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lifestyle & arts

THe North shore weekend

4/12 – 4/13/14

matter of taste

Couple craves creating flavorful treats

Kim and Scott Holstein

■ by katie rose mceneely Kim and Scott Holstein of Wilmette are the creators of Crave Bar. How did you start Crave Bar? Kim: Scott and I had a pretzel company for 17 years. A couple of years ago, he was obsessed with the idea of putting ice cream on a chocolate-caramel pretzel stick as a novelty ice cream bar. One thing led to another, and Ravinia kept asking about it. It was a product that was created specifically for the Ravinia Festival. When we had an offer to buy our company, Scott and I decided to start a whole new company and revolutionize that old, plain ice cream bar with a dark chocolate caramel pretzel stick and using handcrafted ice cream to create a decadent treat. Scott: Don’t forget the sea salt on top of the chocolate! It’s really an exploration of the salty-sweet combinations of chocolate and caramel. It’s a story told through an ice cream bar. Years in the business? Over 18 years. Scott: We started with Kim and Scott’s Gourmet Pretzels. You can still buy the product at Jewel and Whole Foods around the country — we stuffed soft pretzels. What made you decide to get into the food business? Kim: It was just a wild idea. Scott had a theater background, and I worked in advertising. But his family brought the first Ben & Jerry’s to Chicago. In the early ‘90s, I read an article about pretzels, putting flavors together. I couldn’t get it out of my mind. We decided to start working on it. We really sought out a lot of people who were teachers and experts, that’s how we go into it — more as eaters, passionate foodies, not as people who have food industry experience. Plans for development? Kim: Right now we have three flavors — original, malted milk, and one of our seasonal flavors is a cappuccino dark chocolate. One of our passions is

photography by joel lerner that custom flavor. We’re already working on new flavors. Do you cook? We love to cook. We’d love to do it more — we have three kids, so sometimes it’s crazy. We’re always making breakfast. On the weekends we can have a fun lunch. Forever we’ll be bakers, making something with chocolate. Last night I was exploring with homemade Reese’s cups. Scott: We’ve got, like, 30 pounds of chocolate in our kitchen — we’re picking chocolate for our next product. What do you like to eat at home? Kim: I would say that we love breakfast — Scott is famous for his crepes. I love to bake, cookies, cakes, all that kind of stuff. Scott: Our newest piece of equipment is a dehydrator. We constantly make kale chips. We’ll take kale and put in tamari, olive oil, chili peppers, red peppers, any type of a hearty seasoning mixture, and add sea salt and lay it in the dehydrator for about four hours — you get these delicious kale chips. Funniest or most memorable kitchen incident? We live in our kitchen. A lot goes on! It’s our favorite room in the house. We have all our meetings in the kitchen — in the food business, that’s where you meet. We also have been involved in starting a new company, foodiespoon.com Our former banker, when we were in the pretzel business, was involved with a company selling mini appetizer. The project we thought stood out was these edible spoons. They’re pretzel spoons; it’s really whimsical, fun, unique products — Oreo spoons, Oreo tacos, sweet and savory spoons. Really fun. The creation of the whole branding happened in our own kitchen. We tend to be eating and cooking while we’re having meetings — it’s just part of our life. Crave Bar is available at Foodstuffs, Veers, Nicks Neighborhood Bar & Grill, The Noodle, Rock House and, in the summer, Ravinia Festival. For more information, visit thecravebar.com. ■

The North Shore Weekend EAST, Issue 79  

The North Shore Weekend (East Zone) is published weekly and features the news and personalities of Evanston, Wilmette, Kenilworth, Winnetka,...

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