Mistakes are being made. By me. This is my second year overseeing our sofi™ Awards contest and I’m a bit fried after three non-stop weeks. The sofi Awards recognize outstanding specialty foods and beverages in 33 categories, from “Appetizer, Antipasto, Salsa or Dip” to “Outstanding New Product.” We had 1,433 entries in Part 1 of the contest. For a list of finalists, click here.


Tim Von Hollweg, purchasing manager of Myriad Restaurant Group’s Tribeca Grill in New York City

Oops: I told a sofi™ Award finalist for “Meat, Paté or Seafood,” to send his pork leg for our big photo shoot next week. Well, it seems Porchetta Primata’s finalist product is a pork roll, not some leg. Nathan Marcus of Porchetta Primata was confused, and then gracious, about my error.

Oops: About five minutes ago I congratulated a woman from Schoolhouse Kitchen on her company’s entry being selected as a finalist for Outstanding Classic. “That was Stonewall, not us. We were a finalist last year but so far not this year,” she said in an email. Sorry! Stonewall Kitchen’s Wild Maine Blueberry Jam was the product I was thinking about.

Oops: When we created a list of all the finalists for our website yesterday, we added hyperlinks wherever we could. One link connected a product to a company in China that has nothing to do with food. And it was all in Chinese.

Oops: This is bigger. I raced to issue a press release today announcing the finalists. I listed the names of our panel of specialty food experts who judged the entries, but left out Tim Von Hollweg, purchasing manager of Myriad Restaurant Group’s Tribeca Grill in New York City. And Tim even gave up his tickets to a Yankees game at their snazzy new stadium to spend not one but three days inside at our offices on Wall Street plowing through rows and rows of products.

Oops: I have 13 voicemails I haven’t listened to yet. And about 25 emails I haven’t answered.

It’s supposed to be a beautiful weekend in New York City. Time to step away from the sofis and clear my head. Come Monday, I promise to answer my emails and listen to the messages. Special thanks to all the members of the NASFT who made this year’s contest especially vibrant so far. Part 2 is in early June. The gold winners will be announced at the Summer Fancy Food Show on June 29.

–Louise Kramer (AKA sofi Director)


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