Touring E. Waldo Ward and Son
It seems that the most famous aspects of LA are the beaches and Hollywood. Granted the beaches are beautiful and Hollywood does make up a large part of the landscape but there’s so much more to the area. E. Waldo Ward and Son is a prime example. Tucked away on a residential street in Sierra Madre this jam company has been manufacturing preserves and other gourmet food products for nearly a century.
Recently I visited their lovely premises for a guided tour. It was led by Jeff, the great-grandson of E. Waldo Ward. Not only has the company been in continuous operation since 1918 but it remains family owned and operated.
On the tour we were led through the production facility and learned of the jam and preserves making process. While much of the process has been updated some original equipment remains in use, like this burner.
All aspects of the operation are done on sight – cooking, packaging, distributing, etc. And they’re all done in the original buildings (with additions added as more space was needed).
The initial product manufactured was orange marmalade and it is still offered for sale. This marmalade is made from Seville oranges that are grown on the premises. E. Waldo Ward purchased the two original trees directly from Spain and they are still growing strong today.
One of my favorite stops on the tour was the museum located in the 1902 red barn (seen above). There were several artifacts related the company and Southern California in general. It was a treasure trove of history.
And no tour is complete without a visit to the gift shop! E. Wald Ward and Son has a quaint one filled with delicious food products.
I couldn’t help but pick up a jar or two or three or…I lost count. It’s all delicious. Currently I’m addicted to the pomegranate jalapeno sauce. I add a dab to some d’Affinois cheese and mm mm mm I’m in heaven.
273 E. Highland Ave.
Sierra Madre, CA 91024