Media

Hot Cakes: Local Pancake Mix Makes Good

March 21, 2011

Outlet: The Bay Citizen

Author: Tara Duggan

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I’m a sucker for the little guy. And San Francisco and the rest of the Bay Area seem to produce a lot of little guys of the food world – the small companies that have one or two products in which they specialize. What’s always impressive is when these companies can make their business work, despite starting on a small scale – usually because of local support.

I just tried a few versions of Jack & Jason’s Pancake & Waffle Mix, a San Francisco-made product that launched earlier this month. The two partners in the business, Jason Jervis, 31, and Jack Harper, 31, quit their jobs at PepsiCo and Oracle over a year ago so they could devote themselves to their own business idea. Now their pancake mixes, which feature a proprietary blend of whole wheat flour and oats from the venerable Bay Area company Giusto’s flour, are on shelves in about ten San Francisco stores.

Pancakes
Courtesy of Jack & Jason’s Pancake & Waffle Mix,
What’s not to love here?

While it’s not that hard to make pancakes from scratch, having a mix does make the pre-coffee task easier. The two pancakes I tried — original and pumpkin — had good flavor, as well as a light texture despite being 100-percent whole-grain, and weren’t dry like many pancakes from mixes. They’re not overly sweet or salty, which Jervis says is intentional, as is the use of unenriched flour.

One way Jervis and Harper wanted to differentiate from other brands was make sure that the flavors were consistent in each box. During their market research, which included a two-week stretch in which they ate nothing but pancakes, they noticed that some brands might have, for example, only two blueberries in the entire box. In their Dogpatch kitchen, they add the extras, such as banana and walnuts, by hand for each box. Definitely the little guys.

Go here for a store locator. Pancake mixes in original, blueberry, pumpkin spice, banana walnut, double chocolate are $5.99 to $7.99 per 16-oz box.