We’re The Jam Stand, a Brooklyn jam company that’s serious about thinking outside of the jar. We concoct clever chutneys, sumptuous spreads & experimental jams.
I always love sharing an inside look at some of my favorite brands, and I recently had the opportunity to chat with Sabrina Valle the co-founder of the Brooklyn based jam company, The Jam Stand. Sabrina started the business along with best friend, Jess and they’ve been creating unique jams that go far beyond the flavors that you would enjoy with your typical PB&J. The Jam Stand also recently went through a re-branding process (which Sabrina shares about in the interview) and they’re already working on a delicious new jam for the holiday season.
Tell me about how you first came up with the idea for The Jam Stand?
I started the business a few years ago with my friend Jess. We met in college and it was really something we started as a fun project. We always baked and cooked together and did crafty things. We were both unemployed one summer (I was backpacking in South America and she was working on freelance jobs). I’d picked up some Wildberry Jam while I was in South America and when I got back to New York I called Jess up and asked her if she’d like to try making jam.
We started The Jam Stand with the idea of creating interesting and unique flavors that weren’t your everyday flavors. Instead, we wanted to create a product that was more fruit forward and could be used for a variety of things instead of just the standard PB & J.
As best friends and business partners, what do you enjoy the most about the working relationship that the both of you have?
I think a lot what makes any business partnership work is trust and honesty. There is a lot of open communication between us. We are very likeminded, so we agree on most things. When we disagree, we really listen to each other and see where each other is coming from. Our mutual respect makes it a healthy relationship.
Raspberry meets jalapeño and they fall in sweet, fiery love.
Don’t fret if you fear a spicy smear;
I’m the perfect mix of sweet and spice and everything nice — a flavorful jelly for your belly. – The Jam Stand
What are some of the flavors you started with?
Blueberry Bourbon, Raspberry Jalapeño and Drunken Monkey. When we first started, we were making the jam during the winter when there wasn’t a lot of fresh fruit. We tried some basic and weird combos (ie Pineapple Cilantro) and went to a lot of markets to see what people liked. We stuck with the ones that sold.
Do you have a favorite flavor and/or way that you like to enjoy your jams?
The Blueberry Bourbon is my personal favorite, I like eating it with pancakes and yogurt, and occasionally a PB & J. Jess likes the Raspberry Jalapeño, which is good on cheese plates.
Because there’s so much more than grape jelly! – The Jam Stand
How many flavors do you currently offer?
We offer five flavors year around and we have 2-3 flavors that we rotate seasonally.
Do you still make all the jams yourselves or do you outsource?
We don’t make the product ourselves anymore, we work with contract managers. In addition to that, we have a small team in house that handles sales and operations. There are a couple of different companies we use to create the jams.
This jam tastes so sweet when it hits your lips! A zing of blueberry, the sweetness of bourbon and a sprinkle of vanilla.
I’m all of the fun of boozy jam with none of the hangover! – The Jam Stand
What do you enjoy the most about going to markets around Brooklyn with your jam?
We love seeing our customers response to our flavor combinations. Their joy makes us so happy!
Your jams are available online and at retailers around the US. Do you have plans for a brick and mortar store in the future?
No, we do not plan to open a Jam Stand store one day. Maybe a pop-up from time to time, but nothing full time.
What were the reasons behind The Jam Stand re-brand?
We have been business for the past 7 years or so and we wanted to offer a face-lift. So, we wanted to see something a little different. A lot of the reasoning behind the re-brand had to do with the jar. So while changing the jar we decided to change the label too. We really wanted to change the look and feel. Give things a little update. Essentially, we grew up as a company.
How long did the re-branding process take and who did you work with?
It has taken about 3-4 months. We worked with a really great designer named Basha from 280 Design.
Is there a comment a customer has made that has left you feeling inspired or empowered?
We’ve gotten some really great emails over the years from very happy customers. I recently got an email from a gentleman who has been ordering for the past 5 years. He orders our jam for his grandparents and it has been a unique product that they’ve grown to love. His grandmother recently passed away, but she loved the jams and he sent us a photo of her holding the jam.
Do you have a process for coming up with new flavors?
Yes! Sometimes we take requests from our Jam Fans on what they would like to see. Often times, Jess and I will play around with fruits and flavors in the kitchen. We get inspiration from other foodies, trends and friends.
What is a new flavor you’re working on now?
We are working on a holiday flavor that is inspired by the Nutcracker, The Sugar Plum. It’s a holiday spice flavored plum jam and it has edible gold flakes. YUM!
Jessica Quon & Sabrina Valle
Great product and interview! That holiday flavor sounds amazing, especially with the gold flecks. 🙂