One of the new product lines launched this week at the Fancy Food Show is the result of heritage, passion, and a mutual desire for sustainability. Those are the common factors that brought Iron Chef Cat Cora together with an Athens, Greece-based company called Gaea.
The products, branded as “Cat Cora’s Kitchen”, include an assortment of Greek oils, tapenades, vinegar and sauces.
Aris Kefalogiannis, CEO of Gaea, told us, “The idea was to join forces on an authentic, quality Greek product.” He said the key words important to them included health, nutrition, and taste, and added, “If you follow all the announcements about the Mediterranean diet, you know that eight out of ten of them refer to the ‘Greek diet’. People are looking for wellness, and at the same time they want quality, tasty products.”
Enter Cat Cora, who is of Greek descent, and known for being the only female Iron Chef. She said, “For me, representing the best of the best was important. These products are authentic, and they match my philosophy by being environmentally friendly, local, sustainable, and very innovative. Plus, they are authentically Greek.”
According to Kefalogiannis, the olive oils are the first carbon neutral olive oils ever, and his company has a strong commitment to sustainability as well as to their heritage.
“We chose her, first, because she is of Greek descent,” he said. “Have you seen the movie Mama Mia? Well, that’s the island where her father comes from—it does exist! She’s as authentic as they come, and we share the same values. He insists this is not a “celebrity line” but that it is named for Cora because their values and backgrounds match.
“My father is Greek,” said Cora, “and this is my soul food. I grew up going to Greece, and I’ve always been passionate about food and passionate about quality. We share that passion for food, for the environment, and for nutrition while making sure it’s tasty and enjoyable,” she adds.
Cora said that one of the things that excited her was carrying the line in each of her restaurants, and using it in her cooking competitions. “I’m not going to be using somebody else’s olive oil anymore,” she said. “I’ll be using mine and Gaea’s.”
She’s also launching the product on QVC this week, and will be using the various items when she debuts her new shows on the new Oprah network, OWN. Those items include:
- Oxymelo Barrel-Aged Vinegar with Thyme Honey
- Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Kalamata D.O.P Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Corfu Cooking Sauce with tomato, wine, onions and spices
- Crete Cooking Sauce with feta cheese and sun dried tomato
- Cyprus Cooking Sauce with tomato and orange infusion
- Santorini Cooking Sauce with cherry tomato and wild oregano
- Greek Red Saffron
- And, a variety of Tapenades, including Green Olive, Smoked Eggplant, and Feta Cheese
“These are not new flavors,” Kefalogiannis added with a grin. “The barrel-aged vinegar and thyme honey? That’s straight out of ancient Greek books—the condiment of the Gods. It’s just new to American mortals.”
For more on the Fancy Food Show, see links below.