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Archive for March, 2013

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE: Jessie Oleson (CakeSpy)

Monday, March 18th, 2013



Message in a Bottle is a casual sitdown that takes a quick, inquisitive look into the lives of some of DRY’s friends who are influencing their greater communities, providing droplets of insight from great people doing big things.

Today’s feature: JESSIE OLESONcakespyreduced

Head Spy at CakeSpy Dessert Detective Agency, illustrator, writer

What’s the best thing to happen to you in the past 72 hours?

I went to a place called Pie Town, New Mexico, where I ate…pie.

What quote or saying do you relate most closely to your life?

“A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, in the most delightful way.”

Who is your biggest idol, and what would you say to them with only ten words?

Graffiti artist Keith Haring. I’d say, “I love you, can we do a mural together, please?”

What one message would you go back and leave your 7-year-old self?

Dudette, don’t sweat it when they ask you what you want to be when you grow up. As it turns out, it IS possible to eat, write about, and draw baked goods for a living.

To what superstitions do you subscribe?

I won’t pick up a penny that is heads-down. I will, however, flip it over so the next person finds a heads-up penny.  All rules are off for higher tender, though: if I find a heads-down quarter, I’m taking it.

What is your personal mission statement?

The answer is already yes.

What quality do you value most in a person?


If you had to choose one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?

My unicorn sweater, a skirt that spins well, pink glitter tights, and pink cowboy boots. I’m subtle like that.

Which talent do you wish you could pick up immediately?

Ballroom dancing.


Learn more and follow Jessie on TwitterFacebook or on the Dessert Detective Agency’s official website for plenty of delicious recipes, wonderful illustrations and more. Also, check out Jessie’s books: The Secret Lives of Baked Goods and CakeSpy Presents: Sweet Treats for a Sugar-Filled Life.


8 Ways to Prep Your Home & Office for Spring

Wednesday, March 13th, 2013

photo from Dismount Creative, who also knows how to make quite the lovely terrarium

With the first day of spring exactly one week away, we’ve compiled eight great ways to prep yourself for the new season at home or in your office. Use these tips to help shake off the end of winter and jump head first into doing your spring thing.


Add some green flair, clean air and breathe some life into your home and work spaces by incorporating living plants into the mix.

HOME21 Easy Ideas for Adorable DIY Terrariums (via BuzzFeed)

OFFICE: Best Plants for the Office Environment (via Gardening Know How)


As the old proverb goes, “cleanliness is next to godliness,” and while we can’t live spotless lives all the time, getting in a deep clean is a great way to reset things back to square one.

HOMEThe Easiest Green Cleaning Recipes You Can Make At Home (via The Daily Green)

OFFICE: Your 3-Step Spring Cleaning List for the Computer (via Apartment Therapy)


With how much busy movement we have in our days, sometimes we forget how important it is to nest a little. Taking the time to personalize your space is a satisfying way in which we can make everyday spaces worthwhile places to function.

HOME: Galleries Without Secrets: Your Guide to Stylishly Arranging Frames (via InteriorsPL)

OFFICE: Advice to Sink in Slowly: Designers Share Their Wisdom in Posters (via Brain Pickings)


Whether you’re living at home or feel like you’re living in your office, organizing the spaces you frequent most can be important to maintaining your sanity.

HOME: How to Organize Your Fridge (via POPSUGAR Food)

OFFICE: Make Your Own PVC Storage System (via LifeHacker)

RETAILER TALES: Cole’s Palette

Saturday, March 9th, 2013


Tinkering with DRY’s Store Locator for any length of time, you’ll find DRY Soda carried in some pretty amazing independent cafes, restaurants, grocery stores and more. Each of these places has a story, so we’ve set out to bring you the best of these entrepreneurial endeavors to you in Retailer Tales.

Today’s Tale: Cole’s Palette

Chatting with: Cole Whaley, founder and owner

Location: Silver Spring, Maryland

Specialty: Sweet and savory waffles; doing the basic things differently

It’s been said that the simplest things in life bring us the most joy, and for chef Cole Whaley’s first dive into the restaurant world, you can’t get much simpler a joy being slung from a food truck:

Waffles. Pure, simple, delicious.

Cole’s Palette – also the name of Whaley’s catering business – is a food truck that patrols several areas of south Maryland serving up gourmet sweet and savory waffles. On the sweet side, you’ll see such items as red velvet waffles with cream cheese frosting. On the savory side, you have a choice between jumbo lump crab or classic fried chicken with your waffle. You can make your savory waffle a combo by adding DRY Soda and popchips.

“Most people start a restaurant by thinking of what they want to do, then finding a space,” Whaley explains, “but I wanted to find a great space and then figure out what would work well in the area.” This was the guiding hand behind the decision to open Cole’s Palette and his new restaurant Cafe Rue. Do the basics, but do them differently. In an area with Subway sandwiches and plenty of places to get fries, Cafe Rue offers traditional European paninis and truffle fries.


The operation may seem simple enough, but that’s right where it gets technical. “The number one thing I learned in school was technique,” says Whaley, “so I do everything I can to bring a culinary flair to even the most basic, traditional food items. It’s really all about doing things that other restaurants could do, but choose not to because of time or money. It’s all in the small culinary techniques.”

This means putting eggs and butter into the waffle batter instead of water, taking three hours to cook Cafe Rue’s french fries twice instead of dumping a bag of frozen ones into a deep fryer, and the list goes on. It was for this same reason that Whaley brought DRY Soda on board. “It’d definitely be easier and cheaper to bring in Coke, but it just made so much more sense to bring in something new and different like DRY Soda.”

Whaley says his detail, technique-focused cooking was also influenced by his mother. “My mom was a scratch-cooking type. Watching her cook and helping her out all the time, I always wanted to emulate the things I saw her doing.”

With the way Whaley chooses to treat the people he serves and the meals he creates, any mother would be proud.

Whether at Cole’s Palette or Cafe Rue,  it’s all about doing the basics, but doing them differently.

You can track down Cole’s Palette by following along on Twitter, or sit down at Cafe Rue at 11120 Baltimore Avenue Beltsville, MD (Facebook)


Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

Very exciting news! DRY has brought a new team member on board to help with flavor and creative development. Everyone, please welcome DRY Soda’s new Creative Director: Richard Blais!

Bravo’s “Top Chef All-Stars” winner and author joins natural soda team in product and flavor development capacity


(MARCH 5, 2013) SEATTLE – DRY Soda Co. is pleased to announce that chef Richard Blais, Bravo’s “Top Chef All-Stars” winner, restaurateur and author, has been named creative director. In this role he will work with the company on flavor, recipe and cocktail innovation as well as serving as a culinary ambassador for the natural soda brand.

“This is the first time we’ve worked with a chef in this capacity, we are extremely excited to have Richard’s irresistible creativity and culinary vision involved in everything from sales to development,” said DRY Soda CEO Sharelle Klaus.  “He is a relatable trendsetter and will be a great addition to our team.”

Blais has played an influential role in the hospitality industry for the last 15 years.  A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, he spent time between semesters studying at the French Laundry under renowned chef Thomas Keller. Upon graduating from the CIA in 1998, Blais ventured to New York for the opportunity to work with Chef Daniel Boulud at Daniel, followed by a brief stage at El Bulli with culinary wizard Ferran Adria. In 2000, Blais relocated to Atlanta to oversee a local seafood concept.  His creative approach led to the establishment of Trail Blais, a forward-thinking culinary company that has consulted on, designed and operated some of Atlanta’s most popular eateries including Flip Burger Boutique’s multiple locations, The Spence and HD-1.  In 2011, he won “Top Chef All-Stars,” and in February 2013 released his debut cookbook, Try this at Home: Recipes from My Head to your Plate, which features a simplified approach to adventurous home cooking.

“I’ve been a huge fan of DRY for a long time and look forward to working with Sharelle and DRY,” said Blais.  “As a chef and a father, I appreciate DRY’s innovative uses of flavors while maintaining all-natural and less sweet ingredients.”


Follow Richard Blais (@RichardBlais) and DRY Soda (@DRYSoda) for more updates.

DRY’s Five Best Finds: February 2013

Friday, March 1st, 2013

We come across a lot of amazing stuff on the internet every day and always make sure to pass it along on Twitter and Facebook. However, some of that amazing stuff really rises above the rest. With that, here are the top five things we found and shared this month in food, design, green, creativity and more.

Take a Seat & Make a Friend: It’s Amazing What Can Happen in a Ball Pit

“SoulPancake hits the streets to see what happens when two strangers sit in a ball pit… and talk about life’s big questions.” (via SoulPancake)

How To Save a Public Library: Make it a Seed Bank

“Here’s how it works: A library card gets you a packet of seeds. You then grow the fruits and vegetables, harvest the new seeds from the biggest and best, and return those seeds so the library can lend them out to others.” (via NPR)

Photo Project: What Does 200 Calories in Various Foods Look Like?

“To help you watch your weight and calorie intake Wise Geek started a photo project that shows what 200 calories look like in different kinds of food.

Whether it is a plate of broccoli, a few pieces of fried bacon or a small spoon of peanut butter, this project will make you think twice the next time you decide what to eat.” (via Design Taxi)

Turntable Kitchen | Connecting Food + Music

“Turntable Kitchen is a site connecting food and music, born in a foggy Inner Sunset, San Francisco apartment and run by an inspired couple: Kasey (also known as Ksenya) and Matthew. We feature recipes with a focus on local, fresh ingredients, hand-selected ‘Musical Pairings,’ album reviews and musings on our city livin’ and country hoppin’ adventures. Most importantly, we aim to introduce food lovers to music and vice versa.” (via TurntableKitchen)

The Food Photography of Henry Hargreaves

From rainbow pancakes to bacon typography, photographer Henry Hargreaves’ work with various food stylists is truly a feast for the eyes. “What unites his work is his restless and curious mind, a fascination with the unusual or quirky and a desire to see how photography can illuminate the world and spark conversation.” (via Design Milk)


Want more amazing stuff like this delivered daily? Follow DRY Soda on Twitter and Facebook to stay in the loop.