Mastro Company Newsletter May 2016 (V. 1, No. 1)
Welcome to the inaugural Mastro Company Newsletter! Mastro Company works directly with artists and small-scale producers to cultivate products that will evolve over generations. Each month we will original articles, company updates and product news. If you like what you see please share on Facebook or simply forward this link to a friend.
Cultivating Authenticity in the Kitchen
After a winter eating cellared potatoes, the spring radishes at the market look almost exotic, an uncanny juxtaposition of tender greens and stout bright roots that stand out among the mass of spring sprouts and lettuces.
They’re one of the first things we pick up at the beginning of the season. Market radishes taste as they should, every bite a peppery jolt. It’s the same with other produce. The green onions are edgy and sweet. Salad turnips slice like butter. Market produce is true to its own nature.
It’s the same with our best kitchen tools. We like a knife that acts like a knife should, one that stays balanced against the fingers and palm and remains sharp, from julienning to gristle trimming and back again. When an implement performs well, we remember it—its weight and gloss and utility.
Chances are, you have very few kitchen items that are satisfying to use. Every item in your kitchen came from somewhere and chances are, the ones that are mass-produced don’t bring you joy. Many won’t last long enough for them to matter.
It doesn’t have to be this way. The items we use every day can become as much a part of our story as the food we post and share. Kitchen items are personal by nature. You chop herbs while a child tells you how the math exam went. You study the handle of the wooden spoon while you mull over a problem at work. You toss the salad as you sing along with your playlist. Good tools will accompany you more reliably and with more longevity than your furniture, your shoes or your cars. Scaling up is an investment in the small tasks that matter the most.
Why, then, don’t more home cooks own quality tools that feel just right? Because they’re hard to find. Common stores don’t carry uncommon items. And internet searches are time-consuming and undependable. Unless you inherit them, where will you find tools that function like old-world treasures?
There’s only one reliable answer that we’ve found. Fine kitchen goods, like small-batch sauerkraut or preserves, come directly from the people who make them. A handcrafted item is made, not produced en masse, by an artist who cares about the grade of steel, the grain of the wood, the shape of a bowl.
Artists and makers are able to imagine something other than an ordinary wooden spoon or a mediocre cutting board that’s prone to warping. Without the constraints of mass production, they’re free to focus on function. The amount of attention and care put into making their tools matches both your dedication to cooking and deep affinity for the food you put on your table. When you bring an artist’s creation home and use it, you support the artist as well as your own cooking skills. Using beautiful, long-lasting items honors the process of finding, purchasing, preparing, and serving good food.
There are thousands of independent craftspeople out there out there, and some create higher quality goods than others. Finding the best takes time. At Mastro Company, we’ve spent hundreds of hours meeting artists, testing their tools, and collaborating with our favorites to create a selection of beautiful, functional, high-quality kitchen implements that will inspire you to create beautiful meals. We’re in it for the long run. Consider us your scouts.
Learn about the authentic kitchen goods in our online store and get started on your new collection. And if you love what you see, tell the other home cooks in your life. We bet they’ll love these items as much as you do.
Until next time,
The Mastro Team
New: Sake Serving Set by Lynne Tan
New: Hand Hammered Measuring Cups
Coming Soon: Bourbon Toasting Glasses
Dishing up the Dirt Cookbook
Andrea Bemis calls Our Berti Knife the "Best knife ever!". We could not agree more!
Andrea and her husband live on a 6 acre organic vegetable farm (Tumbleweed Farm) in beautiful Parkdale, Oregon.
More Stomach Blog Recipe Feature
Lan Pham has been writing since 2008 on her blog www.morestomach.com. She has traveled extensively and grew up with parents in the foreign service. Her recipes are an eclectic mix of flavors and ingredients. Not to mention some great photography. Check out the recipe she developed for our large Eshelman Casserole dish.
Fork to Belly Recipe feature
Courtney Chun from Fork To Belly created a Lemon Sugar Scone Mix Recipe featuring our wooden spatula. This was a Mother's Day post but we think it is a great gift/project all year round. As we move into farmers market season plenty of opportunities to customize it with whatever fruit you have on hand.
Sake Serving Set
A new piece from artist Lynn Tan, our handmade ceramic Sake Serving Set is burst of color with an understated level of craftsmanship. The purple "basin" cover is thrown upside down on the wheel as a single piece with no joints. The glaze for each cellar is applied one at a time by the artist and has a unique texture pattern. Click here to learn more
Design: An exclusive collaboration with Mastro Company. Each piece is signed by the artist.
Material: Whitestoneware, Matte and Translucent lead free glaze
Source: Michigan, United States
Hand Hammered Measuring Cups
Set of 5 Copper Measuring Cups by artist Ben Caldwell is hand crafted and unique. Note the detailed hammer work and the different facets from each hammer strike. Each set is made to order so please allow 2-3 weeks for delivery.
Materials: Handworked copper with brass rivets
Design: Ben Caldwell
Source: Nashville, TN
Coming Soon: Bourbon Toast Glasses
Our original flame design was featured in several holiday gift guides and quickly sold out. Coming soon are two new colors based on the original form. Each glass is hand blown and finished in Chicago. Click here for more info
Materials: Hand blown glass
Design: Mastro Company Original
Source: Chicago. IL