Tag Archive | Packaging

Favorite Products, Packaging and Booth Displays From The Summer Fancy Food Show 2019!

SFFS19
Prepare To Be Wowed! (All Photos By Gail)

Food Glorious Fancy Food: the most-anticipated annual food show is now behind us, and  I must say that nobody has their act together quite like the Specialty Food Association does when they take over the Javits Center for the annual Summer Fancy Food Show here in NYC. Cheese whiz, what a fantastic show!

There is so much ground to cover when attempting to distill the Summer Fancy Food Experience, and it’s a monumental task because, as the largest show of its kind, there are literally thousands of participating exhibitors! This year, I was fancying a wide variety of sweet treats and snacks. Let’s go to the photos!

Cest Gourmet

Mmm, don’t these look delicious? C’est Gourmet makes exceptional artisanal pastries – in both sweet and savory varieties – that arrive frozen so that customers can bake fresh pastries at home easily and conveniently. C’est Gourmet selects only the finest ingredients, including organic fruit and artisan cheeses, and they have mastered their own European methods of laminating and resting dough, which results in flavorful pastries with crispy, flaky texture, and a memorable eating experience. C’est Gourmet’s newest offering is the Croissant Muffin (pictured above). I could eat a dozen of them!

Bakerly Crepes to Go

Bakerly Crepes To Go are authentic French Crepes rolled with delicious fillings and packaged individually for bakery-fresh, grab-and-go snacking! I discovered Bakerly crepes a few years ago and they are now one of my very favorite snacks! Fillings inside each impossibly flaky crepe include Chocolate Hazelnut, Crunchy Chocolate Hazelnut, Crunchy Caramel, and Strawberry. Take one bite and you will understand immediately why Bakerly’s website is loaded with glowing five-star reviews of these extremely yummy crepe treats!!

Sugar Bowl Bakery Signage

Sugar Bowl Bakery makes tiny snack-sized cakes that are instantly addictive, but my favorites are their Duet Bites.

SugarBbowl Bakery Duet Bites

Duet Bites are two treats in one, combining a luscious almond-flavored Madeleine cake and a moist chocolate Brownie in one tiny cake. I cannot recommend them highly enough.

Sugar Bowl Bakery Duet Bites

Resistance is futile.

Deweys Bakery

By the time you say the name of Dewey’s Bakery Donut Shop Soft Baked Cookies Collection, your mouth will be watering, just imagining the dream-like idea of cookies that taste like donuts.

Donut Shop Soft Baked Cookies

Choose from Old Fashion Glazed, Cinnamon Bun, Chocolate Glazed, Apple Fritter and other luscious varieties. Best served warm!

Too Good Gourmet Donut Hole Cookies

And while we’re talking about Donut Cookies, check out these Donut Hole Cookies, which are brand new from Too Good Gourmet.  Enrobed in a sense-tempting glaze and colorful sprinkles, they look as amazing as they taste.

Tru Fru Display

If you seek a sweet snack that manages to be both indulgent and healthy, you may flip for Tru Fru; 100% frozen fresh (aka freeze dried) fruit — cherries, strawberries, raspberries and chunks of coconut — encased in white, milk, or dark chocolate. Mmmm.

Tru Fru Raspberries

I sampled Tru Fru’s Whole Raspberries in White & Milk Chocolate and they were just insane. Unlike dehydrating, the process of freeze-drying locks in the majority (97+%) of the vitamins, nutrition, taste color and texture the fruit. Tru Fru is a unique fruit-based snack that lives up to its name.

Candy Pop

Behold, an idea whose time has come: Candy Pop popcorn (by Nestle) is Butterfinger candy-coated popcorn drizzled with peanut butter. Please pass the dental floss!

Funky Pretzel Truffles

Socado Funky Pretzel Truffles have successfully harnessed the power of the sweet and savory combination. Individually wrapped for extra fanciness, these crunchy, sweet morsels of endless goodness take the Milk Chocolate Truffle experience even further, adding a creamy filling studded with salted pretzel bits. Kill me.

Hands Off My Chocolate Truffles

Hands Off My Chocolate truffles are made with the finest fair Belgian chocolate. They not only come in unique flavors such as Strawberry Meringue and Cinnamon Cookie, but some varieties also embrace interesting shapes, like these highly-Instagrammable truffles that look like a sunny-side up egg. Fun! Hands Off My Chocolate‘s packaging illustrations are also very whimsical.

Hands Off My Chocolate Birthday Cake Truffles

Remember the popular Birthday Cake flavor profile from SFFS18? Hands Off My Chocolate is keeping it on-trend!

Witches Finger Cookies

Halloween is not too far away to make you aware of this Witches’ Finger Cookie Kit from The Invisible Chef! Bake up a batch to keep the little Goblins happy!

Fiasconaro Dolce Presepe

Inside this classy-looking, cylindrical red box, there lurks one of the most unique food products I saw on the exhibition hall floor. Let’s see what’s inside!

Fiasconaro Dolce Presepe

Well, it’s Fiasconaro Dolce Presepe, a traditional Italian holiday cake made with fresh candied orange and raisins, and flavored with Marsala and Zibibbo (I had to look it up; it’s an Italian white wine) that surrounds a nativity scene carved from white chocolate. Holy Italian Cake! It is almost too fancy to eat. Almost.

Waffle Shot Display

Eventually, someone had to invent the Waffleshot: a edible cup made from an ice cream waffle cone, coated inside with Belgian chocolate and, depending on the variety you choose, possibly hiding a filling at the bottom. I mean, it was only a matter of time.

Waffle Shot Product

Look at these cups. Just look at them, ready to be filled with hot coffee, cocoa or espresso. Or whatever.

Waffle Shot Packaging

Created by Los Angeles-based sisters Doris and Naomi, Waffleshots come in a variety of exciting flavors and can be purchased at This Link, just in time for the Holidays!

Parmela Creamery Aged Nutcheese

If you like nuts and you also like cheese (because who doesn’t) you may be intrigued to know that nuts are now being used to make cheese. Yes I just typed that. Parmela Creamery Aged Nutcheese is traditionally cultured from creamy whole cashew milk. OMG.

Quesadilla

This quesadilla was made with Parmela Creamery’s shredded, sharp cheddar variety artisanal nutcheese and it tasted as delicious as you would expect any quesadilla to taste! What a welcome product for the lactose intolerant, or anyone who cares about reducing greenhouse gasses caused by cattle farming. A delicious product with a conscience deserves our support!

Milkadamia Products

Nuts are also getting into the world of dairy with Milkadamia products, which are derived from the finest raw macadamia nuts — because plant-based dairy is officially a thing.

Milkadamia Buttery Spread

Milkadamia Buttery Spread, a heart-healthy, reduced calorie alternative to butter and margarine, was a new product at SFFS19. This spread has a fantastic buttery taste and a light, creamy texture. Milkadamia also has an extensive line of macadamia nut-based milks and creamers. At the show, I was given a 32 oz carton of their Unsweetened Vanilla Macadamia Milk to take home, which I enjoyed on cereal and in my coffee over the course of three weeks. I emphasis three weeks because a message on the carton recommends consuming the milk within seven days after opening, but it tasted very fresh and delicious for three times that long. Worth noting!

Cauliflower Chips and Snacks

Another trending ingredient among a more health-conscious consumer base is Cauliflower. Not surprisingly, we saw new products at SFFS19 using this versatile vegetable in innovative ways. From the Ground Up makes familiar savory snacks, with a plant-based twist, with their line of Cauliflower-based Tortilla Chips, Stalks, Pretzels and Crackers. Yummy.

Egg Thins Cauliflower Crepes

Crepini brand Egg Thins crepes, made with cauliflower, are a carb-free, gluten-free, paleo-friendly bread alternative.

Egg Thins Cauliflower Crepes With Turkey

I sampled Egg Thins cauliflower crepes rolled up with a slice of deli turkey at the show, and it was a super tasty snack. These crepes would be a great starting point for creative party snacks to impress even your most finicky guest. I definitely will be following up with Crepini post-SFFS!

Terrapin Ridge Farms Bacon Sauces

The Summer Fancy Food Show is an place ideal to discover a vast selection of gourmet variety jams, dips, spreads and sauces. A leader in this category is Terrapin Ridge Farms, who were one of the first outlets I know of to market several kinds of Bacon Jam!

Terrapin Farms Margarita Jelly

Terrapin Ridge Farms products allow the home cook to redefine his or her approach to food, entertaining and cooking. One jar of their sauces eliminates the need to buy multiple ingredients and spend hours in the kitchen, leaving you more time to spend with your guests! Margarita Jelly, which can enhance the flavors of meats or sweets, is one of their new products on the shelf!

Apple Blueberry Salsa Bacon Queso

Stonewall Kitchen, unique not just for the distinctive hand-written-look of its labels, but for the culinary innovation that goes into all of its sauces, jams, dips and spreads, always has dozens of delicious new products to sample SFFS. This year I especially loved the Apple Blueberry Salsa and Bacon Queso!

Bitchin Sauce

The memorably-named Bitchin’ Sauce took home a pair of Sofi Awards for its delicious Almond Dip! Congratulations!

Freak Flag Kale Pesto

Freak Flag Organics, possibly the best-named product in the sauces category, makes a healthy Kale Pesto that tastes great on pizza or pasta, or used in dips. Let your Freak Flag fly in the kitchen!

Crazy Go Nuts Walnut Butter

Crazy Go Nuts Walnut Butter not only has a funny name and a wacky label, but it also tastes amazing! Co-owned by friends Courtney Carini and David Wolfe, Crazy Go Nuts is a small business dedicated to environmental advocacy as they turn the superfood that is the walnut into a delectable, wholesome spread that tastes great on bread, fruit, or just eaten by the spoonful from the jar! You can buy Crazy Go Nuts products on Amazon!

ODang Hummus Dressings

O’Dang Hummus makes a line of flavorful and low calorie chickpea-based bottled Salad Dressings.

Funny Farm Mac and Cheese

Macaroni and Cheese from a box, despite its crave-able taste and comforting mouth feel,  can get a bad rap for being a convenience food that’s perhaps not so good for you. Funny Farm Macaroni & Cheese Dinner mixes (by LaLoos) challenge that notion, appealing to ‘kids of all ages,’ as they say, for its use of lower-in-fat goats’ milk-based cheese and its absence of preservatives, artificial flavors and synthetic dyes. I tried Funny Farm Mac & Cheese at SFFS and can conclude that it is one of the best-tasting dinner mixes I’ve encountered. They also make a version with the same enriched pasta, but in the shapes of little goats, pizza slices and ice cream cones, to get the little ones on board.

Cheese Shaped Mardi Gras Beads

Funny Farm also had these Cheese Wedge-Shaped Mardi Gras Beads as giveaways in their booth!

Princess Shaped Mac and Cheese

Also getting into the game of healthier Mac and Cheese in fun shapes is Pastabilities (bonus points for getting to that name first), who make this organic Mac ‘N Cheese dinner with pasta in the shapes of princesses, crowns and castles! Why didn’t this exist when I was a child?

Moon Cheese

Moon Cheese (Cheese That Crunches) has all the flavor and nutrition of real cheese because it is really just 100% delicious cheese that has been made into little crunchy nuggets. Without additives or preservatives, crunchy Moon Cheese is a perfect on-the-go healthy snack that needs no refrigeration! They also gave my first-ever fidget spinner! Yay, Moon Cheese!

Check out these random products that made it into the recap for their funny names or eye-catching packages!

Smooth Caffeinator

Kudos to Java Factory for its Smooth Caffeinator medium-roast Keurig pods. You know you hear Sade crooning in your head right now. You’re welcome.

Tea Pigs Display

I love this name: Tea Pigs. Because pigs. Tea Pigs is a UK-based small company dedicated to the enjoyment and worshipping of tea. Tea Pigs is a high-quality, whole-leaf tea that, rather than a standard tea bag, comes in a roomy, biodegradable mesh bag that they call a tea temple. I love it.

Tea Pigs Cold Brew Box

Wouldn’t this Lychee & Rose cold brew tea taste refreshing on a hot summer day? You know it would. Tea Pigs teas are available in the US via Amazon.

Mrs Muffin and Mr Brownie

There is so much more to and Mrs. Muffin and Mr. Brownie than set of adorable names. These individually-wrapped mini snack cakes are so delicious, you really should read the brand backstory for yourself!

Uglies Potato Chips

Uglies Kettle Cooked Potato Chips are delicious chips crafted from potatoes with minor cosmetic imperfections. This includes potatoes that are too large or too small; those with the wrong color or the wrong sugar content. Some of the potatoes are slightly blemished and, of course, some are just farmer surplus. Until now, these orphaned potatoes were destined to become food waste. Uglies has helped to reduce food waste by saving over 1,500,000 pounds of potatoes since 2017. Uglies for the win!

King Floyds Bitters

King Floyds Bitters: Bitters are not my thing, but the name made me smile!

Joe Tea

Joe Tea and Joe’s Lemonade: Because these label are works of art!

My favorite product that isn’t exactly a food product, but is nevertheless edible, goes to Gerrit’s Top This! Edible Cake Toppers, made by retro and nostalgic candy company Gerrit Verburg! These take me back.

Now I’d love to pay homage to the exhibitors who went the extra distance to guarantee that the Summer Fancy Food Show is Instagram-able for more than just the food. Check out these creative displays, fun use of props and outstanding booth designs!

Goodie Girl Signage

Goodie Girl, makers of  gluten-free cookies in both creative and classic varieties, got a brand new sign this year: a Pink Neon glow encircling their Giggling Goodie Girl logo! Distinctive and fitting!

Goodie Girl Animal Crackers Box

Goodie Girl Magical Animal Crackers are new on the shelf now!

Salsa God Booth Display

Salsa God, makers of delicious spicy salsa varieties, earns a mention in our recap each year, because skulls! I love these little Day Of The Dead skulls!

Salsa God Chips and Salsa to Go

Salsa God’s new product on the shelf is this Chips & Salsa Combo Pack, so that you can enjoy crunchy tortilla chips and fresh hot salsa as a grab-and-go snack any time! Salsa God!

Attitude Vodka Dragon Booth

Got Attitude Vodka made the most of a less-than-desirable end-of-the-aisle booth location by bringing in a mechanical Fire Breathing Dragon! Every few minutes, the dragon’s mouth would open wide, its eyes would begin to glow red, and smoke would emerge from its mouth, along with a mighty roar! You had better believe everybody stopped by for a sip and a snap!

Attitude Vodka

Got Attitude Vodka is smooth and sassy, and tastes great with any mixer, or on the rocks with a twist. It’s a party in a bottle!

Got Attitude Vodka Dragon

Here’s a close-up of the dragon’s glowing-red eyes (which I imagine would be more impressionable in the dark)! Still, it provided show-goers with a memorable Game of Thrones-style moment!

Jelly Belly Booth Mascot

Over at the Jelly Belly booth, there was a photo op with Mr. Jelly Belly, who is the brand’s official mascot! He is all kinds of cute.

Jelly Belly Cupcakes

Jelly Belly Candy Cupcakes, a non-jelly bean candy similar in texture to candy corn, is new on the shelves now!

Maud Borup Organic Cotton Candy

Maud Borup is known for providing retailers with unique flavor profiles and confectionery gifts that include candy, snacks, baking kits, and beverage mixes, which often come with a reusable collectable item that is sure to be remembered. Check out this sweet and simple display they created to show off their Organic Cotton Candy treats!

Maud Borup Paper Flowers Detail

It was so festive! You really felt like you were at the Fair!

Coco Well Booth

Coco Well 100% Pure Coconut Water constructed its booth from clear lucite panels filled with fresh whole coconuts. What a clever idea, and there was no confusion as to what their product is all about!

Coco Well Product

We know that coconut water is super health and hydrating, and Coco Well produces the freshest tasting coconut water possible by packaging its beverages in Tetra Pak, an eco-friendly and socially-responsible form of packaging based on the use of a sustainably-sourced wood fiber. Coco Well is good for your body, and the planet!

Greenpoint Trading Cart

Greenpoint Trading Co (based in Brooklyn) brought in this a bike-driven cart as part of their booth display for its line of Spices, Herbs and Seasonings. It definitely relays the message of freshness!

Pop Art Popcorn Booth

For SFFS19, Pop Art Gourmet Popcorn made good on last year’s promise / threat to retire their fabulous Mirrored Disco Ball Booth, only to debut a new booth design that is equally distinctive; being comprised of multi-colored, stacked LEGO bricks, making it a work of Pop Art itself!

Pop Art Popcorn Signage

Pop Art also replaced their famous Neon Popcorn Kernel signage with this stunning new sign, which is also made of LEGOs. Well played.

Pop Art Gourmet Popcorn

New flavors of Pop Art Popcorn include Dill Pickle Ranch (which tasted exactly like what it says it is) and Cheddar Jalepeno!

Belgian Boys Pink Booth

The Pinkest Booth at the Summer Fancy Food Show award (which is a thing that I just made up) goes to Belgian Boys European bakery! Beyond the pink plush carpeting (which was very comforting to our tired feet), let’s take a look at some of the awesome pink things found in the Belgian Boys booth!

Pink Recycling Waste Bin

Put It Here: Pink Recycling / Waste Bin!

Pink Smeg Refrigerator

Keeping It Cool: Pink Smeg Brand Refrigerator and a Pink Plant!

Belgian Boys Bakery Booth Display

The booth’s central display was a counter comprised of colorful dessert packaging, stacked high and topped with a Pink Sand Beach, which included a Pink Pineapple!

Belgian Boys Treats

Alongside the Boys‘ best-loved product line such as their famous Mini Cookie Stash (#rockthatstash), authentic Stroopwafels and assorted Liege Waffles and Waffle Chips, SFFS19 launched the debut of a full line of gourmet single-serve Mini Cheesecakes and a Dark Chocolate Lava Cake – super decadent. These treats are imported from Belgium and come two to a pack, with a premium presentation in a re-usable glass ramekin!  Begian Boys new desserts are Non-GMO and made with premium ingredients, no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, and are kosher certified. Crave-able flavors include Key Lime, Cookies & Cream, and Raspberry. Yum!

Niman Ranch Booth

Niman Ranch, purveyors of humanely-raised quality meats, went all out with their idea of a Summer BBQ, bringing the free spirit of outdoor entertaining inside the Javits Center for the debut their new line of sustainably raised products featuring New Belgium Brewing’s Fat Tire Amber Ale!

Fat Tire Neon Sign

Grilled tastings and samples of the meats were an instant hit! The Niman Ranch booth also included a living plant wall with  bicycle tires, and with a bar serving freshly brewed Fat Tire Amber Ale. The joint venture of one of the most recognized names in the craft beer industry and a highly-regarded meat company brought show attendees a fresh idea on how to reach millennial audiences — who are concerned with how their food is produced — while supporting value-driven brands.

Niman Ranch BBQ on the HighLine

For fans who longed for an expanded taste of the new line, Niman Ranch hosted a BBQ Party at Hearth restaurant, located on NYC’s High Line Park, after the Monday evening of the Summer Fancy Food Show, where I was able to enjoy all five items that make up their complete BBQ collection. I hope my photos of the event will inspire you to include Niman Ranch products in your next summer BBQ! Let’s eat!

Beer Brautwurst

Fat Tire Beer Bratwurst, served here on a potato roll with sauerkraut and German-style mustard.

Cheddar Brauts

Fat Tire Spicy Cheddar Beer Bratwurst served with pickled mustard seeds. Little bits of cheddar cheese locked inside the sausage become melty and extra flavorful when grilled!

Pulled Pork

Niman Ranch Pulled Pork with Fat Tire BBQ Sauce show here alongside all the fixings — including crunchy coleslaw and crisp fried shallots — to make an amazing sandwich!

Pulled Pork Sandwich
Pulled Pork Sandwich. Mmmm.

St Louis Style Pork Ribs

St. Louis-Style Pork Ribs with Fat Tire BBQ Sauce. Unbelievable!

Shredded Beef and Pork Rib

Shredded Beef with Fat Tire BBQ Sauce on a potato roll, sharing the plate with one of those tender, meaty pork ribs. Outstanding!

BBQ Spread with Ribs

All items are uncured and fully cooked, making the line perfect for anyone looking for easy-to-prepare meals without sacrificing quality and taste. The new Niman Ranch New Belgium line will be available in specialty stores across the country beginning in August. The complete selection will also be available on Niman Ranch’s new digital storefront powered by ButcherBox.

Sofi Award

And that wraps up our recap of Summer Fancy Food 2019! Congratulations to all of the SOFI Award winning brands and thanks to the Specialty Food Association for another fantastic show! See you back here in 2020!

Favorite Products, Packaging and Booth Displays From The Summer Fancy Food Show 2018!

Summer Fancy Food 2018 Entrance
All Photos By Gail

Oh my goodness, you know I must have been having a crazy fun summer when the season is essentially over before I can even get around to posting my always-hotly-anticipated annual photo recap of the Summer Fancy Food Show, 2018 edition! I have no excuse, except to admit that there is too much rad fun going on over here! Please forgive my tardiness, Specialty Food Association — I promise I will make it up to you with this awesome coverage that you are about experience. To kick things off, let me give a round of shout outs to the considerable number of tasty edibles that you should be putting in your mouth right now. Let’s do this thing!

Michelles Macs

How luscious do those chocolate-enrobed morsels look in the above photo?  Please allow me to introduce you to Michelle’s Maccs — the Macaroon of the Gods. If you are a fan of coconut, then you need to get hip to Michelle’s Maccs, an elite coconut macaroon that comes in 13 gourmet varieties  — including Amarena Cherry, Peanut Butter, Orange Zest, Banana Walnut (with little bits of real banana) and Espresso — each covered either milk, white, or dark Belgian chocolate. Decadent.

Michelles Maccs

Michelles Macs

Check out this close up of the Simple Milk variety: dense with sweet, chewy coconut and drenched in rich Belgian Milk Chocolate. Irresistible! Handcrafted with simple, high-quality ingredients, Michelle’s Maccs are eggless, flourless and naturally gluten-free. What a perfect confectionary treat for yourself, or to give as a gift. Michelle’s Maccs’s are part of the full line of gourmet baked goods from Fresh Baked NY, and you can find out more about them at This Link!

Something Good to Eat Soup Ladies

Over in the New Brands on the Shelf aisle, we met the lovely ladies behind Something Good to Eat  Soups! Meet Sandy Khorrami  and her two beautiful daughters.  Something Good to Eat  is a line of hearty and exotic soups made in small batches right here in NYC. Vegan and sugar-free, with no preservatives or stabilizers, these delicious soups are as close to homemade as you’ll find outside of your own kitchen!

Something Good to Eat Soups

Inspired by her own mothers home-cooking, Sandy has hand-crafted original recipes for unique soup flavors like Pomegranate Beet with Basmati Rice (which reflects Sandy’s Iranian heritage), and Spicy Mushroom with Lemongrass and Quinoa. Delicious served hot or cold, Something Good to Eat is a brand to put on your radar.

Peekaboo Ice Cream

Another new brand exbibiting at SFFS for the first time is Peekabo Organic Ice Cream. What makes Peekabo a unique product is the main ingredient hiding in each flavor — fresh vegetables! Take their Chocolate ice cream, made from the finest cocoa and pure, sweet cream to create a decadent, velvety dark chocolate ice cream. And the hidden cauliflower is providing your kids with a variety of vitamins, folate, fiber, potassium, protein, phosphorus and magnesium — wow! Eating your vegetables never tasted like this before!

Peekaboo Ice Cream
Vegetables Never Tasted So Good

Other Peekabo flavors include Strawberry with Hidden Carrot, Mint Chip with Hidden Spinach, and Vanilla with Hidden Zucchini. Scoop them up at your local grocery!

Graeters Ice Cream

I was first introduced to Graeters Ice Cream at SFFS 2016 and so it was nice to see the brand thriving at this year’s show. Their Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip  totally owns me.

Jenji's Brambleberry Crisp Ice Cream

Jenji’s Ice Cream wins Best Ice Cream Flavor Name for their scrumptious Brambleberry Crisp variety!

Sugar Bowl Bakery Signage

Sugar Bowl Bakery, a family owned company based in Hayward, CA, bakes a variety of bite-sized cakes and pastries that are perfect for lunch bags, afternoon tea, or easy snacking when you really want to treat yourself.

Sugar Bowl Bakery

Possibly my single favorite new sweet discovery of SFFS18 were Sugar Bowl’s Duet Bites; tiny cakes that uniquely blend chocolaty Petite Brownie Bites with buttery Madeleines cakes. Dessert perfection achieved!

Sugar Bowl Bakery Button Cakes
Image Source

Also introduced at SFFS18 are the bakery’s new Button Cakes, which are on shelves now. Button Cakes have the look, texture and taste of tiny, bite-sized muffins and come in four tempting flavors including Tropical Mango, Wild Blueberry, Lemon Zest and Madagascar VanillaSugar Bowl Bakery’s Button Cakes contain real fruit and vanilla bean seeds, with no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. The Button Cakes are available in 8 and 16-count packages, with distribution throughout the United States.

Sweet Sams Cakes

While I’m talking about delicious cakes, I recommend the gourmet pound cakes from Sweet Sam’s. If you’ve ever raved about the moist and addictive Iced Lemon Pound Cake sold at Manhattan Starbucks stores, you should know that their secret supplier is Sweet Sam’s!  In fact, this Bronx-based baking company supplies over 500 New York-area coffee bars, gourmet markets, delis and other businesses with pound cakes, cookies, crumb cakes and other baked goods. Fine quality deserves its rewards!

Dina Assorted Baklava

UK-based Dina Foods produces high-quality, traditional Mediterranean breads and pastries in both sweet and savory varieties. Their Assorted Baklawa, seen above, is a show-stopper.

Bantam Bagels Egg Bites Booth Display

Bantam Bagels first blew up the frozen breakfast foods market with their innovative bite-sized, cream cheese-stuffed bagels. Now they have introduced Bantam Bagels’s Egg Bites Mini Breakfast Sandwiches, which are just fantastic! What could be more delicious than a crisp, chewy authentic NYC bagel puff stuffed with gourmet soft scrambled egg and cheese combinations? I ask yez . . .

Bantam Bagels Egg Bites Close Up

Available in Everything Bagel with Cheddar, Chipotle, Garden Veggie, Onion Gruyere, and original Egg and Cheddar flavors, Bantam Bagels Eggs Bites are one of my favorite savory discoveries at SFFS18!

Frontera Brand Booth

Frontera Gourmet Mexican Cuisine is based on the authentic recipes of Celebrity Chef Rick Bayles. Frontera’s new Taco Skillet and Taco Bowl meal kits elevate the convenience of frozen meals to entrees that will remind you of your favorite Mexican restaurant!

Frontera Taco Bowl

Made with fresh, classic ingredients like fire-roasted veggies, tender, delicious meats, and layers of authentic seasonings, Frontera Taco Bowls and Skillets will help you make a healthy and flavorful Mexican meal for the family that’s ready in just minutes! Fiesta!

Barzu International Plantain and Cassava Strips

And if you’re looking for some crispy chips to go with that south-of-the-border meal, why not sidestep the usual tortilla chips and go for something completely different, like Tumbis brand Plantain Strips and Cassava Strips? Imported From Costa Rica by Barzu International, these high quality strips are 100% Natural, with no trans fat and no cholesterol. Tumbis Plantain and Cassava strips are also high in fiber and potassium, so you can indulge with much less guilt! And they sure do taste divine with your favorite homemade guacamole recipe.

RW Garcia Organic Chili Cheese Corn Chips

I also flipped for these Organic Chili Cheese Corn Chips from the family-owned RW Garcia brand. Chili plus cheese plus corn chips means the name alone sounds too tempting to resist! I want to crunch a mouthful of them even as I type this.

RW Garcia Organic Lentil and Turmeric Crackers

At the show, RW Garcia introduced two varieties of organic, gluten free crackers including Organic Lentil with Turmeric (which is so healthy for you) combining natural ingredients like lentils, stone ground white corn, and a sprinkling of seeds, to create a delicious, crunchy cracker. You can now snack with confidence knowing that these delicious crackers are made with 100% USDA Organic and Non-GMO ingredients, no cholesterol and no trans fats.

Surgital Frozen Pasta

Do you like Pasta? I sure do? But, being a single gal, I also (obviously) appreciate convenience when it comes to preparing a meal for one. That’s why Surgital Frozen Fresh Pasta is not only The Chef’s Best Friend but my best friend as well.

Surgital Frozen Pasta

Look at all of these different types of Surgital gourmet pastas that you can buy to cook at home. Just look at them! While all Surgital products are imported from Italy, they are available for you to purchase in select US markets. Visit This Link for more product information and local store locations! Mangia!

Lemonera Lemonade

Eating non-stop for five hours is thirsty work. I enjoyed a glass of refreshing Lemonera all-natural Homemade Lemonade between bouts of stuffing my face.

Blue Monkey Watermelon Juice

Another guaranteed thrist-quencher, Blue Monkey Watermelon Juice is probably even more refreshing when mixed with the Vodka of your choice! Cheers!

Undercover Quinoa

While I’m walking the show floor, I like to pay attention to products that not only taste great, but that also have some kind of unique or on-trend flavor variety, a funny or clever name, or unique packaging. Undercover Quinoa has a very clever logo for portraying ‘quinoa in disguise,’ but I have to tell you that this product blew me away with its wildly addictive taste and irresistible lite crunch! Quinoa has been one of the more consistently popular choices for healthy eating for years, so it’s not exactly a hard sell. But if you can’t get your kids to eat it, try baking it into wafers and drenching it in chocolate. Sold!

Cacao Market by MarieBelle

Chocolate lovers at SFFS never have difficulty finding something a little different to satisfy the sweet tooth. Check out this Japanese Matcha Milk Chocolate bar from Cacao Market by Mariebelle New York Chocolates. Exotic!

Milk Boy White Chocolate with Potato Chips and Sea Salt

Milk Boy Swiss Chocolate’s White Chocolate with Potato Chips and Sea Salt bar helped that company make sofi™ Award history this year, winning the award for best new product in the category for milk and white chocolates! The gold award in that same category went to Milkboy’s Swiss Alpine Milk Chocolate with Crunchy Caramel and Sea Salt, and the bronze award went to their Swiss Alpine Milk Chocolate with Roasted Almonds. As the first company to win three chocolate category awards in a single year, Milkboy took home a trio of honors equivalent to the Oscars for specialty food! Congratulations!

Milk Boy Chocolate Booth Display

Mona Lisa Chocolate Cups

In the category of ‘food made gorgeous,’ Mona Lisa decorations of Chicago makes chocolate cups, shells and assorted decorations that can transform your desserts into elegant works of art!

Mona Lisa Chocolate Cups

These desserts look almost too beautiful to eat! Check out Mona Lisa’s full line of gourmet chocolate decorations at This Link!

Mona Lisa Chocolate Cups
Mona Lisa Tuxedo Tulip Cups Stuffed with Chocolate Mousse!

Let Them Eat Candles Display

Just when you thought there could not be one more unique and original product made from chocolate, along comes Let Them Eat Candles, which are, literally, Edible Chocolate Candles for every type of celebration!

Let Them Eat Candles Display with Cake

Available in boxes of three candles, in either milk or dark chocolate, Let Them Eat Candles come in a variety of printed designs and they can even be custom printed with your company logo or monogram for wedding. Just don’t eat the wick!

SugarSin Prosecco Gummies

I bet you know someone who would love these Prosecco Gummies candies by SugarSin. This UK-based confectionary makes assorted Cocktail Flavored gummies as well. Check them out!

Satellite Wafers

With their slogan “Taste the Memories,” Gerrit J. Verburg Company is always a huge hit at the show, with their nostaliga-inducing line of old-fashioned candies — like these Satellite Wafers — that delight the kid in each one of us!

Too Good Gourmet Halloween Cookies Packaging

Too Good Gourmet is ready for Halloween by placing its delectable cookies inside this adorable (and scary!) seasonal packaging!

Les Chocolat Des Francais

Le Chocolat des Français is a line of French chocolate bars that have a playful, and unique brand identity that features a variety of amazing illustrations on its packaging. Take a look!

Les Chocolat Des Francais

Designs this bold and exciting (collectible, even!) guaranteed Le Chocolat des Français an appearance in this recap  — and the Chocolate tastes great, too!

Nuts Original Snacks

You’ve heard of Beer Nuts brand peanuts and bar-snack mixes, which are marketed directly towards pairing with beer, but now Portugal-based Nuts Original snacks is giving Beer Nuts a run for the bar tab, so to speak. Nuts Original is the first company to create an entire line of select snack mixes that are perfect for pairing with not just beer, but also wine, or the cocktail of your choice — the first ‘bespoke’ cocktail snack, if you will!

Mystery Flavor Snack Mix

Each bag of Nuts Original contains the perfect blend of crispy crackers, dried fruits, and oven-roasted nuts, all optimally seasoned for flavor enhancement, to complement the special ‘moment’ of your drinking experience. I also love their mysterious, masked spokesmodel, who reminds me of Wonder Woman! Find out more about Nuts Original cocktail snack mixes at This Link!

Red White and Blue Chips

Too bad that this year’s July 4th celebration has passed, because what an ideal occasion that would be to break out the Saratoga Old Glories Kettle Chips – Red, White and Blue goes crunch!

Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

Sea Salt Superstores (purveyors of exotic salts) Himalayan Pink Salt wins Pink Thing of SFFS18! Because, Pinkness!

One Potato Two Potato Sgt Pepper Chips

One Potato Two Potato brand Kettle Potato Chips won my heart with their adorable homage — in both bag design, and name — to The Beatles, with their Sgt Pepper & Capt Sea Salt Chips. Squee!

Hoboken Farms Pasta Sauce

The label for Hoboken Farms organic Pasta Sauce, with its colorful depiction of a vintage a pick-up truck, is a work of art that’s worthy of the high-quality, farm-to-table style sauce that you’ll find inside the jar!

Drink and Play

The most innovative origin story for product packaging at SFFS18 belongs to Florida-based Surprise Drinks company. In 2006, inventor and current CEO of Surprise Drinks, engineer Pavel Dlouhy, developed a patented system of a drinkable beverage in a bottle with a toy hidden in a capsule attached to the bottle (Drink&PlayTM). Dlouhy’s inspiration for the Drink & Play patented bottle was the vision of his wife, who was pregnant at the time with their first child.

Drink and Play Display

Dlouhy approached the Walt Disney Company, which became the first license for Surprise Drinks in Europe. The heritage Disney brands, along with all the up and coming licenses associated with Disney have elevated Surprise Drinks to one of the top selling children’s beverages in Europe.

Drink and Play Product

Genius.

Pretzilla Soft Pretzel Burger Buns

Pretzilla Soft Pretzel Burger Buns: an absolutely delicious baked good with the best. name. ever! I want to eat them.

Bone Suckin Sauces

It’s always fun to spend time browsing in the BBQ Sauces aisle. Spotting a line of sauces with a product-approprate name like Bone Suckin’ is just one reason why that is true.

Attitude Vodka Logo

I’ve already mentioned how fond I am of Vodka, so it was extra sweet to encounter the folks at Got Attitude Vodka in the New Brands on the Shelf aisle. Even better: they were giving out free samples!

Attitude Vodka Bottles

Got Attitude Vodka is not meant for those who follow the crowd. It is for the bold, and those who speak their mind. How does Got Attitude taste? In a word: Smooth.

Attitude Vodka Recipes

Why not make one of these Cocktails with Attitude after you pick up a bottle? Join the Got Attitude family at This Link!

Krispy Kreme Jelly Belly

Jelly Belly — always ahead of the flavor trends  — makes its first of two appearances in this post for their drool-inducing Krispy Kreme Doughnuts-flavored jelly beans!

Frosted Cupcake Taffy

Here’s a flavor trend that I never cease to be captivated by: Birthday Cake — or, alternately, Cupcake — flavored . . . anything. At SFFS18 it was apparent that folks have gotten quite creative with this idea, introducing such festive treats as Frosted Cupcake saltwater taffy from Taffy Town.

Noosh Cupcake Almond Butter

Over in the New Brands on the Shelf aisle, we came across Cupcake-flavored squeezable Almond Butter from Noosh!

Birthday Cake Fudge

Country Fresh Fudge introduced their take on Birthday Cake Fudge — festive and delicious!

Goodie Girl Birthday Cake Cream Cookies

Goodie Girl gluten-free cookies got into game with their newest variety, Birthday Cake Cream sandwich cookies!

Goodie Girl Booth

And check out the gorgeous spectrum rug in the Goodie Girl booth! Now that’s visual merchandising done right!

Here are a few other creative and eye-grabbing ways that exhibitors stood out from the pack, drew crowds to their booths, and got folks to hang around for a few extra minutes in the vast sea of 2,600 exhibitors!

Pereg Spectrum Booth Display

Pereg Natural Foods also took advantage of the universal appeal of a color spectrum that was created from the simple alignment of their product packaging. Lovely.

Statue of Liberty Ice Sculpture 2

Cheribundi 100% natural Tart Cherry Juice knows that the cocktail party brings all the folks to the booth, and this statuesque ice sculpture of Lady Liberty served as a beacon to guide the cocktail-minded to their lively Sunday afternoon soirée.

Cheribundi Display

Brand representatives served both virgin and alcohol-enhanced cocktails which were expertly crafted to highlight the fresh fruit taste of Cheribundi; an ideal mixer that packs numerous health benefits including Phytonutrients  and antioxidants! Plus, free swag!

BBQ Sauce with a Hat

Pepper Creek Farms had the Instagram crowd in mind when they dressed-up their bottles of Salsa and BBQ Sauce in little hats and bandanas! Hey, it got my attention!

Juice Bottles in a Hammock

Retreat Tropical Juice Blends get their point across by displaying the bottles in a little hammock and Adirondack chair!

Salsa God Booth Display

Salsa God’s booth display is simple, well organized, and full of cool skulls!

Strawberry Hill Lollypops and Damien Hirst Cup

Strawberry Hill Candy is best known for their clever line of Novelty Lollipops that have to be seen to be believed. What caught my eye most in their booth though were these oversize tea cup and saucer props with their Damien Hirst Spot Painting motif!

Sauces N Love Car Grill

Sauces ‘N’ Love fresh pasta sauces cooked up one of their speciality dishes on a grill mounted right on top of the engine of this car! Crazy!

Pop Art Popcorn Booth

Pop Art Snacks Gourmet Popcorn is a pleasure to see at SFFS each year; not only for their Mirrored Disco Ball Booth — which is no doubt the envy of every exhibitor on their aisle — and for their numerous unique Gourmet Popcorn flavors, but because co-owner Mike always remembers my name!

Pop Art Hawaiian Sea Salt Popcorn

I highly recommend the Hawaiian Sea Salt with Avocado Oil Popcorn for its extreme deliciousness! So good!

Siren Snack Protein Bites Booth

Siren Snacks emphasized the “Clean Snacking” approach of their brands’ delicious, plant-based range of protein bites by installing an old-fashioned clawfoot bathtub filled with balloons right in their booth!

Spread Delights Booth Display

New, all-natural Spread Delights are single-serve, squeezable smooth spreads in Chocolate Hazelnut, Raspberry, and Almond varieties that will complement your toast, bagel, favorite pastry, or whatever strikes your fancy. The Spread Delights booth felt like a new car showroom with its life-size packet replicas of each flavor perched atop a lucite display case of that flavor’s man ingredient. Classic and Classy!

Mingle Sparkling Mocktails

Props or themed-booths are certainly not necessary to attract attention. Mingle Sparkling Mocktails showed everyone how effective a straightforward approach can be with their clear branding and elegant product display. It was impossible to pass by their booth without stopping in for a taste of one of their refreshing non-alcoholic beverages!

Jelly Belly Merchandising

There’s a reason why the Jelly Belly brand makes its annual Manhattan land grab with one of the largest square-footage booths at SFFS — it’s because their merchandising is rather mind blowing. Everybody wants to hang out in the Jelly Belly booth. It’s like Christmas in there!

Jelly Belly Table Display

And look at how focused this display is for the new Jelly Belly Candy Cones! Forget that Candy Cones have two flavors that taste like both the cone and the ice cream in each piece, and just immerse yourself in this inviting fantasy landscape that features a parfait glass overflowing with candy, an ice cream cone-shaped light, and luscious-looking fake ice cream cones in a rack. Now consider that Jelly Belly has hundreds of flavors, and this tableau is for just one flavor of Jelly Belly.  This is why they are number one, people!

S'More Better Smash Mallow

Last but not least, a shout out to the lady coping with the day’s extreme heat while manning this booth for Smashmallow all-natural gourmet marshmallows (their slogan: “S’More Better”) who set up across the street from the Javits Center! Maybe next year they will move their booth inside, so she can enjoy some nice air-conditioning!

Thanks to the Specialty Food Association for another great show, and see you next summer!

Favorite Booth Displays, Products and Packaging From The Summer Fancy Food Show 2017!

SFFS Show Entrance
One Entrance to SFFS17 Flanked By Larger-than-Life Replicas of the Coveted Sofi Award! (All Photos By Gail)

If you would like to know what it is like to eat and drink your way from one end of NYC’s Javits Convention Center to the other, then the Specialty Foods Association’s annual Summer Fancy Food Show is the must-attend event for you! Sadly, you must have at least a tenuous relationship to the Specialty Food business in order to get in, and lucky for us (and you) we have that connection. I attended with my food critic friend Anne on the opening day of the event’s three-day stretch of wild food delirium. It was all kinds of exhausting fun, but it was worth it.

The Sofi Award
The Sofi Awards Honor the Best and Most Innovative Products in Specialty Food

With over 5,000 exhibitors from around the globe, the SFFS is a kind of blissful food overload that is virtually impossible to thoroughly distill — but we are going give it our best shot! We have a lot ground to cover, so we will break it down into a few subcategories covering food that just was simply delicious to put in the mouth, plus the most striking booth displays, stand-out product packaging, favorite brand mascots and most unusual products of the show. Here are some of our amazing discoveries!

Bacchini Pasta Display
Pastificio Bacchini Pasta Display

The Pastificio Bacchini booth was loaded with gorgeous fresh pastas that they were cooking up on site for tasting and swooning over.

Pastificio Bacchini Signage

When they say that these pastas are the Chef’s Best Friend, they mean it!

Bacchini Heart Shaped Pasta

This Heart-Shaped Ravioli Pasta (stuffed with mozzarella di bufala campana, tomato and basil) looked almost too beautiful to eat!

Pear and Cheese Pasta

Our very favorite had to be the Fiocchi Formaggio e Pere (a pasta purse stuffed with cheese and pears), pictured above, which was just insane. Mangia bene!

Amore Sun-dried Tomato Ravioli Salad

Also taking top honors in the pasta category was the Amore brand Sun-dried Tomato Ravioli Salad featuring Amore Four Cheese Ravioli, Sun Dried Tomatoes and Pesto Paste! So easy to make — we got the recipe!

Calabra Meat and Cheese Rolls

Calabro brand Fresh Rotolo are tiny, hand rolled pinwheels of Mozzarella and Prosciutto that make a delicious, convenient and visually-compelling party snack! Our favorite meat and cheese snack of the show!

C'est Gourmet Ready to Bake Pastry

Soon we came across the well-attended booth for C’est Gourmet Ready to Bake Pastry, from which you can make so many delicious treats of both sweet and savory variety — because everything is fresh baked by you at home!

C'est Gourmet Ready to Bake Pastry

C'est Gourmet Ready to Bake Pastry

In addition to an assortment of fruit and cheese strudels, and other pastries, C’est Gourmet also offers fill-and-bake Danish Twists and Swirls. You officially have no excuse not to bake!

Red Velvet Bomboloni

Behold: the Red Velvet Bomboloni from Forno d’Asolo Italian Bakery! We are speechless!

Sticky Toffee Pudding

Three words: Sticky Toffee Pudding from the Sticky Toffee Pudding Company. Like you couldn’t have just guessed that! Created by British ex-pat Tracy Claros,  who is now based in Austin, Texas, these desserts are her updated approach on the great tradition of British hot puddings brought to America to share with you! You can buy them online!

Pistachio Cake

Look at this cake. Just look at it. We found this gorgeous and outrageously moist and delicious Pistachio Pound Cake in the booth for Hahn’s Old Fashioned Cake Company!

Walden Farms Orange Creamsicle Smoothie

This an Orange Creamsicle Smoothie that we refreshed ourselves with at the Walden Farms booth. The light and luscious smoothie is officially a low-sugar, low calorie treat as it’s made with both fat free yogurt and fat free milk, sweetened fresh fruit and two Walden Farms products: their Orange Marmalade Fruit Spread and their Marshmallow Dip. It tastes fantastic and you can get the recipe at their website!

Two Friends Chocolates

Two Friends Chocolates makes gourmet candies that look like Art! We love the Mondrian design in the lower right hand corner, especially.

Two Cool Chix Signage

We had fun spotting and collecting snaps of products that had fun or funny names, eye-grabbing signage or clever slogans. Too Cool Chix are two cool chicks (Michele Elmer and Sharon Monahan) who have elevated the humble ice cream sandwich, because they think outside the pint!

Two Cool Chix Ice Cream Sandwiches

Too Cool Chix all natural ice cream sandwiches are layered with handmade, soft cookies, paired with extraordinary micro-batch ice cream — what they call their “magic in the middle” — with the result being beautiful, delicious, classic and innovative flavor combinations.

Two Cool Chix Ice Cream Sandwiches

The Beauty Bar: Lavender Ice Cream with a Soft Lemon Cookie Sandwich was my favorite!

Pickled Pink Foods

Pickled Pink Foods, well, if you know me at all, it is obvious why this is included in the round up. These guys pickle foods that you would not necessarily traditionally pickle.

Pickled Peaches

Like these Pickled Peaches, which taste exactly like you would imagine. They would be great served with barbecued meats (especially ribs), I think.

Crapola Poster

This is the slogan for Crapola Granola. Do you need me to explain to you why this is hilarious? It might not be as outrageous as This, but it still rates.

Crapola Granola

Crapola Cranbrerry and Apple Granola: It tastes good, and it makes you go. What more do you want?

Mallow Tree Fruit Flavoured Balls

Mallow Tree Fruit Flavoured Balls. The joke just writes itself!

Ayoba Yo Biltong Jerky

“Eat Our Meat” is the sexually suggestive slogan for Ayoba-Yo, makes of Biltong Jerky and other fine dried meat products. Biltong (a word which I recently played in a game of Words With Friends) is a South African style of  air-dried steak jerky which makes all other jerkies taste like chewy rope by comparison. The photo above shows a selection of Droewors, the new standard for Beef Sticks. Eat their meat, indeed.

Meat Mitch

Meat Jokes! Pigs! We can’t get enough of either!

Meat Mitch BBQ Sauce

Meat Mitch BBQ Sauce featuring a Pig named Mitch: Put it on Your Meat, and Eat It.

Super Seedz

SuperSeedz Gourmet Pumpkin Seeds initially got our attention because their logo is a Big Pink Pumpkin! SuperSeedz makes seasoned and toasted, no-shell gourmet pumpkin seeds in a variety of delicious flavors that include Dark Chocolate and Sea Salt, Garlicky Dill, and Italian Tomato!

Don't Let Life Pasta You By

Al Dente Artisinal Pasta gets a pass for the pun! Ha ha ha, Pasta!

Sucker Punch Mixer

Suckerpunch Gourmet Bloody Mary Mix: There are so many things to like about the label alone.

Wise Crackers

Wise Crackers: For Health Snacking!

Brooklyn Brine Company

Brooklyn Brine Company is famous for its handmade pickles! Also: Metal!

Whitleys Peanuts

Whitley’s Peanuts presents the Andrew Dice Clay version of Mr. Peanut.

Mama Zumas Kettle Chips

Mama Zuma’s Revenge Kettle-Cooked Habanero Potato Chips (from the Route 11 brand)got everyone’s attention, not just with its fiery heat, but with its packaging art inspired by actress Jane Russell’s role in the 1943 film The Outlaw! Mama Zuma/Jane is depicted on the bag, carrying a Route 11 flag in one hand  and a flaming habanero pepper in the other, while wearing a bunch of hot peppers like a grenade belt. Hot and Hot!

Red Rocker Candy

Red Rocker Candy Summer Sunset Mix: A Raspberry Lemonade Delight. It looks and sounds amazing!

Dresden Butter Stollen

Best Holiday Packaging, hands down, goes to Frau Helga’s Dresden Butter Stollen, which encapsulates everything delicious about the Christmas season in one festive package!

Chomperz Seaweed Chips

Chomperz Crunchy Seaweed Chips from Seasnax: Winner of our Shark Attack Snack Packaging Award that we just made up right now!

Choc Stars Chocolate Bars

Choc Stars Chocolate Bars  are all natural German-made milk chocolate bars with easily recognizable (and hilarious) depictions of popular music star as pets on their labels. The Michael Jackson one is just too perfect. Also: Katty Perry, HA! Winner: Best Pop Culture Mash-Up!

P-Nuff Crunch

The Cuteness in Packaging Award goes to P-Nuff Crunch, with its tiny peanut mascot lifting weights. OMG so adorable. This snack is delicious and crunchy like Cheetohs but with Peanut flavor, and it is not made with corn. P-nuff Crunch is the only baked puff snack made from heart-healthy and protein-filled peanuts, fiber-full navy beans, and slow digesting complex carbohydrate rice — natural ingredients, with no artificial flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives are added! Our Favorite Bagged Snack of the show!

Enlightened Red Velvet Ice Cream Bar

Enlightened Red Velvet Ice Cream Bar. Anne and I were initially chatted-up in the ladies room by the mother of the guy who created this line of high protein/low sugar frozen desserts. She claimed that it greatly assisted her weight loss efforts — worth exploring!

Java Nagila Keurig Pods

Best Coffee Pun goes to Java Factory’s Java Nagila Chocolate Mint Keurig pods (photographed in the booth for Brooklyn Bean Roastery)!

Virginia Diner Peanuts Can Do Button Mix

We love the retro-style packaging art for Virginia Diner Can-Do Button Mix. With every purchase of this item, a 10% donation is made to cancer research. This tasty candy/nut mix features Virginia Diner’s lightly-salted Virginia peanuts mixed with candy coated chocolates to create a sweet/salty treat. For The Cure.

Strawberry Hill Sweets
A shout out to Strawberry Hill Candy for their Sugar Skull, Bat, Ghost and Jack-O-Lantern-shaped Lollipops for Halloween!

Best Outift

We have no competition here against this gentleman clad in lime green trousers that flaunt a Hot Pink Crabs and Lobtsers motif (with bonus points for the coordinating Top-Siders, jacket, and tote bag)! Winner: Best Pants of the Show! (Update: Mr. Best Pants has now been identified to us as Stan Ferguson!)

Green Lid Veggie Guys

With a staggering number of exhibitors vying for even 5 minutes of attention from dazed attendees, it can pay off well to have an  adorable, or otherwise eye-catching, focal point at your boot or display that will attract those who simply must stop to snap a photo for their Instagram so they getinstagram likes. Greenlid  compost bins is where we found these little Veggie Guys — a Broccoli Flowerette and her Carrot companion — which made us stop for a photo op, and a chance to learn more about their product. Greenlid is the first compostable and disposable composting bin, made entirely in Canada from locally-recycled cardboard. It breaks down with your compostable waste and produces nutrient-rich soil. Just fill it, seal it, and toss it in your backyard compost pile or put it curbside for municipal pick-up. It’s that easy!

Field Trip Jerky Mascots

Yes, there are real guys inside these hilarious inflatable costumes for Mr. Turkey and Mr. Bull, whom we found over at the booth for Field Trip Jerky.

Field Trip Jerky Bull Mascot

All natural and gluten free, Brooklyn-based Field Trip Jerky is a fast growing, health lifestyle brand aimed at providing delicious and versatile meat snacks that complement a large variety of on-the-go consumers. Formed by three friends who saw a need to transform meat snacks after tasting their first craft jerky on the ski slopes in Vermont, Field Trip makes healthier protein-rich snacks without sacrificing quality and taste!

Field Trip Jerky Turkey Mascot

Winner: Best Mascots at SFFS17!

Cookie Do Confections

I somehow neglected to get a full photo of the booth for Cookie Dough Confections, makers of gourmet, customizable cookie dough for eating and baking, but I think that was because I was distracted by a couple of amazing Pink Things in their booth.

Pink Neon Cookie

One being this Hot Pink Neon Cookie Light!

Hot Pink KitchenAid Mixer

And the other being this Hot Pink KitchenAid Mixer! WOW! Winner: Best Pink Things of the SFFS17!

Stonewall Kitchen Booth

Stonewall Kitchen, an award-winning purveyor of jams, condiments, spreads, mixes and other gourmet specialty foods embraced a Winter Holiday theme by parking a miniature Red Christmas Tree Truck right in the middle of their rather expansive booth! You can see and feel the effects of Kitchenistic products in your home.Winner: Best Holiday-Themed Booth!

Peter Spanton Display

No gimmicks are needed for this super-clean yet visually seductive display for Peter Spanton Drinks: a selection of specialty tonics that can be served on their own as unique ‘soft drinks for grown ups’ or used as a bespoke mixer when paired with its suggested complementary spirit. For example, Lemongrass No. 5 pairs ideally with vodka or gin, while Chocolate No. 4 — an exotic blend of mint and dark chocolate — goes well with dark spirits. Home mixologists take note! Winner: Best Mixers!

Yo Mama Signage

Yo Mama Foods, makers of delicious homemade Marinara Sauce,  Sesame Dressing and Marinade, and Balsamic Dressing and Marinade, made the most of their smaller space in the New Brands on the Shelf Alley with this fun illuminated vintage signage! Winner: Best Logo Signage!

Chuao Gourmet Chocolate Bars Display

Chuao Chocolatier make premium gourmet chocolate bars with unexpected add-ins that include Honeycomb, Potato Chips  (my personal favorite) and even Bacon! A SFFS17, this Fair Trade company introduced two new Latin-inspired flavors: Cheeky Cheeky Churro (with little Churro bits mixed in) and Totally Tangy Mango! Mmm, mouthwatering!

Chuao Bars Display
Chuao Display — Choose Your Favorite!

Chuao Gourmet Chocolate Bars Display

Their booth incorporated this old fashioned Bicycle-Driven Ice Cream Cart, on which they displayed their many Sofi Awards! They had a little Boom Box Dance Action going on as well. Very fun!

Belgian Boys Full Booth

And finally, we present our favorite booth of the show: Belgian Boys European style cookies and treats! The Boys (and Girl) brought the beach right into Javits Center with their Say Hello to Summer-themed booth, which featured a bamboo bar display, Surfboards, a Wading Pool full of cookies and a giant Waffle Shaped Pool Raft!

Belgian Boys Waffle Raft
The Lovely Anouck Poses with a Giant Belgian Waffle Pool Raft!

Belgian Boys Waffle Chips

Belgian Boys dominate in the European Bakery treats category with their Mini Pancakes, Crepes, Waffle Chips, Chocolate Waffle Chips and their famous Cookie Butter, the National Belgian spread, made of crushed Speculoos cookies. We were also introduced to the Mini Cookie Stache, everyone’s favorite cookie butter cookies in a cute mustache shape! Mustache-tic!

Belgian Boys Product Display

Mmm…so much deliciousness!

Belgian Boys Sufboards
Surf’s Up!

And…that about does it for our photo recap of the Summer Fancy Food Show 2017! We hope you had as much fun as we did! See you next year!

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Yes, It Exists: Pink Flamingos Bed Sheets

Pink Flamingos Bed Sheets
All Photos By Gail

Sears & Roebuck released this colorful set of Pink Flamingos bed sheets in 1972, and it mysteriously disappeared almost as quickly as it hit store shelves. The sheets were made available two weeks prior to the release of the film, and within two months they were nearly impossible to find. Sales records indicated that only 500 to 800 units were sold nationwide, though Sears reports that over 5,000 units were actually produced. Where did all of the missing bed sheets end up? No one really knows, but it is speculated that they were pulled from shelves and junked by retail biddies who objected to the content of the film. Each set contained a fitted sheet, top sheet and two pillow cases.

Pink Flamingos Bed Sheets Packaging

Product Review: Explore Cuisine Pasta

Explore Cuisine Pasta Boxes
All Photos By Gail

Do you like pasta? I sure do. One exciting thing about being a pasta fan is how innovative foodies and culinary experts alike are continually coming up with new recipes to make pasta a healthier, better-for-you meal choice, especially if you happen to be on a gluten free diet. At the recent Summer Fancy Food Show, I was introduced to Explore Cuisine pastas, which are made from variety of different kinds of organic beans. The folks at Explore Cuisine were kind enough to send me a couple of varieties to try at home, and happy to say that these pastas are fantastic!

Red Lentil Penne Pasta Box

Founded by Joe Spronz, Explore Cuisine products are vegan, organic, gluten-free, and kosher, ensuring your health and igniting your taste buds! These delicious bean pastas contain nearly 20-25 grams of protein per serving and are low in carbs and sodium while simultaneously containing a high fiber content. With Explore Cuisine, you’ll experience the incomparable taste of pasta with all the benefits of nutritious beans! I tried the Red Lentil Penne for dinner earlier this week, and it exceeded my expectations.

Red Lentil Penne Drained

A friend of mine who is an excellent Italian chef once advised me that pasta cannot be held to strict boiling times when cooking, and experience has shown her advice to be right on. But with this pasta, the suggested cooking time (8-10 minutes) on the back of the box is a pretty accurate if you don’t want the pasta to get overdone (and I like my pasta on the tender side). Just keep an eye on the clock, is all I’m saying.

Red Lentil Penne with Sauce

Here it is, all plated and topped with Trader Joe’s Bolognese Sauce and a grating of cheddar cheese, which I love on my pasta as a change-up from the traditional hard Italian cheeses. Explore Cuisine Red Lentil Pasta has a distinctive and very satisfying flavor of lentils.  And, unlike many gluten free pastas I’ve tasted, it maintains an appealing bite and mouth feel. This pasta is an excellent quality product that anyone should be proud and excited to serve to their family.

Red Lentil Penne with Sauce

Here is close-up of my quick and delicious meal! So yummy!

Learn more about Explore Cuisine foods (they also make rice-based pasta, and soups, among other items) and get recipes at This Link!

Favorite Booth Displays, Products and Packaging From The Summer Fancy Food Show 2016!

SFFS16 Signage
All Photos By Gail

Food bloggers, restaurant owners, gourmet vendors, and other assorted foodies alike kicked off the summer in style with the three-day tour de force that is the Summer Fancy Food Show, which took over Manhattan’s massive Javits Center in its entirety from June 26th to 28th. Summer Fancy Food is the most exciting Specialty Foods Association event of the year, and SFFS16, as it will now be known in food tradeshow history, did not disappoint!

With over 5,000 exhibitors from around the globe, the SFFS is virtually impossible to thoroughly distill. In fact, this was the single largest show ever held at Javits to date! As usual, we arrived with an appetite, a huge empty bag, and eyes wide open for spotting the most striking booth displays, stand-out product packaging and most unusual products of the show. Here are some of our favorite discoveries!

Kate Weiser Chocolate

Kate Weiser Chocolates are miniature works of confectionery art, and they taste just as good as they look!
Kate Weiser Chocolates

Key Lime Pie Bon Bons, Anyone? They are almost to beautiful to eat! Check Kate Weiser out online at the hyperlink above!

Gelarto Display 1

Continuing with foods that are stunning to behold, check out this display featuring Gelarto Italian Ice Cream!

Gelarto Signage

Gelato master Luca Grassi has been carefully crafting this award winning gelato in Turin, Italy since 1986 ! You can taste the quality ingredients in every mouth watering bite.

Gelarto Display 2

We couldn’t help but linger at the Gelarto booth; with so many luscious gourmet flavors, we had to sample a few!

Danas Bakery Macarons

Feast your eyes on this colorful tower of gourmet French Macarons from Dana’s Bakery. We tried the strawberry (pale pink, third row up from the bottom) and immediately declared this Macaron to be the Best Ever!

Goodie Girl Cookie Display

Oh my! The deluge of psychedelic colors coming from the Goodie Girl Cookies display gave us acid flashbacks! Located close by in New Jersey, Goodie Girl makes tiny, delicious gluten-free cookies that will knock your socks off. We are especially partial to the Midnight Brownie variety. Mmm…Brownie…

Shira of Goodie Girl

Meet Goodie Girl owner and founder, Shira Berk. She’s fabulous. And dig that crazy dress! What a vision with a vision she is.

Frisa Rep Damir

We also ran into a few men bringing their vibrant fashion sense to the tradeshow floor, including Damir Redzepagic from Frisa Beverages.That suit is just amazing, and Damir is fairly easy-on-the-eyes as well.

Frisa are the makers of very tasty non-alcoholic, ultra-premium European botanical sparkling beverages that offer unique flavor profiles including Black Currant Rosehip, Elderflower, and Ginger Hibiscus. Frisa is kosher, and has ony 100 calories per bottle. Sadly, we did not get a good, close-up photo of the bottles, as we were visually distracted by other things. But we can tell you that the Elderflower variety is just fantastic tasting. We are going to try to do a separate review of Frisa Beverages in the near future, so stay tuned to the blog!

Frisa Display

Attention all Amateur Mixologists: the Wild Hibiscus Flower Company has introduced a line of 100% natural flower extracts that can be used to create all sorts of cocktail magic. The Rose + Hibiscus variety is a top favorite of professional bartenders. With the hibiscus flower’s  mixed-berry-esque  taste, this unique product can be used like bitters, with just a few drops per cocktail adding a vibrant pink color (are we thinking Cosmos? Sure we are!). It also goes particularly well with mescal, or added to a glass of Champagne.

Even more exciting; B’Lure, a bright blue extract made from Butterfly Pea Flower magically changes the color of clear drinks from blue to purple with just a squeeze of citrus. We saw it demonstrated right before our eyes! Fancy!

Hibiscus Flower in Champagne

And check out these Preserved Hibiscus Flowers that you can add to a glass of Proseco! Visit Wild Hibiscus Dot Com for recipe ideas and more product information!

Art Pop Neon Logo

For the second year in a row, top accolades for Best All-Around Booth and Signage goes to Pop Art Gourmet Popcorn of Salt Lake City!

Art Pop Booth
Mike, Co-Founder of Pop Art, is on the Right

If you read our rad recap of SFFS15,  you may recall that Pop Art won this distinguished honor courtesy of their Popcorn Disco Ball! This year, they took that idea a few steps further, creating an entire booth shaped like a halved Disco Ball! Amazing! No other booth even came close to being so impressive. Also, check out that eye-catching Neon Sign!

Art Pop Feta Cheese Mash Up

Pop Art has just launched its gourmet Mash-Ups, a blend of two popcorn flavors in one tempting bag of yum — Feta Cheese & Honey Caramel being an example of a Mash-Up that makes our brains explode with delight. Visit Pop Art online at Pop Art Snacks Dot Com!

Tasty Mayo Signage

Over at the Foods from England Pavilion (or whatever it was called; you get the idea) we found a few fun products including Farraday’s Tasty, a family-owned business that specializes in gourmet Mayo, Relish and Chutney products. We love their slogan: The Lake District in a Jar!

Tasty Mayo Display

You know how much we love mayo, right? So, imagine what it was like to taste Faraday’s Tasty Wasabi Mango Mayo. Holy Green-Headed Cow with a Globe on its Noggin — that is tasty!! Explore the world of Farraday’s Tasty at Stay Tasty Dot Com.

Mr Kipling Cakes Signage

British Comedian Eddie Izzard once asked the burning question: Cake Or Death? And the answer is: “Cake, Please!” Especially when the cake is from Mr. Kipling!

Mr Kipling Cakes Display

Look at all of those delicious tiny cakes. Just look at them. Imagine the Mad Tea Party you could host with that kind of a spread? Get all the sweet stuff you need to know at Mr Kipling Dot Co Dot UK!

Jelly Belly Baking Mixes

Jelly Belly Baking Mixes: It is a Thing.

Chuao Chocolate Covered Potato Chips

Description of Chuao Potato Chip Chocolate Bar: Creamy milk chocolate, a sprinkle of sea salt and that irresistible potato chip crunch. The Potato Chip Bar combines two of the most crave-able creations on the planet for total taste bud domination. Yes, Please!

Cookie Pop

Yes, it exists: Cookie Pop Oreo Flavored Popcorn.

Mud Jelly

We do not know exactly what Juice Mud Jelly is, but we bet it comes from Asia! Fruit with a face on it gets a thumbs up for inclusion in the SFFS 16 recap!

The Matzo Project

The Matzo Project wins this years favorite product buzz phrase, because Would It Kill You to Try Something New?  We tried the Cinnamon Sugared Matzo. It was, not surprisingly, delicious!

Everything Dog in a Blanket

Everything Dog in a Blanket: Sold!

Mackies Haggis Crisps

Mackies Haggis Potato Crisps. They taste like Haggis!

Volcano Popping Candy

Aw, look at these crazy little monster dudes that are the mascots for Volcano Popping Candy! How cute are they? So darn cute.

Petitpot Signage

And while we’re on the subject of cuteness, surely it does not get much more adorable than tiny, smiling faced-jars wearing a striped sweater and a beret! Le Squee!

Petitpot Display

PetitPot Pot De Creme is delectable french pudding that tastes simply divine, and comes in a jar, for easy access snackin’. PetitPot Pot De Creme comes in lots of yummy flavors and is made, of course, with lots of care and high quality ingredients. Visit their Website for more information!

Brooklyn Bean Roaster Holiday Coffee

Do you like delicious flavored coffees and do you also own a Kurig? Brooklyn Bean Roastery unveiled lots of sensational holiday coffee flavors with colorful and clever theme packaging to match!

Brooklyn Bean Roaster Coffee

Visit them online at Brooklyn Beans Dot Com!

Todds Inner Beauty Sauce Signage

Every year, we always find the most hilarious signage and packaging among the many exhibitors in the Hot Sauce aisle and SFFS 16 was no exception. Todd’s Inner Beauty Hot Sauce has an angry Tiki God on the bottle.

Todds Inner Beauty Sauce

He is angry, so he is hot, get it? And what a fun name this sauce has!

Spyce Sauce

Spyce Sauce — which, REALLY spicy — gave away this crazy little mascot guy at their booth. Super fun.

Blairs Death Sauce with Toys

Blair’s Death Sauce stayed on-theme by decorating their display with fun Chili Peppers with Horns and  Devil Duck Toys!

Blairs Death Sauce with Samples

We wanted to steal this excellent coffin-shaped platter! Bone Appetit indeed!

Casa Maya Salsa Display

Casa Maya Salsa embraces it Mexican heritage with a label that proudly boasts a colorful Sugar Skull on each jar. Their booth was no-frills but nevertheless a minor work of art, because you can never have too many skulls.

Terrapin Farms Bacon Jam

Bacon and Jam Mash-ups also continue to be on-trend, and we tasted a couple of good ones. Terrapin Ridge Farms Hot Pepper Berry Bacon Jam covers all the flavor-profile bases for an artisan condiment that says “You must have me in your pantry!” right on the label. Well, it doesn’t really, but it should.

TBJ Signage

Does The Bacon Jams (soon to be known as TBJ Gourmet) have the best brand mascot in a guitar-playing, shade-wearing pig? Maybe.

Bacon Jams Display

One thing that’s certain is this: they bring the total bacon convenience in the form of their “No Fry, On the Fly” gourmet bacon spreads. Kick Out The (Bacon Jams) at This Link!

Way Better Chips Display

Let’s see, what else did we eat at SFFS 16? Oh Yeah! Way Better Snacks —  a brand we have mad love for already  —  had this for us to nosh on:

Way Better Chips Taco to Go

It’s a Taco To Go: all of the Taco ingredients you crave, tossed in an easy-to-carry half of a chips bag! Way Better Nacho Cheese Tortilla Chips brought the crunch!

Frontera Salsa Taco

And here’s a more traditional, Spicy Beef Taco, which we picked up at the booth for Chef Rick Bayles’ Frontera Salsa! He is very handsome.

Frontera Salsas

Get product information and recipes at Frontera Fiesta Dot Com!

Belgian Boys Mini Pancakes

Do you like Pancakes and also Dessert? Then you might be interested in Belgian Boys Mini Pancakes — which are appropriate for either option.

Chef Making Belgian Boys Mini Pancakes

Check out the Chef making Belgian Boys Mini Pancakes right in the booth! She had mad skills.

Belgian Boys Mini Pancakes

We ate them, and we would do it again.

Graeters Ice Cream

And now, as we wrap up another year of food, folks and fun at the Summer Fancy Food Show, we’d like to give a shout out to Graeter’s Ice Cream.

Graeters Ice Cream Booth

They did not have a fancy booth but, gosh darn it if they didn’t serve the Best Ice Cream of the Show!

See you next Summer, SFFS!

SFFS Entrance and Signage

Pink Thing of The Day: Body Fantasies Spray Fragrance

Body Fantasies Spray Fragrance
Photo By Gail

The packaging design of this fragrant body spray is almost too pink to resist, especially when you add the fluorescent, multi-colored lip prints. Even the fragrance name, “Pink Vanilla Kiss Fantasy” sounds almost edible. And I guess that is what good advertising is all about: compelling you to purchase a product based solely on how it looks on the shelf. Oh, the Pinkness.

Photographed in Duane Reade on 8th Ave and 33rd Street.

Favorite Photos From Summer Fancy Food 2015!

Fancy Food Signage
All Photos By Gail

For a food blogger, there is no better way to kick off the summer in style than with the three-day tour de force that is the Summer Fancy Food Show, which took over Manhattan’s massive Javits Center in its entirety from June 28th to 30th. With over 5,000 exhibitors from around the globe, Summer Fancy Food is the most exciting Specialty Foods product showcasing event of the year for restaurant owners, gourmet vendors, and foodies alike!

As usual, I went with an empty tummy, a huge swag bag, and eyes wide open for spotting the most striking booth displays, stand out product packaging and most unusual products of the show. Here are some of our favorite discoveries!

Simply Baked

Simply Baked makes eye-catching packaging for baked goods, treats and gifts. They even have cupcake cups that go right into the oven and come out ready to serve! I appreciated the pink popcorn and cupcakes that were part of an overall visually enchanting display.

Simply Baked

Salad Shotz Kid Friendly Salad Dressings

Salad Shotz makes Kid Friendly Salad Dressings with all natural ingredients, that will appeal to the adult palate as well. Chocolate Chip salad dressing, mmmmm.

Buen Sabor Empanada Bus

I imagine it was fun for the folks at Buen Sabor to drive their Empanada-serving VW Bus right up to and inside of Javits Center!

Buen Sabor Empanada Bus

Promising Food Truck Flavors Without the Line, Buen Sabor nevertheless attracted a consistent queue with their delicious offerings of frozen empanadas in tempting flavors like Plantain and Cheese, and Beef Picadillo.

Lolea Sangria Bottles

Lolea Sangria is an exceptionally delicious beverage that comes in both red and white varieties and is as distinctive for its flavor as it is for its red and white polka dot bottles that recall the work of Japanese pop artist Yayoi Kusama. When I brought it up, no one at the booth had heard of her.

Morfat Cakes

Morfat is how I felt when I was only about a tenth of the way through the show! And don’t these cakes look delicious!

Kefla Glas Bottles from Germany

Kefla Glass Bottles from Germany come in so many different shapes, sizes and colors, but I loved the ones that look like little shoes!

Banana Snack

Barnana Organic Chewy Banana Bites is one of the most original and great tasting snacks I’ve encountered at any food show, anywhere. Unfortunately, they did not have free samples to take home at their booth, and when I tried to surreptitiously pilfer a bag from their display, I was caught red handed. The shame.

Mocktails Cocktail Shaker Packaging

Mocktails brand non-alcoholic cocktail beverage alternative comes in this neato, totally reusable Cocktail Shaker packaging! Adding alcohol is allowed, at your discretion!

Fundelina Hazelnut Snack

Fundelina Chocolate Hazelnut Spread was mistaken by me for Nutella. I bet that happens a lot.

Serendipity Frozen Hot Chocolate Mix

Serendipity 3’s Frozen Hot Chocolate Mix gets bonus points for having Satan depicted on its packaging. I imbibed my first Frozen Hot Chocolate at the age of 18 years and still recall how it made me feel drunk, even though it contains no alcohol. Mysterious! And now you can prepare one at home, in a variety of flavors no less!

Perky Jerky Mobile Display

Best Mobile Display goes out to Brian Levin of Perky Jerky!

Mamma Chia Mascot

I didn’t see too many Brand Mascots on the floor this year, but the Mamma Chia Human Squeeze Bag sure was friendly! Read more about the health benefits of Chia seeds at This Link!

Blue Isle String Cheese

Blue Isle Mediterranean dairy products had a String Cheese on display at their booth that was the size of a small infant. Impressive!

Smari Yogurt

In line for Best Slogan/ Tag Line is Smari Organic Icelandic Yogurt with “Strong, Like My Mother.” Also, I love the Spoon wearing a Viking Hemet. Valhalla, I am coming!

Beer Flavored Jelly Bellys

Four Words: Beer Flavor Jelly Bellys.

Death Zone Sauce

Fancy Food is so huge, it has room to feature aisle after aisle crammed with hundreds of hot sauce products. These booths provide the best photos ops you could imagine. Let’s take a look!

Red Robot Hot Sauce

Red Robot Hot Sauce, features a cute little Red Robot on its label!

Fat Cat Bacon Sriracha

Fat Cat Foods makes an extensive line of spicy sauces, but this Bacon Sriracha was my favorite. I bet it tastes insane.

Bone Doctor BBQ Sauce

The labeling on Bone Doctors BBQ Sauce is like a work of Fine Art.

Empire White Truffle Mayonnaise

I put Empire Mayonnaise at the top of my list of booths to visit when their friendly PR Rep told me in an email that one of her favorites sayings was, “Hating Mayonnaise Does Not Make You Interesting.” They gave away little jars of their delicious gourmet mayonnaise. Best Booth Ever.

Empire State Building Lollipops

I also didn’t see as much candy at this year’s show, but we were impressed by Strawberry Hill Candy’s Empire State Building Lollipops. New York City!

Cracked Candy

Cracked Candy may be capitalizing on the still-trending popularity of all things Breaking Bad (one representative in the booth was shamelessly sporting a Heisenberg-esque Pork Pie Hat) but this sweet stuff is sugar and gluten free, non-GMO and diabetic friendly, so it’s all good! Say Their Name: Cracked Candy!

Wine Sticks

Wine Sticks (tag line: “Sass with your Glass”) from South Carolina’s The Sweetery are thin, crispy biscuits (cookies) that pair with wine and can even be dunked! I enjoyed tasting several varieties with a glass of red wine, and company co-owner/founder Jane Jarahian was a sweet and attentive lady.

Steve's Ice Cream

Aside from having an awesome name, Steve’s Ice Cream took home a coveted Sofi Award in the Category of Outstanding Ice Cream, Gelato, or Frozen Treat for their Speculoos Cookie Butter Ice Cream! My personal favorite flavor though was the Southern Banana Pudding. Mmmm, Ba-na-na.

Confetti Bownies

I was already at the point of exploding when I hit the Brownie Points Bakery booth for a sampling of their assorted mouth-watering, home made brownies and popcorn treats. They were baking fresh brownies right in the booth! Heaven.

Multi-Colroed Popcorn

Wouldn’t this multicolored popcorn make a fun party favor? Sure it would.

Sexy Pop Signage

Sexy Pop Snacks always creates a bold presence with their brightly colored bags of chips and popcorn that come in all kids of yummy flavors.

Sexy Pop Snacks

Very Sexy!

Boulder Granola

Boulder Granola (tag line: “Unleash Your Inner Hippie!”) brought a much smaller VW Bus into the Javits Center (see below) but, dang if the don’t embrace a memorable and vibrant brand identify with their psychedelic flower power Bus logo/backdrop and commitment to being Organic and Gluten Free.

Boulder Granola

Pop Art Popcorn Booth

And finally, let’s wrap up this thing with the Pop Art Snacks Gourmet Popcorn Booth, which got everything right! From the clever product name and Lichtenstein knockoff artwork to the Neon Logo and the custom-made Popcorn Disco Ball — this brand really made themselves stand out from the crowd! Owners Mike and Venessa (who, like me, are big Pop Art fans) started out in Brooklyn and relocated to Utah where they are growing the brand and enjoying great success! We hope to see them back at Javits for FFS 2016 next summer!

Product Review: Weight Watchers Divine Triple Chocolate Bars

Divine Triple Chocolate Bars
Photos By Gail

OK, everybody loves chocolate ice cream, amiright? I think I may be, so it makes sense that Weight Watchers Divine Triple Chocolate Bars are one of the company’s best-selling and most popular flavors of all of their frozen ice cream treats. When I enjoy these bars from my own home freezer, I am overcome with a wave of nostalgia for the classic Fudgsicle® that I enjoyed so much as kid.

Divine Triple Chocolate Bar Unwrapped

See how Divine Triple Chocolate Bars even improve on the Fudgsicle by adding not only a swirl of rich fudge inside the delicious, low fat ice cream, but also by dipping the top half of the bar in milk chocolate! Because, “These bars are too chocolaty!” said no one ever.

Offered in a package of 6, each individually wrapped bar has a value 3 Points Plus, contains only 110 calories, 4.5 grams of fat and 0 grams of trans fat. Find out where you can buy Weight Watchers Divine Triple Chocolate Bars and other tasty Weight Watchers products at This Link!

Yes, It Exists: Mr. Squid Snack

Mr Squid Snack

I spotted this Mr. Squid packaged squid snack at an anonymous bodega on Mosco Street in Chinatown a few weeks back. I did not actually eat any Mr. Squid, but there is what I would consider to be a semi-enthusiastic positive review at This Link.