In a world that becomes faster-paced by the day (example: it should take you about 4 minutes to read this story), it’s worth stopping to applaud the companies that are doing things the old fashioned way — or at least, are nerding out over their products and ideas.
Inspired by Bojangles’ 48-step process to made-from-scratch biscuit perfection, here are 10 Charlotte brands who don’t cut the corners.
Product: Nutritional snack bars with allergen-friendly ingredients
You’ve probably seen brüks bars in lots of locations around Charlotte — including Whole Foods — so you’d think the manufacturing behind the product would be a massive operation. But old-fashioned elbow grease from owners Brooke and Sean Muldoon and their team is still a key ingredient. Each batch is in fact baked by hand.
Product: Custom stained glass windows, doors, tiles and more
This company started in Charlotte — in a shed — 40 years ago and now operates from a studio off South Blvd. Glasswork is both highly technical and artistic to satisfy clients, so their team of artisans simply can’t cut corners.
Product: Natural and organic jewelry
For a jewelry brand that has grown in popularity so quickly, it’s kind of amazing that each piece is still completely one of a kind, thanks to the uniqueness of the naturally sourced materials. Every piece is strung and hand-tied with love.
Product: Truffles, caramels and other confections
I think the description of the Salted Caramels pretty much describes the obsession for itself: “We make the caramel with sourwood honey that we actually go on road trips to find. We balance that with our own Tahitian vanilla extract as well as lots of butter and sea salt.” Love a good honey-scouting road trip.
Service: Watch and clock repairs
It’s cool to see a business survive in Plaza Midwood that has been passing down the family skill-set for three generations. Precision is everything.
A photo posted by scott miller (@2ndstorywoodco) on
Product: Handmade, reclaimed wood furniture
All of the materials for 2nd Story Wood pieces are ethically sourced and the pieces are built by hand, so there’s no limit on the custom work possible. I’m especially obsessed with the oversized workbenches.
Product: Artful, quirky wedding videos and other projects
Richard Israel, left, and Timm Young, right, are well established independently for their photography and cinematography in Charlotte, and this joint venture allows them to nerd out over antique cameras and old-school film techniques. Super 8, please. (To see the films here, just say the “magic word.)
Product: Reimagined bowties featuring real wood, including a Queen City Collection
From sketch to cutting/sanding to fabric selection, each tie is made here in Charlotte by hand. Brothers Brian and Joshua Galloway created the business after a single piece prompted lots of “Where can I get that?” questions.
Service: Strategic beverage distribution
The way that many craft beverages get from barrel to bar just isn’t a process most consumers think about, but it’s critical part of the operation for breweries, cideries and other beverage creators. Luckily, Charlotte-based Artisan Beverage owner Taylor McDermott is nerding out over the details for their clients with precise temperature-control throughout the process and quick-turnover inventory.
Product: Made-from-scratch buttermilk biscuits
Fast for the customer does not equal fast in the kitchen — the dough is mixed, kneaded and hand rolled throughout the day, every 20 minutes. The 48-step process at Bojangles’ is so intense they host an annual Master Biscuit Maker competition every year and competitors are judged on the taste, color and size of their biscuits.
(Note: This content was co-created with Bojangles’.)