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Cool Food Trends: Part 5

Americans embrace of 'hot' spices and global cuisines-merges nicely in a nifty gift-worthy collection of Artisan Pepper Sauces by Clark + Hopkins...featuring unique peppers and native flavorings from around the world. A SOFI award winner to pour on...!

We had a laugh when we saw this at the Fancy Food Show-being from UWS- NYC-where the tap drinking water is blessedly terrific so why 'enhance' it. WELL-if you are missing that unique taste from far flung locales...these Tap dropper bottles-will cure that ...aka 'water well traveled.' 
Tempting mix of savory+sweet spices-our fav instant hot chocolate mix SOFI AWARD WINNER

We never really thought of instant hot chocolate powders as having gourmet food status potential till now...
COCOA SANTÉ by Harbor Sweets has a winning assortment of natural+ organic cocoa ingredients combined for lush  flavor blends for  this classic cold weather beverage that is also heavenly over ice in the heat. Delicious all -the Mexican chocolate Azteca, the rich indulgent Parisien, the Nor'Easter, and the Mocha (yes we sipped them all) . Pictured in 10 oz canisters.
BONUS POINTS: purchases directly from local farm cooperatives in the DR and South America. AND-available in a gift set box & handy individual pouches. 

Single sources for two of our favorite 'food groups' =chocolate and coffee...are not just for picky eater -snob gourmand types. The tastes differences are that obvious. Prepare to elevate your morning/afternoon staples.

Chocolat Stella (Bernrain) single origin  USDA ORGANIC + Fair Trade Brasil dark chocolate-rich indulgent authentic taste from a Swiss chocolatier.  This company has four other organic-Fair Trade sourced flavors (Madagascar, Costa Rico, Ecuador, Trinidad). BONUS:Many certifications including  FSC certified paper packaging and biodegradable foils, supports carbon offsetting foundation+has solar energy generated manufacturing facility and resource conservation practises sparing water needs.
There seems to be no "standard" definition of what biodynamic really is...though as a certification trademark-via the international organization Demeter Biodynamic-commonly used for products that are not only USDA organic worthy-but even more 'clean'...also relates to how to a regenerative- sustainable ecosystem--including naturally soil enhancing crop rotation (as an example)

Tarvolette di Cioccolato Chocolate Bars ( Del Conte) pure glossy rich extra dark chocolate-are new for this Italian company-Fair Trade sourced from Ghana, Peru,  Madagascar, Ecuador, 
GOODNOW FARMS Chocolate-has award winners including this SOFI WINNER a sinfully tempting Special Reserve collaboration with Boston Harbor Distillery-Single origin dark chocolate /Putnam Rye Whiskey. Other single origin indulgent chocolate offerings are from Nicaragua, Mexico,  Peru (another SOFI WINNER-pictured below), Guatemala, and Costa Rico. Hand selected beans-lovingly roasted-made with freshly pressed homemade cocoa butter that preserves the distinctive flavors of the cocoa beans (read here)-explains why this 'limited' production chocolate bar earns its price tag. 
Available online
República Del Cacao-founded by two Ecuadorean brothers-source their cacao beans from small Latin American plantations. The chocolate bars available here -are even made with locally sourced organic unrefined sugar cane too. The different country chocolate profiles read like fine wine descriptions-ranging from light mahogany to dark earthy-smoky colors/profiles, varying fresh light to more acidic levels-with berry to dry fruits, delicate coconut and sweet dried nutty finishes that vary. Available at Duty Free stores in Latin America...and probably here too. 

BRAZIL is the leader in Arabica Coffee bean production.  CAMBRAIA -a native brand on its fourth generation of owners- which we saw at the Fancy Food Show-offers intensely flavorful single origin (and dark bold blends) from the traditional growing region of coffee. The delicious Yellow Bourbon-which we tried -is naturally sweet-pleasing balance of citric, chocolate-and low milk or sugar needed for this smooth sip. Found online at Amazon and -Cost Plus World Market
DEEP VALLEY single origin coffee is sourced from a single plantation in Espirito Santo, Brazil. It is not only USDA Organic certified-but also 100% BIODYNAMIC-meaning Demeter Biodynamic certificatified-+ no chemicals at all-that are permitted in some instances (like Neem Oil). Brought to the USA-by a super well informed -former Whole Foods coffee buyer-based in Queens.
HELLO HONEY! (USDA ORGANIC)...not made in the USA FYI.

According to a USA honey producer we chatted with...bees fly around-apparently up to large land swaths of 70 miles around-and since there is no where in this country that has a region this wide (or up to at least 3 kilometers-read varying distances needed)- that hasn't been tainted by chemicals, pesticides -or pesticide drifts...(yikes)...all USDA Organic honey is made in Brazil and Bulgaria, (and we read online in remote areas of the Big Island, Hawaii and Canada)-that we know of. Interesting that the USDA Organic folks had no specific standards for organic honey apparently, either...just general USDA Organic requirements. Curious is there are inspectors going around ensuring the label is earned.

USDA Organic labeled honey-is trending-just like other USDA Organic labeled shelf stable goods.
Raw Honey (unpasteurized, unfiltered)-from Brazil -by Novo® Mel-USDA Organic-different flavor profiles-while subtle-come through-depending on the flowers the bees pollinated. There's a QR code on the label for traceability of beekeepers' locales and of the processing plants. 
No trace of pesticides, herbicides, heavy metals, radioactivity or chemicals in Novo Mel organic honey. 

ORIGANIC 100% Organic Acacia Honey from Bulgaria. Delicious thick purely sweet honey...