Monday, February 18, 2013

Say Something Good About Detroit: Pickles




Phil has to have a pickle for lunch. Anything pickled rates high with him. I am not sure how common a love of pickles is but Detroit has become a mini-center of pickle making in recent years.




Michiganders have a passion for pickles. It was in Detroit that a Croatian immigrant named Frank Vlasic got the idea in the 1920s that he should expand his cheese business to include pickles, too. By 1942, they had an idea to package the pickles in glass jars instead of buckets – and business took off.
The pickling-making tradition continues today, with several small artisanal companies popping up alongside larger pickle producers in recent years. If you haven't sampled the variety of pickles that Michigan has to offer, check out this list for ideas. And later this summer, maybe even consider swinging up to Linwood, Michigan (in Bay County) in August for its annual Pickle Festival. 

The number of new companies making pickles continues to grow. And although this may not save the city, it will serve our appetites well. Some of the newer local pickle companies include McClure's, The Brinery, Suddeny Sauer, Perkin's Pickles, Topor's, Hausbeck and of course Vlasic.

Most of this information came from DETROIT METRO PARENT.

Many pickle businesses where you live? Is it a national trend?


 

16 comments:

George said...

Western NY is a big pickle area, too. Most lunches in our fine restaurants come with pickles standard.

pattinase (abbott) said...

I don't think there is a lot of difference between western NY and eastern Michigan-seems like the same groups of people came here. Lots of Germans for instance.

Anonymous said...

New York hipsters are definitely into "artisanal pickles" - which would also be a good name for a rock band. But then, they are into artisanal anything...

I didn't realize Vlasic was a Detoit company.


Jeff M.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Yep. We still got a few.
It is freezing here, Jeff. Can't get warm. Came home to a dead battery and snow. Ugh!

Gerard said...

Up the road in Waterloo, WI is Van Holten's pickles. They make Pickle-In-A-Pouch that are individually bagged pickles sold in convenience stores, gas stations, and even military bases worldwide with sales of 23 million in 2011.

I never heard of them until a 2011 newspaper article in the Madison paper. http://host.madison.com/wsj/business/for-van-holten-s-pickles-are-a-growth-industry/article_cb9979aa-c920-11e0-b019-001cc4c002e0.html

pattinase (abbott) said...

I never heard of half of these not being a pickle aficionado particularly.

George said...

Plenty of Polish folks reside in Western NY. Some Germans, Greeks, and Latinos. The core of Buffalo is African-American. But everyone seems to enjoy pickles.

George said...

We woke up to a 7-degree temperature this morning, Patti. It's supposed to warm up to the 30s, but single digit temps are brutal.

RkR said...

Sounds like someone needs a trickle charger for President's Day.

I like a crispy, crunchy pickle spear or whole pickle once in a while, in spite of the high salt content, usually with a sandwich or with (don't ask me why) tomato soup.

Thomas Pluck said...

I've tried some artisanal small picklers- even one made with Dogfish head beer hops- but I always go back to a snappy half-sour from NY local Ba-Tampte pickles.
Love 'em.
http://www.batamptepickle.com/

Katherine Tomlinson said...

The south is big on pickles and we don't stop with cucumbers. No holiday meal is complete without pickled peaches and pickled crabapples. Both my grandmothers made pickles--dill and sweet--as well as chow chow and chile sauce. And watermelon rind pickles!! The only company that makes those commercially overdoses on the cinnamon and makes them sweet as candy. My grandmothers are turning over in the graves!

Erik Donald France said...

I love it ~! Pickled pink ;->

Pickles in PA, pickles in North Carolina (Mt. Olive).

Did you ever hear of the Purple Pickle? There used to be one where the old Wooden Nickel eatery building is on Mack Avenue, a Kerouac hang.

Anonymous said...

Of course Down South also features deep fried pickles - not that there's anything wrong with that.

Patti, sorry to hear about the weather. We had our "cold spell" yesterday (low 44, high 58) and today (about 70) but will be up near 80 the rest of the week. Next year Florida is the answer.

Trust me.


Jeff M.

pattinase (abbott) said...

This is Michigan, Jeff. Maybe Florida is the answer because I know Michigan is not.

pattinase (abbott) said...

Wooden Nickle is now a sushi place, Erik. How times change!

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Indians, especially south Indians, love pickles. Their plate of food is never complete without a liberal serving of lemon or raw mango pickles. It goes best with curd rice. We get hundreds of varieties of pickles, the more homemade, the better they taste.