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5 things – volume 9

5 Things – Volume 9

Here’s some stuff that occurred this past week at The Smokehaus. In chronological order this time:

#1. Sunday night Staff Meeting! We crammed ourselves into the common area of our small office. We ran down the agenda, we chatted and laughed. No shortage of laughter in this place. Then the newbies got their height marked on the wall. It’s tradition. And it’s a mirror into the past of all the beautiful humans that have made their mark (hehe) on the Smokehaus in years past.

 

#2. Order Up! So…. There’s been some confusion. When sandwiches are shouted out to shop patrons they are set under a sign that once read “Pickup.” This was, however, not where one would pick up an order they called in to our Pickup department. Pickup patrons can conveniently skip the line and our Pickup staff will bring your order right out to you in the alley way on the North side of the building. That all makes sense, right?! ☺ So, we think our new signage might help alleviate some of the confusion… what do you think? More custom lettering by the one and only Flo.

 

#3. The titan among sandwiches is released on the nation. It’s been a long time coming, but as we dipped our toes into the trending world of Sandwich Kits it was only natural that our best-selling sandwich be one of the competitors. You can read more about how this sandwich came into being in this post. If you ever find yourself staring longingly in the direction of the Smokehaus, you know how to bring it home now. Get ‘yer Cajun Finns sent to your doorstep.

#4. PIXIES! A favorite band for at least 2 Smokehausers (Mary and Nick C), the Pixies were in St Paul this week and Steve-man, Mary, Greg, and Jeremy all went down to see them. They were awesome! They played everything from Caribou to Motorway to Roswell. After the show, we headed to a bar around the corner and were utterly amazed to see Black Francis and Joey Santiago in the next booth over. Magic!

 

#5. Birthdays and a tweet. A few fine folks celebrated birthdays this week including Eric, Jeremy, Jacob, and Ned. If you’re a local you probably know and love them. Plus extra love from the fine peeps behind the Homegrown twitter handle. Well that was nice! Thanks @dhgmf

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5 things – volume 8

5 Things: Volume 8

Hi people of the internet. Here’s 5 things that happened at the Smokehaus and our beloved Restaurant this week.

chicken sandwich

#1. Specials!
We perfected the new Wednesday special up on Woodland Ave (Northern Waters Restaurant). Our new fried chicken sammy is to die for! Things that may or may not be featured on this special: buttermilk brined, hays-tenderized chicken breast, Franks hot sauce, cracker breading, local brioche buns from Lake Superior Bakehouse, Smokehaus bacon, avocado, top secret spice blend and/or a rotating mix of toppings for new and delicious creations every week. Every Wednesday!

gourds

#2. Fall Decor
Our shop is pretty cute, but there’s always room for more cuteness! Hannah brought in a few gourds to decorate the shop and help us feel ok about summer being over. Hopefully she brings in a snowman when winter hits… (did you know the record low for December in Duluth is -27 degrees?)

hockey skates

#3. Is anyone missing a pair of hockey skates?
A random box showed up the other day. Its labeling was pretty unclear, it was addressed to us, but it had multiple labels and we were a little hesitant to open it. But our curiosity always gets the better of us. Turns out it was hockey skates, belonging to someone who has really small feet and no connection to the Smokehaus. Weeeeiiiird. Needless to say, we had to discuss this event and all its infinite possibilities for several minutes that day….

wall of boxes

#4. Holiday Season looms over us like a wall of boxes (literally).
October means we’re gearing up for Mail Order’s peak Holiday Season which happens every December. For three glorious and also insane weeks our Mail Order elves work nearly round the clock to make food, package food, and ship food to thousands of customers around the country. Fun fact: after Minnesota, California is where we sent the most boxes to last year. Hello West Coast! So… this week a new seasonal employee started in our Mail Order dept – welcome Zac! He’s the first of many elves who will be joining the team to pack, pack, pack their little hearts out. During peak time, it’s one person’s job just to make boxes – not kidding.

5 things gooseberry jam

#5. The perks of being an employee of the Smokehaus.
When there’s leftover food, employee’s enjoy. This week folks in the shop spread layers and layers of Mary’s dreamy gooseberry jam on our Hausmade rye. Mary’s recipe uses five-spice. You know how she does.

Post was co-created by Stephen Pestalozzi.

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5 Things – Volume 7

Keeping the fire alive – Volume 7!

 

1 / A Really Fishy Photo! We took this photo of our traditional smoked salmon and we think it’s pretty neat! Mmmmm…Hold up while we break for a snack…

2 / Catering Extravaganzas  1: Sue is the owner of the Hemlock Preserve in Esko and we catered her daughters wedding last Saturday. It was crazy humid in the barn but we managed to work fast and pull through for a feast of epic proportions. Photo recap!

2: On Sunday we went to the Oldenberg House in Carlton for a wedding showcase. Food was served, food was eaten and we all had a blast! This historic building is right on the edge of Jay Cooke State Park and is lined with an abundance of rock formations, greenery and other natural goodies to take your breath away. Check them out for bed and breakfast services, special events, jazz dinners, live music, and much more. Thanks for having us!

3 / Restaurant Bits & Bites 

1. We are running an Heirloom tomato and chèvre salad special with fruits from the tomato growing experts over at Hammarlund. I overheard them talking to Eric (The Owner) about the different varieties of tomatoes and the flavor differences. The green striped ones are the all around favorite, the yellow ones are fruitier + sweeter and the dark red ones are kind of like a roma, but with more flavor. We running this with honey-dressed Boucheron chèvre, a balsamic reduction, and Maldon salt flake. Stop in and try one before it’s gone!

2. We have a new side! This couscous salad is delicious and beautiful.

4 / Basement Anthems The delivery and prep department needs music to stay sane. The work they do is incredibly fast paced, super detailed, and downright chaotic. They add to this insanity by BLASTING their music at full volume with no remorse for any nearby ears. In fact, they recently upgraded their stereo system by pooling tips because the old one wasn’t loud enough. Kudos on the teamwork y’all! This week it just so happened that Propagandhi’s new album dropped and it has been on repeat ever since. I asked Jeremy for a few words about it and his response was “Can I say it’s f***ing rippin’?”

5 / Insider Tip!  There were three employee wedding anniversaries this week! On the 27th, Stephen and Robin celebrated their 3 year and Woody and Kiah celebrated their 1 year. On the 28th Mary and Greg celebrated their 7 year! Many more to come, but don’t worry, we won’t post about them next year….. <3

 

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5 Things Volume 5

Volume 5 – Les Sgo!

#1 / Boot in the Barn was a success! The folks came, The cooks cooked and the staff worked really hard. We are really proud of everyone involved!

#2 / Beer in hand – Sandwich in Mouth The Cedar lounge is one of our favorites places to catch a drink and relax. Starting this week you will find ultra fancy, co-branded menus throughout the establishment! That’s right, you can order a sandwich straight to your bar stool at the Cedar Lounge. We think you’ll love the way our sandwiches taste with a cold one.

#3 / The Future Holds New… Photographs! Our creative crew (Stephen & Flo) took a trip to Mary’s (GM) house to scout locations for our new product photos. The abundance of trinkets, textures and materials was inspiring and we can’t wait to get cracking on this dream project.

#4 / Happy Mistakes Our restaurant (Northern Waters Restaurant) makes ice cream from scratch. But what do you get when you burn the base for this sweet treat? Cream Brûlée ice cream! It’s quickly becoming one of our favorite flavors, although the curry is pretty dang tasty…. Nothing like a good happy mistake!

#5 / Our Bread’s First Voyage Our Baker Jerry has been cranking out loaf after loaf of his delicious rye bread for our deli and we are loving it! Although the loaves are living the good life in Canal Park I could tell they were feeling a little antsy and longed for a bigger taste of the world. Low and behold they took the grand voyage to Woodland Ave. and became a permanent addition to our restaurant’s Reuben (The Thursday and sometimes Friday special). This sandwich is truly a legend in the making and now it’s one step closer.

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5 Things Volume 4

Volume 4

The backpack kids are back in town. School is back in session and with a new season comes its ups and downs.

  1. Our co-workers have less time for us! Some of our really hilarious and youthful souls are back in the world of academia. Study hard: Cedar, Asher, Keira, Jake, Cy, Cal, Ian, Kjell, Lucy and Thomas. On a very, very exciting note- Penti (our summer spunky basement daredevil) is studying abroad in India and we wish him all the luck and encouragement on his grand adventure overseas.

Pictured above is the Mr. Deli Manager TK — not going back to school — who’s been keeping his nose in books while researching more and more about fermentation but that’s for another 5 things.

 

2. We have been joined by a local jean-vest-wearing-rockstar Jacob. When he’s not slaying sandwiches, Jacob’s a multi-media working artist in Duluth. He makes short films, shoots video and plays in several bands in town. Welcome to the island of food weirdos!

Ok… So if you add the look, the knife and the t-shirt… You might get the wrong impression of him. He’s actually an incredible sweetheart. We just wanted him to be fierce for the internet. 

 

3. Earlier this summer our assistant manager JT (read: Coach) took a leap of faith and moved across the country to Montana. We were heartbroken to lose him as he brought in a stellar sense of humor to the workplace, but we knew that he had a different scenery calling his name. So since we’re in the middle of testing our new sandwich kit, we sent JT the first four person Cajun Finn Kit! Reports say it arrived safely and made for a sentimental meal with a piece of home. We miss you, JT!!!

This could be you. Stay tuned as we will announce the Cajun Finn Kit this fall!!

 

Barn dinner. Barn dinner. Barn dinner. Those two words have been on everyone’s mind for the last month here at the Smokehaus! So we are happy that tomorrow is finally the day that we will be sharing and making a wonderful experience with 50 guests and co-workers. Eric Goerdt sure knows how to throw a damn party!

4. Stephen and Mary made Mozzarella from scratch for our antipasto platters that we are serving at “Boot in the Barn” this Saturday at Hemlock Preserve. To make Mozzarella you have to bring up your curd mixture to 105 F. There was talk about double gloves, hot hands and other phrases that confirms that love and labor went into the making of the Mozzarella. 

 

5. Three large Porchettas will be smoked, roasted and fire licked as the main event for our “Boot in the Barn” dinner. This week Eric and TK rolled Berkshire pork loin and bellies together. Each Porchetta was massaged and slathered with white wine, lemon, rosemary, sage, garlic and olive oil and will be cooked until tender-perfection. Each Porchetta weighs about 20 lbs!!!! That’s a lot of mouth-watering Berkshire pork.

 

Excuse our raw image, processing isn’t always glamorous but the outcomes are worth the mess. 
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5 Things Volume 3

Volume 3

It’s the last official Friday of the summer! We’ve been honking right along, despite the competition (or welcome reprieve) of the State Fair, with catering, special events, and delivery.

  1. We cranked out 67 BEAUTIFUL raviolo for our Boot in the Barn Feast on September 9th. Eric’s special pasta recipe is stuffed with Bayfield sheep’s milk ricotta, Parmigiano Reggiano, Minnesota sweet corn, leeks, and love. 
  2. Stephen finished the Cedar Lounge menu – making this cozy Superior watering hole even more unique: it’s the only place in Superior we will be providing regular delivery!
  3. Northern Waters Restaurant has been offering a Burbot Po’ Boy sandwich – based on the New Orleans original but adapted for the Northwoods, it’s a must-try! 
  4. Ken Hammerlund, mystical vegetable genius (aka our tomato guy), appeared with his own blend hot sauce. We’ve been working on our own recipe, and his zesty, veggie-infused concoction is a great inspiration.
  5. Woody’s brand new baby boy has robbed him from our basement! Jeremy has been holding down the prep room nonetheless, even as the sandwich cooler has been on the fritz, employees have called in sick, and delivery has exploded! Thanks, Jerbaby Boi.
  6. BONUS: Boot in the Barn planning is revving up. We’ve selected a remarkable amount of crystal, travertine, bronze, and silver to make a Medici marvel. Ci vediamo li! 
    
    

 

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5 things volume 2

Volume 2

It’s Friday, and the weekend is just gearing up. Our busy shop season is nearing the end. There is sure to be a bustling shop this weekend and all the shenanigans that go with it, but here’s 5 things that happened this past week, at #thesmokehaus:

  1. As we have probably all forgotten already, Monday was the Solar Eclipse. The country seemed to be a buzz with the impending total eclipse, but NOT HERE IN DULUTH! NOPE! Go figure, a cloudy day here and we were stuck inside making sandwiches, processing meat, prepping food, and packing box after box of bacon. They tell me I will learn to love this “cool” weather in Duluth. They also tell me these 70 boxes that went out this week ain’t nothin’ compared to the holiday mail order season. Eeek! :/

  1. Taylor and Eric make a giant Porketta. We’re talking almost 20 pounds of butterflied pork loin and pork belly smothered in herbs and rolled to perfection. Several hours in the smoker will have that belly caramelized just right. Have you ever seen such beauty? And look at that Porketta! 🙂 This Tuscan-style porketta will be the focal point up our upcoming and final Barn Dinner of the season. We love putting on these events. We get to showcase our skills outside of the Smokehaus, and be creative and innovative. We get to bring people together over food (what we do best).

  1. Jerry made some bread this week (as he does every week). By the numbers: 1 guy, 80 loaves of bread, 1 tiny oven! Impressive, no? Jerry’s evil plan is to be a full time baker for the shop. YAASSSS! Right now he bakes all of this in a 2x2x2 Blodgett oven, a true testament to his commitment and love of bread-making.

  1. Can we talk for a minute about how we all hate packing peanuts? They are the worst! Always sticking themselves to your clothes and hands. We’re practically swimming in them here. But sadly they are a necessary component for shipping. 🙁 These 20 cubic foot bags are just ridiculous. With only 1 very over-used elevator at the DeWitt-Seitz Building, our employees hoisted these prodigious packs of peanuts up 3 flights of public stairs and public stares! A hilarious sight to see. Now they loom and tower over our ever enclosing office space.

  1. And unto us, a Smokehaus baby was born. Well, not exactly to us, but to our dear employee, Woody! We waited with anticipation all last week and as the silly due date came and went. Woody finally took his leave and we all blankly looked at each other wondering how we would know when it finally came. And finally this week, we get to say, “Congrats to the happy couple!”
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5 things that happened this week

Volume 1

Hello folks – there are so many things that happen at #thesmokehaus each week, it’s high time we start sharing a little more of the day to day from our island of food weirdos. Come along for the ride and catch up with 5 things that happened every week. We’ll share on Fridays. It’s not guaranteed to be a revelation or an earth-shattering event, but more of the laughter, food and quirkiness that keeps us coming together every week.

Here’s 5 things that happened at #thesmokehaus this week:

  1. Finished a little bacon project – that’s 120# sliced and packaged for a major order going out next week! People came together to get it done. It’s nice when we come together over bacon.

  1. Made “The Big Meg” on Thursday for lunch. Another sandwich on our “hidden menu” that has existed behind the scenes over the years. This one exists from the mind of a former great, as far as Smokehausers go. Russian dressing, lettuce, tomato, corned beef, red onion, cheddar, chopped pickles – toasted, baby!

  1. Speaking of babies, a baby was not born – Woody and wife have been expecting a baby any day now for the past week. We all come to work each day in hopes the little Smokehaus baby has come. Nope! A big fat, NOPE! Hang in there Kiah!

  1. Some folks go to Hoops – We deliver sandwiches to #HoopsBrewing, and wanted to catch up with our friends over there. It’s nice to tell the people that matter to you that you like them, are here for them, and want to feed them.

  1. Someone calls for mail order smoked eel – Uh, we don’t have smoked eel. FYI, if you thought we had smoked eel, we do not carry smoked eel.

Xoxo

Team Smokehaus