Though I have known Vera for many years, I recently joined the VeryVera team to lead our media and brand partnerships for The VeryVera Show. The show is in its 9th season and has expanded from Augusta, Georgia into 30 syndicated markets across the United States. Our marquee sponsor is Sub-Zero Wolf Cove, the pioneers and innovators of refrigeration, cooking, and dish washing. We recently visited Madison, Wisconsin – home to the Wisconsin Badgers, cheese curds, and Sub-Zero Wolf Cove – to film two episodes at their highly esteemed Harvest Haven Barn and Garden.
After a quiet and seamless travel experience, (thank you Delta), Vera, our Executive Producer, Corey, and I landed in Madison on a Monday evening. We were warmly greeted and safely escorted to The Edgewater Hotel, a historic anchor to downtown Madison. The Edgewater sits on the shores of Lake Mendota … and made for beautiful mornings and relaxing evenings.
After our morning workouts, we grabbed some freshly roasted coffee from The Market, donned our masks, and headed to Fitchburg, WI where we would meet our hosts from Sub-Zero Wolf Cove and the talented production crew from Crossroads Productions who would capture the dynamic spirit of Vera and this exceptional culinary adventure.
Harvest Haven Barn is simply an experience; rustic yet refined and outfitted with luxe amenities only to be grounded by a beautifully attended garden and adorned with a retro version of the Sub-Zero brand. The facility was constructed with 75% reclaimed materials and 150-year-old timber beams sourced from Pennsylvania. Vera always says every recipe tells a story, and at Harvest Haven, every beam tells its own story.
In addition to the architecture, the kitchen is equally inspiring and truly a stainless-steel utopia with state-of-the-art appliances ranging from induction cooktops and gourmet blenders to convection steam ovens and customizable gas ranges. Adjacent to the barn is the wondrous garden where fresh herbs, fruits, vegetables are available for immediate cooking and baking. The Harvest Haven Barn is used as a test kitchen, a training facility, as well as a venue to host events and key company initiatives…in addition to being a timeless (and stunning) backdrop for The VeryVera Show.
This year Sub-Zero Wolf Cove is celebrating its 75th Anniversary. We were so fortunate to sit down with Jim Bakke, President & CEO of Sub-Zero Wolf Cove to talk about the company, its history, and heritage in innovation and design. We met at The Gallery of Innovations for an interview followed by a tour of the company’s most significant innovations in refrigeration, dishwashing, and cooking. I am including a sneak peek, but you will have to tune in to The VeryVera Show to see the full interview!
Both episodes will feature Vera cooking with Chef Joel Chesebro, Head Demonstration Chef for Sub-Zero Wolf Cove. We spent one day in the garden with Joel, picking fresh fruits, herbs, and vegetables to use on the show (in addition to fruits and veggies that had already been preserved). It is worth mentioning that the single-minded mission of Sub-Zero refrigeration is to prolong freshness, taste, and texture. Our menu over the week included lamb, green beans, tomato confit, and pound cake.
Speaking of food, what would a trip to Madison be without some fun and good food! From cucumber salads and cheese curds to steak and scallops, we ended each day with a delicious dinner. Not too many restaurants were open therefore we ate dinner at The Statehouse a few times and ventured to the Madison landmark that is Smoky’s Club where we feasted on wedge salads, steaks, and yes, crudité.
Over the course of 3 days, we worked with the incredible crew from Crossroads Productions, who were fun, efficient, and truly experts at their craft. We filmed B-roll, two episodes of The VeryVera Show, Vera’s Corner, and TV station promos. We are now back in Georgia and editing the two shows that will air this Fall. I am so excited to share our “behind the scenes” experience with you but I really cannot wait for everyone to see the shows – they will be our best yet!
A special thank you to our hosts at Sub-Zero Wolf Cove and their wonderful Wisconsin hospitality. We had a blast!
This blog was written by Molly Meek, an executive consultant focusing on business development, media partnerships, and marketing opportunities across VeryVera Enterprises.