Winter Weatherize Your Business

The warmth from the oven seemed to permeate the out-of-doors over Thanksgiving weekend here in Raleigh, where Stockton Graham & Co.’s warehouse is located. But the Central part of the U.S. had a different winter weather story. Stockton Graham & Co. Raleigh roaster winter weather info

Winter Storm Delphi dumped heavy snow, sleet and freezing rain from the Plains into the Upper Midwest, creating dangerous travel conditions. The storm impacted deliveries for some of our customers in places such as Minneapolis/St. Paul, Sioux City, Iowa, and Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Delphi gave us a clue as to what to expect this winter whether your business is located in Minneapolis, Oregon, Florida or North Carolina. According the National Weather Service, the South and Southeast are expected to see colder than average temperatures from December through February, which means any precipitation in Raleigh could lead to debilitating snow and ice storms.

“The unusual strength and east-based location or “flavor” of the El Niño event suggests that a very warm 1982-83 or 1997-98 winter is quite possible, with highest confidence for a mild winter across the northern Plains and Pacific Northwest and highest confidence for a cooler winter across the south-central U.S.,” said Dr. Todd Crawford of Weather Service International.

If weather becomes too extreme, shipments from our vendors like Torani from the West Coast can be delayed. Here in Raleigh, if there is snow and ice on the roads, our staff cannot get to the roasting facilities and warehouses to process your orders. And, of course, FedEx and our other freight carriers will be at a stand-still if their large trucks cannot pass on the icy roads anywhere from Raleigh to your business.

We want your business to be prepared in the event of winter weather. Here are a few tips from our Customer Care Team:

Stock Up: Have at least one extra week of essentials like coffee and cups on hand so if shipments are delayed, your business can still operate.

Order Earlier: Place your orders on Monday or Tuesday so they don’t sit in trucks or on tarmacs over the weekend. This is particularly important if you are ordering sugar-free syrups, as those tend to freeze easily and can explode if left in the cold over the weekend.

Track Orders: All shippers offer tracking either by email or text or both. Sign up to receive automatic tracking on all your orders so you’ll know whether, say, an ice storm in Omaha will effect your delivery in Seattle.

All of us at Stockton Graham & Co. wish you a very safe and successful winter.

Why does a coffee shop need syrups, sauces and specialty beverages?

SGC-COFFEE-collegeThe coffee industry is at an exciting place these days. Coffee quality is reaching new heights as communications between roasters, brokers and farmers strengthens. Average consumers are equipped with knowledge and they are excited about coffee and its appreciation. Apart from coffee rust and other environmental factors that threaten it, the future of the industry is looking great, as demand for high-quality, ethically sourced coffee is growing.

Here at Stockton Graham & Co., we often debate the “right” way to do coffee, from offering single origins as pour overs or espressos, to dressing up a blend with flavored syrups and milk. While many of our coffee geeks here would love to make our excellent coffees the only thing we blog about, sample or offer, that wouldn’t serve our customers. The surprising thing about coffee is that most people are introduced to it either as a dressed up beverage, complete with flavorings and topped with whipped cream, or as a cup of low-quality coffee out of can in a dorm room. Very rarely are people introduced to coffee at the specialty coffee level in a high-end shop. A coffee palate is usually developed with practice and appreciation is usually honed over many years.

SGC-equipmentThe reality of the current market is that while coffee consumers are becoming more aware of what true specialty coffee is, it still can be rather intimidating to the novice drinker. That is where syrups, sauces and specialty beverages come in; giving a new customer a place to be comfortable while they are beginning their own coffee journey. Having a diverse menu that includes a variety of popular specialty coffees the general public can enjoy welcomes them in to the coffee industry. These drinks are often the first introduction people have to coffee, and though it is tempting to focus on the cutting-edge trends, we can’t forget that many people are still learning the basics. Our job as a coffee roaster and specialty beverage distributor is to help our customers educate and guide those just beginning their specialty coffee journey.

At Stockton Graham & Co., we try to remember that there are always customers that are being introduced to coffee for the first time. We think that it is important to have menu options that cater to those new to coffee, as well as the experienced coffee drinker. We have a deep selection of some of the best sauces and syrups available to enable our customers to better serve their customers along with a wide variety of coffee to satisfy the experienced drinkers.

Call 800 835 5943 to talk with our Customer Care Associate team or request samples and recipes.

2013 Pumpkin Syrups and Sauces Now Available!

pumpkin-blogWhile the days are still long for most of us, Stockton Graham & Co. and our specialty beverage vendors have been working on getting ready for the fall roll-out of all things pumpkin.

We are happy to announce that our stock of pumpkin syrups and sauces are now available for immediate shipping!  As in years past, we are offering our customers a selection of the most delectable and versatile syrups and sauces in the specialty coffee industry.

For sauces, we are stocking Torani Pumpkin Pie Sauce packed 4 – 64 oz. bottles per case.  We also have by special order a limited-time stocking of the DaVinci Gourmet Pumpkin Sauce packed in 6 – 64 oz. bottles per case.

For those who prefer to use syrups in their café lattes and other specialty drinks, we are stocking the following syrups in 750ML glass bottle:

  • Torani Pumpkin Pie Syrup (Regular and Sugar Free)
  • DaVinci Gourmet Pumpkin Pie Syrup
  • Monin Pumpkin Spice Syrup

Due to their popularity and high demand, we are pre-packing these glass bottles into six-count cases for quick shipment and passing along the full case savings of $1.50 per case (based on standard list price), single flavor on these prepackaged syrups.

We also have by special order a limited-time stocking of the following syrups in 750ML glass bottles, packed 12 per case:

  • DaVinci Gourmet Pumpkin Pie Sugar Free
  • Torani Pumpkin Spice Syrup
  • Monin Pumpkin Pie Syrup

Make sure to plan for the upcoming fall season early! Call your customer care or sales associate at 800.835.5943 for more details and pricing.

Blended Frozen Drink Recipes for Summer!

smoothie-frappe-drinkAs discussed in our Summer Promotions and Building Business with Frozen Blended Drinks blogs, blended drinks such as frappés and smoothies are big sellers for Cafés in warmer summer months. To help you create some great menu items, the Stockton Graham & Co. team have chosen a few recipes to share. Our variety of allied products help create all these quick and easy drinks, so be sure to discuss all your options when talking to your Customer Care Associate.

According to the StudyLogic 2012 review, sales for frozen coffee beverages reached $4.3 billion, in the U.S. alone, in 2012. This is a huge and delicious market that you can easily take advantage of with a few products. It’s been reported* that the top 5 frappé flavors are: mocha, caramel, coffee, vanilla and chocolate. Offering at least one of these top 5 is a must, but explore more flavorings for a specialized option.

Torani has released their Real Cream Frappé Base for the summer of 2013, that makes a real easy and quick variety of frappé drinks. All you need to create a 16 oz. drink is 2 cups of ice, 5 oz. of Torani’s Real Cream Base, 1 shot of chilled espresso and 1 oz. of any syrup or sauce. Blend it well and you have a delicious and savory frozen coffee drink. We suggest Raspberry syrup with the Vanilla Real Cream Base. This creates a creamy raspberry milkshake flavor with the hint of espresso.

If your choice of frappé mix is powders, we have a variety of options there as well, from Caffe D’Amore, Big Train and Café Essentials. Consider making a “Peanut Butter Bliss” with 3 oz. of a vanilla frappe powder, 5 oz. of milk, 2 oz. peanut butter syrup, 1 oz. of caramel sauce and ice. You can adjust this recipe with a shot of chilled espresso or 1 oz. of chocolate sauce as well.

Entice customers looking to indulge, with a “Mocha Cookies and Crème Frappe”. Just take 5 oz. of milk, 2 scoops of a Mocha Frappe Powder, 16 oz. of ice, 1 chilled shot of espresso and blend, then add 1 scoop (70cc) of cookie pieces and pulse in until well blended. This rich and creamy mocha concoction will have customers begging for more.

Smoothies are very popular now as meal replacements, protein suppliers, tasty snacks or just a healthy specialty beverage to enjoy. The top 5 smoothie flavors are strawberry, strawberry banana, mango, peach and wildberry, so any of these options will satisfy your customers. Branch out by pouring different flavors into the same cup as a smoothie “mix-n-match”, it’s a 2 for 1 deal for your customers! Stockton Graham & Co. offers a variety of real fruit smoothie options for our customers, from industry leaders Torani, Jet, Big Train, Monin, Teawave and Dr. Smoothie.

Give your customers a taste of the islands with a delicious “Mango Pineapple Smoothie”. Put 3 oz. of Mango smoothie mix, 3 oz. of pineapple juice and 2 cups of ice in a blender and blend till smooth.

Dr. Smoothie has a great recipe called “Indigo Isle” where you mix 2 oz. of water, 3 oz. of strawberry banana concentrate, 2 oz. of blueberry banana concentrate and 16 oz. of ice in a blender. Then pulse in 1 strawberry and 5 blueberries afterwards for a great fruit texture.

Adding supplements or frappe mixes to your smoothie mix can make for a creamier, fruity drink. Blend together 2 oz. of a cream base, 6 oz. of peach smoothie mix and 16 oz. of ice for a delightful “Peaches N’ Crème” drink. Customers will enjoy how sweet and subtle the tart of the fruit is.

To help you get your blended frozen beverage program on the right track or for a minor tune-up, Stockton Graham & Co. has set-up a blender equipment special. If you purchase one of our Blendtec or Vitamix blender options, you can receive FREE cases of assorted product from Jet, Torani, Caffe D’Amore or Dr.Smoothie! Programs for Mocafe and Cappuccine products will be coming soon! We also have promotions going on from Dr. Smoothie (Whey Protein Promotion) and Jet (Flavored Lemonade Promotion) that can get you FREE product with your purchase of blending concentrates, click the links above to learn more.

Don’t forget to decorate your frozen blended drinks. Top them off with whipped cream, pieces of fruit, a drizzle of sauce or nuts to really impress your customers. These sweet and tasty specialty beverages will sell themselves, and have customers coming to your café all summer long. Give us a call at 800.835.5943 today to order some beverage mixes, or to discuss more recipe options with our sales team!

* Mintel , All Segments Report from 2012

Only a few more days of our Pumpkin Promotion left!

There are only a few more days of our great pumpkin syrups and sauces promotion left! Pumpkin is falls favorite flavor, so have your shop ready for the pumpkin crowd!

If you pre-order a full case of Pumpkin sauces or syrups before Aug 31 we will give you:

$4 off a case* of  Pumpkin Sauces
$6 off  a case*of Pumpkin Syrups
*full cases only (applies to 12ct pumpkin syrup or 4ct/6ct sauce)
***All pre-orders will ship 9/5/2012 with FREE FREIGHT***

Syrups and sauces will be available from the taste leaders Monin, DaVinci and Torani! Stay ahead of the competition and call Stockton Graham at 800.835.5943 to pre-order your pumpkin flavors today!

With Fall and a change in temperatures right around the corner, your customers are going to be looking for those delicious pumpkin flavors!

August Promotions Recap

With August being the segue month from Summer to Fall, we are offering a lot of great promotions to help your shop shift into the cooler months. To remind you of all we have going on here at Stockton Graham & Co., we have created this recap list. Give your Customer Care Associate a call at 1.800.835.5943 to place your order today!

Monin All Natural Fruit Smoothies
Save up to $18 dollars a case:
$6 instantly on your full case of one flavor. Expires: 9/30/2012
$12 back as a rebate direct from Monin on any case you buy. Expires: 12/3/2012
First case of Monin Smoothies Free with rebate. Expires: 12/31/2012

Big Train Real Fruit Smoothies
$10 off each case Expires: 9/30/2012

Big Train Blended Cremes NY Cheesecake and Root Beer
Buy 1 case of NY Cheesecake get 1 case of Root Beer free
Expires: 8/31/2012

Torani Real Fruit Smoothie Green Apple
$4 off two 64oz. bottles
$18 off each case Expires: 8/31/2012

Torani Real Fruit Smoothie Strawberry Lemonade
$6 off a case Expires: 9/22/2012

Pumpkin Sauces & Syrups :Torani, Monin, Davinci Syrups Torani Sauces
$4 case instant savings on Sauces
$6 case instant savings on Syrups
(full cases only) Expires: 8/31/2012

Jet Artic Lemonade and Margarita Flavors
$6 instant off a case Expires: 9/30/2012
$12 per case or $2 per 64oz carton mail in rebate. Expires: 12/31/2012

DaVinci Gourmet Single Origin Naturals
$6 instant off a case Expires: 9/30/2012
$12 per case or $1 per 64 mail in rebate. Expires: 12/31/2012

Prepare your shop for Fall!

Fall is just about here, and it’s a great time to be a coffee shop owner! Your regulars start to return from summer vacation, kids begin a new school year, and some of the most favored seasonal blends and drinks give people another reason to stop in your shop. There’s a lot going on, and a business owner can get overwhelmed quickly, so we have prepared a cheat sheet of preps that you should take into consideration in order to plan for a successful fall.

Revise your menu for fall drinks! As we move into fall, our industry shifts gears and we begin to prepare for coffee’s busiest season. It is time to consider promoting your seasonal drinks, beginning with pumpkin!

• Call Stockton Graham & Co. to pre-order seasonal syrups and sauces. Customers expect flavors like Pumpkin Spice and Caramel Apple to be on your fall menu. Pre-ordering these seasonal items ensures you are prepared to handle the demand. We highly suggest you order AT LEAST one case of pumpkin flavored syrup of your brand choice – it will sell. We offer it in DaVinci, Torani and Monin. To give you an extra boost with the fall transition Stockton Graham & Co. is offering a  promotion for pumpkin syrups and sauces pre-order! Click here to learn more.

• Determine what seasonal coffees you will offer. Here at Stockton Graham & Co., we have numerous fall-inspired flavors and blends to satisfy any customer. Click here for more details, and a list of our favorite fall-time coffees!

Apple cider is also a very common and popular drink for the colder months. Click here to learn great ways to incorporate cider into you menu!

• Don’t forget about Chai! Chai is always a big hit in fall and winter months, and it is a great way to pick up some of those smoothie and frappe sales that oftentimes slow down this time of the year. Check out this great chai recipe to get your chai program up and running!

• Just because the peak of frozen beverages has come and gone doesn’t mean you won’t continue to sell them now, and through the fourth quarter. Dr. Smoothie’s 100% Cherry Cranberry is always a fall-time favorite, and this year’s new fall smoothie hit is Torani’s real fruit Green Apple smoothie! This green apple smoothie mixed with caramel sauce makes an AWESOME caramel apple smoothie. To give it a try, check out a spectacular offer here.

• And finally, make sure you are well staffed. Remember, fall marks the beginning of the busiest time of the year, and you don’t want to be shorthanded when it comes to employees. If you do need to hire additional help, be sure to consider Stockton Graham and Co.’s Coffee College to make sure your baristas are the best that they can be, ultimately saving you money!

If this is your first season as a cafe owner, or if you’re a veteran looking for some new, spicy ideas, contact one of our customer care associates today at (800) 835-5943 for additional seasonal advice!