Makers in the USA: Best Food & Drink (2016)


Gathering with friends and family around a plate of food or a cold drink has universal appeal – a fact that these 10 winning food & drink makers in the USA have tapped into. Whether baking cookies or hand-etching glassware, these creatives – nominated by a panel of makers movement insiders and voted the best by our readers – craft items worthy of any foodie's wish list. 

  • The Herbivorous Butcher

    The Herbivorous Butcher
    Vegan Meat & Cheese Alternatives

    Vegan brother and sister duo Aubry and Kale Walch opened The Herbivorous Butcher to provide realistic and "tastefully accurate" meat alternatives to vegans and vegetarians around the country. Products are made in small batches from locally sourced ingredients with a high protein content to aid in satiety. Options available online include vegan deli meats and cheeses, jerky, bacon, steaks, brats, ribs and chicken.
    Photo courtesy of The Herbivorous Butcher

  • Reclamation Etchworks

    Reclamation Etchworks
    Upcycled Spirit Decanters

    Tim and Ethan, the duo behind Reclamation Etchworks, met while working in one of California's busiest restaurants, where they began liberating empty glass bottles from the recycling bin. The pair use these bottles, along with other reclaimed materials whenever possible, to craft laser engraved decanter sets for the home bar.
    Photo courtesy of Kelly Puleio

  • Sparkling Sweets Boutique

    Sparkling Sweets Boutique
    Candy & Sweets

    The glam candy from Sparkling Sweets Boutique looks almost too beautiful to eat! Autumn, the Ohio-based confectioner, creates gold-dipped rock candy, glittery cake pops, mini donuts and chocolate covered cookies.
    Photo courtesy of Sparkling Sweets Boutique / Etsy

  • French Broad Chocolates

    French Broad Chocolates
    Bean-to-Bar Chocolates

    Soon after Dan and Jael Rattigan fell in love, the pair dropped out of grad school and bought a cocoa farm in Costa Rica. The chocolate loving duo have since relocated to Asheville, where they handle every step of production in their bean-to-bar chocolate factory, French Broad Chocolates. They still own that cocoa farm in Costa Rica and hope to use their own harvest of cocoa soon.
    Photo courtesy of Katrina Ohstrom for French Broad Chocolates

  • Beautiful Briny Sea

    Beautiful Briny Sea
    Artisan Dry Goods

    Based in Atlanta’s Grant Park, Beautiful Briny Sea makes their artisan dry goods from foraged mushrooms, locally grown herbs and organic spices carefully sourced from sustainable growers.  The 100-percent handmade salts and sugars include fun flavors like Magic Unicorn, Hot Steve, Sultan Papadopoulos and Mr. Gigglepants.
    Photo courtesy of Beautiful Briny Sea

  • Caboose Spice & Company

    Caboose Spice & Company
    Seasoning Blends

    Greg & Stacie Humpherys, the duo of makers behind Caboose Spice & Company, make seasoning blends and sustainable grilling planks to make it easier for busy folks to cook crowd-pleasing meals. Spice blends never include filler or additives. Varieties include gluten-free BBQ seasoning, curry spice blend, fish & seafood rub and a smoky, spicy, sweet rub.
    Photo courtesy of Caboose Spice & Company / Etsy

  • North Drinkware

    North Drinkware
    Handmade Glasses

    North Drinkware, a team of three friends living in Portland, Oregon, designs and produces handmade glassware inspired by the mountains. Handblown glasses – perfect for sipping a handcrafted beverage – have iconic American mountains worked into the glass. Birch ply coaster sets complement the glassware.
    Photo courtesy of North Drinkware

  • Methodical Coffee

    Methodical Coffee
    Roasted Coffee

    David Baker, Will Shurtz, and Marco Suarez opened Methodical Coffee in Greenville, South Carolina in 2015. While not everyone is in the area to visit the cafe, anyone in the country can order Methodical Coffee's roasted beans, sourced from Brazil, Colombia, Ethiopia, Honduras and Kenya to brew at home.
    Photo courtesy of Methodical Coffee

  • Holly Fox Design

    Holly Fox Design
    Custom Sugar Cookies

    Holly Fox combines her passions for graphic design and baking into Holly Fox Design – a custom sugar shop specializing in colorful custom sugar cookies. Holly cuts, bakes and decorates each of her made-to-order cookies by hand. Whimsical shapes include snowflakes, champagne flutes, artist palettes and ice cream cones.
    Photo courtesy of Holly Fox Design / Etsy

  • The Urban Canning Company

    The Urban Canning Company
    Preserves & Canned Goods

    Illene Sofranko owns The Urban Canning Company, a St. Petersburg-based producer of handmade and naturally preserved foods. Local Florida farms provide many of the ingredients for Urban Canning Company's jams, pickles, sriracha and sauerkraut.
    Photo courtesy of The Urban Canning Company

The top 10 winners in the category Makers in the USA: Best Food & Drink are as follows:

  1. The Herbivorous Butcher - Vegan meat & cheese alternatives
  2. Reclamation Etchworks - Upcycled spirit decaters
  3. Sparkling Sweets Boutique - Candy & sweets
  4. French Broad Chocolates - Bean-to-bar chocolates
  5. Beautiful Briny Sea - Artisan dry goods
  6. Caboose Spice & Company - Seasoning blends
  7. North Drinkware - Handmade glasses
  8. Methodical Coffee - Hand-roasted coffee
  9. Holly Fox Design - Custom sugar cookies
  10. The Urban Canning Company - Preserved & canned goods

A panel of experts partnered with 10Best editors to picked the initial 20 nominees, and the top 10 winners were determined by popular vote. Experts Suzy Ekman (Makers Market), Erin Godbey (Makers Collective), Dayna Isom Johnson (Etsy) and Sid Orlando (Kickstarter) were chosen based on their expertise of the makers movement.

Other nominees in this category included Bole and Buck, Dandelion Chocolate, Eli Mason, Four Barrel Coffee, minibrownie, Pedal Happy Design, Simply Gum, Sogi's Honey Bakeshop, Urban Cheesecraft and Whimsy & Spice.

Congratulations to all our winning food & drink makers!

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AlertThe Experts

Suzy Ekman

Suzy Ekman

Suzy Ekman

Erin Godbey

Erin Godbey

Erin Godbey

Dayna Isom Johnson

Dayna Isom Johnson

Dayna Isom Johnson

Sid Orlando

Sid Orlando

Sid Orlando