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CHESTERFIELD, Mo. -- Dierbergs Markets Inc., here plans to showcase its ever-expanding fresh prepared foods lineup in a big way this weekend, at the family-retailer's annual "Taste of the Holidays Food and Wine Sampling Celebration."
The tasting event, set to take place Sat., Nov. 10 and Sun., Nov. 11 from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., will include some 25 appetizers, entrees, side dishes, and bakery goods from Dierbergs' holiday menu, said the chain.
Dierbergs will also sample a medley of new prepared foods items, including oven-ready seasoned and stuffed specialty meat products.
"These tastings work in concert with new-item introductions and are often tied to holiday menus," Dierbergs' spokesman Todd Vasel told Progressive Grocer. "It gives customers -- particularly those who are perhaps not regular prepared foods buyers -- a chance to taste the quality of our prepared foods."
This will be third year that the regional grocer will hold a holiday event inside its stores, but this year's effort will be the largest to date.
"To pull these events off in 23 stores takes tremendous effort," said Vasel, noting that inclusive of event-day demonstrators, department and kitchen staff, set-up crews and managers, "We estimate up to 400 Dierbergs associates participate to make our Taste of the Season events successful."
In addition to helping shoppers get a jump on their holiday meal planning, the events provide an ideal forum for the family-held chain to connect with its customers, Vasel said.
"These are dishes just like those you would make yourself at home, fresh, made-from-scratch," said Vasel, adding that "no matter how we explain that in writing or try to depict in photographs, the best way for us to explain the quality of our made-from-scratch products is to let customers taste them."
Dierbergs has been steadily boosting its prepared food offerings to the point where its kitchens now regularly produce 300 to 400 items in stores and by order.
In addition to various stationary demos staged throughout the store, some of the items that will be sampled during this weekend's event include:
Spiral Sliced Ham with our Signature Recipe Honey Pineapple Glaze
Fruit & Nut Wild Rice Pilaf (new)
Apple Cranberry Bread Stuffing
Chipotle Tex-Mex Warm Appetizer Dip (Served with Tortilla Chips) (new)
Pumpkin Cheesecake Dessert Ball (served with wafer cookies) (new)
Signature-Recipe Cranberry Relish
Fall Harvest Whole Grain Salad with a Honey Cinnamon Sauce (new)
Red Velvet Cake
Cranberry Nut Muffin Loaf Cake
Pumpkin Muffin Loaf Cake
Tippin's Pumpkin Pies
Tippin's Peaches 'n' Cream Pies
Apple Betty Coffee Cake
Cinnamon Pecan Gooey Butter Cake
Mini Molasses Cookies
Rodney Strong Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon 2003 (Rated 90, Wine Enthusiast)
Hogue Riesling 2006 (Rated 88, The Wine Spectator)
Di Majo Norante Sangiovese 2005 (Rated 90, Wine Advocate)
Dierbergs operates 23 stores in metropolitan St. Louis.