Commercial plug. Skip post if you like. I know, Marketman shamelessly plugging his own jams. :) But after months of wrangling on a new design for the stickers (wickedly EXPENSIVE, cost more than the BOTTLES!), I have finally gotten it all together and there are a limited number of jams for sale at the Zubuchon restaurants in Cebu. Freshly made guava jelly, kalamansi marmalade and mango jam are the three we have right now. The mangosteen season seems to have been severely affected by rains, so I doubt we will have any mangosteen jam this year…
Designed by the same graphic artist who did our pig logo, I thought the little teaspoon appearing to stick into the jam was a clever design. The labels are clean and minimalist. The jams are cooked in small batches and are heavy with fruit and just sugar, and sometimes pectin. There is no secret to them at all as I have written about all three products and how to make them on this blog before.
At PHP180 per bottle they are quite expensive and not for everyone. But we use the freshest and highest quality fruit, make it all by hand, in small batches, by real humans who are paid well, etc. And if you have ever tried to de-seed and cut up five kilos of kalamansi, you would know that the process can practically erase your fingerprints for several days hence… :)
A few days ago, a party of say 12 guests, several of them balikbayans, visited the restaurant. One of them, an elderly lady of the group, picked up a bottle of our guava jelly and said something like “nobody makes guava jelly like they used to make guava jelly. It used to TASTE like guava, not just sugar. And this one is way too light in color.” which I of course took as a challenge after overhearing this comment… and I replied, picking up a jar “Mam, would you like to try some of our guava jelly to see if it meets your exacting standards?” I opened a bottle, got a teaspoon, and handed her some jelly. She tasted, rolled her eyes, smiled and looked at her companions and said, “Now, THIS is guava jelly. It TASTES like guava jelly. You all have to TASTE this…” and she proceeded to buy a bottle to take home, a happy camper. It may have cost me a bottle to make the sale, but make the sale I did. More importantly, I brought a smile to a lady whose memory of guava jelly was now a reality. :)