Mustard and Co.: Just Plain Good

Mustard and Co.

Photo courtesy of Mustard and Co.

It seems like most people don’t give mustard much thought. Its section in the condiment aisle is dwarfed by towers of mayonnaise, ketchup, barbecue sauce and an alarming array of hot sauce. That bright yellow bottle is familiar, but what’s in it?

That’s what Justin Hoffman wondered as he scanned the list of ingredients on a jar of mustard at a deli one day. As his eyes fell on the words “white vinegar,” he was hit with what he calls “divine inspiration.”

“It struck me as cheap and bland,” Justin remembers. “And at that moment I decided I was going to make a honey mustard using balsamic vinegar, which I saw as a more complex and tasteful option. It’s since been quite an unexpected journey. It’s like a child dropped into my arms, for which I must now care.”

That child is Mustard and Co., a swiftly up-and-coming condiment business that he formed last year with his friend and business partner Bryan Mitchiner. Justin spent the last few years tweaking his recipe. Only a handful of ingredients go into his mustard, but he’s dutifully sought out the best. Unlike most mustards, Mustard and Co.’s is never subjected to heat, resulting in a curiously spicy kick that’s balanced with a bit of curry and raw honey.

Bryan dropped off a bottle of their signature blend at Macrina not long ago for us to consider selling in our cafés. It didn’t take much more than a taste to convince us.

“They are exactly the kind of local company that we would like to support,” says Crystal Kitchin, general manager of cafés. “They are very nice and their product is all-natural, which pairs nicely with our bread.”

Not only can you find Mustard and Co. on our shelves these days, but Head Savory Chef Elizabeth Hall has been folding it into our lunch menu. It was practically made for our Pretzel Roll.

Justin’s favorite way to eat it? “Put a little chèvre on a cracker, top it with a piece of smoked salmon and a drizzle of mustard and it will take you to a new place.  I also love it in potato, tuna or egg salad mixed with a bit of mayo, or aioli if that’s your preference.”

Mustard Aioli
Click here to print this recipe!


1 large egg yolk
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
*1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Mustard and Co. mustard
1/2 cup canola oil

*Available in our cafés or online.


1. Whisk the egg yolk, garlic, lemon juice and mustard in a medium bowl to thoroughly combine.

2. Start adding the canola oil just a few drops at a time, whisking constantly until the mixture begins to emulsify. As it thickens, continue adding the oil in a slow stream, making sure each addition is thoroughly blended before adding more.

3. Season to taste with salt, then cover the aioli and refrigerate until needed.

4. Enjoy spread on a corned beef sandwich or as a dip with a soft pretzel.

The Seattle Wine and Food Experience

The Seattle Wine and Food Experience

We are gearing up for the food event of the year! No, Thanksgiving hasn’t been moved to February. If you’ve ever wondered where exactly your food and beverages come from, The Seattle Wine and Food Experience (SWFE) is a can’t-miss event. In its sixth year, SWFE is a gathering of the Northwest’s best purveyors of food and drink all ready to sample their products and talk about their origins.

“What makes Seattle Wine and Food Experience unique in the marketplace are the experiences guests encounter,” says Jamie Peha, producer of SWFE.

Those “experiences” Jamie’s talking about?

Stop by our booth in Les Dames d’Escoffier Alley to sample our newly created Rye Crostini – not yet available in our cafés – piled with savory layers of corned beef, Manchego cheese, pickled onion and cabbage slaw.

Les Dames d’Escoffier Seattle, this year’s event beneficiary, is a wonderful non-profit organization of women leaders in the culinary world whose focus is on raising scholarship funds for women in the food, beverage and hospitality industries, while also supporting community outreach and local sustainable-agriculture projects. As a member of Les Dames, this year’s SWFE comes full circle for Leslie, making it all the more exciting.

Visit SWFE online for more event details and ticket information.

Valentine’s Day at Macrina

Valentine's Day 2014

Despite the love surrounding Valentine’s Day, this holiday can be rather divisive. Those not partnered up have even created the antithesis, dubbing it Singles Awareness Day. Whether you love it or hate it, we can all agree that February 14 gets one thing right: Food. Seeing to it that no one misses out, we’ve pulled together some delicious sweets and savories to share with your favorite people or keep all to yourself.

1. Potted Cheese – We top a blend of chèvre, cream cheese and Manchego with a relish of roasted beets, raspberries, Champagne vinegar and spices. Couple it with our Sardinian Flatbread or Crostini for an elegant appetizer or party snack.

2. Raspberry Pocket Pie – Our signature pie crust is wrapped around fresh raspberries and raspberry preserves, then topped with crystal sugar. Slip one into your youngster’s lunchbox or bring some to the office to share.

3. Mini Chocolate Orange Coffee Cake – If there was ever an excuse to have chocolate for breakfast, it’s Valentine’s Day. This coffee cake is laced with flavors of orange, bittersweet chocolate and roasted almonds and topped with rich chocolate ganache.

4. Fresh Strawberry Tartlet – This tartlet comes dressed in Cupid’s favorite colors, filled with sweetened strawberries and topped with white chocolate curls.

5. Heart Galette – Want to skip the mad scramble for Valentine’s Day dinner reservations? Treat your favorite person to a Valentine’s Day brunch instead! Filled with ricotta and chèvre and topped with a roasted beet relish, we make this savory pastry easy to reheat and serve.

6. Infinity Cake – Enough to satisfy four, this cake is the perfect dessert for those double-dating this Valentine’s Day. We fill our white chocolate almond cake with raspberry amaretto Bavarian cream and fresh strawberries, then finish it with white chocolate sour cream frosting, a fresh raspberry and sugared rose petal.

You can find these items along with many more Valentine’s Day treats in all of our cafés through Sunday, February 16.

Glazed to Perfection: How to Make Chocolate Ganache

Chocolate Orange Coffee Cake glazed with chocolate ganache

Our Mini Chocolate Orange Coffee Cake drizzled with rich chocolate ganache.

Chocolate ganache is rainbow sprinkle frosting all grown up. It’s patent leather shoes and sequin sparkles. It’s velvety smooth and seductive. Go ahead. We dare you to whip up an easy batch and not dip a finger into the decadent gloss.

We use chocolate ganache in many of our recipes, from Cocoa Puffs to Chocolate Orange Coffee Cake. Since it brings a full-bodied thrum of chocolate flavor to everything it touches – and you can’t have Valentine’s Day without chocolate – we decided to share our signature chocolate ganache recipe.

Chocolate Ganache
Click here to print this recipe!


1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup good-quality semisweet chocolate chips


Pour the heavy cream into a small saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring the cream to a froth just before it boils. Turn off the heat and add the chocolate chips. Using a rubber spatula, stir constantly until the chocolate has completely melted. Set the pan aside and let the ganache cool to the desired consistency. The ganache will thicken as it cools.

How to Use Chocolate Ganache

  • Pour warm ganache over ice cream for an off-the-charts delicious sundae.
  • Dip your favorite fruits (dried or fresh), nuts (raw or roasted) and candies.
  • Drizzle warm ganache over a bundt cake for a dramatic effect that’s impossible to mess up.
  • Top cupcakes in lieu of traditional frosting.
  • Spread a layer over a pan of brownies for death-by-chocolate decadence.