February 2008: it is damn cold and the snow half a meter high in Potsdam. A group of young people, artists and craftsmen, with fancy mulled for a campfire meet in front of the studio. The snowpack is relatively quickly cleared away and a short time later patter wood residues from the carpentry workshop. Mulled wine with oranges, cinnamon and cloves slowly begins to steam.
One of those present unpacks a bag: Toast and ciabatta, mushrooms, cheese, chopped onion, ketchup, bacon and butter. And a shapeless, black metal part on long stalks, a souvenir from a stay abroad. He works out the rectangular and simple cast iron apart, then puts bread on the inner surfaces and spread by the ingredients brought something on bread. The future CEO clips together then the baking surfaces of the Australian Sandwich Toasters and sets the midst of the hot fire, next to the pot with the hot wine. After about 5 minutes I hold my first sandwich of an open fire in the hands and bite into it. I am absolutely thrilled. Better than any of electric sandwich maker, so what I tell myself that the core temperature is higher in this variant fire, thus melting the cheese in the loaves and the mushrooms are no longer just raw. After another toast is clear that I so need a sandwich maker for my camping trips and barbecues.
Slightly noisy I start a search for a buying opportunity and have to say that this sandwich maker could not be bought in Germany and buying abroad is associated with high shipping costs. Enthusiasm gives way to frustration. The enthusiasm about this cooker holds but for days and I'm stuck with it to Andreas. We are considering to produce itself, but by solicitation is aware that with about 60 € per piece and no floor market will be to win, because no one is willing to pay so much money for so little metal. Corresponding products cost in the US and in Australia about 25 $.
After further research, we come across an American manufacturer who is willing, to provide us with a pallet of his articles. A first web site is quickly made and the online business starts in May 2008. Within a short time the pallet is sold and since then we have the productline for all cast iron products manufacturer expanded: in addition to the single and double sandwich makers, there is now a stylish Panini Press (eventually as the double sandwich maker with a shorter stem and a little smaller back head ), a hamburger griller, which works like a fish basket, jaffle makers and many more pie rions; for dessert waffle maker in three different versions and even a popcorn pot. We have not included articles made of aluminum and teflon coated. Especially in the outdoor area materials must sometimes even something more enduring and the coated one needs to wave only with a fork and already there are scratches in the surface. On the cast iron baking and cooking surfaces can ever cut with a knife. To the knife you have to be more afraid.
Years later after the event we like the business so well that we are continuously expanding to other quality products. For excellent results at the fire we need first-class equipment. We offer now more flexible and also individually configurable Grill systems, fireplaces, hearths, fire pits - and bowls for outdoor use in the yard, garden or even on a camping holiday.
What impressed us and still fill us with joy, is that there are products that are sustainably produced top-quality workmanship and therefore durable. With proper, careful maintenance, I can even bequeath them. As Andrew and I both come from families semiprofessional amateur cooking households, we know also how decides for good food is the right equipment. We are not on cheap cheap, but think that an investment in a very good Grill, an award-intensive pan, a cast iron and therefore indestructible sandwich maker or equivalent waffle maker pays off in the end. For the environment, your wallet and enjoy.
Have a good time in both, winter and summer!
Andreas Hoffmann & Markus Laspeyres