Artisan Pickles Delivered by Bike
Brad Koester has two loves: pickling and bicycling. And he managed to make a business combining the two. Koester is the owner, founder, chef, and bicycle delivery guy for Boozely’s Pickles.
Chances are you’ve had one of Boozely’s products, maybe without knowing it. Koester provides all the green beans for Zeitgeist Bloody Marys, about three cases per week (way to drink, San Francisco!). “They pretty much clear me out every week,” says Koester, who operates his small batch pickle business out of the Mission.
You can also find his products (dill pickles, pickled okra, pickled green beans, and the occasional pickled brussels spouts) at Bi-Rite and Cheese Plus. Koester’s hoping to “hop on the Rainbow Grocery train soon.”
A cyclocross racer and avid bicyclist, Koester delivers all of his wares by bike. It’s at the DFL cross-dressing cyclocross races in Golden Gate Park that Boozely’s first burst on the scene. “Delicious pickles seemed like a great prize for winning the race,” says Koester. Pretty soon all the racers were asking for pickles, and the business grew from there.
“Last year every pickle, every piece of garlic, and every green bean was put in a jar by me and delivered by me,” says Koester, who is packing jars into a crate while holding his newborn daughter, Silver. “Now I have a little bit more help.”
Koester says he’s not interested in expanding his business too much. He’s happy keeping his pickles ultra-local, selling small batches within San Francisco, and making the pickles in the style of his grandfather, who taught him.
“I’m hoping to be able to support my family with pickles one day,” says Koester, as he packs Silver into a baby carrier. Keep drinking those Sunday Bloodies and he just might be able to.