Nov 102011

Between my fascination with mass production and my past as a middle school taffy-maker, I was sure that a day at Garrett Popcorn Shops® would be fantastic.

It was, but not to my credit. I sauntered in at 8 am to find my fellow Garrett cooks already making CaramelCrisp® and CheeseCorn. Despite their early start, they greeted me with welcoming smiles. My new friends let me jump into their everyday routine, not realizing how I would inadvertently disrupt their work day.

Failed Attempt at CaramelCrisp®

After making a few batches of CheeseCorn, I confidently reported an average of three batches an hour to the Shop Manager. He told me that was good “for a slow day.” I must have been mesmerized by the CheeseCorn tumbler.

Next came my attempt at making CaramelCrisp®. I expected this to go smoothly. Wrong again. Instead of the trademark crème brûlée aroma that wanders through downtown, smoke and shame suddenly billowed through the Kitchen. The Cook ran over to salvage the batch, but it was too late. Defeated, I scooped out the darkest Garrett Popcorn I have ever seen.



I retreated to my station at the CheeseCorn tumbler. After cleaning up the mess and throwing out the Popcorn, the Cook told me I needed to try again. I didn’t expect even to be allowed back in the Kitchen, but she patiently walked me through each step. Together we made CaramelCrisp® that actually looked like CaramelCrisp® instead of CaramelBurned.

I learned a lot from a humbling first day in the Shop. I learned that the family vibe of Garrett Popcorn Shops® comes from the kindness of everyone behind the scenes. I learned that when it comes to this beloved Chicago tradition, experience rules in the Kitchen.

I collapsed at home after a long day and let the sweet scent of Garrett Popcorn drift through dreams of my next day in the Shop.

  2 Responses to “Experience Rules in the Kitchen — A Day At Garrett Popcorn Shops®”

  1. Nobody has to tell me about the sweet goodness and the cheeseness(smile) of Garretts popcorn, I live in Detroit, Mi and if anybody I know is headed to Chicago, I got my $50.00 ready. This popcorn is my life line, I sit and think about it if I have not had it in a while, I even planned a bus trip to Chicago just to get some popcorn.NOTHING should be this good. LOVE U GARRETTS♥♥♥

  2. Congrats for the Garrette Popcorn Opening in HK!
    I am the manager from in Hong Kong. We would like to cooperate with your company. We are the first groupbuying website in Hong Kong. Please kindly contact (852) 3563 5778 for more information! PS. Chicago Mix is AWESOMEEEEE!

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