In our ever-more mechanized world, it is ChefShop’s pleasure to bring you a little closer to the artisans who dedicate their lives to preserving food traditions.
ChefShop.com - searching the world for the finest artisan-produced, sustainable foods and ingredients
Located in the InterBay area of Seattle, Washington, ChefShop.com was started in 1999 by a small group of passionate food-lovers with a very big mission: To change the way people think and feel about the foods that they eat. ChefShop.com searches the world to find the very best-tasting foods made by small family growers and artisan craftspeople who understand the connection between the way the land is maintained and the flavor and healthiness of the food they produce - and making these products available to ChefShop.com’s customers wherever they live.
The owners of ChefShop.com feel that the industrialization of food production and mass market dominance of food distribution here in the U.S. have led to a noticeable degradation in the quality of food available in this country, most noticeable by its lack of flavor and healthiness. They long recognized that this sorry state of affairs was due, in significant part, to the breakdown in the traditional, sustainable methods of growing, producing and selling foods. In 1995, Tim Mar and Seattle food personality, Mauny Kaseburg, produced a video for children called “Earth to Table.” The concept was to help children understand where their food came from – highlighting local farmers and producers who toil to grow, harvest and deliver the food that we buy at local farmers’ markets.
“No one really knows anymore where their food comes from.
Kids think that food comes from the grocery store already wrapped in plastic.
We wanted to change all that!”
- Tim Mar, Founder & CEO, ChefShop.com
From these humble seeds germinated the idea for a content-only website for the Microsoft Network (MSN), and in 1997, Mauny’s Kitchen on MSN was born. In 1998, they launched an e-commerce website on Yahoo Store. Finally, in early 1999, they married content with commerce and launched ChefShop.com, the first education-driven e-commerce site for high quality foods and ingredients.
“It was a novel concept at the time … and still is, for that matter.
We actually think information is a good thing when it comes to food. If more people understood where grocery-store food actually came from, they could then make better choices.”
- Mauny Kaseburg, Local Food Personality, Seattle
in search of the very best
ChefShop.com’s chief hunter-gatherer is Michael Janiszewski, who spends his days searching the world for the most delicious and flavorful foods he can find, and establishing personal relationships with the food producers and growers who make and grow those foods. From the Farmer’s Salon in Paris, to the olive groves of Sonoma County, California, and from the cherry orchards of Lake Chelan, Washington to farmers' markets in New York’s Hudson Valley, Michael looks for growers and producers who care passionately about their products and the land that produces them, and want to share those products with ChefShop.com’s customers. He selects foods that are created or harvested seasonally, and handcrafted in small batches with natural ingredients using traditional techniques.
“We research and taste every item we consider.
We want to know who makes it, how it’s produced, and what ingredients they use.
And, it needs to taste great.
We then share our learning with our customser.”
– Lisa Sullivan, Resident Chef, ChefShop.com
Because of their focus on traditionally crafted foods and ingredients, ChefShop.com’s producers are often extremely small, located in remote places, and do not have mainstream distribution or modern brand management. One example is Stephanie Fuller of Stephanie’s Specialties. Michael first heard about Stephanie and her products through a friend in Central Washington. Stephanie jars her own jams and pickled vegetables, all made from sustainably grown organic produce, most of which is grown on her own farm.
"ChefShop.com does a great job of educating their customers about the products they sell.
I really appreciate their efforts."
- Whendi Grad, Bee Farmer & Owner, Big Island Bees
serving local seattle customers
ChefShop.com’s customers are food lovers who realize that there is more to food than what they see on their supermarket shelves. To help their local customers learn more about the products that they sell, ChefShop.com opened a brick-and-mortar retail store in late 1999 that included an olive oil, balsamic and wine vinegar tasting bar, as well as separate tasting stations for honeys, sea salts and jams.
“ChefShop.com is the only place I know where I can taste the product before I buy it.
It is just a better way to shop.”
- John Sundstrom, Owner & Executive Chef, Lark Restaurant (Seattle)
Food & Wine Magazine’s “Best New Chefs” in 2000
expanding on the traditional-production concept
In 2002, ChefShop.com started offering a small selection of artisan-produced fresh foods, such as tree-ripened cherries from Central Washington, smoked-to-order free-range, naturally raised turkey and ham, and seasonal Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese from Italy. What sets ChefShop.com apart from other retailers is that they work directly with the grower to get the absolute freshest, most flavorful products possible.
“Every cherry we sell is left on the tree until it is actually ripe.
It is picked at its peak, and then packed and shipped the same day.
No early harvest or cold storage.
It’s like eating the cherry right off the tree!”
- Tom Batch, Owner, Batch’s Best Family Farms
In 2003, ChefShop.com added sustainable Alaskan and Hawaiian seafood to their list of fresh products. They work directly with a native Alaskan family who has been fishing for salmon in the Situk River for generations. The fish is line-caught, properly processed on the boat (so that the fish is not stressed), then packed and shipped to ChefShop.com’s customer within 24 hours.
“Not only do we support sustainable fishing practices, our fish arrives far fresher than anything one could get in the typical grocery store, even in ChefShop.com’s native Seattle.”
- Eliza Ward, VP of Marketing, ChefShop.com
eight years later
Gourmet cooks and chefs the world over are discovering that the better the starting ingredients the more delicious the final result. ChefShop.com searches the world to find the best seasonal selection of over 1000 gourmet foods and ingredients. ChefShop.com’s product line includes a broad selection of estate extra virgin olive oils, aged balsamic vinegars, artisan wine vinegars, exotic sea salts, artisan gourmet chocolates, and more. ChefShop.com focuses on supporting and promoting products that are grown or produced by people who care. Most are made the old fashioned way – handcrafted with a dedication to quality, sustainability and flavor. We believe that products made with fresh, pure and mostly organic ingredients not only taste better, but also are healthier for you and the environment. ChefShop.com – eat simply! live well!™
How to Contact ChefShop.com:
shopkeeper at chefshop.com
By standard mail:
PO BOX 3488
Seattle, WA 98119
800-596-0885 (between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. PST)firstname.lastname@example.org
We currently have a “flat” fee for shipping ground packages up to 12 pounds for $7.99.
We also have varying set fees for 3 day delivery, depending on weight and costs.
This pricing is subject to change and is only a representation of offers we have.
Your pricing may vary.
The semi-details on how it works: our flat fee system in many cases works on where the package is shipped to and how much it weighs. And in some cases the dollar amount of the total order also affects your shipping price.
So what does this mean? It means that if you buy a small lightweight spice, shipping won’t be a good deal, and unless you are panicked and need it for a special recipe we don’t recommend it. On the other hand if you add more items to your order it becomes a much better deal for you (and us to).
The shipping and handling charge is determined through a combination of weight, volume, our costs, and how much you spend.
Shipping time is determined by these rules.
The day the box is shipped (when it leaves the warehouse, not necessarily when you place your order) is the day that determines how long it will take to get to you.
Ground takes 7 to 11 days. IF shipped on Monday it will arrive the following Monday.
3 DAY AIR arrives on the fourth day. Monday shipped, arrives on Thursday.
2 DAY AIR arrives on the third day. Monday shipped, arrives on Wednesday.
NEXT DAY AIR arrives on the second day. Monday shipped, arrives on Tuesday.
We do not guarantee shipping time to you. There are too many variables outside our control. This includes, but not limited too, Zeus, the shipping carrier, and incorrect ship to addresses.
How we are billed by United Parcel Service:
Our pricing is based on UPS pricing system. A confusing but simple comparison of actual weight versus dimensional weight.
1) Actual weight rounded up
2) Cubic size of the box used to ship your items, divided by 166, rounded up
Whichever is larger is the “weight” we are billed for.
The UPS add ons
All packages also have “additional” charges based on service type and delivery location.
Fuel surcharges are as follows and are updated monthly.
Through December 31, 2008: 6.75%
Air and International
Through December 31, 2008: 21%
Residential surcharges are now typically $1.85 to 2.30 per package.
About our Search for the Perfect Packing Material,
or . . . . Why We Use Those Awful, Annoying, Packing Peanuts
Some of you who are concerned about the environment have asked about our practice of packing your orders with polystyrene peanuts. We’re concerned about the environment, too - so let’s talk nuts.
The good: strong for their weight; good cushioning properties; inexpensive; water resistant; good thermal blockers; and use less manufacturing energy than paper products.† The ones we use are 100% recycled polystyrene. A use for all that plastic we recycle now! We also accept and recycle polystyrene peanuts from our local neighborhood.
The bad: pain, pain, pain to have around and to store; litter easily and last for decades.
Though not good for the environment if we dump them into the landfill, the peanuts are just fine if we recycle them into another shipping box. We use recycled peanuts that we get from customers who get lots of stuff shipped to them, and we purchase peanuts that are made from recycled bottles and carpet pads.
And† . . . . those pesky peanuts don’t collapse when a box with a bottle of oil and a bottle of jam inside is dropped from the back of a truck (not too often we hope); or more often gets crushed during the rapid sorting process necessary to move your box from here to there. (Did you know that UPS moves 14.8 million packages every day?)
And the cost is best, which keeps your costs down. Lighter packages mean lower shipping costs to you - and now with our three-day anywhere for a flat fee, weight is important!
A quick response to why we don’t use:
Cornstarch Peanuts … rodents love to eat them; when they get wet they’re like little glue blobs everywhere; and they’re crushed flat,never to recover, by heavy bottles of olive oil!
Air Systems … mostly not suitable for what we ship, and the machines required are very expensive.
Shredded paper, perforated paper, crumpled paper, etc. . . . manufacturing costs to the environment are very high, either in old-growth foresting or recycling.
Call for Help!
Have you seen a packing material that knocked your socks off and think we could use it? Let us know, as we are always looking for the next best option!
If we like and use your idea/find, you’ll get free shipping for a year!
Copyright ©2002- 2006 ChefShop.com ™ All rights reserved
Order online or by phone toll free 800-596-0885 or by FAX 206-267-2205
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