Tag Archives: Whole Foods

Kite Hill reinvents non-dairy cheese from ground up

Kite Hill's Soft Ripe cheese. Photo: Kate Williams
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The last time I ate dairy-free cheese, I was in college and experimenting with a vegan diet. At the cafeteria salad bar, there was a giant tub of Tofutti, ready for slathering over bagels and 9-grain toast. It wasn’t exactly delicious, but it was dairy-free.

Today, times have changed. An abundance of non-dairy products have emerged that make use of far more flavorful ingredients like cashews, coconuts and almonds. Two pioneering non-dairy cheese companies are headquartered in the Bay Area, one of which, Kite Hill, is in Hayward. (The other is the Fairfax-based Miyoko’s Kitchen.)

Kite Hill is currently producing a line of six cheeses, all made from almond milk. There’s a ricotta, two flavors of cream cheese (plain and chive), and three “artisanal” cheeses: two chèvre-like Soft Fresh cheeses (plain and truffle-dill-chive) and one Soft Ripened cheese with a soft bloomy rind, a la Brie or Camembert.

Nosh took a tour of Kite Hill’s creamery to learn more about what distinguishes its product, and, of course, to have a taste of the cheese itself. … Continue reading »

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CORE Kitchen aims to open produce-only restaurant

Collard Leaf Burrito. Photo: CORE Foods
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If all goes according to plan – meaning, the Kickstarter gods come through – a new lunch option will be opening its doors in Oakland’s City Center complex above the 12th Street BART station come August. It will be a new way of eating, neither Paleo nor raw nor vegan, but with traits of all three. All entrées will be made with 100% organic fresh produce, with no oils, sweeteners, additives or powders of any kind. In short, its website boasts: “This is the most nourishing food ever created!”

Called the CORE Kitchen, the restaurant will be an extension of the CORE brand of foods, which now consists of bars that are sold in the refrigerated section of Whole Foods and other independent markets. The bars, called “CORE Meals,” are gluten-free and are considered “clean,” as they contain none of the additives or sweeteners found in most health bars.

“We’re a mission driven business, and the CORE meals we make are a great alternative, but we wanted to go even deeper with our customers by providing a more compelling solution,” said Kai Itämeri, CORE’s chief business development officer. “The dream is to create a kitchen as a way to deliver even fresher, healthier food and have a more intimate, deep connection with our customers.” … Continue reading »

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East Bay’s OCHO offers organic twist on candy bars

Scott Kucirek, left, and Denis Ring, of OCHO. Photo: Alix Wall
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When North Berkeley resident Denis Ring was consulting with Whole Foods to launch and oversee the retailer’s 365 label, he spent a lot of time in its stores. Astute businessman that he is, he noticed a gap when hanging out in the candy department.

“I could see all the organic confections and saw that while there was a cup or a molded bar like a chocolate bar, no one was making anything like traditional candy bars,” he said.

So he set out to create one. … Continue reading »

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Grumpy Cat comes to Berkeley Humane in style, fanfare

Grumpy Cat, held by her owner Tabatha Bundesen, poses with City Councilmember Linda Maio and Berkeley Chamber of Commerce CEO Polly Armstrong before the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Photo: Seung Y. Lee
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With a police-escorted motorcade fit for a foreign ambassador or an A-list Hollywood star, viral internet star Grumpy Cat rolled into Berkeley in style Saturday afternoon.

Hundreds of fans waited outside Berkeley Humane at 2700 9th St. to catch a glimpse of Grumpy Cat, who has a permanent scowl on her face and millions of fans on social media. Tucked in the arms of her owner, Tabatha Bundesen, Grumpy Cat oversaw the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Berkeley Humane’s new mobile adoption center.

Following the ceremony, Grumpy Cat held a private photo session with her fans. Tickets for an up close and personal were reserved long before Saturday. The opportunity to take a photo of Grumpy Cat — or with, for the lucky fans who registered for the photo session in time — drew residents from beyond the Bay Area. … Continue reading »

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Local Greens: A water-smart farm in urban Berkeley

Some of the Local Greens team: (l to r): David Ceaser, Ron Mitchell, Faye Mitchell, Araab Ballard, and Jason Axt. Photo: courtesy Local Greens
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If you’ve bought Local Greens products at the new Berkeley Whole Foods, you couldn’t get any more local; they are literally grown right around the corner. But more than that, you are buying a product that its founders hope is revolutionizing how food could be grown in the future.

All of their products are grown hydroponically, which means in water, with no soil, in about 2,200 square feet of space in their Berkeley indoor warehouse. Because products are grown vertically, on racks, Local Greens is growing seven times the amount of what could be grown in the same area outside. And because they are indoors, they don’t have to worry about pests. They use LED lighting and don’t need heavy tools which rely on energy. … Continue reading »

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New Whole Foods store wake-up call for Andronico’s

Whole Foods Gilman first day in the produce section photo Neil Mishalov
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Today at 9:30 a.m. a new Whole Foods Market broke bread rather than cut a ribbon, and opened for business in the rapidly transforming Gilman shopping district in West Berkeley. The store, and the competition it represents, has been a catalyst for at least one other local grocery chain to sharpen up its act. Early reports suggest the market will be a welcome addition to the neighborhood for local residents.

An estimated 600 people took tours of the new Whole Foods store last week in the lead-up to today’s opening at its location on 10th and Gilman streets. This is the second Whole Foods store for Berkeley (the first one opened at Ashby and Telegraph in 1990), the 41st Whole Foods in Northern California, and the 401st nationwide. It will be open 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. daily while the Whole Foods-owned Allegro Coffee roastery in-store, its first outlet on the West Coast, will be open from 6 a.m. every day.

The 47,000-square-foot market, with 85 car parking spaces, including electric charging spots, and 12 bike spaces, is employing 200 staff, two-thirds of them from other Whole Food stores while the rest are new staff members, said outreach team leader Kristen Tantarelli. … Continue reading »

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Allegro Coffee to open at new Berkeley Whole Foods

Jeremy Allegro
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Allegro Coffee Roasters is set to open a craft coffee shop in the Whole Foods Market store at 10th and Gilman in West Berkeley which is slated to open on Nov. 4. It is Allegro’s second location after Brooklyn where it also has a shop within Whole Foods.

Allegro Coffee Company was founded in 1977 in Boulder, CO, and was one of the first certified organic roasters in the country. It was bought by Whole Foods in 1997 and, since then, Whole Foods has offered Allegro’s coffee as its signature house roast. Allegro continues to operates as its own business entity from its Boulder HQ.

At the new Berkeley store, Allegro will be roasting and grinding beans on-site. The coffee shop will be at one end of the store with a separate roll-up door for those who want to drop by for coffee and aren’t necessarily shopping for groceries. Whole Foods spokesperson Beth Krauss said there will be “a nice breezy seating area outside the venue too.” … Continue reading »

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Berkeley boy gets real in the Whole Foods parking lot

He’s a Berkeley High School alum (class of ’92), his fiancée also attended BHS, and his parents live in Berkeley. He drives a Prius and likes quinoa — and now a music video created by David Wittman, which has some fun at the expense of Whole Food-shopping healthfood nuts (like him), is going viral.

In an interview with occasional Berkeleyside contributor Tanya Jo Miller for CyberFrequencies, Wittman (aka DJ Dave) explains that, although he shot the video at a Whole Foods in west Los Angeles, its tongue-in-cheek message applies just as readily in the Bay Area.

“I have a lot of love for the Bay. I grew up in Berkeley… I couldn’t be happier that people like [the video] up in the Bay.” … Continue reading »

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