Food Finds - Emily G's Jam of Love

The all natural jams are made in small numbers so the quality doesn't waver

It all started with a berry-picking playdate and way too many strawberries. Since freshly picked local strawberries turn bad so quickly, Emily Myers and Gina Bodell decided to make jam. They gave it away to friends, who begged for more. Some even offered to pay for it. So they looked at each other and said, "Why not?" The two mothers of young children started Emily G's — a name they credit to Bodell's husband. At first, they expected to sell some jam at farmers markets and to friends, but the lark transformed into a successful business with a cult following of local jarheads.

Emily G's jams are all natural. That means no crazy additives, just lemon, sugar, pectin and fresh local and seasonal fruit. Each batch is made in small numbers so the quality doesn't waver. It's a family operation; many an afternoon is spent with the kids labeling jars. Myers says they don't hesitate to trash the jams if the result doesn't meet their expectations: "We know what we want and what's delicious."

Purists will love flavors such as the tripleberry — a mix of strawberries, raspberries and cherries. It's not too sweet and full of tangy berry goodness. More adventurous choices — such as the jalapeño raspberry, strawberry chipotle, and spicy blueberry — are best-sellers. Emily G's is big on seasonality, so summer should be a boon for the company. When we spoke, Myers was waiting on a harvest of peaches from Pearson Farms and expects a new batch of peach jam to be available very soon.

Emily G's jams are available at Pine Street Market, Muss & Turner's, Savi Urban Market, select Whole Foods Markets, Peachtree Road Farmers Market and more.

For more information, visit www.emilygs.com.

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