DADA Daily: Healthy Meets Chic Snacking
When Claire Olshan opened Fivestory in 2012, she turned luxury shopping into something more than just a visit to a store. Her expertly curated merchandise from the top names in fashion, jewelry, accessories and home décor combined with the unique Upper East Side townhouse setting made for an unexpected, delightful and refreshing retail experience. With a background rooted in the art world and a growing interest in wellness since welcoming her first child in June, she is now working on transforming the way we snack.
Her newest endeavor, DADA Daily, is all about elevating your snacking experience. Olshan worked with nutritionist Tricia Williams of Daily Dose and Food Matters to create a collection of delicious (and healthy) snacks. DADA Daily's initial offerings include bites like Crispy Almond Butter Brussels Sprouts and adaptogenic Schisandra Chocolate Truffles, all packaged in artful boxes or as part of a gift set packaged in a DADA-branded Head. We talked to Olshan about her wellness philosophy, go-to ingredients and her snacking routine.
To me, healthy living and eating should be joyful, inclusive and fun.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed (especially on social media) with the amount of products that support a healthier way of living. What inspired you to create DADA Daily and what sets it apart from other brands in the wellness space?
DADA was created in order to connect two worlds, design and wellness, that parallel one another but were never properly bridged. The health food industry, in my eyes, was getting bogged down by the word “no” and was becoming a very restrictive, rule oriented space.
To me, healthy living and eating should be joyful, inclusive and fun. It should ignite the imagination and create beauty in one’s life. With DADA, we feel we are creating a fun, carefree world where indulging doesn’t have to be something naughty and where snacking can be chic and elevated to the highest level.
What do you hope to change about the way people approach snacking?
I think snacking has always had this secretive shameful undertone to it. We want to #elevateyoursnacking moment. We think snacks should be as beautiful as the vase on your table, the shoes on your feet and the shampoo in your shower. The woman who has an aesthetically-oriented mind should have her snacks holistically fit within her lifestyle. She should be proud of her snacks; serve them at her dinner party, bring them as a gift and parade them down the street.
My journey has been long and productive, but I can say that being pregnant was the final culmination of my healthy outlook on food and body image.
Have you always had an interest in wellness or has it become a bigger part of your life now that you’re a mother?
I would say my wellness journey started in high school. However, it was a bit warped, as many 16-17 year olds start with health, but then fall into a trap of being too restrictive. At that age, you’re focusing too much on looks, not on how you feel and [can] flirt with disorders.
My journey has been long and productive, but I can say that being pregnant was the final culmination of my healthy outlook on food and body image. It caused me to be gentle, but also to realize how wonderful it feels to be good to yourself and thus feel good as yourself and not always trying to be something you currently aren’t. Whether that be 5 pounds skinnier, a bit more toned, et cetera...
What is your personal wellness philosophy? How is it reflected in DADA Daily?
It is much easier to be joyful and grateful than negative and remorseful. Wellness and health is all around us, it’s available to us by just sitting still alone and meditating a few minutes a day. The earth provides us with unbelievable healthy delicious food to eat and we should feel nourished and satisfied by the simplicity in that.
I think people get a bit confused by all the mixed messaging in health food that creates this rule oriented outlook on what eating should be. Food should be a place of fun and playfulness and diets, to me, are really something of the past.
The earth provides us with unbelievable healthy delicious food to eat and we should feel nourished and satisfied by the simplicity in that.
Tell me a little more about the snacks you launched with, how did you land on these?
I have always loved brussels sprouts, but was in an ever-long pursuit to get them as crispy as possible, without burning. I feel like we have all been there — who doesn’t love crispy brussel sprouts? This has been an idea of mine since I was 15! Same with the cabbage, I remember I would tell my mom, ‘put them back under the broiler for 10 more minutes…then another 5 minutes.’ She would roll her eyes and say, ‘Gosh darn-it Claire! It’s going to be breakfast before we finally eat these!’
It’s been long time coming, but we wanted to add superfoods to the mix. Moringa, for me, is the greatest anti-inflammatory agent, as well as turmeric and apple cider vinegar. As for the truffles, I am a chocolate-aholic, but for some reason I’ve never found that perfect chocolate that had a complexity without being too weird (like adding cumin and paprika and other bizarro spices). I also wanted to add Schisandra, an adaptogen which I think is really powerful to combat stress and just help the adrenal system overall. For the Matcha Latte Truffles, I have been a matcha drinker ever since I went to Japan for a month after collage in 2008. I drink matcha every morning and it literally was the only thing that got me out of my bed (until I had a baby in June) so it was just a duh, need to do this moment.
It’s probably hard to pick one, but do you have a favorite snack from the collection?
You’ve had a successful launch - the matcha truffles already sold out once! What can we expect to see next?
I told you we are a brand about joyful and playfulness! We couldn’t dare to tell you the tricks up our sleeves!