What’s Cooking in Brooklyn? Five Exciting Vendors to Look Out for at Brooklyn Eats 2017!

Brooklyn’s largest food and beverage trade show is back June 23, 2017 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge. Last year, 1,000 hungry New Yorkers had the opportunity to take their taste buds on adventures as Brooklyn Eats hosted over 100 exhibitors to showcase the many sweet, spicy, savory and unique flavors of Brooklyn.

While the show is aimed at local and regional buyers/distributors, restaurateurs and consumers, we want to welcome every hungry foodie across the Brooklyn Bridge to check out what’s cooking in Brooklyn!

Brooklyn Eats is free to tradespeople and open to the public for a $10 fee, so ditch your monotonous lunch plans on Friday, June 23, and join us as we indulge in these local sips and eats!


Zesty Z: The Za’atar Co.

We spoke to Alexander Harik, the foodie founder who launched the za’atar company Zesty Z in 2016 with his mother, Lorraine, aka “Zesty Mom,” to learn more about what za’atar is and why we cannot wait for you to taste it at Brooklyn Eats.

Mother/Son Co-Founders Lorraine & Alexander Harik. Lorraine also goes by "Zesty Mom" !
Mother/Son Co-Founders Lorraine & Alexander Harik. Lorraine also goes by “Zesty Mom” !

So, what is Za’atar?

“Za’atar is a cultural food staple in the Mediterranean/Middle East. It’s a dry herb mix made from wild thyme and other spices native to the region.  Millions of people use it to flavor their food or cook with.

Our first product is a spread/condiment that uses herbs from the Middle East, extra virgin olive oil, and sesame seeds. Customers enjoy “Gettin Zesty” as a spread with cheese boards, but also as a condiment to add guilt free yet awesome Mediterranean flavor to any meal.

Our product is all natural, GF, plant based, sugar free, and low sodium. The best part is you never refrigerate a jar even after opening, and it lasts for a year! Olive oil keep it fresh, so it won’t spoil or be forgotten like other spreads or condiments”

How did the idea of starting a za’atar company in Brooklyn come about?

I grew up enjoying the awesome flavor and versatility of za’atar​. We had the dry mix in our spice cabinet and a bowl of the​ Lebanese style za’atar spread on the kitchen table.

The Zesty Z moment hit me when I was at home visiting my parents. I was mentioning how cool it was to see za’atar in NYC restaurants, food blogs, and national publications as an ingredient. There was a pause in the conversation, and I glanced at the bowl of za’atar spread and then it hit me. If America embraced hummus and thick yogurts over the past 20 years, there was a chance they’d embrace za’atar too!”

Why are you participating in this year’s Brooklyn Eats?
“Zesty Z is America’s first za’atar Brand, and we’re proud to call Brooklyn home. We want to continue to showcase Zesty Z to our local community!”


Island Pops

As the temperatures keep climbing closer to 100 degrees, we are excited to share some cold favorites of ours will be joining Brooklyn Eats 2017 as well. We reached out to Island Pops owners Khalid and Shelly Hamid, to learn more about the mouthwatering frozen treats that will send your taste buds on a vacation.

Courtesy of Island Pops
Courtesy of Island Pops


What are Island Pops and how did the company get started?

“Island Pops is an artisanal Brooklyn-based company that creates tropical flavored ice cream, ice pops and snow cones. Our products are handcrafted in small batches with the purest of Caribbean grown ingredients, resulting in high quality, robust flavors.

We loved ice cream and noticed that we couldn’t find premium Caribbean ice cream in New York, [so we] decided to make our own ice cream for friends and family. This led to the birth of Island Pops.”

Why are you excited to participate in this year’s Brooklyn Eats?

“We are in the midst of re-branding and launching new packaging for our ice cream pints and would love to debut it at Brooklyn Eats. We feel that it would be a great way to get feedback from our customers, wholesalers, distributors, etc.”

What will you bring to Brooklyn Eats next week?

“We will be exhibiting our premium ice cream and our new line of alcoholic ice pops (abv 3-5%)!”

Courtesy of Island Pops
Courtesy of Island Pops



Brooklyn Delhi

Hungry yet? Good! We met with local foodie, cookbook author and chef Chitra Agrawal from Brooklyn Delhi to learn more about how we can explore premium Indian home cooking in the heart of Downtown Brooklyn on June 23rd.

What is Brooklyn Delhi all about?

“Brooklyn Delhi is the first premium food brand to combine Indian home cooking, ethical sourcing practices and clean ingredients on supermarket shelves. Brooklyn Delhi produces innovative Indian condiments called achaar, a pickled chili sauce made from fresh produce and spices. Our unique recipes result in versatile and addictive flavors that can turn any simple meal into an extraordinary one. Brooklyn Delhi achaars have been featured in the New York Times, Saveur, Food & Wine, among others.”

Photo by Elizabeth Graham Chitra Agrawal creates her Brooklyn Delhi south Indian sauces in a church kitchen in Williamsburg.
Photo by Elizabeth Graham
Chitra Agrawal creates her Brooklyn Delhi south Indian sauces in a church kitchen in Bed-Stuy.

When and how did the idea of starting Brooklyn Delhi come about?

“I’ve been serving, writing about and teaching Indian vegetarian cooking since 2009. I just came out with my first cookbook called Vibrant India: Fresh Vegetarian Recipes from Bangalore to Brooklyn with Penguin Random House. I actually developed the recipes at Brooklyn Delhi when I realized you could not find a homemade tasting achaar in the US.

Achaar is a staple Indian condiment and one that I have been obsessed with since I was young. The flavor is a mix of savory, sour, sweet and spicy, and I pretty much put it on everything I eat. I started making achaar from local produce and serving it to my students and at my pop-up dinners. My husband saw what a great response my achaar was receiving and offered to design the packaging since he’s a food packaging designer. The rest is history!”

So now that you have made us hungry, what will you exhibit at Brooklyn Eats?
“We’ll be exhibiting our three achaar flavors: tomato, roasted garlic and rhubarb ginger.”

Courtesy of Brooklyn Delhi
Courtesy of Brooklyn Delhi


Mike’s Hot Honey

Love honey? Like it hot? Well, this is going to be one of your new favorites! Unlike other condiments, Mike’s Hot Honey is a dynamic condiment perfect for pizza, chicken, ribs, biscuits, salads, fruits, cheeses, cocktails, marinades and even ice cream. We met with Mike Kurtz, who established the brand in 2011, to learn more about how the honey is made and what we should look for at his booth at Brooklyn Eats!

Courtesy of Mike’s Hot Honey
Courtesy of Mike’s Hot Honey

Where does the honey come from?
“Mike’s Hot Honey is made with wildflower honey harvested from New York apiaries. We are proud to support local beekeepers and their hives.”

Why are you participating in this year’s Brooklyn Eats?

“It’s a great opportunity for us to connect with and have meaningful conversations with buyers about selling our products.  Unlike the bigger trade shows where face time with buyers is limited and everyone seems to be in a rush, Brooklyn Eats is much [more intimate] and more focused and it gives local brands like ours a chance to spend quality time with key buyers outside of the chaos of the Fancy Food Show.”

Courtesy of Mike’s Hot Honey
Courtesy of Mike’s Hot Honey

What products will we see at Brooklyn Eats?  

“We’ll be showcasing our full line-up of pack sizes for Mike’s Hot Honey, our signature chili pepper-infused honey.  We recently underwent a comprehensive brand refresh so we’ll be able to show our new packaging and pack sizes to buyers, including our single-serving, to-go packets, 1.88-ounce glass mini jars, 12-ounce retail bottles, 24-ounce Chef’s food service bottle and bulk 12 pound / 1 gallon jugs.”


Café Grumpy

A tad tired from all the delicious bites? A local favorite from Greenpoint, Brooklyn will keep you caffeinated throughout this exciting day! We spoke to the Brooklynite, CEO and Founder behind the quirky yet “grumpy” brand launched in 2005, Caroline Bell.

Courtesy Café Grumpy
Courtesy Café Grumpy

When and how did the idea of starting Café Grumpy come about?
“We started Café Grumpy with the simple dream of creating a place where everyone would feel welcome and where they could get a great, quality cup of coffee.”

Why are you participating in this year’s Brooklyn Eats?
“We are excited to participate in Brooklyn Eats again this year to showcase our cold brew bottled beverage line, as well as our coffee beans. We love to talk with people about our coffee and to meet other companies making great tasting things in Brooklyn!”

Courtesy Café Grumpy
Courtesy Café Grumpy

What will we sip on at Brooklyn Eats?

“We will be giving out samples of our cold brew ready-to-drink beverage, and our cold brew + milk beverage and will also be brewing some of our favorite coffee selections from our menu like Las Flores from Honduras.”

Brooklyn Eats Flyer

Are you a food blogger? Send an email to anilsen@brooklynchamber.com for more information on how you can get the most out of Brooklyn Eats!

Brooklyn Eats is presented through the generous support of sponsors, both houses of the New York State Legislature and the New York City Council. The cost to exhibitors is nominal and includes a one year membership to the Brooklyn Chamber to allow growing food businesses to access Chamber services all year round.