Monday, October 5, 2015

Brews, breads, beneficiaries

Posted By on Mon, Oct 5, 2015 at 1:40 PM

An update on some past reporting plus new food-and-drink news:

• This past May, I spoke to Mike Callicrate about Ranch Foods Direct's purchase of the former Federal Food Service building at 4635 Town Center Drive, turning RFD into a full-service distributor. In the company's newsletter sent out last Friday, they shared big news:
Renovations are currently underway on a new Ranch Foods Direct retail store that will open inside the food distribution warehouse at 4635 Town Center Dr. In addition, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack recently announced that among nearly $35 million in new grant funding to support local and regional food systems, USDA would be making a $100,000 contribution to Ranch Foods Direct for establishing a commercial kitchen inside the warehouse. The creation of kitchen facilities will expand the company's ability to preserve and distribute local food products and enhance its role as a food hub for Southern Colorado. Ranch Foods Direct will have more exciting updates in the weeks ahead.
• In that same RFD newsletter, local baker Shawn Saunders of the Sourdough Boulangerie shared news of some of his new products, available at RFD and the Acacia Park Farmers Market, that should appeal to the gluten-sensitive (not celiac) among us:
click to enlarge Ancient grains star in new offerings from Ranch Foods Direct's baker Shawn Saunders. - COURTESY SOURDOUGH BOULANGERIE
  • Courtesy Sourdough Boulangerie
  • Ancient grains star in new offerings from Ranch Foods Direct's baker Shawn Saunders.

He recently began researching two traditional varieties of wheat — Einkorn and Emmer, also known as farro — that are among the first plants ever to be domesticated and cultivated. These much-sought-after but exceedingly rare grains are considered healthier than modern wheat varieties and easier to digest. This is especially important for those who are gluten sensitive or diabetic. Shawn purchases the grains in whole form from a farmer-owned cooperative and has them milled in a traditional stone grinder. The flours are then made into breads using real sourdough starter and no commercial yeast. "My customers are very excited about these new products," Shawn notes. Get yours today at Ranch Foods Direct, along with other artisan breads, cinnamon rolls, muffins, dessert bars and more.

 • In June, I spoke to owner/brewer Steve Stowell about the upcoming Triple S Brewing Company at 318 E. Colorado Ave., which is finally ready to open its doors, he says. Look for a ribbon cutting with the Downtown Partnership and Regional Business Alliance tomorrow morning to kick off regular service hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday; noon to 8 p.m., Sunday. 
Stowell says he is "opening with 6 of my craft beers brewed on site, 2 guest taps, craft soda, coffee and Kombucha, as well as healthy soups, sandwiches and salads."

• While on the topic of beer, catch the 2nd annual Haunted Brew Fest, Saturday, Oct. 10 at the Colorado Springs Event Center. The first session runs from noon to 3 p.m.; the second goes from 4 to 7 p.m. 

• Then, on Tuesday, Oct. 20, from 6 to 8:30 p.m., join Yobel International for its third annual Evening in Good Taste at the Pinery at the Hill. Info on that:
We will be showcasing several area craft foodies, breweries, roasteries and wineries. So dress your best, grab your pals, and join us for a night of live music, tasting, and learning more about what Yobel International is up to this year. ... 
Cost $20 per ticket with the option to donate beyond your ticket price. Guests giving more than $25 above their cost of entry will receive a tax deductible receipt and be entered into a raffle for an amazing fairly traded product from Yobel Market!...
Proceeds and donations will benefit Yobel's mission to alleviate extreme poverty and prevent slavery through sustainable business.
• Lastly, on Saturday, Oct. 31 from noon to 3 p.m., check out Sette Dolori Winery's After the Crush Open House. Tickets, $25, get you wine samples plus apps and desserts by the Margarita at PineCreek and Corner Post Meats

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