Category Archives: New Products

The Man You Should Thank For Your Love of Sugar Snap Peas

Calvin Lamborn's over-sized pea 52s that are as sweet as candy.

Calvin Lamborn’s over-sized pea 52s that are as sweet as candy.


TWIN FALLS, IDAHO — You may not be familiar with Calvin Lamborn’s name. But you know his delicious life’s work. He is the plant breeder responsible for creating the first commercially viable sugar snap pea in 1979.

It’s hard to imagine a time without those sweet, crunchy pea pods. But before Lamborn worked his magic, you couldn’t find sugar snap peas regularly at farmers markets or supermarkets. Oh, and those stringless sugar snap peas we all adore because they don’t have to be peeled? Yup, he created those, too.

Calvin Lamborn and his wife, Bonnie, who had a sugar snap pea variety name for her.

Calvin Lamborn and his wife, Bonnie, who had a sugar snap pea variety name for her.

At 80 years of age now, Lamborn is not thinking about slowing down anytime soon. And top chefs in New York are sure thankful for that. Lincoln Ristorante, Union Square Cafe, The Breslin, wd-50 and more clamor to use his handiwork in their dishes — over-sized pea 52s that taste as sweet as candy, snap peas the bold color of a red chile pepper, and frilly pea leaves the likes of which no one had ever seen before.

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A Summery Taste of Jardesca

A fun new summer sip.

A fun new summer sip.


In summer, nothing satisfies like something chilled, quenching and palate-awakening.

That’s what Jardesca delivers. The fortified wine is made in Sonoma by Roger Morrison and Marshall Dawson, who wanted to create a simple apertif suitable to begin any meal.

Recently, I had a chance to try a sample. The beautiful bottle looks right at home in a garden. Not surprising since Jardesca is made with an eau de vie infused with 10 botanicals, as well as a blend of sweet and dry white wines.

It’s designed to be served not only chilled but on the rocks, which is how I tried it. It’s dry and refreshing, with notes of orange peel, peppermint, grapefruit, mint and a whiff of warm baking spices. Even at 18 percent alcohol, it’s quite smooth with none of that fire at the back of the throat of other aperitifs.

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Macarons Galore Plus New Juice Bar and an Oyster Fest

Presenting the "Hedwig Schmidt'' macaron. (Photo courtesy of Tout Sweet Patisserie)

Presenting the “Hedwig Schmidt” macaron. (Photo courtesy of Tout Sweet Patisserie)

Glitzy New Macaron from Tout Sweet

Inspired by the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical, “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” Tout Sweet of San Francisco has created a limited-edition macaron covered in a riot of edible red glitter.

Pastry Chef-Proprietor Yigit Pura was inspired to make the “Hedwig Schmidt” macaron because the musical’s message of “love and discovering who you really are,” resonated with him.

Named for the title character in the musical, the macaron features a bourbon-orange marmalade ganache with a brandied cherry center. And of course, there’s the glitter, which will leave your lips sparkling.

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Famous Dave’s Wants You to Crank Up the Grill

My husband's glorious ribs dressed with Famous Dave's rib rub and barbecue sauce.

My husband’s glorious ribs dressed with Famous Dave’s rib rub and Georgia Mustard barbecue sauce.


You have to hand it to Dave Anderson.

By his own admission, he wasn’t the best of students. But one thing he did excel at was barbecuing in big fiery wood smokers.

So much so that he started his first barbecue joint in Wisconsin in 1994. Today, he has Famous Dave’s locations throughout more than 35 states. Plus a line of barbecue sauces and rubs, which is what I had a chance to try samples of recently.

With my husband, aka Meat Boy, hankering to cook up a slew of ribs, we gave the Rib Rub ($3.89 for a 5.5-ounce container) a shot. Anderson says his award-winning ribs just wouldn’t be the same without this blend of sugar, salt, habanero powder, smoke flavor and paprika, plus dehydrated onion, carrot, tomatoes, red pepper, and parsley.

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San Francisco Landmarks Rendered in Chocolate

The San Francisco Landmarks Box.

The San Francisco Landmarks Box.

You may have eaten your way around San Francisco. But have you eaten San Francisco?

Recchiuti Confections actually makes that possible in the most decadent way.

Its new San Francisco Landmarks Box is the perfect souvenir for locals or visitors. Inside are eight signature Burndt Caramel Caramel Truffles, depicting four San Francisco landmarks: Coit Tower, Sutro Tower, a trolley, and the Golden Gate Conservatory.

The new chocolate box is in partnership with Creativity Explored, a Mission District non-profit that supports artists with developmental disabilities to help them create, sell and display their art. Two dollars from the sale of each $21 box goes to that organization.

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