Grocery

Not Your Average Grocer

If there’s one thing we know around here, it’s that at Provisions, we’re not your average grocer. People come from all over the city to find that one amazing, rare item we happen to carry, just as much as we have a crowd of regulars who pick up everything they need from us. It’s not just our unique collection of products, though, or even our crew of diverse personalities. It’s in the way we source those products, and it’s in the way those products are made. From your basic milk and eggs to the specialty foods you never thought you’d find in Fort Greene, we strive to find and carry items that are local, sustainable, and ethically made, all held to a high standard of quality.

Many if not most grocery stores source exclusively from corporate distributor middlemen, and they in turn source from industrial farms and factories where there’s little to no transparency. It makes for a hard disconnect on where food comes from, especially when food is mistreated and wasted in the name of perfectly identical, shelf-ready products. The people who make these foods are likely to be vastly underpaid and overworked. Both people and animals suffer under these systems that are not sustainable, and yet as an individual it can seem daunting to get around it. That’s where we come in.

At Provisions, we are constantly looking for more ways to do our part toward a better, more viable food system where people and the food that nourishes them can thrive. Our milk and eggs come from farms where animals are treated like part of the family, with expansive pastures to roam, diverse grazing, and even biweekly pedicures for the cows. We source produce from small operations from as nearby as Gotham Greens in Gowanus, and our butcher counter lets no scrap go to waste when they make animal fat soaps and candles. When it comes to stocking our shelves, we work directly with small producers who hold the same values of sustainability and transparency in their ingredients and production.

Look for Not Your Average Grocer signs around the store, and find out more about what sets us apart!

Carla Bueno-SandersNot Your Average Grocer
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Eggs-cellence in the Field

While food trends come and go, announcing this berry or that herb as the new star ingredient to your every meal, there’s no denying the simple egg. There are as many ways to prepare an egg by itself as there are recipes to which eggs are essential, whether it’s dyed and hidden in grass, placed on a Seder plate, or part of a spring-inspired baking project with seasonal fruit on the horizon. But with so many different labels and terms on egg cartons these days, what does it take for an egg to make it to our discerning shelves?

There are plenty of producers that can legally slap the words “free range” or “cage free” on their egg cartons, but neither of those terms are guarantees that their hens are living the idyllic lives we hope they are, nor are they promises against some of the industry’s crueler practices. That’s why we’re proud to offer eggs from Oliver’s Organic Eggs and Red Gate Grocer’s Scenic Vista Farm, both family-owned farms in upstate NY. On these farms, hens have access to spacious pastures, free to graze on provided vegetarian feed and field insects. Oliver’s, which hand-raises their hens from chicks, is certified organic, which extends to the grains they grow themselves that becomes feed for their chickens. On Scenic Vista Farm, chickens roam free all year long, and each egg supplied to Red Gate Grocer is certified American humane.

True free range farming like this, which gives chickens freedom to be chickensinstead of screened-in rooms that barely qualify as “outdoor access”also produces healthier eggs. Pastured eggs have lower cholesterol and saturated fats than their conventional counterparts, as well as up to double essential vitamins like A and E, and up to seven times as much beta carotene. You could say pastured eggs really help us reach our beak potential! – Order delivery! These eggs-ceptional eggs are available here!

Carla Bueno-SandersEggs-cellence in the Field
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Thanksgiving Holiday Hours

Getting Your Turkeys in a Row

The holidays are our favorite time of year at the Greene Grape. We love playing a part in all of our customers’ celebrations, and doing what we do best: food. As you’re getting your ducks (and turkeys, chickens, etc.) in a row for Thanksgiving, please keep in mind our revised hours for the holiday:

Thanksgiving, Thursday 11/23

Annex: 8AM – 1PM
Provisions: 8AM-2PM
Scoops & Sweets: CLOSED
Wine & Spirits: 10AM – 3PM

Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a first time turkey roaster, you may find yourself overwhelmed when planning your holiday menu. We’ll be open until the early afternoon on Thursday to help you cover any last minute bases. We’ll have pies, sides, and that one stick of butter or onion even the best of us can forget. If you find yourself struggling with any more questions, like “How do I select wines for my meal?” or “How do I even cook this turkey?”, our FAQ page can help you out! We hope you have a very happy holiday, Fort Greene!

Mike FunkThanksgiving Holiday Hours
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Another Little Pizza my Heart

Any gathering can be a party with one simple ingredient – The Greene Grape Pizza Recipe! A homemade pizza is a great way to custom tailor your pie to your guests and a fun cooking activity to boot. Scoops and Sweets’ Housemade Pizza Dough streamlines the process while preserving the thrilling parts of pizza making: shaping your pie and picking your toppings! Some of our favorite toppings at the Greene Grape are fresh pesto, marinara sauce, roasted veggies, cured meats and charcuterie, our housemade mozzarella, aged parmesan, fresh basil, and our housemade sausages, just to name a few! – You can take it up a notch with this great pizza recipe for a grilled pie by our own Kelsey Werner!

Here’s our easy-as-pie guide to making your own pizza:

Ingredients:

  • 1 ball of our Housemade Pizza Dough (which makes two 12” round, thin crust pizzas)
  • All-purpose flour
  • Olive oil
  • Toppings of your choice

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees fahrenheit. If using a pizza stone, put it in the oven now to heat up as well

  1. Remove thawed dough from fridge and allow to sit at room temperature for about 1 hour. Use fresh dough within 5 days of defrosting.
  2. Prepare a clean work surface and lightly dust it with all purpose flour
  3. Remove the dough from the package and dust it with flour so it’s easy to work with.
  4. Press out the dough into your desired shape using your fingers.
  5. If using a pizza stone, transfer the dough to a flour or cornmeal dusted pizza peel, and continue to press out into a round shape. If baking in a pan, lightly oil a rectangle or round baking sheet and gently transfer your dough over and onto the sheet, and continue to shape as desired.
  6. Gently brush the edges of the dough with olive oil using your fingers or a pastry brush
  7. Add your toppings! As many or as few as you’d like, don’t be afraid to get creative!
  8. When the oven reaches 450, bake until bubbling, golden on the edges and crisp; about 20 minutes.
  9. Slice and enjoy!
Angela GelsoAnother Little Pizza my Heart
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Proud to be a part of Good Food

For us at Provisions, the surest sign of the start of summer is the New York Good Food Mercantile, an expo of mostly local food products that are as delicious as they are ethical; the Good Food movement is about prioritizing the stories behind our food. We’re proud to feature many of these producers in our store because we know that transparency in food production is important not only for our guests to make informed decisions, but for creating a more viable food system overall.

This weekend our buyers will head to the Good Food Mercantile in Greenpoint where we’ll be sourcing new products for our shelves and showing our support to many of our current local food producers, Raaka Chocolate, Crown Finnish Caves, Charlito’s Cocina, and Matzo Project to name a few!

As a proud founding member of the Good Food Collaborative, we are on a mission to build commerce and community between the people who make, purvey, and enjoy Good Food. 
Angela GelsoProud to be a part of Good Food
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Spread Shrub, It’s The Brooklyn Way

What’s shrub got to do with it? Shrub is not a bush, but a refreshing mixer perfect for summer beverages. Popular during America’s colonial era, shrubs were a means of preserving fruit flavors prior to the invention of refrigeration and industrially processed foods. But like many traditional recipes, shrubs are now making a comeback! Also known as drinking vinegar, shrubs are an acidulated syrup made from fruits, vinegar, and sugar. A versatile concentrate for cocktails and softdrinks, try a lime shrub with tequila for an easy margarita, or dilute a strawberry shrub with seltzer for a funky soda similar to kombucha.

We’re excited to showcase two shrubs this summer, both made near Washington DC. Shrub District infuses vinegar and simple syrup with locally grown fruits and herbs, and is sold as a concentrate. It can be combined with seltzer to taste, with or without your favorite spirit, and each bottle comes with unique recipes on the label. For shrubs on the fly, check out Element Shrub‘s newest line Shrub & Club. Though Element makes lovely syrups, this ingenious ready-to-drink shrub is pre-balanced with club soda right in the bottle. Delicious chilled straight or poured over ice with your favorite spirit!

If you feel like getting creative, both Shrub District and Element have even more fun recipes listed on their websites. Whether you enjoy a buzz or prefer a clear head on a hot day, shrubs are a refreshing, bright way to celebrate the best of Summer’s bounty!

Angela GelsoSpread Shrub, It’s The Brooklyn Way
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Notes From the Grocery Buyer’s Desk

Here’s a run down of whats new and notable on our shelves this week!

We start off with plenty of sweets…

Chunky Pig Popcorn – Twice candied Niman Ranch bacon with Vermont maple syrup flavor this popcorn that won’t stick to the back of your teeth!  

Billington’s Demerara Sugar – This is from an old school sugar company from England, who created Wholesome Sweeteners back in 2001, the company that makes our corn syrup. Demerara is a crunchy, golden brown sugar with a sticky texture and rich aroma. The large sugar crystals make for a crunchy topping on desserts and create an eye catching swirl in yogurt or porridge.

Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream is back! In five flavors: Ndali Vanilla, Milkiest Chocolate, Salty Caramel, Brown Butter Almond Brittle and Pistachio & Honey.

Coop’s Microcreamery Salted Caramel- This brand also makes a vegan chocolate sauce, and we’re excited to have both on the shelves. The jars are characterized by their melted wax top that looks like it’s been dipped in the delicious sweet sauce. The chocolate is even scented! The product itself is made by a family company. No GMOs, no gluten, no reason not to indulge to your heart’s content!

Salty Road Salt Water Taffy- These wonderful Brooklyn based candy mavens have introduced two new flavors! Pumpkin Pie Taffy, made with real pumpkin and spices, and Chocolate Chews, deep, dark chocolate and sea salt chewy candy.

Ethereal Confections – Lovely chocolate confections made in Woodstock, Illinois, including a sugar free bar, truffle-like chocolate “meltaways” and chocolate covered pretzels that are gluten free.

Zingerman’s Candy Manufactory– zzang Karamel Krunch and Peanut Crush candy bars- Delicious candy bars with simple ingredients that you can actually pronounce!

Askinosie Chocolate– 60% Dark Chocolate with Peanut Butter – made with the crunchy peanut butter from another Greene Grape shelf standby Big Spoon Roasters- we love it when our vendors collaborate!

A little something savory… 

Roberta’s Pizza – New flavor, The Baby Sinclair. This is their next level flavor, dinosour kale, with cheddar, parmigiano and Calabrian chiles.

And one new product that we can’t define! 

Lark Fine Foods Scourtins – This variety from one of our longstanding cookie suppliers is making their grand return after a few years. Their shortbread cookies are studded with oil cured olives. Yes, olives in cookies. Sweet and Salty. They’re really delicious and adult.

Meg ChristmanNotes From the Grocery Buyer’s Desk
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I Got It For My Mama!

We have a number of ways you can treat the moms, mothers and mamas in your life this Sunday!

Send her some love- we’re offering a special Mother’s Day Gift Basket that can be shipped nationwide or picked up right here in our shop!

Make breakfast in bed- create a custom menu with all of her favorite treats, or look around for suggestions at each of our counters.

Decorate a coloring page– our beautiful Mother’s Day coloring pages are available at the registers. Get creative, get expressive and don’t be afraid to color outside the lines!

Pick up some flowers– we will have gorgeous fresh bouquets available from Stem and for those looking for a more lasting gift, take home a paper blossom branch by local artist Bespoke Brooklyn.

We’re wishing a very Happy Mother’s Day to all of the wonderful mom’s we see each day here at the shop!

 

If love is sweet as a flower,

then my mother is that sweet flower of love.” —Stevie Wonder

Greene GrapeI Got It For My Mama!
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Celebrate Earth Day the Brooklyn Way

Join us as we work to build a Greener Grape!

We’re kicking it off this Saturday at Habana Works’ Annual Earth Day Expo!
We’ll be stationed at this celebration of urban environmentalism at Habana Outpost between 11am-2pm.

Learn from our agriculture expert, Mickey Davis, what it means to be a sustainable farm. To help explain some complex ideas, we’ll have a host of coloring pages (for kids and adults alike) that break it all down. We’re also calling all crafty foodies to join us at our “Ugly Produce Decoration Station.” Afterwards, come by our shop and explore all of the Sustainability Do’s and Dont’s that we practice every day!

Then come in on Earth Day – Wednesday, April 22nd – as we give back to the neighborhood and promote earthy friendly shopping habits with a free re-usable bag give-a-way all day!

We’d like to give many thanks to our community here in Fort Greene- we’re working hard to help create a greener future and we couldn’t do it without all of you.

Greene GrapeCelebrate Earth Day the Brooklyn Way
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Supporting Local Farms… from Afar!

With Earth Day around the corner, we have been taking stock of our environmental impact. The most basic way to make sure our carbon footprint stays low is to support local farms businesses whenever possible. But in order to provide pantry staples year round, we sometimes need to go outside of that 250 mile radius. Let’s look at two staples, rice and beans, and consider how companies we source from can keep us committed to supporting small and sustainable farms!

 

We carry many varieties of Rancho Gordo beans. While they travel from California to get to us, the company’s commitment to growing heirloom beans and working with local growers is without comparison.

Heirloom varieties are important for preserving genetic diversity and they also remind us that our food doesn’t have to look uniform! The Rancho Gordo-Xoxoc Project creates a market for small farms in Mexico to grow heirloom beans indigenous to their areas. These beans also taste amazing! You’ll find a creaminess and earthiness in each bag that is impossible to replicate out of a can.

 

Lotus Foods brings us rice from afar in order to support small and family farms in areas of the world where rice as a commodity crop leads to overproduction and damages local environments and economies.

By providing market incentives for small sustainable farms in these regions, Lotus Foods creates a system that encourages environmentally friendly growing practices. The heirloom varieties of rice that we carry come from Indonesia and China. Volcano Rice has a dark color that reflects the high concentration of minerals such as magnesium and zinc, found in the volcanic soils where it grows. Forbidden Rice comes from a farm that uses a System of Rice Intensification that reduces water use while boosting production.

 

So try out an heirloom bean or two, marvel at their colorful complexity, enjoy a bowl of Volcanic Rice and stay tuned for more info on our sustainable buying practices. It’s not always easy being green, but we’re getting there one bite at a time!

 

Read more about Rancho Gordo here

Read more about Lotus Foods here 

Greene GrapeSupporting Local Farms… from Afar!
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