Daphnis and Chloe
Recently we came across the inspiring Athens-based Kickstarter funded webstore named Daphnis and Chloe, founded by Evangelia Koutsovoulou, which focusses on culinary herbs and spices for chefs and home cooks who are looking for Mediterranean ingredients of the finest quality. Local varieties of Mediterranean herbs are sourced from the areas of Greece where they naturally perform better, making their products of the highest quality. In the seasonings and infusions one finds at Daphnis and Chloe, city cooks can smell and taste the genuine bounty that can only be encountered in the natural state of things, without having to visit the remote islands and valleys where each herb has chosen to grow. Around these exquisite products a distinct aesthetic was created online and in the packaging, making Daphnis and Chloe by far the most elegant choice when looking for the finest herbs and spices.
Before launching our company in the summer of 2013, we spent more that two years visiting remote farms all across Greece and mapping the areas where each cultivar prefers to grow. We created a network of family farms, gatherers, cooks and researchers who share our same ethical criteria: Quality above quantity, sustainability above profit.
Daphnis and Chloe is the first culinary herb company to invest in local varieties produced in the same lands where they naturally perform better. Herewith they support natural farming plantations, contributing to the non-invasive development of remote areas where employment possibilities are scarce. In this all-natural cultivation process, the fields where herbs spontaneously grow are enriched with more crops, giving a sustainable produce that tastes great. By inspiring their producers to put quality and common sense above quantity, the company is able to supply with seasonings and herbal teas that are a far cry from what you’ll find at supermarket shelves.
Many of the aromatic plants that are used in the Western kitchens are little survivors: they are able to be cultivated in several parts of the world with different climates, but this doesn’t mean that they will always taste the same: climatic variations can highly influence their performance. It is because of the sun, soil and sea that Greek oregano can contain up to 30 times more essential oils than the ones typically found in stores. Moreover, thanks to their geographical distribution and microclimatic diversity, the remote valleys and islands of Greece are home to more than 5000 varieties of plants. About one fifth of them are endemic: they can only be encountered here. This promises much for the still growing Daphnis and Chloe selection, which already includes a vast range of sages, mints, oreganos and some other herbs that can be used either for cooking or for preparing infusions.
Photography by Adrianna Glaviano (Herbs) and Teddy Iborra (Products).
For more information and to order the amazing herbs and spices online see here.