This past week our eco18 team visited the 2014 Summer Fancy Food Show! The day was filled with creative companies, cordial business owners, delicious foods, and exquisite packaging. By the end of the day we were stuffed full, but we compiled our ideas together and came up with this list of 18 companies we will never forget.
1. Organic Smart Kids Fruit Juices- This is the way juice is supposed to be served! In addition to their highly regarded 100% pure, fresh pressed, USDA organic juice, Smart Juice has now introduced Smart Kids Fruit Juices. With no high fructose corn syrup, no added sugar, no preservatives, no GMOs, and no artificial flavors or colors, this delightfully natural juice comes in three kid-friendly flavors: Berry Blast, Super Fruit Punch, and Mango Lemonade. At only 50 calories per serving, there is nothing but juice in this bottle and is the perfect option for kids to fulfill their nutritional needs while enjoying a deliciously pure taste. You don’t have to be a kid to love this the way we did—you can find this excellent juice option in Whole Foods, Wegmans, ShopRite, and more!
2. Counting Sheep Coffee– Gourmet coffee that helps you sleep! This innovative, decaffeinated coffee is blended with organic valerian root, an herbal sedative that will complement your bedtime ritual or help to unwind after a long day. We tried the original BedTime Blend, which had a subtle and pleasant. The taste was no different than the taste of a regular caffeinated blend! Also available is a stronger blend with more valerian added, Lights Out! Very popular already in Canada, Counting Sheep Coffee is available on Amazon and can be accessed through Bed, Bath, & Beyond, Kings, and Balducci’s.
3. ULIVjava– At 80 calories per bottle, this smooth, refreshing and delicious iced coffee is infused with astragalus root, green tea leaves, and yerba mate herbs and botanicals. We tried the vanilla flavored iced coffee and was more than impressed with its exceptional taste. Made with fair trade ingredients, ULIVjava was created by Kathleen, a clinical nutritionist, and Mary, Martha Stewart’s Personal Fitness Trainer. Together, they created a delicious coffee product infused green tea and every other fabulous and healthy herbal ingredient for maximum health benefits. Also a great source of B vitamins and vitamin D, this truly healthy and great-tasting iced coffee is very low in fat and provides a considerable amount of fiber. This was by far the most delightful and rewarding iced coffee I’ve ever had!
4. Brewla Bars– Brewla Bars are all natural, creamy, refreshing popsicles created from different kinds of tea! A family company, their goal was to tap into the intersection between popular high-end juices and the boom in trendy frozen yogurt by creating a product that was all-natural and contained no artificial flavors or sweeteners. They begin the creation of their pops by brewing up a batch of root beer, unsweetened tea, or Irving Farm espresso. Natural fruit juice, teas with health boosts, or dairy ingredients are added to the brew, crafting a delicious pop that is 70 calories or less. Specialty flavor combinations include cherry pomegranate + red tea, peach ginger + white tea, raspberry + green tea, sweetened espresso, and craft brewed root beer float. These refreshing, $3 pops are a guilt-free option to satisfy your summertime sweet tooth.
5. Iliada Flavored Oils– Amidst all of the olive oil displays at the show, the standout oil in our minds was Iliada Flavored Oils. From the region of Kalamata, Greece, Iliada is a high quality olive oil that will fascinate your sense of taste with extremely rich aromas. These award-winning flavored extra virgin olive oils are irresistible and are a perfect pairing with a food or drink. Gourmet flavors include Basil, Orange, Truffle, Chilli, , Chocolate, Vanilla, and one with Rose Oil, ideal for baking, but can also be used as a lotion or daily moisturizer! The packaging is gorgeous and perfectly exemplifies the superiority of this extra virgin olive oil compared to any other.
6. Kombucha Brooklyn– Kombucha Brooklyn will nourish, detoxify, and energize your body, while supporting your immune system, streamlining your digestive system, clarifying your skin, preventing disease and elevating your mood. A laundry list of benefits, this kombucha reserves a light, refreshing, and fizzy taste. They use compostable plastics, recyclable glassware, and all of the teas and sugars within the bottles are organic and fair trade. The eco-friendly approach combined with the revitalizing taste of this New York Kombucha secures their place on this year’s list of our favorites.
7. Grandpa Pete’s Sunday Sauce– The hidden story behind this delicious sauce will leave you wanting more. Grandpa Pete knew he had a talent of cooking for many years, but it really came into play when he started cooking at his daughter-in-laws family resort in Catskill, NY. He loved his work and got joy in preparing food for everyone. Grandpa Pete’s youngest son Charlie soon joined in on the love of cooking, as well as his wife and children. Shortly after the family began jarring the secret Sunday sauce recipe to be sold! If you see Grandpa Pete’s sauce on any shelf at the supermarket you must pick it up and give it a try! I promise this sauce will not fail. It comes in 5 delicious flavors that can be used on any dish you’re cooking for your family!
8. Mediterra- You can throw away all your high fat sugary because we found these must have all natural and amazingly delicious bars! There are hundreds of snack bars out there to choose from, but our choice was easy. We saw the Mediterra and fell in love with the packaging first! Based on the Mediterranean diet with all natural ingredients including nutrient rich fruits and vegetables as well as fiber packed grains and seeds these bars are really different. We all lead such busy lives and sometimes getting in the right amount of nutrients each day can be hard, but not anymore. Mediterra make it easy to fulfill your daily nutritional requirements and still have the flavor we all are looking for. Look no further; Mediterra is definitely our new choice of snack bar.
9. P. De. Q. – Crispy on the outside, warm and spongy on the inside! We couldn’t get enough of these! P.De. Q.’s products are all tapioca based cheese bread that does not contain any wheat or gluten and come in four delicious flavors. These flavors include crispy warm and cheesy, jalapeño, chocolate, and carrot raisin. These could either make a great snack or an easy on the go breakfast. They taste great paired with a hot beverage like coffee or tea or anything cold depending what you like. Perfect snacks for kids and versatile enough to turn into really tasty appetizers. They can also easily be ordered online and shipped to your house the next day
10. Natural Sins– The new generation of healthy snacks! The name says it all. You will feel good while eating this snack as opposed to all the others that leave you feeling full and maybe like that wasn’t as healthy as you thought? Two best friends growing up, Dominguez and Sosa, as well as Sosa’s mother developed this product right in their shop in Costa Rica. It wasn’t until they saw the success of this product taking off that they decided to industrialize the process and made the product available to everyone. We could not leave these alone!
11. Superseedz– These mouthwatering seeds kept us wanting more and will surely do the same for you! We must have visited their stand 5 times for samples. These pumpkin seeds come in a variety of flavors and are loaded with nutrients. You could buy these in most of your local supermarkets, or place an order online. Kathie Pelliccio the founder of these seeds started making them at home for her friends, when she realized that she might just be on to something good. She started off by selling them at local fairs and then a company was born. She soon found Joe who became the seed king, and shortly after became Kathie’s husband.
12. 5-Spoke Creamery– You can’t have great cheese without great milk now can you? That’s why out of all the cheese companies we saw at the show we chose 5-spoke creamery. They are determined to have the freshest and best cheese around. They only use grass fed cows because they get to roam and eat a variety of grasses, weeds, flowers, and herbs, which produces the great taste in the cheese. They are up at 4 am to milk the cows and then start making the cheese by 9 am. Everything is done that day. Nothing is reused or stored for later use. If you’re a cheese lover you have to try their products!
13. Motto– Iced, sparkling, green matcha tea. Need we say more? What a perfect drink on a hot day! Motto created this delicious and nutritious beverage with matcha powder, a.k.a. ground green tea leaves, apple cider vinegar, honey, organic agave nectar, and lemon juice. Talk about antioxidants! One glass bottle of Motto’s sparkling green matcha is equal to 12 cups of green tea and only has the caffeine of a third of a cup of coffee! This drink contains beta-carotene, chlorophyll, L-theanine, and a ton of other antioxidants to keep you going strong throughout a hot summer. And did we mention how delicious it is!
14. Aijiri Tea– Sara Holby and her mother Ann launched Aijri Tea in Kenya in 2009. The company’s goal is to provide employment and education for women and orphans in Kenya. All profits for the tea go towards that Aijiri Foundation, a foundation that focuses on creating a maintainable cycle of community engagement and education. Women in the Kisii region of Kenya hand make each label using dried bark from banana trees, beads, and twine. Aijiri Tea sells a variety of delicious coffees and teas to satisfy everyone’s craving for a hot beverage. Their black tea with ginger is perfect to warm up a sore throat, and their black tea with mango would make the perfect glass of iced, fruity tea!
15. Takeya– We know, we know, another iced tea. But come on people, it’s summer! Takeya’s iced teas offer a unique variety of iced tea products. Ranging from their Coconut Vibe Iced Tea to their Pomegranate Hibiscus you’re bound to find one, possibly even five that you’ll love! Takeya’s passion in tea-making branches from wanting to promote a healthy lifestyle through flash chilled teas and easily useable tea makers. Takeya’s flash chill process locks in aroma and ensures super flavorful beverages in just minuets.
15. Anarchy in a Jar– If the name isn’t enough, Anarchy in a Jar’s set up of over 14 jams definitely caught our eyes! CEO Laena McCarthy started making jams with her family growing up, and she’s been jammin’ ever since! Anarchy in a Jar makes different jams, jellies, marmalades, and mustards. The company also demands for using only fresh and local ingredients, how awesome is that? Their grapefruit and smoked salt marmalade is delicious and perfect to put out at a dinner party. The company uses organic, fair-trade sugar as well. No wonder they’ve been featured in The New York Times and Serious Eats, they’re great!
16. Budi Bar- Previously leading a vegan lifestyle for several years, I know how hard it can be on digestion if you don’t pay a close enough attention to your colon. If only I had known about Budi Bars before! Budi Bars offer a variety of wheat-free and certified vegan friendly granola bars packed full of nutrients. When speaking to the lovely workers we were told that a majority of vegans who have eaten Budi Bar products have reported a ton of benefits digestion wise. Budi bars are also packed full of super foods include chia seeds, ginger, hemp seeds, and chicory root fibers! Budi Bar’s goal is to provide satisfying bars that nourish your body and brain. Needless to say “Budi”, the Indonesian word for “wise,” definitely fits the company.
17. Big Picture Farm– Big Picture Farm has to be the cutest and most delicious dairy and farmstead confectionary out there! Located in Vermont, owners Louisa Conrad and Lucas Farrell, use the milk from their 24+ goats to make delicious caramel candies and cheeses! Founded in 2011, Louisa and Lucas’s goal with Big Picture Farm is to create delicious caramels by integrating agriculture and narrative in a fresh and innovative way. Considering the fact that Big Picture Farm is an Animal-Welfare-Approved farm, and each goat has a name, and we think they’re doing it just right. Their website is adorable!
18. Sel Magique- A salt and herb factory that sells chocolates as well! Sel Magique creates 100% natural, vegan, gluten-free, kosher, delicious chocolates! Ranging from their dark chocolate with salt and herbs to their milk chocolate spicy blend it’s safe to say that Sel Magique is no conventional chocolate company. The company receives dried herbs from France and seals herbs with salts to ensure unique mixes bursting with flavor. The salt is hand-harvested only a few months out of the year.