Bucket & Bay Honored to be 1 of 100 Top Rated Small Businesses in the US

Many thanks to you, our great customers!

We have been selected to represent New Jersey at the Yelp Coast-to-Coast event at Yelp HQ in San Francisco this week!

Thanks to Yelp.com for honoring us as 1 of the 100 top rated businesses! Looking forward to meeting the other outstanding craftsmen, including NYC local food entrepreneurs: John from Beehive Oven, Dave from Calexico NYC & Julie from JoJu

 
 

Check us out on YELP!

5 things I was surprised to learn about milk

 
Cows have evolved as ruminants, with special stomachs to digest grass, not corn, or soy.

Cows have evolved as ruminants, with special stomachs to digest grass, not corn, or soy.

 

Milk is the foundation of our creative gelato infusions and important both in terms of taste, and healthiness. Jen wanted the best milk possible.

The search was not easy.  After a series of discussions with other food makers, our friend Jonathan from Bobolink Dairy led us to a cooperative of farmers 2 hours away from Jersey City in Ronks, PA: Oasis at Bird In Hand. Follow us for a discussion with Dale who manages this amazing dairy initiative.

INTERVIEW with Dale from Oasis at Bird-in-Hand

BORIS: ORGANIC VS 100% GRASS FED MILK, WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE?

Dale: Our grass-fed milk is organic too. But organic milk is not grass-fed. I grew up on a farm. A real farm. In the summer the cows were on meadows, but for most of the year they were kept inside and fed chopped corn, and dried grain. Were our cows grass fed?  Yeah. But not all the time. Organic milk, even if labelled as grass-fed usually means the cows graze for 4-5 months only. You have to make sure your milk is 100% grass fed.

 
The beautiful grass (and flowers) that our grass fed cows eat. No SOY. NO CORN.

The beautiful grass (and flowers) that our grass fed cows eat. No SOY. NO CORN.

 

B: Why are not all cows grass-fed?

D: Because they produce less milk. The food that they eat on the pasture is higher quality and full of nutrients, but it does not stimulate milk production as much. That is why most cows are fed with “high-energy” feeds made out of corn and soy.

B: Why is it important to be 100% grass-fed?

D: The quality of grass-fed milk is much better. Compared to regular milk, 100% grass-fed milk is significantly richer in omega-3 fats, vitamin E, and beta-carotene. The butterfat content in our milk is also higher, which is a sign of good milk. It is 4-4.5%, while conventional cows produce more milk, but diluted, with fat content around 3.0%, and significantly lower quality. Butterfat contains Vitamins A & D which help the assimilation of calcium and protein. Without those, the calcium is more difficult to assimilate and possibly even toxic. (Learning #1: 100% Grass fed milk is what milk should be. It is the highest quality milk and it is good for you, but it is also really hard to make)

B: Why do your cows not have black and white spots like most other cows? (Fun observation!)

D: We do not use Holestein cows, which are your popular black and white cows. They are bred to be the highest-production dairy animals is in the world. Modern farming has lots of focus on high production.  All the effort in science labs is for higher volume of food, with little care about the nutritional value of this modern food. At Oasis we are concerned about the nutritional value.

We have a mix of “heritage breeds” such as Linebacks and Jersey cows, as well as some mixed breeds. Jersey cows, for example, produce a higher butter fat than most other breeds. They do not give as much milk… so the volume of milk in our herd is not as large as conventional herds. (Learning #2: Most milk in the US is pushed for higher volume production, which decreases the nutritional value of milk)

B: Does 100% grass fed milk taste better?

D: It does. Grass fed milk has a fuller flavor, in particular if it has all its butter fat… and we leave it that way.

But taste is very personal. Some people are used to conventional milk and do not like the 100% grass-fed whole milk. My grandson, who is 5 years old, drinks 100% grass-fed milk every day. He grew up on it. When he tasted one day conventional store bought milk he immediately asked what was wrong with it?

Organic whole milk is usually not full fat milk. It is skimmed, even if it is called “whole milk”.

B: What do you mean? Whole milk is skimmed?

D: The FDA requires whole milk to be 3.5% fat. If the industrial Holsteins produce milk that is 3.6% fat, the producers will skim the extra 0.1% and make butter out of it, as they can still call 3.5% milk whole milk. (Learning #3: You need butterfat to absorb better calcium, but most milk in the US is skimmed )

B: Is your milk pasteurized?

D: Yes. But we do it very gently. Most milk you buy in the store is pasteurized using ultra high temperature (UHT) which basically means they take the milk up to 280 F for a short period of time, killing all live cultures.

The result is that the milk lasts longer, 2-3 months, but UHT destroys the nutritional value of the milk and makes it harder to digest. At Oasis we use vat pasteurization, where we heat the milk at the low temperature - 145F - for 30 minutes. Vat pasteurization, takes longer but allows some of the good cultures in the milk to survive, while still eliminating the risk from pathogens. (Learning #4: Milk naturally has good bacteria, unfortunately most milk in the US is over-treated, making it harder to digest and less nutritional )

Our milk is also non-homogenized - so the cream separates and rises to the top. Fat molecules float naturally, forming a cream on the top. So you want to shake it up before serving. Conventional diary bought in the store is “homogenized” - they break up the fat molecules under duress, for convenience sake, so they break down and rearrange the fat proteins in the milk. If you want to eat closer to nature -less processed food- unhomogenized milk is the way to go.  And you will enjoy the beauty of some cream on top, that you have to shake up. (Learning #5: Unhomogenized milk is more natural, learn to love the cream that separates, and just shake it)

B: How do cows eat grass in the winter?

D: Our cows are out on the pasture, not kept in confinement. In the winter time, only when the weather is really really bad, they are kept in the barns to shield them from the storms. The cows live in harmony with nature.

During the winter we supplement their diet with hay that we make on our farms. Our farms are farmed with horses, which is an important consideration in regards to the carbon footprint, which is very very minimal.

 
Here is who makes the winter snack for the pretty 100% grass-fed cows! With a green carbon footprint.

Here is who makes the winter snack for the pretty 100% grass-fed cows! With a green carbon footprint.

 

B: When was the cooperative started?

D: The creamery started in July 2012… The farmers made milk before that and were shipping it to other diaries. But as a cooperative, they can now receive the recognition for creating real food and educate about its benefits.

B: Thank you so much Dale! And thanks to the farmers that work hard to bring us the best milk possible!

Made to last, a leather maker duo from Jersey City

You may recognize Chris and Kirk as the brothers from the cover of the founding issue of Eighty Mag. For us, they are part of a daily routine - we see them every day, passing in front of our store, walking to their atelier, waving a friendly hello, and always smiling. So we decided to invite Billykirk to kick off the Cross-Craft pop-up store at Bucket & Bay.

Here is a short introduction to these two Jersey City artisans.

Chris (left) and Kirk (right) Bray  have been working in the commercial studios at 150 Bay street for more than 5 years, before that they used to work out of Kirk's studio at 140 Bay.

Chris (left) and Kirk (right) Bray  have been working in the commercial studios at 150 Bay street for more than 5 years, before that they used to work out of Kirk's studio at 140 Bay.

Their craft maker story started more than 15 years ago, on the west coast, almost accidentally. Kirk purchased a vintage watch strap from an antique store, and after receiving many compliments on it, he talked his brother Chris into starting a business, making watch straps and other unique leather products.

B: OK, so you liked the strap, but why did you think you have the talent to make leather goods?

Ch: Our dad use to make leather scabbards, we were making all sort of leather stuff when we were little, so it was not a long stretch to make a little leather strap. It is just like a small belt. We knew we could make that.

B: What products did you initially start with?

Ch: The first product was wide watch straps and leather cuffs. We had 3 different widths and 3 different colors, a very small collection to start with in 1999.

K: Our collection now is still not very big, as we are a small operation, but we have more products, both from leather and canvas, all handmade in the US. And we use hide from tanneries, and hardware made in the US.

(BTW Kirk is a local artist whose work is on show often in Jersey City, currently displayed at the Hamilton Square Gallery located at 232 Pavonia Ave. through August.)

Billykirk atelier at the landmark Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company Headquarters in the Powerhouse District, Jersey City

Billykirk atelier at the landmark Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company Headquarters in the Powerhouse District, Jersey City

B: What was your first order?

Beyond friends and family, our first store was a place called Cricket West, in Ohio. We just went to a trade show and we got lucky, our product was unique and we got a deal. It was pretty exciting! We were still finalizing our logo and product, and then we got the first order, so it was quite encouraging..

B: What is on your logo?

K: A hammer and a mallet.

B: What is a mallet?

K: A weighted hammer with a leather around it…. It is weighted, so it is easier to work with for punching things.

Here it is a mallet, in the hands of Chris Bray.

Here it is a mallet, in the hands of Chris Bray.

B: What inspires your designs?

We are inspired by vintage, and in particularly military stuff… they made everything so well in the military – so functional and durable. Our most memorable vintage find was a military map case, which we loved so much that we used it as a model for some of our hardware.

B: When did you come to Jersey City

Ten years ago, in 2005. We had just relocated from California, and were looking for a place… we were looking at Brooklyn and Manhattan, but then we stumbled upon Jersey City and it fit well!

B: Making a finished product requires a lot of skills, what is your favorite?

K: I like the stitching of the wallets. It took us a while to figure out how to stitch it right, but it is pretty satisfying, pretty quick, and satisfying as the finished product looks so good.

Ch: I like to stamp names, gives it a nice personal touch, which adds extra meaning to the item. But we do not do much of that as it adds a lot of logistics and planning.

B: Give me one cool Jersey City story.

K: Chris found a mortar shell in while working in his garden.

Ch: Yeah, it’s a 12 Pound Revolutionary War cannon ball. There was a lot of revolutionary activity in  Jersey City. It now sits on my mantel.  It was likely fired from Communipaw Cove by a British Gun Boat.  These 12 pounders could go up to 2 miles and my house at the time was less than 2 miles from that location.

A final look at the studio, with the classic picture of brotherly work on the wall. Working together for more than 10 years, every day.

A final look at the studio, with the classic picture of brotherly work on the wall. Working together for more than 10 years, every day.

 

B: Great,  thank you and thanks for helping us start the pop up series at Bucket & Bay!

You can find a curated selection of Billykirk items in our gelato cafe! Come check them out now! For a more comprehensive dive into their collection, you can go to their Flagship Store/ Showroom in the Lower East Side 16 Orchard Street, NY, NY 10002

A REAL CUP OF COFFEE, YOUNG, FRESH, MODCUP STYLE

(PART 2 conversation with modcup)

In Part 1, we looked at how modcup selects the best coffee beans from around the world. In Part 2 we continue the conversation and look at what else we need to make a real good cup of coffee.

CONTINUED

Do you sell only single origin coffee?

We also make also 3 blends.

Why do you blend coffee beans?

Blending coffee beans historically was done to disguise poor coffee.

Here is an example of what I mean. You might have heard about the great coffee region called Kona coffee.  If you see a bag in a store that says Kona blend it means it has to only have about 10% Kona coffee in it to use the word Kona. And the other 90% of coffee used in the blend? Who knows where that is from? So blending was typically done to disguise that coffee and reduce the cost.

However, we use blending more as a chef uses a recipe to achieve a specific profile.

 
Freshly roasted coffee @ modcup

Freshly roasted coffee @ modcup

 

We have 3 blends

·       One blend for drip coffee with milk

·       We do an espresso blend which you use in espresso machines

·       And then we do a cold brew blend

What does real coffee taste like?

Once this guy invited me to what he said is a “real cup” of coffee that he said wouldn't need cream or sugar. I tried it and he was absolutely correct.

The supply structure of the coffee industry is set up to supply you with coffee past its peak freshness. It gets roasted, bagged, and stocked on shelves, and it sits on the shelves for a year, in some cases two years before it gets ground and brewed.

If you really want to truly enjoy the intricate flavor of coffee it must be consumed within a maximum of 18 days after it has been roasted otherwise all of the flavors dissipate and oxidize. So what many roasters have done for many years knowing their coffee will sit on the shelves for more than a year, is impart a roast flavor into the coffee beans.

 
Small batch distribution ensures fresh coffee in your cup.

Small batch distribution ensures fresh coffee in your cup.

 

Well that is not the flavor of coffee. Coffee is one of the most complex fruits known to man. It is actually the seed of a fruit, a little coffee cherry, not a bean plant. But you will only ever get a chance to taste the full complexity of coffee if you drink it after soon after roasting.

So is your coffee a medium roast?

Roast levels are not important when you are dealing with a truly fresh product that you are serving within a truly fresh window. We roast appropriately according to the regions that the coffee comes from. Regions (and not roast level) are way more important to us. And then if you want to really jump down the rabbit hole, how the coffee cherry is processed is even more important!!

So at modcup we would rather have a discussion on region of the coffee bean and the processing of the coffee cherry, (btw processing is how the farmer at source gets the cherry off the coffee bean.) All this will have more to do with the flavor and taste than a roast level.

 
 

What are the Global trends?

The western world in the 21st century is moving towards specialty coffee just like they moved towards specialty wines in the 80’s.  But we have a ways to go to catch up with the wine industry. They are 30 years ahead of educating their customer base. The UK for example still has horrible specialty coffee. It is still an instant coffee culture. They consume more instant coffee than any place on the planet, but in places like London that is starting to change slightly.

Australians have always had a super high end espresso culture. Remember Australia had waves of Greek and Italian immigration after the second world war. They have always had a super espresso culture. But even there you see brewed coffee gaining popularity now.

 
Modcup_JerseyCity_SpecialtyCoffee_20150315_49.jpg
 

What is a flat white?

Flat white is an Australian (originally New Zealand) name given to an espresso beverage with textured milk. At ModCup we treat all espresso beverages as what they are: espresso plus milk. All shots are doubles and then you the consumer gets to choose whether you want to compliment with milk and if you do how much milk, 4oz 6oz or 10oz. . We don’t get into the names of drinks like cappuccino, latté, and flat white. We think that is confusing to the consumer and the definition of a cappuccino is different from one person to the other. By letting them know how much milk we are adding to the espresso, we offer the customers a more informed choice.

What do you mean when you say brewed coffee?

"Brewed" is coffee that is brewed in a number of ways: drip, full immersion like a French press, or an aero press.

Full immersion techniques will bring out more body in the coffee whereas a drip coffee will highlight more acidity and top notes. So full immersion, like a french press, will be better if you want to drink it with milk because the body comes forward. Whereas with the drip coffee, not so much. It is lighter bodied and higher on acidity and top notes, therefore is a better method for drinking black coffee.

 

Bringing out the best of each coffee requires during roasting requires constant attention

 

What are some of the challenges in running a commercial coffee roastery?

We only are dealing with the top 5 % coffees in the world

  1. So the 1st thing is in the sourcing of the actual green coffee. Sticking with our mantra of freshness, almost all green coffee we buy must be within a 9 month window of the coffee being harvested so it has not sat in a warehouse. You know that some of the coffee out there can sit in a warehouse for up to 8 years before it gets to the consumer? So the first challenge is making sure you get the freshest and best coffee into the door.
  2. The second challenge is roasting it appropriately to bring out what that specific region is known for or highlighting the specific processing technique the farmer used .
  3. And then of course the third biggest challenge for any wholesale account we are working with, they have to serve it truly fresh coffee. They have to stick to our mantra by buying smaller amounts from us rather than larger quantities that stay on the shelves for two months.

 So who is ready to serve fresh coffee?

WE ARE!

Thanks to Travas and Justin for the inspiring attention to detail and the good seeds they roast.

 
 

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You have a nose for wine ... But are you ready for coffee?

(PART 1 Conversation with modcup)

As we are preparing to open our craft gelato café, Bucket & Bay, one of the most amazing things that has happened is getting to know other artisans with a passion for good food. A recent visit to modcup’s Jersey City roastery and a conversation with Travas took us on an unexpected tour around the world of coffee. We’d like you to join!

 
Visiting Justin & Travas (in the back) from modcup - a specialty coffee roastery in Jersey City

Visiting Justin & Travas (in the back) from modcup - a specialty coffee roastery in Jersey City

 

Where did you taste your first cup of coffee?

I come from the UK which did not have much of a coffee culture when I was growing up. I drank coffee with cream and sugar to mask the bitterness. That bitterness is due to the poor quality of the coffee beans used in the UK and in the whole of Europe for that matter. They tend to use the robusta variety which is a lower elevation, harsher coffee.

How did you discover specialty coffee?

We happened to be renting an apartment in Toronto next to a guy who runs a specialty coffee roastery. I was hooked. And when I came back to Jersey City, the only way to indulge my increasingly large coffee habit was to open a coffee roasting company of my own.

What was your first step for roasting your own coffee?

I wanted to focus on freshly roasted coffee. Most coffee that people consume is not freshly roasted, and as a result is stale, flat and incredibly bitter. Coffee is a perishable product - the same way that bread is. Once you put green coffee beans through the roasting process they go through the same chemical reactions as dough when it is baked. And just like baked bread roasted coffee goes stale in a short time frame after the roasting process.

So I thought the best way to sell the concept of freshly roasted coffee was to roast live in front of people out of a vintage truck. This little project of course took a lot longer than we thought it would. (Ed. Note:sounds familiar!) 

 
Travas, packing fresh coffee beans with the Citroen truck in the back.

Travas, packing fresh coffee beans with the Citroen truck in the back.

 

And then I met Justin at a coffee conference in San Francisco. We had the same ideas, so he moved to the east coast, I got us a cart while we waited for the truck, we got a mobile license and things started moving. We started selling coffee on the streets in Hoboken in 2012 , and then came to Jersey City, where we both live.

What are some of the obstacles you have encountered so far?

Jersey City historically was an Italian immigrant hot bed, and as a result there was a passion for a dark roasted coffee, which we do not even contemplate doing. And we are not alone. If you look at all the specialty companies from the west coast at the end of 1990s, back then they never got into darkly roasted coffee because it kills the wonderfully complex coffee flavors attributable to the region of growth.

 
Justin had been involved with specialty coffee for 7 years, before he partnered with Travas in 2012 to bring the taste to Jersey City

Justin had been involved with specialty coffee for 7 years, before he partnered with Travas in 2012 to bring the taste to Jersey City

 

People still come in and ask, “Can I have a good dark roast?”.  In our opinion those words don’t go together. Or we will be asked “Can I have a good, strong, dark roast? The darkest you have, I need a pick me up.” Again “strong”, “pick me up”, and ”dark roast” do not belong in the same sentence. The longer you roast a coffee bean not only do you strip it of all of its wonderful complexity, but you also strip it of its caffeine too. 

So if Dark Roasts are the enemy of good coffee why is that so many other roasters still do them and market them?

 There are two reasons why roasters will darkly roast green coffee:

1.      One is to hide the fact that the green coffee they buy into is of a poor quality and has very little flavor to begin with, therefore they impart a flavor into it by roasting it for a long time. Some people trace this practice to Italy.  Several centuries ago, when coffee got to Europe, Italians were not the wealthiest country in Europe. So they bought inexpensive poor quality coffee, and they developed roasting profiles on it to make it punchy and flavorful.

2.      The second reason Roasters roast on the darker side of the spectrum is to create a consistency in their coffee offerings and perhaps most importantly to extend its shelf life. The carbon flavor imparted onto the bean during a darker roast stays on the coffee bean forever, while the complex natural flavor will not last that long. We at modup say that innate complex natural flavor inherent to the coffee bean will remain with the coffee up to around 18 days after the roast date.

Changing habits and perceptions is tough and most coffee companies out there do not want to engage the public in a discussion about what good coffee is. They would rather find out what the customers are already looking for and pander to established long held views, views that we as company do not support.

Where do you get good beans?

In our roastery right now, we have 4-6 kinds of single origin beans.  We use importers but we also directly trade with 2 farms:  one in Colombia, one in El Salvador, and we are now looking to develop a relationship with farmers in Burundi.

 
Coffee waiting its turn to get roasted at modcup.  Calera (on the left) is a small farm in El Salvador from which  modcup buys coffee directly.

Coffee waiting its turn to get roasted at modcup.  Calera (on the left) is a small farm in El Salvador from which  modcup buys coffee directly.

 

What is a “single origin” coffee? Is that better?

When we say “single origin” we mean one farm, one farmer, and in some cases one specific lot in that farm. So you know what you are getting. There is a traceability.

All coffee in the world is scored and graded.  A Q grader assigns a score based on a number of factors such as body, acidity, mouth-feel, after taste etc. The lowest score a coffee can receive is 70, even the worst cup of coffee you ever had scored at least 70!

  • The crappiest coffee is in the 70-75 range, which is what you get at diners
  • Grades between 75 and 80 are what they call good commercial grade, think most big brands here, like Dunkin.
  • 90% of all coffee scores below 80. Coffee that starts at 80 and scores between 80 and 85 is what they call specialty coffee, and where you see most of the specialty coffee brands buying, like Starbucks.
  • Anything that scores 85 to 90 is what they call true specialty coffee. Think any specialty third wave coffee roasters, they all refuse to buy under this score.
  • Coffee that scores 90 or higher represents only about 1% of all coffee that is served in the entire world. That score stands for flawless quality coffee. The rarest and best coffee beans one can find.

So right now we’ve got 4 single origins on our bars, two of which are 90+ coffees:  Our Rwandan coffee from east Africa and a directly traded Columbian coffee from the La Palma estate.

 
modcup sources only the top 5% quality coffee sold around the world

modcup sources only the top 5% quality coffee sold around the world

 

Oh, so it's like wine?

Sort of, it is a different score. But the comparison with wine is interesting…they are indeed very similar. Both are fruits of a tree that produce wonderful complex drinks. Both are reliant on great terroir and farming techniques. And both are like rabbit holes, get “into” them and you can be lost down that hole for a very long time!

There are huge differences though. Obviously wine is better aged and coffee needs to be drunk fresh

Wine has between 400 and 600 flavor compounds that make up its flavor profile. Coffee has between 800 and 1200, so against preconceived notions, coffee has the potential to produce a much more complex drink. Its unfortunate that 99% of the coffee out there for sale is either stale (past the true window of freshness post roast) or roasted within an inch of its life (and this includes btw the majority of so called big brand medium roasts) Its very rare that we are offered coffee that display their true complexity.

With wine you are dealing only with the fruit when making the drink, whereas with coffee you are dealing with the seed of the coffee cherry. The seed is where all the flavor compounds are.

 
Coffee seeds have a complex flavor profile, allowing for a lot of variety

Coffee seeds have a complex flavor profile, allowing for a lot of variety

 

Great, what’s next for you? What are you excited about in the future?

I am looking forward to April, when the Ethiopian crops land in. They were harvested about 6 weeks ago, and are currently being shipped over.

You will have very blueberry floral coffees, from the Yirgacheffe and Konga regions, some of the best coffees in the world as far as I am concerned…

Wow, that sounds like something we should all look forward to!

(to be continued)

Cool beans. Thanks to our friends from modcup for the quick run through the history of coffee. Stay tuned for another cut (Part 2) of our conversation, where we talk about how coffee is roasted & prepared.

 
 

JERSEY CITY is BIG on COFFEE

One Monday evening, 100 years ago… bags of coffee are being loaded to the train. The smell of coffee permeats the air in Jersey City. 

Bucket & Bay Craft Gelato Co is located in the historic landmark building of the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co which created and roasted here in Jersey City the iconic Eight O'Clock Coffee.

Eight O'Clock Coffee regarded by many as the “original gourmet coffee” was once the bestselling coffee in the world.  A&P built their first coffee-roasting plant in Jersey City and we are ready to bring back the smell of coffee to it.

What is your favorite brand?  We would love to hear from you.

We are in the process of selecting our vendors. We need coffee and we need your help. What coffee does Jersey City like today?

1. One might say "Gelato? Try the classic Italian brands Illy & Lavazza." But our gelato is not Italian, it is American, freshly crafted in Jeresy City.
2. Starbucks is everywhere but not good for us. So scratch that.
3. We have considered the popular high end brands Stumptown, Intelligentsia, Counter Culture, Irving Farm, and maybe Blue Bottle. Union city has Red House Roasters. And then there is Mod Cup. Local. On a mission.

What is your favorite brand? We would love to hear from you.
Please comment BELOW or on Facebook.


Craft Gelato - Naming Conundrum

In retrospect it all looks easy peasy. It should be. We have come up with two great names for our daughters, so how can this be difficult? But, oh, the agony. Literal. Agony.

A roller-coaster - at one point we had over 100 names on a list and none of them was good enough.

 
 

Our first name was championed by partners-in-crime in my culinary management program at The Institute of Culinary Education (ICE) in Manhattan. THE CHURN. It was simple, and strong, and fit our concept.  Think handcrafted, small batch gelato slowly churned on an elegant, old-school gelato machine.

We liked it.  A lot. So once we found our home in the Powerhouse Arts District in Jersey City, we ran with it!  We did a survey in our local circles and it was the clear winner.  Well, a version of it was.  By now it was shortened to CHURN.  

Yes!  We had our name.  Then came the technical nitty gritty of acquiring domain names and social media handles.  Oh, and applying for a trademark.

But wait!  Not so fast. You see, we’d done our homework on domain names and the social media stuff, but not on trademarks.  And it turns out that someone had already trademarked CHURN for gelato. OOPS!  [Note to all potential entrepreneurs: check if you can trademark your name BEFORE falling in love with it.  Here’s the link: http://www.uspto.gov/trademarks/ ].  After all those months of agonizing deliberation, CHURN was a no-go.  

So back we went to the drawing board (kicking and screaming).  There was brainstorming, word association games, white boarding, word mapping, survey monkey research with friends. Reluctant to give up completely on the CHURN theme, we tried to see what we could salvage and came up with CHURNOLOGY.  A combination of CHURN and MIXOLOGY.  

I liked it, but my Marketing Department (i.e. my husband - Boris) didn’t. So we decided to start the naming process again.  Fresh. From scratch. A little more personal.  And this time, with a little help.

Enter Tamara Connolly.  Not only is she a friend and the mom of two awesome kids that happened to be in the same school as ours, she’s also the Principal and Creative Director at We Are How, a branding, design, and development studio right here in Jersey City.  Naming things was right up her alley!

Tamara brought new life to the process.  She helped us focus and refine our defining characteristics, then pointed us down the path we chose.

The result: BUCKET & BAY Craft Gelato Co.

Why BUCKET? That’s the wooden bucket sitting in the middle of my grandparents’ garage churning the best vanilla ice cream I remember from my childhood.  And why BAY?  Because early next year, that’s where you’ll find my own handcrafted gelato at 150 Bay Street, Jersey City, NJ. And we love it!

GURU RESOURCES for my fellow entrepreneurs:

Al Reins in Ad Age http://adage.com/article/al-ries/logic-enemy-a-successful-brand/235161/

Dan & Chip Heat in Fast Company http://www.fastcompany.com/1702256/how-pick-perfect-brand-name

Independent branding, design, and development studio We Are How

Website: www.WeAreHow.com

Twitter: twitter.com/we_are_how
Linkedin: linkedin.com/company/we-are-how

 

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