An online community for gourmet and specialty food retailers.

Welcome to Fancy Food & Culinary Products' blog, your place to read reviews of the great fancy and gourmet products we find in the marketplace.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Editor's Pick: Bauli Mini Croissants

To end my week, last Friday I tried a package of mini croissants, compliments of BauliI tried both the chocolate cream as well as the vanilla custard, and couldn't decide which flavor I enjoyed more. So I tried another of each, and another—lather, rinse, repeat—until both bags were gone. The results are in. It's a tie. 

The company, who makes Italian holiday cakes and pastries, recently launched in the U.S., introducing traditional Italian desserts with natural ingredients to the market. Their initial products include Il Panettone di Milano, an Italian Christmas bread with candied citron, lemon zest and raisins; Il Pandoro di Verona, Golden bread which is a star-shaped Christmas bread; and their Chocolate Cream and Vanilla Custard Croissants.

With the holiday season just around the corner, the company brings the Italian culinary experience to the seasonal products bring authenticity, heritage and tradition to family and friends gathered around the dinner (or dessert) table. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Editor's Pick: Simple Salsa E-Z Mixes

It’s Taco Tuesday, and very few things in life are more depressing than being forced to eat that bland, less-than-flavorful salsa your friend bought at Trader Joes—pardon the exaggeration, it’s for the story’s purpose. Although beautifully ripe, in-season tomatoes act as a strong foundation for flavorful salsa, it’s the marrying of herbs, spices, and other ingredients that take such a basic fruit to the next level.

Enter SimpleSalsa’s E-Z Mixes. The 60-second salsa requires one packet of the company’s seasoning and spice combo, 14-ounces (whether a can or fresh) of tomatoes, and you’re ready to tango. The healthy, MSG and gluten-free products spice up dishes at a fraction of the price of store-bought jars, and with a list of choices like Restaurant-style Fiesta, Smokin’ Chipotle and more, the flavor options suit plenty of salsa aficionado’s preferences.

But we’re all for multi-tasking around here, right?  In addition to it's marriage with tomatoes, we tried the Smokin’ Chipotle Seasoning packet with chicken for fajitas had a serious depth of flavor. The packets should work just as well with steaks, pork chops and even soups, stews, taco meat or any dish that’s looking for a fiesta. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Editor’s Pick: Titan Tea

Trade shows can be exhausting, and between the exhibitors I need to see, the attendees I need to interview and the long hours, I don’t always have time for a meal, let alone to stand in a line at the food court. That’s where I turn to Titan Tea. Their delicious cold-brewed teas infused with electrolytes for hydration, ribose and caffeine for sustained energy keep me going when I am walking miles of trade show space. Former Major League Lacrosse player John Gagliardi developed the formula over the course of two years. He was inspired to create the tea because he was disappointed with sugar-laden drink options packed with artificial ingredients.  Brewed tea is Gagliardi’s drink of choice and it has great benefits and natural caffeine so it makes sense that he would develop a tea.

The teas come in four tasty flavors and are low-calorie.  

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Editor's Choice: Bloody Bold Bloody Mary Mix

Last weekend, I hosted a Bridal Shower brunch for a lovely group of ladies. There, I had the standard mimosas, fruit and bagel assortment. I also decided to make Bloody Marys for those with a savory tooth. I used Bloody Bold's Bloody Mary Mix for this event, and it went off without a hitch. The flavor combinations of tomatoes, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce and added spices provided a rich flavor, and quickly became a favorite for the ladies, beating out the every-popular mimosa. 

The founder of Bloody Bold, Bob Wegryn started making his recipe in college, and after plenty of positive feedback over the next few years, learned to perfect the recipe to prepare for mass production. Like any truly great product, word of the product quickly spread, and with Bob personally taking cases of his product to liquor stores around Connecticut, the company was born. As someone who has been on a mission to create the World's best Bloody Mary, it truly does come down to the recipe, and Bloody Bold is definitely now in my top choices of mix.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Editor's Pick: Red Rocker Candy

“My dream is to shape a self-sustaining organization based on the old-fashioned values of family, quality, goodness and customer enjoyment,” says Sue Charney, owner of Red Rocker Candy, a confections company based in the small town of Troy, Virginia.

With a humble beginning in Southern California, Red Rocker Candy started with a desire to produce the best toffees, brittles and other confections to gift for friends, family, coworkers, etc. What they created was something more. Charney’s products bring back nostalgic, rich flavors of times gone by—a time when making products handmade meant something special.

The toffees are rich and buttery with roasted cashews perfectly blended; their white chocolate indulgent and sweet. But where the Rocking Chair extraordinaires had me sold was their signature blend, The Rocking Chair Mix. Because life is sweeter when snacks are coated with thick layers of creamy white chocolate, the Rocking Chair Mix features a blend of cereals, pretzels and whole roasted almonds, all en-robed in the creamy confection. The chocolate melts in your mouth before the salty, crunchy mix becomes your new favorite after-lunch snack.

Other fan favorites include the Toffee and Brittles. The brittles, Pecan and Peanut, are crunchy, rather than chewy; they're made with rich butter, pure sugar, and they’re not skimping on the Virginia Jumbo Peanuts or savory pecans. Perfect for gifting, their limited edition Barks include a Peppermint Bark hand made with a layer of rich dark chocolate, swirls of white chocolate (infused with peppermint oil) and sprinkled with crushed peppermints for an added boost of flavor. At Red Rocker Candy, fantastic ingredients and a passion for confections has proved a recipe for success.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Editor's Pick: Lola Granola Bars

The other editors and I do a lot of traveling for trade shows. When we are only at them for a few days and have so much to see and do, we try not to take too much time out of our busy schedules for eating. Each trip, we try to pack a few heathy, filling snacks to tie us over between breakfast and dinner. I recently discovered Lola Granola Bars, and they were the perfect snack to bring to the most recent show that I attended.

Lola Granola Bars are gluten-free and gmo-free and are packed with protein to give busy people the energy that they need during the day. The tasty, filling bars come in a five flavors, each one is named after the founder's children and her nephew. Most of the ingredients are sourced in the U.S., with many of them coming from the Northeast where the company is located.

Lola Granola Bars not only provides tasty, healthy snacks to retailers, it also provides food for kids anti-hunger back pack programs, so your customers can feel good about buying something for themselves.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Editor's Pick: Passage Foods

Passage Foods creates a way for you to travel the world by cooking your meals at home. Their line of Simmer Sauces are created by chefs around the world, using their knowledge of regional cuisine and age-old recipes. Each sauce is made with fresh, all natural ingredients that, when added to meat, seafood or vegetables, create an authentic international dish, right in your own kitchen.

I made Passage to Japan Teriyaki Chicken for dinner last week, and it was a huge hit. After boiling chicken and tossing some veggies in a pan, I added rice and the simmer sauce for a quick meal that actually was filling. I have noticed the growing popularity in Japanese food recently, so it was nice to be able to try making a meal myself. The mild and sweet flavor paired perfectly with the rest of the dish, and tastes how I would expect a Japanese restaurant to prepare their dishes for me if I joined them for dinner.

Currently, Passage Simmer Sauces give customers a passport to India, Thailand, Morocco, China, Mexico, Japan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Korea, Russia and Spain.