Goodbye, 2020 - the year of the naked cucumber!
Happy New Year.
As we wave goodbye to 2020, I wanted to share some of Crooked Pickle's 2020 highlights, as well as shout a big hoorah and welcome to 2021.
First and foremost 2020 was obviously dominated by Covid. With lots of businesses being badly affected, we've been fortunate enough to carry on producing and supplying our delicious pickle products throughout. However, we wouldn't have been able to do this without our brilliant suppliers and of course our wonderfully loyal customers.
Winster Foods are based in Chesterfield, and it's here that we purchase 90% of our ingredients. They have the freshest produce available, accompanied by prompt and super friendly service. When asked if cucumbers could be supplied without all of that nasty, plastic wrapping (saving both my time and, more importantly, reducing plastic waste), they happily obliged. They are now known affectionately as 'Naked Cucumbers'. The fact that Winsters are local to us also means low food mileage, which again is something close to our hearts here at Crooked Pickle HQ . They are open to the public at the moment, so be sure to try them out when you're doing your next food shop.
Huge gratitude to our wonderful clients who remain ever loyal and supportive. They always try our new products and share our passion and love of all things pickled. A lot of them are small independent delicatessens who have stayed open throughout the year despite the pandemic. We salute them all. Big shout out to The Lambton Larder and Riverside Kitchen in Bakewell and also Kelham Deli in Sheffield's Kelham Island. They offer delicious products that you won't always find in the large supermarkets, go check them out.
We love attending the outdoor markets, whether it's Macclesfield's Treacle Market, Haddon Hall's Mercatum or Wilmslow Artisan Market. It's always great to meet old and new customers, allowing them the opportunity to sample our products. Sadly, Covid restrictions in 2020, stalled this. Fortunately for us, it takes more than a pandemic to come between a pickle lover and their favourite jars. Our hardy customers carried on purchasing pickles via our online shop.
When the markets eventually opened again, we had to adapt according to Covid regulations (gone were the sample pots that are always popular). Happily, everyone understood and respected the situation and continued to purchase products they hadn't necessarily sampled before - online.
New Product Lines
Talking of our products, we launched a couple of limited edition lines in 2020. Kimchi Hot Sauce and, in collaboration with my sister Inga (@creationsbyinga Instagram), Balsamic Onions. Both were a complete success and sold out within days. Watch this space (or look on our website) for their return.
We also launched our incredibly popular Sweet and Crunchy Onions. If you've not tried them, you're missing out on a tastebud sensation. Why not order yourself a jar today here and see what all the fuss is about. They're seriously good pickles.
Awards and Media
It would be rude not to mention the awards we received wouldn't it? We were delighted to be recipients of not one, but two awards from the prestigious Guild of Fine Food's annual Great Taste Awards. Our ever popular Bread and Butter Pickles picked up two stars and our Korean Pickled garlic, one star (out of a possible three stars). We're hoping to top that in 2021. Winning awards has helped raise the profile of our humble pickle company and, the local press, keen to highlight our successes; featured us on numerous occasions during 2020 (just might have to work on my photo poses).
Here's to 2021
All in all, although there have been a few challenges, we've managed to overcome them. We're hoping that our friends in the hospitality industry are soon able to as well. Brexit has thrown a curveball our way and we're still getting to grips with it, but with your continued support, we're sure to get through it. So a big thank you to everyone.
Here's to a positive and healthy 2021. We'll continue to use only the freshest, 100% natural ingredients and we'll strive to operate a business greener than our famous pickles.
Stay safe everyone.
Founder and owner of Crooked Pickle Co