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Tasting is believing. Escalon Premier Brands has a passion for the best tomatoes

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In the fertile soil of California’s San Joaquin Valley, a small group of dedicated farmers carefully nurture and cultivate select tomato varieties. Vine-ripened to a vibrant red, picked with the greatest of care, graded by hand and packed within hours of harvest, these could be the best “fresh pack” tomato products you’ve ever tasted.

 Now, for the first time, they’re available to foodservice operators in Canada.

By Lawrence Herzog

“Tasting is believing,” says Dan Milazzo, senior manager, Escalon Premier Brands. “Everything that we do from a process and ingredient standpoint is ultimately about what’s in the can and how it tastes and performs for the operators who are passionate about what they serve.”

Juriaan Snellen, corporate chef at Heinz Foodservice Canada, says the Escalon tomatoes and tomato sauces are naturally steam peeled the same way a chef would do it in the kitchen. “With tomatoes, most of the nutrients and flavour are contained just below the skin, so it’s very important to peel carefully. As a chef, I am looking for the highest quality with no preservatives and no additional ingredients.”

Escalon Premier Brands delivers the quality uncompromising chefs are looking for time after time with low-temperature processing, 100 per cent steam peeling and no added citric acid. “The result is tantalizing in colour and true to the sweet taste of fresh tomatoes,” Chef Snellen says. “It is the start of fantastic tomato dishes like pizza and pasta sauces, salsas and soups.”

Look for these products in six distinct tomato formats: 6-in-1 Ground Tomatoes, Bonta Concentrated Crushed Tomatoes, Cristoforo Colombo Tomato Strips with Fresh Basil, Allegro Classic Italian Pizza Sauce, Allegro Starter Sauce and Mama Linda Chopped Tomatoes.

“We’ve had customers literally scour the globe in search of the best tomatoes, and they chose us for uncompromising quality and consistency,” Milazzo says.

Buying higher quality, more concentrated tomatoes and sauces can actually save money, too. “Our high yield Bonta Concentrated Crushed Tomatoes are super thick and designed to be extended with water,” Milazzo says. “When you run the numbers, it is lower on actual serving cost than many competitive products.”

Quality, flavour and performance have made Escalon Premier Brands a favourite among discerning chefs in the United States for generations. Italian-Americans Cristoforo and Emma Colombo founded the company in 1944, dedicated to providing the very best foodservice tomato products available in the U.S. They succeeded, deliciously, and now, 70 years later, their tradition of excellence is coming north to Canada.