by Eat. Sip. Chew. in New Food and Packaging on Sunday 15 May 2011

A year ago you could happily find me here, writing for Lost At E Minor, and cooking away in Los Angeles restaurant kitchens. A year later, I’ve launched Sqirl (for the old saying ‘Squirreling Things Away’), a preservation company dedicated to jams, jellies, and marmalades made from certified organic seasonal fruit no more than 200 miles from Sqirl’s commercial kitchen.

Curious about unusual produce like Mandarinquats (a Mandarin and Kumquat hybrid), Pakistani Mulberries, or Seascape Strawberries? Well, I am too, and it turns out that they make extraordinary jam. Finished off with minimal amounts of fair trade organic cane sugar and cooked in a copper jam pan made for me by a local, ‘knarled grizzly old coot’ (that’s what the copper artist calls himself), it’s really The Jam.

While preservation invades my consciousness, I turned to Scott Barry (Print Magazine Top 20 Designer for 2011) for the package design and branding. He’s brilliant and really considered form, function and aesthetic and how they would coexist. Artist James Gulliver Hancock lent his stop-motion moxie, and the world of Sqirl’s been born.

So now it’s a published fact – very few hands are responsible for what I believe to be beautiful work, both inside the jar and outside of it. And I can only hope that you dig it, too.