Since we left you to find your own muses throughout the holiday season, we decided to bring readers a double hitter this month! What better way to celebrate the start of a new year than by celebrating a power couple that shares small, local products every day? Tripp and Emily Nichols are the creators of Small Batch Daily, an Instagram account sharing a curated collection of American made artisanal food products. From salad dressing and jam to coffee and chocolate, it’s easy to find a new favorite or three by simply scrolling their feed and commenting “sold!” But their love of food and involvement in the industry began long before Instagram started. Read on to learn more about out January Muses!
What is your favorite place or thing to do in the Boston area (together or apart)?
There are many but a favorite go-to activity when friends are visiting is hitting up Sofra Bakery and strolling through Mt. Auburn Cemetery. The food at Sofra is unlike anything around and so, so good. Get the mezze plate with crick cracks no matter what you do. And Mt. Auburn is the perfect place to work up an appetite or walk it off. Sometimes people think it's odd when you suggest visiting a cemetery but it's wonderful. There are miles of walking trails, the landscaping is gorgeous, and from Washington tower there are phenomenal views of the city.
What is the last book you couldn’t put down?
Do cookbooks count? Tripp just got me the Nantucket Open-House Cookbook and that's what's currently on my bedside table. It was published in 1987 and definitely has an Ina Garten vibe. In the non-food department I'm absolutely loving Jessica Klein's 'You'll Grow Out of It'. She's a writer for Inside Amy Schumer.
You’re both very involved in food and nutrition, how did that passion grow?
We both grew up in central Massachusetts in apple country and always loved all the seasonal food traditions we have here in New England. After college we each made our way to food through different paths. Tripp did a few stints on Alaskan salmon and crab fishing boats before moving on to the gourmet cheese world at Formaggio Kitchen where he worked for 8 years. Most recently he's traded cheese for beer and now works as Outreach Director for Mystic Brewery. After college I went on to Tufts to do a master's in Food Policy and Applied Nutrition. Since completing that degree I've worked at Tufts in childhood obesity prevention.
We love following the Small Batch Daily instagram account! What inspired you to start this company?
It was absolutely inspired by all the makers we met through Tripp's work in the cheese world. We met dozens of folks who'd quit their 9-5 to make jams, honey, chocolate, cookies, cheese, butter, etc. Many of them became our friends and I began experimenting a bit with helping to promote their products on the food blog I was writing at the time. When that was successful we had the idea to try and more regularly showcase small-batch products and hopefully introduce them to a larger audience.
What are some of the highlights of running a company together from your home? Have there been any unforeseen or humorous struggles to that venture?
It has been so much fun! The biggest highlight has been all the new makers we've met and connections that have been forged as a result. Makers learn about us on Instagram or through other makers and reach out. Those are always the most exciting emails to get. As for unforeseen struggles, sure things always pop up. We rely on Instagram which is always changing its algorithm but it keeps us on our toes.
As a couple that works together, do you have any tips for balancing work and home?
It's nothing special but just carving out specific time for work and setting it down when that time runs out. Otherwise it just bleeds into every part of your day.
Last but not least, what are each of your top 3 favorite Cambridge Naturals products?
This is an easy one:
- Counter Culture coffee! I love that Cambridge Naturals carries such excellent coffee. It's my go-to spot to find new brews.
- Caleb introduced Tripp to the John Masters Hair Texturizer. It's awesome stuff and I admit I even use it once in awhile too.
- Palo Santo incense. Emily and Caleb first introduced us to this wood you can burn as incense and it's divine. I love burning it at home especially around this time of year as winter sets in.
Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with us, Emily and Tripp! To see more, follow @smallbatchdaily on instagram!