied Ginger Gelato.

Coconut with Lemongrass and Cilantro Gelato: We thought about calling this gelato Siam Dream but then reconsidered because we did not think that anyone would know what that meant or what was inside. Once you taste it though you will be dreaming. Everything always works out in the end. We use Whole Foods 365 brand coconut milk which contains no sulphites.

We will produce these flavors through May. After that we will offer up our Summer flavors and from there Fall/Winter. These flavors are also offered at The Dorothy Lane Markets in Dayton Ohio. Deliveries will start there this coming week. My goal is to continue to offer new flavors for you to enjoy. Some flavors that we have offered in the past have not been as creative. That's not to say Cookies and Cream tastes bad, but using an Oreo cookie (which contains all kinds of extra stuff) is not where we want to be. You can see in the photos that our process is small bath and hand crafted. We will continue to develop flavors that include superior ingredients, feature local sources and make the best tasting gelato & sorbet. Thanks for your support of Madisono's