Fermentation is a combination of produce, time and temperature, harnessing the power of natural processes to create a live product and with it flavours that wouldn't otherwise exist. When we look at the most revered, flavourful foods from around the world, nearly all of them use the transformative power of fermentation – aged cheeses, cured meats, wines, soy sauce, pickles. Typically they contain no more than a handful of very basic ingredients, treated with care and patience to allow natural, live organisms to work their magic.
When most people nowadays think about pickles, they think about crunchy bites of vegetable preserved in vinegar. Vinegar pickles can be delicious in their own right, but lack the complex flavours and potential health benefits of traditional live pickles. Our products are lacto-fermented, meaning that fresh vegetables, fruits and chillies are salted and then fermented at cool room temperature for 2-3 weeks - readiness is decided based on taste and acidity. They are then moved into cold storage to slow the fermentation process right down; this secondary, cooler fermentation period is responsible for a lot of the finished depth and nuance in flavour.
Fermentation is simply a way of transforming and preserving fresh produce. By using lacto-fermentation, we're preserving fresh ingredients at their best and creating live products that require a little careful direction to maintain consistent flavour and texture. 'Lacto' refers to lactic acid bacteria, the myriad bacteria species that convert the natural starches and sugars within vegetables into lactic acid. Rather than adding acid in the form of vinegar (pickling), the bacteria produce their own acid, achieving a lesser degree of preservation than vinegar pickles, but far surpassing them in flavour and health.
Fermentation creates complex and intense flavours, and possesses a unique capacity for rounding out strong flavours such as garlic, ground spices and chilli without losing their precision or satisfying kick. Our kimchi develops a rich, savoury depth and pungency yet is also extremely refreshing; palate cleansing but full of flavour. What goes into our krauts is something very flavour-neutral (white cabbage) and something very strong (robust spices such as black pepper, cloves, cardamom and chilli), yet what comes out is complex, perfumed and rounded, the flavours meshed together yet still identifiable.