DLM Difference: Authentic Coffee

We don’t just sell coffee at the DLM Coffee Bar. I mean, we do sell coffee, but there’s more at play with each pour. And this past January, myself and the three DLM Coffee Bar managers, Holli Kiser, Chris Hatfield, and Amy Bodish, traveled to the mountainous terrain of the Tarrazú region in central Costa Rica. It’s here that Hacienda La Minita is nestled. Along with some friends from Dayton’s Boston Stoker Coffee Company, including owner Henry Dean, we got to take our understanding of coffee to a new level. We not only soaked in knowledge during our five day stay, but we experienced it: we picked, we sorted, we smelled, we tasted, and we came back with a deeper understanding and appreciation for each sip, each bean, and the fine people who make it possible. —Scott Fox, VP of Bakery & Coffee Bar

“It’s one thing to sit in a room learning about coffee,” says Chris, DLM Springboro Coffee Bar manager, recalling his time in barista school. “But, it’s another seeing it in person.” The trek to where the coffee cherries grow at Hacienda La Minita is rugged terrain and the work is hard. On the first day the DLM team arrived, they strapped the picking baskets to their waists and got started alongside the pickers. They learned what to look for (red and yellow cherries) and that if you pick them too soon or too late, they won’t meet the La Minita grade. “They only pick what is ripe, so that means that they are picking four to five times from the same tree—it’s like a typewriter,” says Scott.

After the allotted picking time was up, everyone took their haul and circled around a large truck where two men stood in the bed. One would be handed a picking basket full of coffee cherries. He’d weigh the contents, shout a number, and the next man would throw money into the emptied basket before handing it back to its picker. As a Fair Trade coffee, the workers are compensated fairly, are permitted to live on the plantation, and have access to a clinic and dentist for free.

Same is true for migrant workers who come seasonally to work. After all that was harvested that day was gathered and paid out, time was ticking. It’s important for the processing of the coffee cherries to happen 24 hours from being picked before
quality diminishes. First, the haul must make its way to recibidores, or receiving stations, before continuing through the mountains to the mill. To get there, Chris, Scott, Holli, Amy, and friends rode in the back of the truck among the cherries,
“hanging on for dear life,” Scott jokes.

At the receiving station, they are weighed again—making sure what was paid out matches what is coming in. A much larger truck then picks up everything that needs to make it the mill where it is all weighed again. From there, a tedious multi-step process begins resulting in only about 20-22% of what was picked meeting the La Minita grade. The rest will be sold under a different banner.

There are layers to the coffee cherry that encase the bean within: the skin, fruit, a sticky layer called mucilage, and a thin parchment-like covering on the bean. At the mill, the beans undergo cleaning, depulping, sorting, fermentation, washing, and drying. Nothing is wasted along the way as the removed parchment feeds a fire that aids in the drying process. The travelers from DLM are witness to this all.

At the sorting stage, DLM Oakwood Coffee Bar manager Amy recalls a phrase that “every bean has a home,” even the ones that do not make the cut for La Minita. About 50-60 inspectors await, knowing just what to look for. “They are pulling out anything that is damaged, not the right color,” says Holli, DLM Washington Square Coffee Bar manager. “The biggest and most dense beans are what becomes La Minita.”

This is just one of the coffee varieties roasted locally at Boston Stoker, which we feature at the DLM Coffee Bar. The same care in finding a high quality and ethical source is taken with other varieties as well that make their way to Boston Stoker and then to DLM. “At the end of the day, La Minita is a top notch company, from their ethics and the way they do things to the quality of their coffee,” Scott says, “And Henry Dean (Boston Stoker) is incredibly well respected in the industry and knowledgeable.”

20 Years of Partnering with Ghyslain Chocolatier

There’s something to be said about a long-lasting business relationship in this industry that feels more like a well-oiled friendship. It was nearly 20 years ago that Ghyslain Maurais, chef and renowned chocolatier, crossed paths with DLM’S Scott Fox, VP of Bakery & Coffee Bar. “It’s been quite a ride,” says Ghyslain. Watching the two interact, you can see that friendship at play as they jest and riff off one another’s creativity. Scott looks back on the start of it all around this time in 1999, and he knew that he had found a gem, not just in finding a unique product to bring to Dorothy Lane Market but in linking arms with a brilliant local partner with world class experience.

A ONE-IN-A-MILLION FOOD & FRIEND FIND

Ghyslain Chocolates are stunning handpainted creations, many with a flavored ganache encased inside. Each is truly as spectacular as Ghyslain himself. Born in Québec City, Ghyslain spent several years as the head chef for the Québec ambassador at the Canadian Embassy in London and also in New York City. After using his vacation time to expand his knowledge and study chocolate making in Zürich, his creativity was truly unleashed in new ways at the embassy.

In the mid-nineties, Ghyslain was eager to make his way to the U.S. and saw a head chef position for the Ohio-based Inn at Versailles, which is heavily influenced by French culture. It was there that he met his wife Susan. The two moved to Union City, Indiana, where Susan’s family was from, and Ghyslain started making his chocolates from the kitchen of their farmhouse in 1998. Today, Ghyslain Chocolatier is a thriving business there in Indiana where he creates everything from chocolates to perfect croissants, which we also carry.

Dayton Daily News food critic Ann Heller caught wind of Ghyslain and wrote about him in 1999. Fox had to taste the chocolate and meet Ghyslain, and this was the start of our 20-year relationship.

20TH ANNIVERSARY COMMEMORATIVE HEART BOX

That very first Valentine’s Day with Ghyslain, we featured a stunning dark chocolate heart that was hand painted red and held six beautifully crafted chocolates. You can see it photographed in the 1999 article by Ann Heller. This year, to celebrate our 20th anniversary of working with Ghyslain, we are bringing the chocolate heart back, but with some special touches for the occasion.

You’ll find the chocolate heart made from ruby chocolate, an exciting new innovation in the chocolate-making world, which is aptly timed for this occasion. The inside of the heart reveals three ruby pink chocolates filled with a ruby chocolate cream and Champagne ganache, and three platinum chocolates filled with a salted caramel ganache. The 20th Anniversary Ruby Heart Box comes enclosed in a platinum box as a nod to the milestone. It’ll be available seasonally just in time for Valentine’s Day, along with some other ruby creations by Ghyslain because every good friendship is worth celebrating.

Made Right Here Bakery Favorites

When you bite into a piece of Grandma Tobias Pie or slather butter on a fluffy Bakehouse Roll, do you ever stop and ponder what “Made Right Here” really means? When it comes to the DLM Bakery’s signature holiday items, we are proud that they are made with top-notch ingredients in our very own DLM Bakehouse. So as you plan your home-cooked, hassle-free holiday, be sure to reserve these favorites for your table.

GRANDMA TOBIAS PECAN PIE

We use an all-butter crust with a traditional pecan pie filling that’s sweet, gooey, and chock-full of pecans.

BREAD BASKET

The perfect edible centerpiece, we make these beautiful bread baskets by hand that are piled high with two dozen assorted rolls.

GRANDMA TOBIAS PUMPKIN PIE

So good, it’ll impress even the most discerning mother-in-law. We start with an all-butter crust and fill it with traditional pumpkin pie filling that’s creamy and smooth to taste.

PUMPKIN CHEESE ROLL

Rich cream cheese folded between layers of pumpkin cake comprise this instant favorite.

BAKEHOUSE ROLL

Soft and pillowy, each bite of this yeast roll that’s Made Right Here melts in your mouth.

 

Pumpkin Checklist

Fall is here, which means bonfires, football, and pumpkin EVERYTHING! We’re big fans of this seasonal flavor and the wide variety of yummy pumpkin products available, so we’ve compiled a list of pumpkin must-haves to get your pumpkin fix. Let’s face it, is fall even fall without pumpkin treats?

How many of these pumpkin goodies have you tried?

View PDF

Fall for These 10 Recipes

Fall is here! It’s time for hayrides, apple picking, pumpkins, and all of the foods that embrace this season of change. We want to welcome fall by diving into the quintessential flavors that make this time of year so delicious. Here are 10 fall recipes sure to have you fall-ing for the season.

8 Recipes to Fall For

10 Fall Recipes You’ll Love!

1. Honeycrisp Fall Sangria

This yummy recipe features the stars of fall: Honeycrisp Apples, Beaujolais Nouveau (available mid-November, but a strong red makes a great substitute), and DLM 100% Apple Cider.

2. Blondies

With cinnamon, nutmeg, and Honeycrisp apples, this dessert is the ultimate fall treat. Just one bite will have you craving all that this season has to offer.

3. Butternut Squash

Feast like a gourmand with this enticing butternut squash recipe. Chock-full of mouth-watering flavors, this is a recipe everyone will love!

4. Pumpkin Pancakes

The perfect weekend breakfast.

5. Braised Bacon Kale with Roasted Veggies

It’s time to get roasting! It’s an easy, simple, and delicious way to bring out some of the unpopular root vegetables. Roast at high heat so a lot of color and caramelization happens, and simply season with salt or pepper.

6. Butternut Squash Soup with Garam Masala

This warming soup has subtle sweetness and spice, and is full of unique flavor.

7. Pumpkin Gingerbread

The perfect edible gift for friends and neighbors.

8. Apple Cider Glazed Pork Chops

A hearty dish that is full of fall flavors. It’s one you’ll repeat all season long.

9. Butterbeer

This magically delicious beverage, perfect for fall parties and get-togethers, is sure to put a spell on you.

10. Pumpkin Gooey Butter Bars

Ooey, gooey deliciousness, these butter bars are ones to share.

 

Taste of Thailand

What is it about Thai food that has so many of us enthralled? I can answer that with four words—hot, sour, salty, and sweet. In most Thai dishes you can find some kind of combination of all of these taste components. In addition to the contrast of flavors, you’ll also find a contrast of textures. How fun is that? Think for example of bright herbal soups, savory curries, crunchy salads, slurpy noodles, spicy dips, and beautiful tropical fruit to name a few.

Grab your Produce Passport and get ready to dive into the world of delicious Thai Produce!

Street food found in Thailand is some of the best in the world. Some favorites from my travels include spring rolls, grilled satay, salty fish cakes, and sweet sticky rice in baggies along with the best fried chicken I’ve ever eaten in my life.

Lucky for us, it’s easier nowadays than in years past to find the ingredients to recreate excellent Thai food in your own kitchen. Rice and mung bean noodles, curry pastes, coconut milk, fish sauce, and chili sauce are now common and you need to find some room for them in your pantry. Along with some fresh veggies and a variety of proteins, a taste of Thailand can be yours! So challenge yourself to roll up your sleeves and explore the incredible flavors that the cuisine of Thailand has to offer.

Curious about curries? Learn about the different types and how to use them!

Noodle on These 3 Recipes:

1. Pad Thai

2. Yum Woon Sen

3. Chicken Pad See Ew

 

Destination: Oaxaca, Mexico

Mexican food—who doesn’t like it? It’s a cuisine that’s embraced worldwide. Interestingly, Mexican cuisine was the first to be awarded an UNESCO Culinary Heritage Status. As we embark on a new Food Explorer destination this month, we’re especially drawn to the cooking coming out of Oaxaca, Mexico (pronounced Wa-ha-ka).

We’re not the only ones who are slightly obsessed with Oaxacan cuisine. American chefs, restaurateurs, and cookbook authors are heavily influenced by Oaxaca, including Rick Bayless, Alice Waters, and Diana Kennedy, to name a few. It’s become quite the trendy food-lover destination bringing in tourists to the region and flooding their food markets. Although we can’t hold a candle to that experience, we’re excited to bring our interpretation of some of these food experiences to DLM.

Oaxacan cuisine has a large variety of ingredients coming from mountain areas, central valleys, southern coastline, and in and around the capital city that shares its name. Think staples like not only corn and beans, but a variety of chiles and stunning produce, seafood, chocolate, avocados, cheeses, and even the smoky mezcal that heavily influences this cuisine. Other more exotic ingredients are the delicious, but not super attractive, corn fungus called  huitlacoche (or corn smut) and a small type of grasshopper called chapulín that is full of protein and plentiful to the area.

We especially love favorites from Oaxaca, such as tlayudas, tamales, quesadillas, black beans, and Oaxacan cheese, also known as quessillo. Chocolate also is plentiful, mostly drunk hot. But the primary focus and foundation of Oaxaca cooking is mole, see page 6 for more! We’re excited to explore Oaxaca and we hope you join us for the journey.

Click here for some recipes to try at home or ways you can bite into Oaxaca, Mexico, via DLM.

DLM Food Explorer Viva Italia

On my first trip to Italy some years ago, I was surprised to learn that Tuscans largely ignore balsamic vinegar, and Milanese favor rice over pasta. And right in between Milan and Tuscany you find many recognizable delicacies from lasagna to Prosciutto di Parma to balsamic vinegar in the region of Reggio Emilia. Hazelnuts are a big deal in the north and hot peppers in the south.

You learn that when speaking of Italy’s great food culture, it’s impossible to describe it without putting it in a regional context. Maybe it’s the Italian connection to the land, a long culinary history, or simply local pride. In any case, discovering the regional foods of Italy is both educational and incredibly fun. Over the years, so many of us at DLM have traveled to Italy to discover its food treasures, and we’ve made it a point to bring a number of those back to you.

You see Italy’s influence at DLM in the Italian products themselves, like our Vera Jane’s Extra-Virgin Olive Oil hailing from the hills of Tuscany or our Parmigiano-Reggiano from Modena. Other times, you’ll find its reach in the form of a technique we’ve learned from studying with Italian masters that we then replicate here, such as our DLM Handmade Mozzarella, Naples-Style Pizza, and Tuscan butcher-inspired specialty prepared meats, to name a few. As you can imagine, we could write a book on our passion for Italian food, but for the purpose of giving some focus, we are spotlighting a few regions of Italy that have inspired us the most: Tuscany, Campania, Emilia-Romagna, and Southern Italy, mainly Calabria and Sicily.

We’ll be celebrating Italy all month culminating with our Food Explorer Day taking place May 18. Join us for great fun and good Italian eating on our next stop as Food Explorers…buon appetito!

TUSCANY

FOOD

Vera Jane’s Extra-Virgin Olive Oil (GROCERY), Pane Toscano (BAKERY), Pecorino Toscano (THE DLM CHEESE SHOP), Italian Oven-Ready Meats (MEAT)

WINE

CAPPONE CHIANTI CLASSICO – Count Sebastiano Capponi is a dear friend to DLM, hailing from his lovely Tuscan estate that’s been in his family since 1524! This young-vine Chianti is named for the first ancestor of Sebastiano. It’s 100% Sangiovese, brimming with beautiful fruit and richness.

VILLA CALCINAIA CHIANTI CLASSICO RISERVA – 100% Sangiovese from the best blocks of old vines near Greve in Chianti. It’s a well-structured wine that’s full of rich black fruits, leather, spice, cigar box notes, and supple tannins.

FONTALEONI VERNACCIA DI SAN GIMIGNANO – A wonderfully dry, minerally, and extremely pleasing white wine from the surrounding vineyards of the hilltop town of San Gimignano.

CAMPANIA

FOOD

Naples-Style Pizza (DLM WASHINGTON SQUARE & SPRINGBORO), San Marzano Tomatoes D.O.P. (GROCERY), DLM Handmade Mozzarella (THE DLM CHEESE SHOP)

WINE

COLLI DI LAPIO ROMANO CLELIA FIANO DI AVELLINO – A white wine from the Avellino province and a varietal the Romans called Vitis Apiana, vine beloved of bees. It’s dry, lovely, and has hints of pear and hazelnut, floral tones, and a hint of minerality.

EMILIA-ROMAGNA

FOOD

Prosciutto di Parma (DELI), Mortadella (DELI), DLM Aged Balsamic Vinegar of Modena (GROCERY), Lasagna (GOURMET TAKEAWAY), Parmigiano-Reggiano (THE DLM CHEESE SHOP)

WINE

CASALI ROSA DI ROSA RED SPARKLING WINE – Perfect chilled with a plate of charcuterie enjoyed al fresco with its bright raspberry/blueberry fruit and soft bubbles.

LO DUCA LAMBRUSCO REGGIANO – Lambrusco does not exactly excite most after we’ve suffered so many terrible mass-produced and exported representations of this wine. However, Lo Duca is bright, semi-sweet, and has a naturally carbonated essence. Try it in a cocktail.

SOUTHERN ITALY (CALABRIA + SICILY)

FOOD

Cannoli (BAKERY), DLM Gelato (FROZEN), Scalia Anchovies (GROCERY), Marinated Anchovies (SEAFOOD BAR)

WINE

VILLA POZZI NERO D’AVOLA – The Pozzi family is a fifth-generation winemaking family located on the island of Sicily.

DONNAFUGATA ANTHILIA BIANCO – An amazingly crisp, minerally, and vibrant white wine blend from Sicily that’s perfect for light seafood dishes, salad, or poultry.

 

DLM at 70: A Culture of Good Food & People

People ask what the secret sauce is to DLM. Sure, there’s that touch of gourmet in addition to the everyday infused throughout every department (and no, it wasn’t always that way). There’s the friendly carryout who knows your kid’s name and never hesitates to offer the protection of an umbrella on a rainy day. There’s also the robust network of gourmands from faraway lands and local farmers whose bounty can be found at DLM.

But at the core of everything we do, there’s our history, which we hold near and dear. It’s real and rooted in humble beginnings built on friendship, hard work, and an unwavering sense of community; it’s not perfect, but it’s our history. We are proud of it and it has influenced much of who we are today, 70 years later.

We took a minute to reflect on that history and what has shaped the DLM culture, from cultivating a passion toward exploring good food to growing a family of associates, with many who have been here 25+ years. So take a minute to soak that in with the video below.

And to all of our customers and the community at large, thank you! Please  join us this weekend as we celebrate our 70th Anniversary at our 70th Anniversary Carnival happening 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11, followed by our DLM Good Neighbor 5K at 8:30 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 12.

Sip on This: Cold Brew Coffee

You’ve likely heard the trendy terms “cold brew coffee” or “coffee toddy.” The process behind it is different than what most of us think of when we hear “iced coffee.” To brew iced coffee, one would make extra strong hot coffee in a regular coffee maker then pour it over ice, thus both diluting the strong coffee and chilling it simultaneously. The cold brew method is different, and produces a beverage that’s smooth, strong, and delicious—never watered down.

We use a higher coffee to water ratio than we do for a typical brew, one pound of coffee per gallon of filtered water. The word “brew” in this case is deceiving as what really happens is the water and coffee steep at room temperature for eight to 12 hours before the grounds are strained out. The result is a cup of cold brew coffee that’ll give you a pep in your step. We are kicking up this cold brew experience with a twist. We’re tossing in chicory root with the coffee grounds and steeping them together, combining the New Orleans-inspired toddy with Vietnamese coffee-influenced sweetened condensed milk. Ask for The Big Easy.

Now for the best part: You’ve heard of a growler— the amber glass jug that craft beer enthusiasts love. Growlers aren’t just for beer. Purchase a growler or bring one from home and we’ll fill it with any of our iced drinks. Stop by the DLM Coffee Bar and see what the fuss is about. You’re gonna love it!