Friday, December 26, 2014

Gelato Petrini, Delray, Florida Ingredients

Delray, Fla.--Gelato Petrini makes gelato with Florida sourced ingredients. This family run business, since 1957, makes small artisans batches of over 800 flavors of frozen goodness in three different ways. They work closely with local producers, farmers and culinary artisans. I interviewed the family at the 18th Americas Food and Beverage Show in Miami Beach Convention Center earlier this year.

Koby Cohen, Jim Cohen, Kassi Lowenstein of Gelato Petrini,
18th Americas Food & Beverage Show, Miami, Fla.
Copyright 2014 by Helen A Lockey
They are an authentic Italian gelato manufacturing company that caters to the food industry.

"We like working with local chefs that have an idea but don't have the time to create it," said Kassie Lowenstein.

According to Koby Cohen, Chief Operating Officer of Gelato Petrini, they use Florida milk, Florida sugar, and Florida fruit in their frozen products that include Gelato, Gelato made with soy milk (certified organic and GMO-Free), and Sorbet (made with or without alcohol). Cohen said, "All our alcohol is kosher."

They will be featured at the 2014-2015 growing season farm-to-table dinners at Swank Table in Loxahatchee, Fla.

You can buy their retail products at several South Florida Fresh Markets, and at some Winn Dixie stores.

To find out more about wholesale services and products of Gelato Petrini check out their webpage at

Monday, December 22, 2014

St. Augustine Distillery Co., Fla.: Farm Supporter, Updated

When you go to St. Augustine check out the distillery. It is housed in the historic ice plant of St. Augustine located just south of the historic old city area. The company, started back in 2013, makes vodka and gin with Florida grown heirloom black sugar cane. They distill their small batch spirits the old fashioned way in copper kettles.

Shawn McDonald, St. Augustine Distillery Co. tour guide in distilling room
with copper kettles, St. Augustine, Fla.
Copyright 2014 by Helen A Lockey
They embrace the old ways so much that they even make their own ice the same way it was made back in 1907.

I went for a tour of their facilities back in April, five weeks after opening to the public. Back then the only thing they had to taste, at the end of their free tour, was vodka.

The tour took us past a time clock, through a museum, into a movie theater and out into where the magic happened, in the distilling room.

Here, our guide Shawn McDonald, explained how St. Augustine Distillery vodka was different from other brands. Passing around a glass container filled with smelly liquid. “This contains the head of the vodka. It is acetate. The major labels leave this in and this is what gives you headaches. We remove it,” said McDonald.

As everyone walked past the hand labeling room and wall of bourbon filled oak barrels maturing in a natural aired room, McDonald said, “We do not air-condition this room because we want a maritime flavor in our bourbon.”

Then came the tasting starting with a straight shot of vodka followed by a Moscow Mule.

Phil McDaniel, CEO St. Augustine Distillery Co., autographing
bottles of Florida sourced vodka, St. Augustine, Fla.
Copyright 2014 by Helen A Lockey

Phil McDaniel, St. Augustine Distillery CEO, joined the group to sign bottles and answer questions. He thanked everyone for coming on the tour and said, “We love our farmers. We love this building. We love this community.”

They now make and sell gin, and in 2017 or so their bourbon will be ready for sale.

You can find them at 12 Riberia Street, St. Augustine, FL 32084
Phone 904-825-4962

You can also buy St. Augustine Distillery Co., spirits at most ABC Fine Wine & Spirits stores in Florida. Check their website for more locations to buy at

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Cocoade, Thai Coconut Water, Miami, Fla.

Miami Beach, Fla.—Cocoade is delicious Thailand sourced coconut water in a can. It is imported to Florida by Miami based Seba Distribution LLC. According to Sales Manager Steven Villazon, Cocoade is a new product line. It is made from unblended Thai coconut water, that has a nuttier flavor than other types of coconut water. It also contains only sugar, is gluten-free and is fat-free.

Cocoade Corp, 18th Americas Food & Beverage Show, Miami Beach, Fla.
Copyright 2014 by Helen A Lockey
SebaDistribution LLC actively gives back to the Miami-Dade County community by aiding the Miami Rescue Mission through product donation, volunteering and sponsorship.  

You can buy Cocoade at most corporate Walgreen Stores in South Florida for about $1.79.

To find out more about this company go to or call Villazon at 1-800-767-0896 ext. 203.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Bountiful Citrus Crop, Showcase Of Citrus, Clermont, Fla.

Showcase of Citrus is open for u-pick business again. Located in Clermont, Florida, this 2500-acre citrus grove is the place to take the family for a day of picking, swamp bugging, picnicking or just tasting what the grove has to offer. Their picking season usually starts in November and goes until June or until they run out of crop.

Pomelo, grapefruit, lemons, mandarines from Showcase Of Citrus,
Clermont, Fla.
Copyright 2014 by Helen A Lockey
In November, I stopped and bought several lemons, grapefruit, mandarines and a single pomelo. The cost was surprisingly low and the flavor was fantastic because the citrus had been picked that day.

To find out more  you can go to the grove at 5010 US Highway 27, Clermont, FL, phone (352)394-4377. They do not ship.

Or you can visit their website