If you’ve ever been to a you-pick strawberry farm, you’ve surely seen children who have more strawberry on their faces than in their buckets.
“That was me as a kid,” grins Adam Dillard, a 33-year-old Raleigh native who still can’t resist the plump red orbs. “One for the bucket, two for my mouth.”
Dillard’s love of strawberries led him to create an artisan condiment company, Berry Brothers. He launched the brand in 2015 with Strawberry Rosemary Vinaigrette, followed by Strawberry Chipotle BBQ Sauce. Both are made with fresh berries sourced from the Faison and Wallace areas of Eastern North Carolina.
Dillard has since expanded the Berry Brothers line by adding a Blueberry BBQ Sauce and two dry-rub spice blends. Goods are produced at Bobbees Bottling in Louisburg and sold at Triangle-area Lowes Foods and Fresh Market stores, as well as several specialty food and gift shops.
In addition to providing an outlet for his culinary creativity, Berry Brothers serves as a way for Dillard to honor a friend who died unexpectedly several years ago.
“I feel like he’s the power behind this,” Dillard says of the friend, who he considered like a brother since childhood. “I was hundreds of miles away when it happened, and I just didn’t understand it. I felt like there was a message, something I needed to do.”
Dillard donates what he considers his friend’s share of business proceeds annually to animal rescue groups in tribute to the man’s lifelong support of such causes.
Berry Brothers is among the dozens of artisan food producers who will be at the Got to Be NC Festival, May 18-20 at the State Fairgrounds, 1025 Blue Ridge Road, Raleigh. The event also includes a carnival, pony rides, fireworks and other family-friendly activities. For information on the event, go to gottobencfestival.com.
Learn more about Berry Brothers and where it’s sold at berrybrothers.biz.