After spending ten years working his way up the ladder at Safeway, Joe Albertson opened his first grocery store in 1939. That flagship store is my neighborhood market, just a few blocks from my house. When I was asked to attend the launch of Albertsons and Safeway’s new private label brand, Signature, I was thrilled to represent as the hometown girl. The fanfare that ensued was befit of a product line that boasts over 4000 products – everything from paper towels to mouthwash; cereal to chocolate; prepared selections to pantry staples.
The event started with a flight to Los Angles and a kick off dinner at State Social House with an introduction to Signature products, not to mention the other 24 bloggers in attendance. It was a good first impression on both accounts.
The next day was the main event, hosted at a beautiful residence in the Hollywood Hills. This place was amazing and a photographer’s dream!
A toast bar awaited us – a long table set up in the sunny backyard with a variety of breads and Signature peanut butter and hazelnut spreads as well as jam and sliced avocado. Coffee is a must, of course, and there were big pots filled with their Signature blend as well as several coffee enhancers in a variety of flavors to try.
Back inside first up was sampling of the Signature Cafe’s® line of prepared soups – Tuscan Tomato & Basil Bisque, White Bean & Kale and Cauliflower & Cheddar – along with a brainstorm session of all the ways these could be used outside of the obvious. Perhaps my big ah-ha moment of the event was how good these soups, something I normally don’t purchase, really are. I’d love to add chopped, crisp Granny Smith apples to the cauliflower soup and serve it topped with crunchy, garlic-y croutons. Yum!
Albertsons’ Chef Jeff Anderson jumped in to show us a marinade for chicken using Signature marmalade, soy sauce, orange juice and Dijon mustard with more sampling, of course.
Enough of this sitting around watching other people cook! Now it was our turn to try our hand at making flatbreads.
We pressed out the dough (made with Signature flour, salt, etc) which was then lightly grilled before we topped it with an array of Signature products including marinara, white sauce and pesto; red peppers, artichoke hearts and butternut squash, and of course, several cheese options. Our masterpieces were finished off in the oven just in time for lunch.
When we were done eating, Tiffani Thiessen joined us at the table. I really appreciated how down to earth she was, talking about everything from her new baby to her favorite recipes; trying to balance a busy life and still cook for her family as often as possible to how her husband keeps adopting rescue chickens (they’re up to 6).
Just in case anyone still had stomach space left, we moved into the house and Tiffani made ice cream sandwiches with a variety of Signature flavors. More in the mood for an afternoon pick-me-up? She also topped scoops of ice cream with freshly brewed coffee.
A farewell toast with Tiffani’s Peach Sweet Tea, a few more rounds of photos and it was time to head back to Boise.
If you’re as excited about Signature products as I am now but maybe don’t have the flagship store in your neighborhood, or an Albertsons or Safeway store nearby at all, don’t fret. Signature products are available at all Albertsons Companies stores, including ACME, Vons, Pavilions, Jewel-Osco, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Shaws, Star Market, United Express, United and Carrs/Safeway.
A big thank you to Albertsons and Safeway for this amazing experience. I got home and couldn’t wait to start making my own Signature moments. In fact, watch for my first recipe coming soon. Cheers!