Chefs knew about hearts of romaine, but could only get them by peeling down each head of romaine, hoping to find a heart inside. Because not all romaine varieties have a heart, that was a monumental task! That all changed when Hitchcock Farms began to pack Hearts of Romaine into cartons specifically designed for the foodservice industry.
At first, we gleaned fields of romaine, looking for heads left behind after the regular romaine harvest crew had passed over the field. Eventually, we needed to plant fields dedicated to growing the romaine only for hearts. We worked diligently to select romaine varieties that produced a true solid heart when mature.
Over time, we developed relationships with many premier restaurateurs and food service professional throughout the culinary world. They were intrigued by the idea of being able to purchase a true romaine heart that would arrive ready for their prep team.
This was truly the start of the romaine heart “trend,” which has remained strong for the past 25 years! Today, many growers and shippers of fresh vegetables have romaine hearts as part of their rundown, but no one has surpassed the quality or value of our Garden Hearts® — the original foodservice Romaine Heart.