NRA 2016, Chicago, My Bags are Vac-Packed

The month of May is here, and that can only mean one thing…Mother’s Day! Cinco de Mayo!, My Wife’s Birthday! Nope, it’s the National Restaurant Association Expo in Chicago!

Print goes every year, and every year is great, but this year is special in that Henkelman Vacuum Systems, for the first time ever, will be exhibiting their superior vacuum packers. This is significant, because NRA-goers will be exposed to a great brand and product in a way they have not been before.

Yes, other vacuum packer brands have exhibited at the show before. However, it is time for a truly world-class chamber vacuum sealer manufacturer to emerge as a star in this category, and there is no one better than Henkelman Vacuum Systems:

  • Ease of Use
  • Hygienic Design
  • Strong Busch Vacuum Pump (German Made)
  • Wireless Seal Bar(s)
  • Seamless Stainless Steel Chamber
  • Designed to Fit Your Needs – Basic to Sophisticated
  • Robust, Durable Construction
  • Best Value For Your Dollar

If you happen to be at the show, stop by the Henkelman booth (#9547), and tell them Trey sent you for a special NRA offer only available at

What life will you extend? Discount – Chicago-bound, NRA 2015

It’s that time of year again. May time in Chicago, where food craft meets business craft in a delicious fusion of flavors. Yes, I am pushing the metaphors to new unpalatable heights. But, hey, we are talking about, NRA 2015.

This year, will be offering a special NRA disNRA 2015count starting today through the end of the month. A month long special where you can receive a 5% discount off any single item, or maximize the offer by applying it to a bundle of products, like a sous vide bundle which could include a Henkelman Vacuum Packer and a Fusionchef Circulator, plus Boil-In Vacuum Bags.

Any and all models are fair game.

The Voucher Code is: NRA2015

Visit now, and cook your food sous vide!


Going Back to Cali – NAFEM 2015

NAFEM 2015The NAFEM (North American Foodservice Equipment Manufacturers) trade show is held every two years, and alternates between Orlando, FL and Anaheim, CA. It seems like they enjoy being near Disney. They travel from coast to coast and always set up shop within walking distance from the happiest place on Earth. And this year’s show promises to be just as happy as Mickey Mouse for those in the foodservice equipment business… will be present at the show, meeting and greeting suppliers and customers, both new and long-time friends.

This year brings some 500 manufacturers of equipment, supplies for food preparation, cooking, storage and table service for all types of food service operations from fast food to fine dining, from convenience stores to super markets.

We look forward to a very productive show.

Follow us on Twitter (@Vacuum_Packer) and Facebook for live updates and images direct from the show.

Happy Vacuum Packing!

A Brewer’s Problem – Keeping Your Hops Hoppy

I am always surprised to see how many different ways vacuum packing things can be so beneficial to such a wide variety of businesses. Of course, we are familiar with the benefits of vacuum packing food, and the cool things you can do cooking with them (sous vide), but for brewing beer, this was new to me.

Sensitive Hops
We have been getting more and more customers from brewing companies of all stripes and types. It turns out that many of them face a particular yet common problem with their hops supply going bad too quickly.  Hops and hops pellets are an integral ingredient in the production for all types of beers and being a relatively sensitive ingredient, along with growing demand, the price of hops can fluctuate greatly and can be quite expensive.

This is especially true when you look at exotic or aromatic hops used in specialty or seasonal beers. Brewers will receive their hops in bulk, perhaps in large bags of 25 lbs.; the problem is, when a bag is not completely used and left unsealed, exposed to air, heat and humidity. The hops will oxidize changing its flavor and dramatically altering the beer, rendering the hops useless. Oxidation can occur very quickly.

The hops must be repackaged in a way that will allow the brewer to continue using them at a later time, while maintaining a consistent product. It doesn’t make cents to through out or waste hops because of inadequate repackaging.

The solution:
Vacuum seal the unused hops and store until needed without losing any quality!

To do this successfully, it is important to ensure you are creating a full vacuum (99.9%), and creating a strong dependable seal (double seal). Henkelman Chamber Vacuum Sealers do exactly this. There are no bells and whistles needed for this job, just a robust, well made machine you can depend on.

Jumbo Series image for Vacuum-Packer

Best Man For The Job
We offer a specific chamber vacuum packer that seems to fit the bill perfectly, the Henkelman Jumbo 42 XL. This machine is large enough to vacuum seal 16″ x 20″ vacuum pouches, which hold approximately 15 lbs of hops. Yet the unit is small enough to fit on a countertop or a small table with casters for easy mobility.

(If this model looks too big, check out the smaller version, Jumbo 30).

One of our esteemed customers, Allagash Brewing Company, does exactly this. (Below are a couple pictures they were kind enough to share with us.)


Jumbo 42 XL

Another customer of ours that uses this same model of chamber vacuum sealer is, John I. Haas, out of Yakima, WA.

“Grist for the mill”
If a specific hops type is used for a particular brew, or if certain batches are done during specific seasons, prepackaging ingredients for these recipes is a great way to ensure you will have the proper amounts of fresh ingredients, correctly portioned and of well-preserved quality to make the specific brew just as you planned.

If you are testing different recipes in the lab, and are making several batches with alterations to the ingredients, you don’t have to worry about opening a new bulk bag of hops when you don’t plan to use the whole amount. Simply repack it under vacuum and store until needed.

Also, since our chamber vacuum packers easily seal Mylar pouches, packing smaller portioned amounts of hops for home brew kits is another great use.

Honestly, the uses for our chamber vacuum sealers abound, but they all come down to the simple fact that Henkelman vacuum packers perfectly vacuum seal products (food and non-food, alike) in a way that provides the longest extension of shelf life possible.

If you have ever thrown out hops because they’ve oxidized or otherwise gone bad, take a look at Henkelman chamber vacuum sealers.

There does exist a money and time saving solution for this problem and its name just might be, Henkelman.

Brew Happy!

Gunshow ATL – Nominee for Best New Restaurant 2014

Congratulations to Kevin Gillespie and Gunshow ATL for their nomination to America’s 50 Best New Restaurants for 2014. The list was published by Bon Appétit, which briefly describes the restaurant’s unique concept.

Apart from personally being a big fan of chef Kevin, I am proud to say he is a customer, and happy owner of a Henkelman chamber vacuum sealer: Jumbo 30.

If you ever find yourself in Atlanta, GA, Gunshow is a must.


A Vacuum Packed World Cup Opener, cont…

So, the World Cup has come and gone, leaving behind some very sad Brazilians and some very happy Germans. We were at least very happy to be a part of it all. We enjoyed many good games and good food as we cheered on our favorite teams.

As for the opening event here at our offices, we had a very nice time and in the end our menu consisted of:

  • Crudité (little veggies and fruit with dipping sauces to pick at) and Greek salad
  • Grilled hot dogs and hamburgers (shaped as Texas?)
  • Sous Vide BBQ ribs, which came out beautifully and delicious, and were the star of the event (I cooked these, 😉 )
  • Birthday Cake (it was a birthday party, too!)
  • Heineken beer (World Cup Edition)

Vacuum packed ribs

sous vide ribs







sv ribs finishing on grill




photo 4


What have you cooked sous vide for this sort of event? Leave a comment, we’d love to hear from you.





A Vacuum-Packed World Cup Opener!

So the World Cup is about to start. Thursday, June 12 is the opening game. We here at, being a very international group and avid futbol fans, will be having an Opening Day bash.


The idea is to have a sort of Pot-Luck, where co-workers each bring in a little something to eat or drink for the group to share. One person may bring the soft drinks, somebody else a baked casserole of some sort – these things usually are not very good, culinary-wise. So I have decided to take it upon myself to try and elevate the food at this inter-office shindig by cooking something sous vide.

I am still working out what that might be, but I would like it to reflect a little bit of my preference in teams, and this is where I am a little torn.

Do I route-route-route for the home team, USA? Stay true to my Spanish/Mexican heritage, and to my time spent in Mexico? Perhaps I show some solidarity to the Clock Work Orange team of The Netherlands in support of our very good friends from Henkelman.

Maybe I sous vide ribs; finish them on the grill with BBQ sauce (U.S.A.!, U.S.A.!).

Add some quesadillas, corn and chistorra to the grill (Si Se Puede! Si Se Puede!)

We must quench our thirst…a cold Dutch brew…Heineken sounds “goed” (Wij houden van Oranje!)

From the ribs I would remove as much fat as possible and cut them into manageable size racks, vacuum pack them in the Boxer 35 Chamber Vacuum Sealer, after seasoning with my special blend.

Since they are pork ribs, we will cook them using our Pearl Fusionchef Immersion Circulator at 143ºF (61.5ºC) for 48 hours, to make sure they are tender and juicy. Due to the forgiving nature of sous vide and the cooking time associated with it, the ribs will be in the water bath ready when we are. Once the hunger grows to a growl, we will finish them on the grill.

I usually do a quick sear on both sides, then brush a thin layer of BBQ sauce on one side, through it back on the hot grill – sauce side down. Sauce the other side and flip…and repeat. I do this maybe four times. I am no chef, but I think it gives the ribs a very nice BBQ and char-broiled flavor, and I must say, very good.

Ahhhh…grilling some perfectly cooked BBQ ribs, drinking a cold Heineken under the warm Florida sun, with friends, in observance of the world’s favorite sporting event…you tell me a better a way to spend a Thursday afternoon.

Cheers! Salud! Proost! at NRA 2014 – Chicago, IL

It’s that time of year again, Chicago-bound for NRA 2014. nra2014

Being one of the best foodservice industry trade shows in the USA, the NRA show is where American and international manufacturer’s show off their equipment. They show their tried-and-true and what’s new for all to view.

There are business seminars scheduled throughout the days of the show, as well as demonstrations with celebrity chefs presenting market trends for restaurants and bars.

I look forward to attending the show and visiting the Windy City…Chicago is my kind of town: big, foodie friendly, mid-west enough where the people are welcoming, and gritty enough to be interesting.

Being it is a foodservice industry trade show, in Chicago, eating plays a big a roll. I am still working out dinner plans for the duration, but know for sure that I will be dining at least once at the Purple Pig (one of my favorites).

One restaurant I’ve been dying to try is Girl and The Goat; the last three times I’ve been to Chicago I haven’t had the opportunity, hopefully fourth time’s a charm.

Kabocha Japanese Brasserie with Chef Shin Thompson (a happy customer and proud owner of a Jumbo 42 II) would have been a great option, but unfortunately they have closed their doors. (I can’t wait to enjoy his next project.)

Since I will be traveling with a colleague from Peru, we may just end up at world-renown Peruvian chef, Gastón Acurio’s restaurant, Tanta, and this would be just fine by me.

I hope to return home having enjoyed a successful show, well fed, and with good stories and pictures to share…and perhaps some not to share 😉

See you in Chicago!

Henkelman Vacuum Systems at Interpack 2014 – Dusseldorf, DE

Hello Friends,

Just dropping a quick note about the trade show going on this week in Dusseldorf, Germany – Interpack 2014. This is one of the largest and most recognized packaging trade shows in the world.

Henkelman Vacuum Systems has come out in style with an amazing booth showing off their superior vacuum packaging machines – both single chamber vacuum packers in tabletop and floor models, as well as their impressive double chamber vacuum packaging machines.

At the booth you can see the following chamber vacuum sealers:

Below are some images of the booth as they were finishing placing the vacuum packers for the big show.

Henkelman Vacuum Systems

Henkelman Vacuum Systems










Henkelman Vacuum Systems

If  you happen to be in the neighborhood I recommend you stopping by and visiting what will surely be one of the most fun booths at the show.

Our Best Wishes to Henkelman. May they have a busy and successful show!



Henkelman Sighting! Nathan Myhrvold’s Cooking Lab

When I recently received my January/February 2014 issue of, Food Arts magazine, which I get regularly and love as a great resource on the current professional culinary world, I quickly noticed a particular article, Once and Future Kitchens.

The article is an interview with renowned kitchen designer, Mark Stech-Novak, where the interviewer and Mr. Stech-Novak talk about the future of kitchens. They speak of conceptual food equipment ideas and tools, what the trends are currently, and where they are going. It is an interesting read, I recommend it.

What I wanted to share with you was the prominent picture shown on the first page of the article. It is an image of Nathan Myhrvold’s Cooking Lab. He is the principal author of, “Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking”, which is a ground-breaking and notable five volume set of cook books on modern cuisine.

If you visit the, Modernist Cuisine, website you will see he lists some recommended equipment on his, “Gear Guide,” it is a list of the different types of equipment used in modern cuisine. Under the “Must-Have Tools for the Modernist Kitchen” he lists one tool as being a chamber vacuum sealer. While he notes several brands including, Henkelman (Yeah!), no particular brand is recommended over any other. However, the picture of his Cooking Lab from the Food Arts article, and shown on his website, seems to show his personal preference.

Nathan Myhrvold's Cooking Lab - Henkelman Marlin Vacuum Packer

Nathan Myhrvold’s Cooking Lab – Henkelman Marlin Vacuum Packer

You guessed it! Front and center (well, to the right a bit) is the only really identifiable machine [brand] prominently displayed, a Henkelman Marlin Vacuum Packer. I cannot tell which particular unit it is, but my money is on it being a the more popular model, Marlin 52.

This is certainly a larger unit than most kitchens need. Most use a Henkelman tabletop vacuum packer, like our the most popular model, Boxer 35, or the Jumbo 30 (both units are currently on sale at reduced prices!). Regardless of the size of the machine, all Henkelman vacuum packers are made with the same robust quality and attention to design. You simply cannot go wrong with a Henkelman vacuum packer.

Remember, you can always find the best sous vide equipment from Henkelman and Fusionchef at,