Category

Seafood

Emerald Eats: St. Patrick’s Day Menu Magic

By | Breads, Grilling Essentials, Holiday, Meats, Produce, Seafood, Vegetables

As we fly through the month of February, we are already looking forward to spring menus (and spring weather)! Spring brings with it the vibrant greens of St. Patrick’s Day, a time when tales of leprechauns and pots of gold fill the air. But amidst the green festivities lies a treasure more valuable than any mythical riches at the end of a rainbow: Irish food. It’s hearty, comforting, and steeped in tradition, offering a taste of Ireland’s rich culinary heritage. At What Chefs Want, we’re helping you take those traditional flavors and bring them to the next level on your menu with our carefully curated ingredients. Sláinte!

Corned Beef and Cabbage

Traditional Recipe: Slow-cooked corned beef brisket, traditionally cured in a brine of salt, sugar, and pickling spices, resulting in tender, flavorful meat. Served alongside cabbage, potatoes, and carrots that have absorbed the savory juices of the beef during cooking, creating a comforting and satisfying meal.

Update it! Sous vide corned beef brisket served with charred cabbage puree, roasted baby potatoes, and pickled mustard seeds for a modern twist on a classic favorite.

  • Corned Beef Brisket (raw) – item #00592
  • Green Cabbage – item #20296

Irish Lamb Pies (Dingle Pies)

Traditional Recipe: Dingle Pies, named after the picturesque town of Dingle in County Kerry, are hearty individual pies filled with succulent lamb, potatoes, onions, and a medley of aromatic herbs. Encased in flaky pastry crusts, these pies are a beloved staple of Irish pub fare, offering warmth and sustenance on chilly evenings.

Update it! Individual lamb pies featuring braised lamb shoulder in a rich Guinness gravy, topped with buttery puff pastry and served with a side of minted pea puree.

For more info on Freedom Run Farms lamb check out their feature in our blog.

  • Freedom Run Farms Lamb Shoulder – item #62502
  • Puff Pastry dough – item #03734
  • Onions – peeled white pearl – item #70915

Grilled Leg of Lamb with Garlic and Rosemary

Traditional Recipe: A leg of lamb marinated with minced garlic, fresh rosemary, olive oil, and lemon juice, infusing the meat with vibrant flavors before being grilled to perfection. The smoky char from the grill enhances the natural sweetness of the lamb, resulting in tender, juicy slices that are perfect for a celebratory meal.

Update it! Herb-crusted grilled leg of lamb served with a balsamic reduction, accompanied by roasted garlic mashed potatoes and sautéed spinach for a sophisticated take on a classic dish.

  • Freedom Run Farms Lamb Leg – item #62504

Irish Potato Boxty

Traditional Recipe: Potato boxty, also known as “Poor Man’s Bread,” is a simple yet satisfying dish made from grated potatoes, flour, baking soda, and buttermilk. Pan-fried until golden brown and crispy on the outside, with a soft, pillowy interior, potato boxty is a versatile staple of Irish cuisine, enjoyed as a side dish or main course.

Update it! Potato boxty filled with creamy Irish cheddar cheese and chives, served with a dollop of sour cream and house-made apple chutney for a gourmet twist on this beloved Irish comfort food.

  • White potatoes – item #60099

Irish Brown Bread

Traditional Recipe: Irish brown bread, affectionately known as “soda bread,” is a rustic loaf made from wholemeal flour, baking soda, salt, and buttermilk. Its dense, hearty texture and nutty flavor make it the perfect accompaniment to soups, stews, and hearty Irish breakfasts, slathered with butter and topped with a dollop of jam.

Update it! Seeded Irish brown bread featuring a blend of ancient grains and artisanal flours, served warm with whipped Guinness butter and a drizzle of honey for a sophisticated bread course.

  • Beurremont Butter – 83% butter fat – item #93073

Creamy Leek and Potato Soup

Traditional Recipe: A classic combination of leeks, potatoes, onions, and chicken or vegetable broth, simmered until tender and blended to silky perfection. Cream is often added to lend richness and depth to the soup, while a sprinkle of fresh chives or parsley adds a burst of freshness before serving.

Update it: Silky leek and potato soup garnished with crispy pancetta, chive oil, and truffle-infused crème fraîche for a luxurious starter that tantalizes the taste buds.

  • Leeks – item #70200
  • Tiny Leeks – item #02709 (pre-order item)

Smoked Salmon Toasts with Mustard Butter

Traditional Recipe: Thinly sliced smoked salmon served atop slices of buttered brown bread, with a generous smear of creamy mustard butter for added flavor. The tangy mustard butter complements the smoky richness of the salmon, while a squeeze of lemon brightens the dish with a burst of citrusy freshness.

Update it: House-smoked salmon served on toasted Irish soda bread rounds, topped with stone ground mustard butter, pickled red onions, and microgreens for an elegant appetizer with layers of flavor and texture.

  • Bakkafrost Salmon – item #32828
  • Shuckman’s Smoked Salmon – item #95053
  • Whole grain mustard – item #95107

Irish Lamb and Turnip Stew

Traditional Recipe: A hearty stew featuring tender pieces of lamb shoulder, turnips, carrots, and pearl onions simmered in a savory broth flavored with thyme, bay leaves, and a splash of stout or red wine. Slow-cooked until the meat is fall-apart tender and the vegetables are meltingly soft, this stew is the epitome of comfort food on a chilly evening.

Update it: Slow-braised Irish lamb and turnip stew featuring sous vide lamb shoulder, heirloom turnips, and baby carrots, finished with a drizzle of rosemary-infused olive oil and a sprinkle of gremolata for a refined twist on a rustic favorite.

  • Turnips – item #20543
  • Tiny Turnips – item #02362 (pre-order item)
  • Freedom Run Farms Lamb Shoulder – item #62502

By celebrating the Irish culture with food, we gain a deeper appreciation for the flavors, techniques, and cultural significance that have shaped Ireland’s culinary heritage. These timeless dishes offer a taste of history and tradition, while giving chefs the opportunity to make them their own!

* Some featured items may not be available in all regions. Please contact your customer advocate for substitutions or new menu ideas.

Festive Flavors: Mardi Gras Menu Inspirations and Fish Fry Fun

By | Gourmet, Ham, Meats, Mustards, Oysters, Pork, Poultry, Rice, Seafood, Southern Foods, What Chefs Want

As the vibrant Mardi Gras season approaches, bringing joy, music, and colorful parades, it also marks the beginning of the Lenten Fish Fry season. These two celebrations share a rich tapestry of traditions, and what better way to commemorate them than by exploring the delicious world of Cajun and Mardi Gras-inspired cuisine? In this blog post, we’ll share some valuable tips for hosting the perfect Fish Fry or cooking up authentic Mardi Gras dishes. Laissez Les Bons Temps Rouler!

Fish Fry Season

Seafood Selection is Key

Opt for mild and flaky white fish varieties like cod, haddock, or swai. Their delicate texture allows them to absorb flavors and maintain moisture during frying. Choose fresh fish to ensure the best taste and texture. Look for clear eyes, vibrant skin, and a mild ocean smell. If using frozen fish, thaw it thoroughly before frying.

  • Wild Caught Cod Loin Skin Off – Frozen – 10 lb case (available in 5, 6, 7, and 8 oz portions) (Item #48329, 48330, 48331 & 48332)
  • Swai – Skin Off – Frozen – 15 lb case (available in 5,7, and 9 oz portions) (Item #48307, #48308 & #22950)

Want to get a little more out of the box? Include oyster or shrimp po boys for a fish fry twist that your patrons never knew they needed!

  • Mariblu Shrimp – Available in peeled, deveined, tail on and tail off, in a wide variety of sizes. Search Mariblu to see all our offerings.
  • Shucked Oysters – wild caught in Chesapeake Bay – Gallon (item #48218)

Perfectly Battered and Breaded Seafood

For a classic fish fry batter, combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and spices. Experiment with adding herbs like parsley or dill for an extra flavor boost. For a light and crispy texture, consider using a beer batter. The carbonation in beer creates a bubbly, airy batter. Mix beer with flour, salt, and spices for a delicious coating. Or, try a tempura-style batter for an incredibly light and crispy result. Use a mixture of flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and ice-cold water. Dip the fish in the batter just before frying.

The key to the perfect fry is all in the temperature and the timing. Maintain the right oil temperature. The ideal range is around 350-375°F (175-190°C). Too hot, and the fish may burn; too cool, and it can absorb too much oil. Fry the fish in small batches to avoid overcrowding. The cooking time will depend on the thickness of the fillets. Typically, it takes 3-5 minutes per side for a golden-brown finish. And remember, serve the fried fish immediately for the best taste and texture!

Or, without the added step of creating your own batter, achieve the perfect crispy texture with our Cod Battered and Oyster Breaded Frozen options. These products make the frying process a breeze, allowing you to focus on creating a memorable dining experience.

  • Battered Cod – Dipped in a tasty beer batter coating made with real Corona beer – 2-3 oz portions – 10 lb case – (Item #22033)
  • Breaded Oysters – 5/2 lb cases (Item #48441)

Let’s Take it Beyond the Ordinary

Citrus Zest in the Batter: Add a burst of freshness to your batter by incorporating citrus zest, such as lemon or orange. The citrusy notes cut through the richness of the fried fish, providing a vibrant and unexpected flavor.

Dill Pickle Juice Marinade: Before coating the fish in batter, marinate it in dill pickle juice for an hour. The acidity and subtle dill flavor will enhance the taste of the fish and add a unique twist to the traditional fish fry.

Beer and Mustard Dip: Prepare a tangy dip by combining beer and Zatarain’s Creole Mustard. This unique dipping sauce complements the fried fish with a zesty and slightly spicy flavor.

  • Zatarain’s Creole Mustard – It is a coarse, stone ground mustard with a uniquely vibrant flavor (Item #95110)

Coconut and Curry Infusion: Incorporate tropical flavors by adding shredded coconut and curry powder to your batter. This unexpected combination transports your fish fry to a new level of exotic deliciousness.

Mardi Gras Menu Magic

Gumbo

Gumbo is a hearty and flavorful stew that originated in Louisiana, particularly among the Creole and Cajun communities. It is a staple of Southern cuisine, known for its rich, complex flavors and diverse mix of ingredients. Gumbo is often considered a symbol of Louisiana’s culinary heritage and cultural diversity.

Gumbo can include a variety of proteins, such as andouille sausage, crawfish, catfish, shrimp, oysters and/or chicken. The combination of meats and seafood contributes to the dish’s depth of flavor. Similar to the French mirepoix, the holy trinity is a key flavor base in gumbo, consisting of onions, bell peppers, and celery. This aromatic trio forms the foundation of many Cajun and Creole dishes.

Add a twist to your gumbo by incorporating smoked okra and fire-roasted tomatoes. The smokiness from the okra and the depth of flavor from the tomatoes elevate the dish, creating a unique and delicious variation.

  • Louisiana Crawfish Tail Meat – Frozen – (Item #48371)
  • Harvest Select Catfish – Premium farm-raised frozen catfish from North Carolina (Item #48317)
  • Andouille Sausage – 12 lb case – (Item #00470)
  • Fresh Okra – (Item #20919)

Jambalaya

This one-pot wonder is a celebration of diverse ingredients and bold spices, creating a hearty and satisfying meal. Jambalaya is known for its unique combination of meats, seafood, vegetables, and rice, resulting in a dish that captures the essence of Louisiana’s cultural melting pot.

Similar to gumbo, jambalaya features a mix of proteins, and the holy trinity. The rice used in Jambalaya is typically 100% Louisiana Popcorn Long Grain Rice. The long-grain rice absorbs the flavorful broth and complements the variety of ingredients. Serve it hot, straight from the pot, for a true taste of Louisiana’s culinary heritage.

As you embark on a culinary journey inspired by the festive spirit of Mardi Gras and the Lenten Fish Fry season, let the traditions and flavors guide your menu. What Chefs Want offers a range of premium products to elevate your dishes and create an unforgettable experience for your guests. Celebrate with authenticity, savor every bite, and make this season a true feast for the senses!

  • 100% Louisiana Popcorn Long Grain Rice – 20 lb bag – 98338

Cajun Grits with Tasso

Cajun Grits with Tasso is a Southern classic that combines the creamy goodness of grits with the smoky, flavorful kick of Tasso ham. Tasso, a highly seasoned and smoked pork, enhances the traditional grits, a staple in Southern cooking.

Enjoy Cajun Grits with Tasso as a standalone dish for a comforting and filling meal or as a flavorful side alongside blackened seafood, chicken or other cajun-inspired dish.

Add a kick to this dish by incorporating diced jalapeños or a dash of hot sauce. The spiciness complements the smokiness of the Tasso, creating a dynamic and flavorful bowl.

  • Comeaux’s Cajun Hickory Smoked Tasso – (Item #96572)
  • Weisenberger Yellow Grits – Stone ground old fashioned grits (Item #92217)

* Some featured items may not be available in all regions. Please contact your customer advocate for substitutions or new menu ideas.

Valentine’s Day Menu: A Culinary Love Affair for Your Restaurant

By | Beef, Chef's Feed, Chocolate, Desserts, Fruit, Gourmet, Hors d'oeuvre, Meats, Oysters, Produce, Seafood, What Chefs Want

This Valentine’s Day, let your restaurant become the stage for a culinary love affair. As the festive season ends, it’s time to shift our focus to the upcoming celebration of love. We recognize the importance of crafting an exceptional dining experience for patrons seeking to impress that special someone with an amazing dining experience or patrons who want to treat themselves! What Chefs Want has curated a selection of premium ingredients to help chefs craft menus that enchant patrons celebrating their love. Let’s explore the possibilities:

Amorous Appetizers

Oysters on the Half Shell

Begin your romantic evening with the briny essence of fresh oysters, known for their aphrodisiac qualities. Shuck and serve these delicacies chilled, enhancing the experience with a squeeze of lemon. We have a large variety of fresh oysters on hand week to week in each region, so make sure to check our app for options and availability. A couple of our recent favorites include:

  • Connecticut Blue Point – from Norwalk Island, CT – these oysters are 3.5 inches in size with a medium salinity, springy meats and light mineral finish
  • Miyagi – from Hood Canal, WA – these oysters are 3 inches in size with substantial meats, a savory brine and a tangly cucumber finish.

Artichoke Heart Bruschetta

Artichoke Heart Bruschetta is a luscious appetizer featuring a blend of chopped artichoke hearts (item #90600), diced cherry tomatoes, fresh basil, and minced garlic atop golden toasted baguette slices, all drizzled with olive oil and truffle balsamic glaze (item #29853) for a flavorful and aphrodisiac-rich culinary delight.

Truffle-Infused Deviled Eggs

Level up the classic deviled eggs with a touch of luxury. Drizzle them with Regalis Black Truffle Oil (item #95402) and top with canned Truffle Peelings (item #90536) for an irresistibly earthy flavor.

While both oysters and artichokes are commonly touted to have aphrodisiac properties, there isn’t much evidence backing either. Other popular (but not scientifically proven) aphrodisiacs include chocolate, honey, hot chilies, figs and strawberries.

Seafood Sensations

Lobster Tails

Need we say more? Help your guests impress their special someone with succulent Canadian Lobster Tails (item #48421). Grill or steam these 5-6 oz treasures to perfection, creating a dish that captures the sweet and distinctive flavors of the cold waters of eastern Canada.

Pan-Seared Halibut Fillet

Show off the deep, rich flavors of wild Halibut (item #48052). These skin-on fillets promise a delicate sweetness and firm, flaky texture. Pan-sear and serve with a light citrus drizzle for an exquisite main course.

Scallops

Consider featuring U-10 Dry Domestic Scallops (item #32502), a delicacy renowned for their large, succulent profile. Perfect for a romantic menu, these scallops can be expertly seared and served with a velvety truffle risotto or nestled atop a bed of creamy cauliflower puree, adding an elegant touch to your menu.

Protein Packed Passion

Porterhouse for Two

Share the love with a perfectly cooked Porterhouse Beef (item #1089) for two. This cut combines the tenderness of the filet mignon with the rich, flavorful strip steak. Fire up the grill and savor the best of both worlds. For a decadent touch consider adding a Red Wine Reduction Sauce. This rich and velvety sauce not only adds depth of flavor but also brings a luxurious and romantic element to the dish.

Lamb Lollipops Duo

Embrace the “two of ewe” with individual lamb rib chops (item #98661) from New Zealand. These 2 oz lollipops are a delightful balance of tenderness and robust flavor. Season with herbs and pan-sear for an elegant touch. Or drizzle them with a balsamic rosemary reduction. The sweet and tangy notes of balsamic, combined with the earthy aroma of rosemary, will complement the succulence of the lamb

Poulet Rouge Fermier

Consider featuring Poulet Rouge Fermier (item #847) as the star of a shared platter for two. Roast it with aromatic herbs and serve alongside decadent sides like truffle-infused mashed potatoes or roasted vegetables. The act of sharing a beautifully prepared bird adds an intimate touch to the dining experience. The exquisite Poulet Rouge Fermier from Joyce Farms is not just a chicken; it’s a symbol of culinary excellence, renowned for its exceptional flavor, succulence, and heritage breeding.

Decadent Desserts

Chocolate-Dipped Stem Strawberries

A Valentines Day classic! Create a sensual experience with stem strawberries (item #10404) perfect for chocolate-dipping. Melt the finest dark chocolate and dip each berry, adding a touch of sweetness to your romantic evening. Consider using the gorgeous and tasty pink ruby chocolate to up the Valentines aesthetic.

Raspberry Rose Petal Sorbet

Refresh the palate with a homemade sorbet featuring juicy raspberries (item #10412) and edible flowers. The floral notes will add a romantic touch to your dessert and your plating. For our large selection of edible flowers search flowers on our ordering site or app.

Filled Chocolate Tulip Cups

End your evening on a sweet note with chocolate tulip cups (item #92114). Fill these delicate cups with a rich chocolate mousse or berries for a visually stunning and delicious finale. We love these because you can use them as a beautiful canvas to fill with whatever creative ideas you have to wow your diners!


* Some featured items may not be available in all regions. Please contact your customer advocate for substitutions or new fresh, healthy menu ideas.

Creating Restaurant Wins for Health-Conscious Consumers

By | Beef, Chef's Feed, Gluten Free, Grab & Go, Grilling Essentials, Juice, Meats, Non-GMO, Produce, Retail Ready, Seafood, Sparkling Water, Vegan, Vegetables, What Chefs Want

Top tips for bringing together a healthy menu to appeal to your more health-conscious patrons

In a world where health-conscious dining is on the rise, restaurants are faced with the challenge of catering to a more discerning audience. The demand for nutritious, sustainable, and plant-based options is growing rapidly. To stay ahead of the curve and satisfy health-conscious patrons, chefs can implement strategic changes to their menus. In this blog post, we’ll explore five top tips to help you create restaurant wins for health-conscious consumers.

Lean into Functional Foods

Functional foods add health benefits beyond basic nutritional benefits like protein and fiber.

As the spotlight on mental health intensifies, adaptogens are a sought-after class of ingredients that are believed to help the body resist and adapt to stressors. One such adaptogen that is trending is saffron (item #97219). Saffron, known for its mood-boosting properties, lends a touch of luxury and emotional well-being to dishes. Saffron is believed to alter the concentrations of neurotransmitters like dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the brain.

Prebiotics like buckwheat are non-digestible fibers or compounds found in certain foods that promote the activity and growth of beneficial bacteria (probiotics) in the gastrointestinal tract. Buckwheat (item #21111) is a gluten-free, nutrient-rich prebiotic food that is a good source of nutrients such as fiber, protein, magnesium, manganese, and antioxidants.

Probiotics like sauerkraut (like the Pickled Pig dill kraut – item #266752) and kimchi (like Napa kimchee item #26574) have beneficial bacteria that promote a healthy balance of microorganisms in the digestive system.

Offer more plant-based entrees

As the demand for plant-based options continues to rise, consider expanding your menu to include more plant-based entrees, and we aren’t just talking salad here. Highlighting produce items as main attractions can be a game-changer. Create vegetable-based dishes and a variety of plant-powered choices will not only attract health-conscious customers but also contribute to the overall sustainability of your menu. For a hearty and satisfying option, consider the robust and savory Portabella mushrooms (item #30025, #30008 or #30030), perfect for grilling or roasting as a centerpiece in a plant-based dish. Jackfruit (item #90141) is also incredibly popular as a meat substitute in savory dishes like curries, stews, tacos, and sandwiches. Its ability to absorb flavors makes it a versatile ingredient in plant-based cooking.

Consider incorporating trendy and nutrient-dense ingredients like quinoa (item #19976), lentils (item #93806), and plant-based proteins to add depth and satisfaction to your plant-based offerings. Emphasizing the health benefits of these ingredients in your menu descriptions can resonate with health-conscious consumers, encouraging them to make nutritious choices when dining out.

Plant-based proteins with options like tofu (item #80024) and tempeh (item #99682) are also great additions. These protein-packed alternatives not only provide a substantial base for various dishes but also absorb the flavors of accompanying ingredients, making them ideal for creating diverse and delicious plant-based entrees.

To cater to those looking for a meaty experience without the animal products, consider incorporating Impossible Meats. This innovative plant-based meat substitute mirrors the taste and texture of traditional meat, providing a familiar yet entirely plant-based option for your health-conscious patrons. You can find Impossible Ground Pork (item #26939) or Impossible Ground Beef (item #03198).

Offer healthy drinks & mocktails

Extend your commitment to health-conscious dining beyond the food menu by introducing healthy drinks and mocktails. Incorporate trendy options like kombucha, known for its probiotic benefits. Craft refreshing mocktails using fresh ingredients, herbs, and spices to provide a non-alcoholic alternative that complements your menu.

If you are looking for a great Kombucha to add to your lineup you can try Elixir (search Elixir in the app), with flavors like Blueberry Pomegranate, Harvest Cider, Lavender Lemonade, Pineapple Ginger and Raspberry Limeade if you are in the Midwest/central region. Or try Rowdy Mermaid (search Rowdy Mermaid in the app) if you are in our Colorado region, in flavors like Strawberry Tonic, Watermelon Bloom, Hello Ginger or Savory Peach.

Collagen is still having its moment right now as well. Collagen is often associated with its potential to promote skin health, joint health, and overall well-being. Circle is a sparkling collagen water focused on making healthier options accessible, enjoyable and affordable. Circle comes in flavors like Raspberry Hibiscus (item #22710), Lemon Mint (item #22711), Vanilla Pear (item #22712) and Watermelon Thyme (item #22713).

Use our Natalies juices or our variety of purees to craft creative and healthy alternatives to alcoholic cocktails and garnish them with something from our huge variety of edible micro flowers.

Showcase sustainable & healthy seafood

Highlighting sustainable seafood serves as an opportunity to educate consumers about making ethical choices in seafood consumption. Collaborate with trusted suppliers adhering to sustainable practices to build transparency and trust with your health-conscious clientele. Sustainable seafood not only offers ecological benefits but is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids, providing a nutrient-dense and heart-healthy dining option. Consider featuring seasonal and local seafood options to emphasize freshness and reduce the carbon footprint. By showcasing sustainable seafood, you contribute to your customers’ well-being and play a role in preserving the delicate balance of our oceans for future generations.

Mariblu shrimp holds a prestigious 4-star BAP (Best Aquaculture Practices) certification, which is a testament to our unwavering commitment to responsible and sustainable aquaculture practices. This 100% phosphate-free shrimp comes in a large variety of sizes to fit your menu needs. You can find our Mariblu shrimp options by searching Mariblu on our ordering app or site.

Laguna Blanca Salmon is another wonderful healthy option. This antibiotic-free salmon stands out for its eco-friendliness, produced with notably less impact on the wild fish population, and is BAP and ASC certified. The Laguna Blanca salmon is raised on an algae diet which ensures it is a rich source of omega-3s, making it not only delicious but also healthy. You can find these options on our site by searching Laguna Blanca.

Educate consumers about your menu items

Share the story behind your menu items to educate consumers about the health benefits of your dishes and their origins. For instance, highlight unconventional healthy protein options or promote antibiotic-free meat. Mention reputable producers and what makes them so special to build trust and transparency with your customers. Incorporate this information into your menu descriptions or create a separate section dedicated to the health-conscious choices available.

For example: Make sure when talking about duck on the menu, that in the description you mention the  lower fat and calorie content compared to many other meats, making it a winning pick for those who crave incredible flavors while upholding a balanced diet. Take it a step further and share the details of the source. If you are using our Maple Leaf Farm duck you can share their particular dedication to sustainability and quality.

Or share the story of Joyce Farms chicken and their belief that small farmers, with their deep caring and passion for the animals, are the best at raising them, often using age-old artisan methods passed down through generations. They use no pesticides, animal by-products, hormones, growth stimulators or antibiotics EVER.

Creekstone Farms Angus Beef stands out for its commitment to quality and ethical practices in beef production. Embracing organic farming principles and ensuring humane animal handling, they prioritize a farming approach free of antibiotics and hormones. With a dedication to transparency, Creekstone Farms is not only passionate about delivering premium Angus beef but also strives to educate customers and consumers about the origins of their food, fostering a deeper understanding and appreciation for sustainable and responsible farming practices.

Highlighting producers like these add value to your menu items and make your patrons feel good about the choices they make at your restaurant.

Create easy healthy grab-and-go options

Recognizing the fast-paced lifestyles of many customers, offer easy and healthy grab-and-go options. To-go parfait cups filled with nutritious ingredients, such as Greek yogurt, fresh fruits, and granola, make for a convenient and satisfying choice. Consider other portable options like salads in a jar or protein-packed snack boxes to cater to health-conscious consumers on the move.

We have the perfect Parfait Combo Kit + Lid (item #34031) for your grab and go needs! This clear cup is a portable, fast, convenient, and easy-to-use package for yogurt parfaits and savory snack combinations.

Grandola Granola is a gourmet granola that’s made by hand, cured, nut free, gluten-free, and vegan with flavors like Autumn (item #18929 – Chai/Pumpkin spice with apricots and cranberries) and Ella’s Favorite (item #18932 – Madagascar vanilla, cherries and cranberries).

Pair granola with Greek or regular yogurt for easy options for your customers!


By incorporating these top tips, chefs can successfully cater to health-conscious consumers, fostering a dining environment that aligns with the growing demand for plant-based, sustainable, and transparent culinary choices. This strategic approach not only expands your customer base but also plays a vital role in enhancing the well-being of your patrons. Adapting to the evolving preferences of health-conscious consumers isn’t merely a passing trend; it’s a fundamental strategy for ensuring enduring success in the dynamic restaurant industry.

* Some featured items may not be available in all regions. Please contact your customer advocate for substitutions or new fresh, healthy menu ideas.

Standout Center-of-the-Plate Options That Wow For the Holidays 

By | Beef, Berkshire Pork, Chef's Feed, Ham, Meats, Pork, Poultry, Seafood, What Chefs Want

The holiday season is not just a time for festive decorations and gifts—it’s also a time for chefs to shine by creating memorable dining experiences. According to a recent survey by the National Restaurant Association, nearly 60% of consumers are planning to dine out at a restaurant during the holidays, while 50% intend to order takeout or delivery for gatherings at home. This holiday season, we are highlighting some center-of-the-plate options from What Chefs Want that will not only dazzle your patrons but also keep them coming back for more.

Beef

During the holiday season, beef takes the spotlight with its robust flavors and versatile options. Whether it’s the marbling of a ribeye, the tenderness of a filet, the heartiness of beef shanks, or the exceptional quality of a tenderloin, beef provides a diverse range of choices that cater to different preferences. Let’s check out some beef options that make for an ideal centerpiece during the holidays, offering a combination of taste and variety that appeals to a broad audience.

Tenderloin: A must-have center of the plate option for the season. This is a sought-after cut of meat known for its tenderness, lean profile, and exceptional flavor. Beef tenderloin is versatile and can be prepared in various ways to suit different preferences. What Chefs Want has tenderloin option to fit every chef’s need.

Choice Tenderloin (#00089) (#00535)

Trimmed Grain Fed Tenderloin (#30625)*

Black Hawk Reserve Tenderloins (#26956) – 100% F1 American Wagyu Beef from Black Hawk Farms

Prime Lipon Ribeye (#00171)*: The ribeye’s high fat content makes it well-suited for grilling. The fat renders during cooking, creating flare-ups that contribute to a flavorful sear on the exterior.

Beef Shanks (#26692)*: Beef Shanks provide a heartwarming and bold option for holiday diners. beef shanks are favored by chefs for their rich flavor, versatility in cooking methods, budget-friendly nature, and ability to contribute to the creation of deeply satisfying and comforting dishes.

Ham

Loved for its ability to embody tradition and innovation simultaneously, ham has become a holiday staple, bringing comfort, flavor, and a touch of sophistication to festive gatherings. Let’s check out some favorites for the center of your table.

Berkshire Honey Glazed Hams (#01036)*: This fully cooked whole Berkshire honey glazed ham is slow smoked over applewood chops to enhance the flavor. Its savory and slightly sweet flavor profile complements a wide array of festive accompaniments.

Spiral Ham Halves (#00447)*: This is a fully cooked, spiral sliced, bone in, honey glazed ham that is synonymous with the holidays.

Poultry

When it comes to holiday menus with duck and chicken, steer clear of standard cuts to offer a refined culinary experience. From the indulgent richness of duck to the diverse possibilities presented by unique chicken cuts, such as osso bucco, chefs can transform holiday poultry into masterpieces that go beyond the ordinary, ensuring a sophisticated and memorable dining experience.

Duck Leg & Thigh (#00890), Duck Breast (#00841): Contrary to its poultry companions like chicken and turkey, duck strides into the realm of red meat, ushering in a diverse flavor profile akin to steak. Maple Leaf Farm duck has no artificial ingredients.

Poulet Rouge Fermier (#00847): When you want the most succulent chicken the world can offer, you want Poulet Rouge Fermier. This renowned breed has an irreplaceable standing in French cuisine.

Airline Breast (#72001): This is a boneless, skin-on half breast with the first wing joint attached, between 7-9 oz each. The attached wing drumette not only adds an aesthetic appeal to the plate but also gives the dish a distinctive and elegant look.

Chicken Osso Bucco (#00909): Transform a classic dish with a holiday twist —Chicken Osso Bucco brings comfort and elegance to the table. This is Frenched drumstick with the meat pulled down towards large end resembling a “Lollipop”.

Lamb

From succulent lamb leg to tender loin chops and impressive New Zealand lamb racks, offer a spectrum of flavors and textures for lamb enthusiasts. The versatility of lamb allows chefs to showcase their culinary creativity, offering a unique and memorable dining experience that complements the celebratory atmosphere of holiday gatherings.

Lamb Leg (#62505)*: The lamb leg is known for its tenderness. It is a prime cut that responds well to roasting, grilling, or slow cooking methods, allowing the meat to become fork-tender. This is a lamb leg from Freedom Run Farms is deboned, rolled and tied.

Lamb Loin Chop (#62526)*: Lamb chops are prized for their tenderness and rich flavor. The meat closer to the bone often carries more flavor, and the delicate nature of the chops makes them a favorite among those who appreciate a more refined taste. Each chop is cut to 1.5″ thickness and weighs approximately 7-8oz.

New Zealand Lamb Rack (#00408): A lamb rack is a premium and visually striking cut of lamb that is prized for its tenderness, succulence, and presentation.

Seafood

Including a variety of high-quality seafood into holiday menus allows chefs to showcase their culinary prowess, cater to diverse preferences, and wow customers with elegance, creativity, and a touch of indulgence.

Halibut (#49148): Chefs appreciate halibut for its ability to serve as a canvas for culinary creativity. Its neutral taste allows for inventive flavor pairings, making it a versatile ingredient for both classic and contemporary seafood dishes.

Ora King Salmon (#23794): Ora King Salmon, often hailed as the “Wagyu of the Sea,” is a premium breed of King Salmon (Chinook Salmon) known for its exceptional quality and flavor. The premium quality of Ora King Salmon makes it a favorite for gourmet presentations.

Seabass (#49141): Sea bass is renowned for its mild, delicate flavor, making it a favorite among seafood enthusiasts. The flesh is tender with a slightly sweet taste, allowing chefs to showcase its natural qualities through various cooking methods.

Swordfish (#48129): Swordfish has a firm, meaty texture, making it hold up well to various cooking methods, allowing chefs to create hearty and satisfying dishes. The dense texture of seabass steaks allows them to hold up to high-heat cooking methods, resulting in a satisfying sear on the outside while maintaining juiciness on the inside.

Mariblu Shrimp (#33206): These delectable shrimp are renowned for their exquisite flavor, and what sets them apart is their commitment to both your palate and the environment. Mariblu Brand Shrimp are carefully sourced and processed to ensure they are 100% phosphate-free. 

Cooked Shrimp (#48633): These head-off, tail-on cooked shrimp are ready to use for your holiday menu needs.

Tempura Shrimp (#48709): These Shrimp Tempura Tzukuri are frozen and coated in a light, airy batter ready to be deep-fried to golden perfection.  The contrast between the crunchy exterior of the tempura and the tender, juicy shrimp inside creates a delightful sensory experience.

Bacon Wrapped Shrimp (#90610): These large tail-off shrimp are wrapped in lean bacon and held together with a toothpick skewer, ready to bake for a delightful holiday appetizer.  

Scallops (#32713): Whether served as a delicate appetizer or the centerpiece of an exquisite dish, scallops remain one of the ocean’s most celebrated culinary treats. Scallops are known for their delicate, sweet flavor and tender, buttery texture.

King Crab Legs (#48396): When you hear the shell crack, the sweet, succulent crab is just moments away! The Red King Crab is the most majestic of all crab, with a tender, sweet, succulent meat unlike any other crab in the world.

Jumbo Lump Crab (#48204): Jumbo Lump is beautiful, whole pieces of firm, succulent white meat picked from the two large swimming fin muscles of the crab. This product is perfect for high quality crab cakes, cocktail presentations or sautéing. There are between 75-100 pieces per can.

Canadian Lobster Tails (#48423): Enjoy the mild, sweet, and distinctive flavor of these beautiful 7-8 oz lobster tails caught in the pristine, cold waters of eastern Canada. Frozen raw and uncooked, they thaw easily and can be boiled, steamed, grilled or prepared your favorite way in minutes.

This holiday season, the National Restaurant Association survey reveals that consumers are eager to let restaurants handle the cooking, making it the perfect time to showcase your culinary prowess. With our premium center-of-the-plate options, you can create a holiday menu that not only reduces stress for your patrons but also leaves a lasting impression. As diners seek convenience, loyalty, and memorable dining experiences, What Chefs Want provides the ingredients to make your restaurant the holiday destination of choice. Happy holidays and happy cooking!

*Items may not be available in all regions and subject to availability

Mariblu Shrimp: Your Sustainable Seafood Solution  

By | Chef's Feed, Seafood, What Chefs Want

In the world of cooking, chefs constantly seek top-quality ingredients that are not only delicious but also environmentally friendly. That’s where Mariblu Shrimp, exclusively available at What Chefs Want, shines.  Offering a range of sizes and types, it’s the perfect option for chefs in search of the best shrimp. Let’s dive right in and explore what makes Mariblu stand out for both your palate and the planet.

From Hatchery to Plate: The Freshest Shrimp You’ve Ever Tasted

At What Chefs Want, we understand the importance of freshness when it comes to seafood. Our Mariblu brand shrimp is meticulously sourced and processed, ensuring you experience the freshest shrimp possible. But what sets Mariblu apart from the rest?

Phosphate-Free, Naturally Delicious

Our Mariblu Shrimp proudly maintains a 100% phosphate-free profile. By foregoing the use of phosphates, we not only preserve the natural flavors of the shrimp but also contribute to a healthier dining experience. Phosphates, when used in shrimp processing, can negatively impact the taste and texture of the shrimp. Phosphates can cause shrimp to absorb more water and potentially become mushy or spongy, so chefs often prefer the natural, firm texture of phosphate-free shrimp, especially in dishes where texture is crucial. In addition, using phosphate-free shrimp reduces the risk of allergic reactions.

What makes the phosphate-free aspect so crucial for the environment?

The use of phosphates in shrimp processing can lead to several environmental issues. Phosphate runoff from processing facilities can find its way into our waterways, causing water pollution and potentially harmful algal blooms. These environmental consequences can negatively impact marine ecosystems and the communities that depend on them. By choosing Mariblu Shrimp, you’re actively participating in the preservation of our oceans and the health of the communities that rely on them, making every bite of Mariblu shrimp an ecologically conscious choice.

A Commitment to Environmental Wellness

Mariblu Shrimp holds a prestigious 4-star BAP (Best Aquaculture Practices) certification, which is a testament to our unwavering commitment to responsible and sustainable aquaculture practices.

A “4-star BAP certified” designation means that a seafood product or aquaculture facility has achieved the highest level of certification from the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) program. It indicates that the product meets BAP standards in four important areas: processing, farm, hatchery, and feed mill. This certification assures consumers that seafood is produced responsibly and sustainably, with a focus on environmental and social responsibility throughout the aquaculture process. It’s a strong endorsement of good practices in the industry and we take pride in offering shrimp that not only tastes amazing but also upholds our dedication to sustainable practices.

A Variety to Satisfy Every Chef for Every Need

One of the most exciting features of Mariblu Shrimp is the sheer variety it offers. As a chef, you know that having a range of options at your disposal can allow you to expand your menu and give you the creative freedom you need. With Mariblu, you can choose from various sizes, to fit your every need.

But that’s not all – whether you prefer your shrimp raw or cooked, with shells on or shell off, Mariblu has an incredible selection of options to cater to your specific menu needs. This extensive variety empowers you to explore and experiment, making every dish a unique masterpiece.

Healthier for You, Better for the Planet

Mariblu Shrimp is a win for chefs who value quality, sustainability, and flavor. With its dedication to freshness, phosphate-free purity, and sustainable practices, Mariblu Shrimp and What Chefs Want are your ideal partners in creating extraordinary dishes that are both delicious and environmentally responsible. It’s time to experience the difference for yourself. Your palate and the planet will thank you.

You can find Mariblu Shrimp exclusively at What Chefs Want. Order on the website or app.

Click on the Mariblu banner to view the entire list of our Mariblu shrimp.

From Kodiak to the Kitchen: The Search for Alaska’s Freshest Seafood  

By | Chef's Feed, Farm To Table, Seafood, What Chefs Want

At What Chefs Want, we’re proud to bring you a truly unique and unparalleled seafood experience through our Boat Direct program. Our team of fishmongers walk the docks daily to handpick the freshest catches straight from the source. This brings our chefs a true dock-to-dish experience. We’ve recently expanded this program to ALASKA – bringing you the freshest, most exciting fish from Kodiak Island.  

At the helm of this visionary program is Kelly Probst, a seasoned industry expert with an unwavering commitment to excellence, and a passion for fish that he pours into absolutely everyone that he speaks to. Join us for a chat with Kelly where he introduces how this innovative program and additional location empowers chefs with unprecedented quality and freshness, setting a new standard in the industry. 

Kelly, can you provide some background on your journey to becoming a part of What Chefs Want and your role as Director of Seafood Purchasing? 

Kelly: I earned my international business management degree at BYU in Hawaii and spent about a decade working in the banking industry in Southern California. However, the 2008 financial crisis prompted me to reevaluate my career path. I decided to follow my passion for fish, which led me to pursue a master’s degree in aquaculture and aquatic science in Kentucky.  

During that time, I worked on a USDA grant, collaborating to connect local fish farmers and high-end chefs. The objective was to explore if we could eliminate the middleman and enable direct transactions between fish farmers and restaurants. However, I soon realized that fish farmers farm and chefs are busy in the kitchens which led to the need for a middleman. So, I ventured to Florida and started working with a company. Over time, I built relationships with fishermen and introduced chefs to underutilized fish species.  

My path eventually led me to a meeting with Ron, the founder of What Chefs Want and we shared the same vision. I ended up selling my company to Ron, and we embarked on a journey to provide chefs with the finest, most sustainable, and freshest seafood. We’ve expanded our reach over the years, covering not just Florida but also the East Coast and the Gulf, establishing connections with a wide range of fishermen.  

Kodiak, Alaska, was the next step in our journey. Our goal has always been to deliver that “wow” factor to chefs when they receive our seafood, and it’s something we’re continually dedicated to. 

You’ve discussed the benefits of having a fish house located right on Kodiak harbor. Can you elaborate on how this setup allows What Chefs Want to align with its commitment to chefs and its core value of going above and beyond for them? 

Kelly: Of course. Kodiak’s unique location as the second-largest island and second-largest fishing port in the United States provides us with an extraordinary opportunity. The island boasts the most diverse variety of seafood species in Alaska, offering a rich selection of fish not found anywhere else. We picked our location in Kodiak because we can sit in a little office across the street from the harbor and watch when the small boats come in. These smaller boats and their crews, usually just 1-3 people, have a deep connection with their catch, viewing each fish as a critical part of their livelihood. They prioritize quality and handle their catch with care, so the fish arrive in pristine condition. Our investment in Kodiak and our ownership of a dock right there allows us to secure these fresh catches as soon as the boats return.  

What in this process sets us apart? 

Kelly: We pick it up and bring the fish right across the street. We dry them, pack them and drive 15 minutes to Alaska Air Cargo where it’s overnighted to our What Chefs Want warehouses. This cuts out two to three middlemen along the way, along with at least a week, if not more of storage and travel time.   

I’m not going to name names, but right across the street from us is a large company that we used to buy fish from, and so does everybody else. A couple weeks ago we watched their process from our fish house window, and saw them with a front loader, scooping up halibut from the boat, lifting it up probably 15 feet in the air and dumping them huge containers. Now, juxtapose that with what we’re doing now, picking up every fish by hand, putting them in the bin, and driving it across the harbor to our warehouse where everything is temperature controlled. We box them, add gel packs, and overnight them. I don’t know of anybody who has better, faster, cleaner, fresher, more cared for Alaskan fish than us. And that is AWESOME!  Best of all, the fishermen are talking about us to all the other fishermen and appreciate and are excited about the care we are taking with their fish.  They love the stories we tell them about you and how you prepare their fish too! 

Does all this impact our pricing at all? 

Kelly: Well, the wonderful thing about this is that even though we’re paying small boats more for their attention to quality to their fish and to focus on smaller batches, our prices are not going to be any higher. We can do this because we cut out so many unnecessary steps and so much time on the way. Our prices are going to be the same, or better if possible for a higher quality, more sustainable and fresher fish. 

You’ve mentioned exciting fish options in Kodiak that chefs can explore. Could you tell us more about these unique offerings beyond the well-known salmon and halibut? 

Kelly: While salmon and halibut are widely recognized, Kodiak’s real treasures lie in the lesser-known fish varieties.  

One such category is rockfish. There are over 50 different types of rockfish, each with distinct characteristics, colors, and patterns. These fish exhibit striking colors, from bright reds and red-and-white stripes to olives, browns, and even species with yellow dots. These fish are ambush predators that use camouflage to catch and eat smaller fish. They’ll sit on a rock until a small fish goes by, jump out, and get it. That’s important because their muscles are not highly vascularized, there’s not a lot of blood in them, because they don’t use them frequently. This produces the most beautiful white filets that you’ll ever see. They are sweet with an excellent mouth-feel and offer chefs an opportunity to create unique culinary experiences.  

Another noteworthy fish is lingcod, which isn’t a cod at all. Cod are normally 4 pounds up to 15 pounds while lingcod can get up to 50 pounds. Occasionally, you get a lingcod that when you look in its mouth, it is a beautiful baby blue. When you fillet them, the flesh is as blue as can be! 

Sablefish or black cod is also a special fish. They are one of the most buttery and tasty fish out there. They are incredible fish with a super high fat content.  

And this is just the beginning of it. Kodiak’s diverse selection of fish allows chefs to introduce their patrons to a wide range of flavors and textures, setting them apart from the rest. 

Can you share more about Jeremy Abena, our fishmonger in Kodiak, and what his experience brings to What Chefs Want? 

Kelly: Jeremy Abena comes from a family deeply rooted in the fishing industry. His father was a successful fisherman and Jeremy was born and raised on Kodiak Island. He initially pursued a marketing degree in Seattle and went to work for an agency in San Francisco. However, his father’s call changed the course of his career. His father offered him a spot on one of his boats in Dutch Harbor, and Jeremy didn’t hesitate to make the transition from his corporate life in San Francisco.  

He joined as a deck hand and quickly fell in love with it. Over the years, Jeremy has been involved in catching over a million pounds of fish, primarily salmon and halibut on his father’s boats. He’s passionate about fishing and brings a wealth of experience to the table. I’ve been buying fish from Jeremy for years, even when I had my own company, because of the quality and the care he took with his fish and his facilities. Chefs absolutely loved what he was what he was getting for them! It absolutely made sense to bring him on board as a full-time employee of What Chefs Want, providing our chefs with that same commitment to quality and passion for the industry.  

Can you share more about the sustainability of this program and why it matters? 

Kelly: 98% of all the electricity in our warehouse is renewable. On the hill behind us we have windmills that produce the electricity for the warehouse and our water is all from a catchment system. The island must be concerned about sustainability because with the weather being so bad, we must be self-sufficient here. That equals sustainability and the need to use renewable resources, so it’s pretty awesome. 

The most amazing thing that I have learned over the years is that if we do care about the ocean and the sea life in it, the ocean comes back and comes back fast. In the town that I grew up in, we’d go spearfishing and it was hard to catch fish. Now when I revisit, because of San Diego’s sustainability practices, and because of what the government has done there, it is the most amazing fishery I’ve ever seen. I can’t believe how alive it is now. I’ve seen the same thing with certain species in Florida.  

So, it matters. It matters what fish we choose. It matters how much we catch and how we catch it. It matters what we do.  It’s worth it to care. 

How can chefs learn more about the freshest and most exciting fish sourced from Kodiak? What’s the best way for them to stay informed and get in touch with us? 

Kelly: I love to teach and that’s what I do more than anything. Sign up for my newsletters. I’ll teach you about the fish, I’ll teach you all about the fisherman and I’ll teach you something new every week.  

My personal cell phone number is provided in my newsletters. I love, absolutely love it, when chefs call me. We can geek out about fish. 


The Kodiak dock represents the What Chefs Want commitment to sourcing the best seafood. It’s not just about acquiring fish; it’s about building a trustworthy and sustainable relationship with local fishermen and prioritizing the wellbeing of the ocean’s resources. Kodiak is a prime example of how this approach can lead to win-win situations. By choosing our Kodiak fish, chefs can trust that they’re receiving seafood that meets the highest standards of quality, sustainability, and freshness. This commitment to excellence extends to every aspect of our sourcing process, ensuring that chefs can confidently add these exceptional fish to their menus. 

Our aim is to ensure that chefs have all the resources and knowledge they need to make informed choices and deliver memorable dining experiences to their customers.  

You can sign up for Kelly’s emails here.

Standing Out with Center of the Plate Options

By | Beef, Grilling Essentials, Meats, Pork, Seafood, What Chefs Want

As a chef, your creativity knows no bounds when it comes to crafting unique and unforgettable dishes. To help you take your culinary creations to the next level, we’ve gathered a selection of ingredients from What Chefs Want and shared some ideas to help you think of these ingredients in a new way. Let’s explore how you can incorporate these exceptional ingredients into your menu to inspire and delight your customers while discovering their unique qualities.

16 oz. Bone-in Kansas City Strip (Item #05573)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Savory Bone Marrow Butter”

Let’s begin with the 16 oz. Bone-in Kansas City Strip, a prime cut that boasts unparalleled tenderness and taste. Aged to perfection for an average of 28 days, this steak offers a depth of flavor that’s revered by chefs worldwide. What sets it apart is the bone, which remains intact, infusing the meat with a richer, deeper flavor cherished by steak lovers everywhere.

To celebrate this exceptional steak, try creating a “Savory Bone Marrow Butter.” Roast the bone until the marrow is rich and luscious, then whip it into softened butter, adding fresh herbs and a touch of lemon zest for brightness. Serve a dollop on top of a perfectly grilled Kansas City Strip to elevate the flavor profile and provide a melt-in-your-mouth experience.

Laguna Blanca Salmon Fillet (COMING SOON!)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Patagonian Salmon Crostini with Avocado Cream”

Our next stop takes us to Region XII Magallanes in Patagonia, where the Laguna Blanca Salmon Fillet hails from. This antibiotic-free salmon stands out for its eco-friendliness, produced with notably less impact on the wild fish population, and is BAP and ASC certified. The Laguna Blanca salmon is raised on an algae diet which ensures it is a rich source of omega-3s, making it not only delicious but also healthy. This salmon offers exceptional quality for its price.

To showcase the unique qualities of this salmon, consider preparing “Patagonian Salmon Crostini with Avocado Cream.” Start by gently searing thin slices of the salmon fillet to highlight its buttery texture. Then, serve the salmon atop crostini spread with a silky avocado cream, garnished with microgreens and a drizzle of lemon-infused olive oil. This elegant and fresh dish highlights the salmon’s impeccable quality and its eco-friendly origin, making it a delightful addition to your menu.

8oz Creekstone Burger Patties (Item #00258)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Balsamic Glazed Bacon Burger”

Our culinary adventure now turns to the 8oz Creekstone Burger Patties. These all-natural patties come from humanely-raised, vegetarian-fed cattle, and they are free from antibiotics, hormones, additives, and artificial ingredients. What sets them apart beyond just the quality of the beef, is the high-tech patty machine we use in-house to create the patties, which guarantees a tender, handcrafted bite every time.

To create a gourmet burger experience, try a “Balsamic Glazed Bacon Burger.” Brush these all-natural patties with a balsamic glaze while grilling, then top them with crispy bacon, caramelized onions, and creamy goat cheese. Serve on a toasted brioche bun for a burger that’s a testament to quality and craftsmanship.

16 oz. Centercut Pork Loin Chop (Item #05680)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Porterhouse Pork with Apple Chutney”

Our next destination is the 16 oz. Centercut Pork Loin Chop. This exquisite cut captivates guests with its presentation while remaining affordable. The center-cut porterhouse blends loin and tenderloin for an elevated dining experience. Expertly carved in-house daily, this chop promises both luxury and value.

To create a conversation starter on your menu, prepare “Porterhouse Pork with Apple Chutney.” Grill the center-cut pork loin chop to perfection and serve it with a side of homemade apple chutney. The sweet and tangy chutney complements the savory pork, creating a delightful contrast of flavors that makes your guests feel they’re dining at a five-star establishment.

Red Grouper, Skin-on Fillet (Item #48046)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Citrus-Herb Grouper en Papillote”

Our journey now takes us to the world of seafood with the Red Grouper, Skin-on Fillet. This fillet is part of our Boat Direct Program, which champions small fishermen and ensures a 48-hour delivery from catch to you. Managed sustainably against overfishing, it’s heralded as a ‘Good Alternative’ by Seafood Watch.

To make the most of this clean-eating fish, try “Citrus-Herb Grouper en Papillote.” Wrap the red grouper fillet in parchment paper with slices of citrus, fresh herbs, and a drizzle of olive oil. Steam it to perfection, allowing the flavors to meld inside the pouch. The result is a clean, flavorful, and visually stunning dish that showcases the grouper’s delicate taste.

Shrimp 16/20 PD Tail-on (Item #48642)

Unique Preparation Idea: “Saffron and Garlic Shrimp Risotto”

Our final destination is the Shrimp 16/20 PD Tail-on, peeled and deveined to retain their elegant tails. These raw shrimp are known for their versatility, consistently delighting guests across a range of dishes.

To showcase these shrimp, consider preparing a “Saffron and Garlic Shrimp Risotto.” Incorporate the succulent shrimp into a creamy saffron and garlic risotto. The shrimp’s natural sweetness and elegant presentation with tails intact will impress your diners, making this dish a standout on your menu.

With these premium ingredients from What Chefs Want, you have the opportunity not only to create exceptional dishes but also to share their unique stories and features with your customers.

To make your menu shine and get the most bang for your buck, talk to your customer advocate. They’re experts at enhancing your existing center-of-the-plate offerings. Whether you’re looking to add variety, improve value, or simply elevate your menu, they’ve got you covered. It’s all about aligning our premium products with your unique menu needs to create delightful dining experiences. Don’t miss out—reach out to them today and let’s make your menu even more amazing!

Exploring the Seasonality of Fish: Understanding What’s Fresh and Why

By | Local, Seafood, What Chefs Want

As chefs, one of the most exciting aspects of our craft is the ever-changing palette of ingredients that nature provides. Among these culinary treasures, fish stand out as a dynamic and diverse ingredient, but they come with their own unique rhythm dictated by the changing seasons. In this article, we’ll dive into the fascinating world of fish seasonality, exploring what impacts it and why understanding it is essential for creating exceptional dishes that celebrate freshness and sustainability.

The Rhythms of the Sea

Fish seasonality refers to the natural cycles of availability that different species of fish exhibit throughout the year. Just as the changing seasons influence the growth of fruits and vegetables, factors like water temperature, migration patterns, and spawning habits influence the presence of various fish in our oceans, rivers, and lakes. Embracing fish seasonality not only ensures that chefs work with the freshest catches but also contributes to sustainable fishing practices and responsible sourcing.

Factors Influencing Seasonality

Water Temperature: Fish are highly sensitive to water temperature. As the temperature changes with the seasons, so does the behavior of different fish species. Warmer water might attract certain species to migrate or spawn, while cooler waters could trigger migrations of other species.

Spawning Habits: Many fish species have specific times of the year when they reproduce. During spawning, fish might become less abundant as they focus on propagating their species rather than feeding.

Migration Patterns: Fish often migrate in search of optimal conditions for feeding and reproduction. These migrations can lead to the presence of certain fish in specific regions during certain seasons.

Food Availability: Fish feed on other marine life, and the availability of their prey can impact their presence. Changes in the abundance of smaller fish or plankton can influence the movement of larger predator fish.

Environmental Factors: Environmental factors such as water salinity, oxygen levels, and currents can impact the distribution and behavior of fish populations.

Weather: Weather conditions, including temperature, storms, and ocean currents, play a significant role in fish migration and availability. Changes in weather patterns can affect water temperature and nutrient distribution, influencing the movement and behavior of fish species. For instance, shifts in wind patterns can lead to upwelling, bringing nutrient-rich waters to the surface and attracting various marine life, creating opportunities for certain fish to thrive during specific seasons.

Why Seasonality Matters

Freshness and Flavor: Fish that are in-season are at their peak in terms of flavor and texture. They are more likely to be caught closer to your location, reducing the time between catch and plate.

Sustainability: Embracing fish seasonality supports sustainable fishing practices. Fishing responsibly and avoiding overfishing during sensitive times like spawning seasons helps protect fish populations for future generations.

Economic Impact: Sourcing in-season fish can positively impact local economies, as it encourages the consumption of fish that are readily available from nearby waters.

Environmental Impact: By choosing in-season fish, you contribute to reducing the carbon footprint associated with transporting out-of-season species from distant locations.

Culinary Creativity: Adapting to the changing availability of fish challenges chefs to think creatively and explore new flavors and preparations.

Navigating Fish Seasonality

To make the most of fish seasonality, chefs need to stay informed about the species that are in-season in their region. We are happy to provide our seafood expertise to guide you in making sustainable and delicious choices! See below for the What Chefs Want seasonality chart.


Red, White and BBQ

By | Chef's Feed, Farm To Table, Local, Meats, Seafood, The Butchery, Vegetables, What Chefs Want

Grilling inspiration for your 4th of July menu

The 4th of July is just around the corner, and you know what that means—time to fire up the grill or smoker and give your customers a menu that sets off fireworks of flavor and leaves everyone craving more. That’s why we’re here to share our BBQ favorites, guaranteed to add sizzle and excitement to your holiday feast. From hand-cut, premium quality steaks to the freshest produce, we’ve got the ingredients that will inspire grilling greatness and create an unforgettable 4th of July experience.  

Center of the Plate Stars for the Grill

The sizzle and aroma of a perfectly grilled steak evoke a sense of anticipation and delight, as each bite offers a tender and juicy experience that is simply irresistible. Try one of our favorites, the Black Hawk Reserve Striploin. Black Hawk Farms cattle are selectively bred for intense marbling and robust flavor. (Search Item #26955)

Nothing says the 4th of July like a burger hot off the grill, but how can you take those burgers to the next level? It’s all about the quality of the beef itself. Try Berry Beef Burger Patties. Berry Farms dry ages their beef, allowing the natural flavors to be enhanced while making the meat more tender. (Search Item #26696)

While beef remains a favorite in star-spangled spreads, don’t overlook the incredible flavors of fish, which prove to be an excellent and delectable option for the grill as well.

It is wild caught salmon season, ensuring a steady supply of Sockeye Salmon and the perfect grilling companion, King Salmon. Sockeye salmon is known for its intense flavor and vibrant red color, while King salmon is revered for its large size, high fat content, and luxurious taste. (Search Item #28603)

Cobia, a versatile and delicious fish, is an excellent choice for grilling enthusiasts. With its firm and flavorful flesh, Cobia holds up well on the grill, allowing for various preparations and marinades to enhance its taste. (Search Item #48021)

Don’t Forget the Smoker

We can’t let the summer season start without a nod to the magic of smoked meat.

Smoking lamb neck or lamb shoulder creates a tender and flavorful culinary experience. The slow smoking process allows the lamb to develop a rich smoky aroma and a melt-in-your-mouth texture, resulting in a truly unforgettable dish. Freedom Run Farm Lamb is more tender and mild than virtually any other lamb available in the market today. (Search Item #62506 for lamb neck and #62502 for lamb shoulder)

Smoked beef brisket is a barbecue masterpiece that promises an explosion of smoky and savory flavors. We recommend smoking the Black Hawk Brisket. (Search Item #00336)

Produce that Pops on the Grill

Summer is the perfect season to showcase the vibrant flavors of fresh vegetables on the grill. Grilling vegetables enhances their textures and creates a delicious char, elevating them to a whole new level of culinary enjoyment during the sunny and bountiful days of summer.

Grilling asparagus highlights the natural sweetness and earthy flavors of this versatile vegetable. With a slight char on the outside, grilled asparagus offers a perfect balance of crispness and tenderness, making it a perfect side dish or addition to salads, pastas, or as a standalone appetizer. (Search Item #20000 for jumbo and #20005 for standard)

Broccolini and caulilini are excellent choices for grilling due to their unique attributes. Broccolini, with its tender stems and small florets, grills beautifully, developing a smoky flavor while retaining its crunch. The thinner stalks of caulilini allow for quick and even cooking on the grill, resulting in a delightful blend of charred and slightly sweet flavors. Both vegetables benefit from the grill’s heat, transforming into deliciously charred and caramelized delights that add a delightful twist to any summer meal. (Search Item #20012 for broccolini and #03643 for caulilini)

Sweet corn is in season as well, so don’t forget that it is a treat on the grill! (Search Item #20041)

Gourmet Goods to Enhance your Grill

Take your grilling to the next level by incorporating flavorful glazes. Elevate your dishes with the luscious sweetness of fig balsamic glaze, made by enriching balsamic vinegar of Modena PGI with fig juice, or indulge in the earthy richness of truffle balsamic glaze, infused with the aromatic essence of truffles. (Search Item #29869 for fig balsamic glaze and #29853 for truffle balsamic glaze)

Change your whole flavor profile with spices like ras el hanout or za’atar. A prized Moroccan spice blend, ras el hanout takes its name from an Arabic phrase that can be loosely translated as ‘top of the shop’, meaning the very best a spice merchant has to offer. Za’atar is a complex medley of seasonings is notable for its rich aroma and well-balanced curry-like flavor. It is an authentic Middle Eastern mix of herbs and spices, featuring sumac, thyme, oregano, sesame seeds and salt that is sure to add a new pop of flavor to your grilled favorites. (Search Item #97142 for ras el hanout and #97181 for za’atar)

Elevate your grilled fish with extra virgin olive oil with lemon or yuzu. The yuzu oil, a fantastic complement to grilled seafood, offers a refreshing twist as a versatile citrus substitute. (Search Item #18268 for EVOO with lemon and #95411 for yuzu oil)

What Chefs Want is Delivering Your Grilling Favorites

What Chefs Want has you covered with a selection of grilling favorites that will make your menu shine. From hand-cut steaks to the freshest seasonal produce, our premium quality ingredients are sure to elevate your summer menu and leave your guests craving more.

With split cases, daily delivery (even on the 4th!) and no minimum orders, we give chefs what they want and need to create summer menu magic.

*Not available in all regions – see website or app for more information.