Field Notes, Healdsburg

Healdsburg Store Closing: FAQ

Healdsburg Store Closing

It is with great sadness that we announce that our Healdsburg store is closing at the end of December 2018. Our last full day operating the Café and Fermentation Bar, Larder and Pantry, Housewares and Garden will be Monday, Dec. 31. We will be open daily from 8am to 6pm until then.

We will reopen briefly in 2019 on January 9th to 27th just for Coffee Bar service and for customers to shop our retail floor. Our online store operations at will remain unchanged.

Closing the Healdsburg store was a hard decision for owners Doug Lipton and Cindy Daniel to make. “After much consideration and experiencing a tough retail year following the 2017 Sonoma County fires, we have made the very difficult decision to close the Healdsburg brick-and-mortar version of SHED,” Doug said.

Cindy adds, “We’re proud of what we’ve accomplished with our community and thankful to the residents of Healdsburg who have been so supportive over the past five-and-a-half years. We are truly grateful for our incredible employees who have been integral to creating and sharing all aspects of SHED with visitors and customers.”

Healdsburg SHED opened in April 2013 to celebrate good farming, good cooking, and good eating. That ethos and the products that support it will remain online. Only the Healdsburg brick-and-mortar business will shutter.

Change brings questions. We’ve tried to anticipate some of yours here. 

I have tickets for an event in 2019. Will the event still be held?

No, all of the public events in our Modern Grange for 2019 have been canceled. You should have been contacted by now and given a full refund. Our apologies for the inconvenience!

I had been planning to host a private event at Healdsburg SHED in 2019. Will you be able to accommodate me?

We’re sorry, but all private events scheduled on or after Feb. 1, 2019, are canceled. Our events manager will be in touch to refund any deposits or other monies as appropriate and to make recommendations to help you rearrange your event elsewhere.

I have a SHED gift card. Will it still be honored?

Absolutely! Physical gift cards are available for in-store redemption through Dec. 31, 2018. If you have a remaining gift card balance, it will be transferred to a digital store credit and available for online use after Feb. 15, 2019.

If you have an online SHED gift card, please continue to simply shop online with us. While our brick-and-mortar Northern California store will close, our online store will remain stocked and open.

I’ve ordered holiday gifts from your store for out-of-town friends and relatives. Will those gifts still be shipped and delivered?

Yes! If you bought your gifts from our Healdsburg store and arranged to have them shipped, they will be unaffected by our change. Gifts purchased online will be unaffected by the Healdsburg store’s closure.

What if a gift I give needs to be returned? Can the recipient handle this via your website when your Healdsburg store is closed?

Of course. We will accept gift returns for an online store credit, and all other general product returns within 14 days of receipt of the item. Unless your item has been received damaged or broken due to misshipment and packaging, we do not at this time cover the cost for return shipments.

I have reservations for your Café in December. Will they be honored?

We look forward to welcoming your party to our Café in December. All operations will remain active through the end of business on Monday, Dec. 31.

I have reservations for your Café after December 2018. Will they be honored?

Our Café will close permanently after service ends on Dec. 31, 2018. Reservations for 2019 are suspended. Our apologies for the inconvenience. Please give us a call if you’d like suggestions for other places to dine in Healdsburg. Our community is fortunate to have excellent eateries at every price point.

I love the fresh selections in your produce section. Where will I be able to find this kind of food now?

Thank you for wanting to support farmers! It’s so important to us. Locally, the Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers’ Market at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts is year-round, rain or shine, on Wednesday and Saturday mornings until 1pm. Our own beloved Healdsburg Farmers’ Market runs  Saturdays, May 5-Nov. 24, 2019, at the parking lot across from our store and on Tuesdays, from May 29, 2019, on the Healdsburg Plaza.

I purchased just two settings of your stoneware dinnerware for my son and his new wife, intending to add to their set over the years. Will I still be able to find it?

Yes! In addition to our carefully curated retail collection from around the world, we will continue to offer such legacy and proprietary merchandise as the SHED dinnerware set and our Pantry line of house-made spices and salts.

I have enrolled in your registry and my wedding isn’t until June of 2019. Will my guests be able to shop our requested items?

Congratulations on your upcoming nuptials! And worry not: Our registry already lives online and nothing about it will change.

How will I know when you have new items or have a sale or otherwise update your online inventory?

Please sign up for our newsletter. We’ll keep you apprised of sales and new items and you can make purchases directly from the links within it.

I’ve always enjoyed your blog posts and recipes, interviews and profiles. Will those go away, too?

We love our blog and Learn sections, too! Education is an incredibly important component of what we do, and we are committed to continuing to create fresh content for our website. Subscribing to our newsletter will alert you to new posts.

Have a question we haven’t anticipated? Email us and we’ll do our best to get it answered!

Cooking, Farming, Field Notes, Foodshed, Healdsburg, HomeFarm

Food is Too Good to Waste

Currently, about 40% of the food we produce is wasted, representing a carbon footprint larger than any individual country except China and the United States. It’s also a moral failing—in the United States alone, 1 in 8 people are food insecure.

The EPA’s Food Recovery Hierarchy ranks methods of dealing with food waste from the most preferable to the least. Many people think of composting as the be-all end-all of responsible waste management, but it’s actually all the way at the bottom of the pyramid, just above the landfill. Don’t get us wrong, we’re big believers in compost—one of our owners is a self-proclaimed dirt doctor!—but effective reduction of food waste starts long before your cores and peels hit the compost bin.

The top of the pyramid is source reduction, which simply means generating less food waste to begin with. The more mindful we are about using every ingredient to its fullest, the less food waste we’ll have to manage further down the line. It’s a philosophy essential to our culinary identity at SHED. Our different departments work together to ensure that nothing goes to waste, much like a permaculture farm would. When we have surplus dairy in the coffee bar, pantry products we need to move, or extra ripe and ready produce, our cafe chefs can transform them into new dishes.

Our menus are full of underappreciated ingredients, from croutons made of bread heels to apricot kernel ice cream. And when we can’t use all of a seasonal ingredient, we ferment or preserve it. It not only lends flavor to our dishes, it extends fresh ingredients’ shelf lives to ensure they don’t end up in the trash. And our eye toward preservation goes beyond pickles; culinary powders and shrubs also keep produce out of the landfill. Our passion for preserving extends to helping others learn the art. From canning classes to full-on food waste dinners, education is a top priority. Going low-waste in our own kitchen is good, but encouraging those in our own community and beyond to do the same can be game-changing.

But despite our best efforts, sometimes we end up with food waste. We over-prepare or end up with trimmings that just can’t be used. The next three tiers on the food recovery hierarchy are all ways to make the most of leftover food. If we can’t eliminate food waste, we should try to feed hungry people, feed animals, or find industrial uses for food waste. As our leftover-loving employees and our well-fed chickens can attest, we’ve got the first two covered. We also work with an oil management service that turns all those fried chicken Fridays into energy-rich biofuel.

The bottom tier of the food recovery hierarchy is the landfill. The landfill should only ever be a last resort. With so many alternatives to choose from, there’s no reason we should be throwing food away. Yet this is where 90% of food waste ends up. We’re proud of the work we have done to be part of the solution, but we know we can always do more. So we’re asking for inspiration from the place we so often find it: our community. We want to hear your ideas of how we can do more, because every meal we can keep out of the landfill is one more we can enjoy together. We welcome your comments and insights below!

Artisan Producers, Chefs, Craftsmanship, Farming, Foodshed, Healdsburg, HomeFarm

Introducing the SHED Pantry Line

We’re excited to announce the launch of the SHED pantry line, featuring a proprietary collection of powders, salt blends, herbs and spices, preserves, pickles, and Shrub concentrates drawn from the best ingredients prepared just as we do in our Healdsburg café.

Coming to fruition under the direction of SHED chef Perry Hoffman, plans for the Pantry Line predate SHED and its café. SHED co-owner Cindy Daniel knew that she wanted to do this before our doors even opened.

“It’s always been a dream of Cindy’s and really, it just makes so much sense,” Perry says. “It really came from the concept of utilizing the pantry that we use to cook from in the café.”

SHED Powders

A distillation of flavor, the SHED powders are a unique finishing touch that pack a punch. Available in one-ounce bottles, they are the essential taste of the vegetables from which they’re made.

Dehydrated in our own kitchens and then pulverized before being mixed with Jacobsen Salt, these powders are intended to be used just before serving to add a strong note to your good fresh food.

“I’ve been using powders for 16 years,” Perry says. “The tradition really comes from fine dining. They’re amazing flavor enhancers. When you dehydrate produce, you concentrated the flavor of that element.”

Perry likes the Charred Eggplant Powder sprinkled atop a bowl of yogurt with fresh chopped mint. He mixes it into vinaigrettes, and hails it as his “love letter” to the baba ganoush dip he adored as a child.

The Tarragon Caper Powder is a nod to traditional French cuisine, adding a note of elegance perfect for using to finish sauces. “Capers and tarragon are two ingredients that are made for each other,” Perry says.

The Niçoise Olive Powder is purposefully not powdered entirely. “We leave this a bit chunkier and just smash them into little crumbles because we love those little bits of dried olives,” Perry says.

The Shiitake Mushroom Powder is a “flavor builder,” Perry says, referring to its role adding umami to any dish. “Add it to a little bit of chicken stock and soy sauce and you’ve got this amazing stock that will add flavor to anything. It’s all about intensifying flavors.”

One in every 100 Padron peppers is hot, so eating them has an element of chance. Dehydrating and then powdering them for our Padron Pepper Powder guarantees that its sweetness will be tempered by a bit of heat. “When you combine them,” Perry says, “you get an incredibly wonderful, earthy powder.”

The Smoked Onion Powder features sweet onions and adds a gorgeous element of onion flavor to everything it touches. “Mix it into sour cream,” Perry suggests, “and you have a dip.”

SHED Salt Blends

SHED’s blends use Jacobsen Salt as a base and add unusual flavors to create finishing salts you’ll always want to reach for.

An incredibly versatile and popular offering, Lemon Salt can be sprinkled liberally atop roasted potatoes and fish. For dessert, try a pinch with vanilla ice cream.

Utilizing an increasingly popular Japanese culinary herb, our Red Shiso Salt is perfect for bringing a fresh taste to a salad before serving or for sprinkling upon fish.

“As a chef, you have the opportunity to cook this way because you have Shiso and you have salt,” Perry explains. “Home cooks don’t necessarily have that option. This is a way of being able to capture those flavors in a jar and be close to the same outcome.”

Made for chicken and perfect for lamb, pork loin, and other roasts, the Rosemary and Wild Fennel Salt is, Perry says simply, “a natural love affair.”

Normally not one to play favorites, Perry confesses that his favorite of the new line is the Black Lime Salt, which has a distinctly Californian take on a traditional Middle Eastern flavor profile. Limes are salted and soaked before being dried and pulverized, bringing an intensity to this salt.

“The wonderful aromatic flavors of lime are very dominant, so this becomes a umami flavor enhancer,” Perry says. He suggests pairing the Black Lime Salt with the Shitake Powder for a umami powerhouse. “If you were to add those two to your broth, it would be very full-bodied.”

SHED Shrubs

A drinking vinegar born from the need to use all of the harvest, the Shrub has recently come back into favor. And thank goodness for that.

Shrubs are the centerpiece of the Fermentation Bar in our Healdsburg store and our flavors always change to match the season. This new collection of essential Shrub flavors is just the start; we’ll be certain to add more as the harvest wanes and new herbs, fruits, and flowers become available.

Available in 12-ounce bottles, SHED Shrub concentrates form the base for a refreshing non-alcoholic drink but can just as easily be made with Prosecco or other lightly bubbly wines.

Whether Quince, Apple, Beet, or Grape — each SHED Shrub concentrate is made from organic ingredients raised by farmers we know or even foraged by Chef Perry himself.

What’s more, his technique for creating this concentrate hasn’t change. For a few hundred years. “We do this just as they would have in the 1800s,” Perry says.

Preserves and Honey

Having fresh jam made with local fruit is a hallmark of the SHED café and our pantry. A devoted home cook, Cindy has always spent part of her summer putting up preserves. Now you can share in some of our good fortune and bounty. Each jar is made of pure organic or even foraged fruit set with cane sugar and a good squeeze of lemon juice. That’s all.

SHED honey is raised in Sonoma County by beekeepers who respect their hives and the hard-working insects inside of them. SHED subscribes to the idea that we don’t keep bees — the bees keep us, as one-third of all the food that we eat is made possible by pollinators.

Pickled Vegetables

Fermentation is a core value at SHED. “We pickle everything. It was so hard to even choose what to put in the jar,” Perry says.

Perry loves eggplant but it doesn’t pickle well, so he made a gorgeous chunky Roasted Eggplant Conserva from it. He encourages us to use it as a chutney. “Yogurt is the most wonderful platform for it,” he enthuses. “It’s such a match made in heaven.”

Packed like the Conserva in 13.5-ounce jars, our Pickled Carrots are flavored with dill leaves, jalapeños, and black peppercorns; the Pickled Turnips with bay leaf, beets, and garlic. Both of them are perfect additions to supper, laid out on a relish plate to contribute bite and interest to a simple meal.

Also jarred up for a pre-dinner pickle plate are our Pickled Shiitake Mushrooms, Roasted Eggplant Conserva, and Turmeric Pickled Turnips.

Herbs & Spices

With this Pantry line-up, SHED is also proud to release its own line of herbs and spices, adding traditional everyday spices like cinnamon to a line-up of offerings that include the Middle Eastern flavors of Harissa, Zahtar, and Vadouvan. We have other unusual mixes like Shichimi Togarashi, Japanese Curry Powder, and Chinese Five Spice. Our own line of Dukka is already a best-selling staple. We even have six kinds of peppercorn!

Just the Start

SHED’s Pantry line is an effort to preserve the peak flavors of the season by pickling, preserving, fermenting, smoking, and drying ingredients to make jams, pickles, shrubs, spice blends, and powders.  It’s an attempt to better tell the story of good farming, good cooking, and good eating.

“We want to take all of the behind-the-scenes things that we make and showcase them,” Perry says.

“There are so many things that we have to make to stock our own pantry. The powders are a perfect example of that.  We want to show what we make, and how we use these products to flavor and enhance our cooking,” he says.

“And how you might share in that.”

Artisan Producers, Cooking, Foodshed, Healdsburg

Spring Foraging

On March 19, SHED’s Culinary Director Perry Hoffman and chef de cuisine Bryan Oliver led a group of 30 or so on a spring foraging foray looking for miner’s lettuce, mustard flowers, wild fennel, Douglas fir shoots, and more through Dry Creek Valley.