Spotted on Shelves is back for more at the 2019 Summer Fancy Food Show (FFS) in New York City. I scoped out new products from familiar brands and interesting things from up-and-coming companies.
I, and everyone else present, ate many free samples. So many samples. This did not affect what was chosen to appear in this column or my opinions of the products.
We’ve seen the savories. We’ve seen the sweets. We have to stay properly hydrated, though, so let’s hit on all the wet stuff at FFS that will keep us refreshed and moist. (Yeah, that’s right – I said it. Moist.)
Maud Borup’s Very Cherry and Blue Raspberry Fizzy Drink Bombs
One of my favorite finds at FFS were these little bath-bomb-like spheres that you drop into water to make a fizzy fruit drink. The ball spins, rises and sinks, and sheds edible glitter as it dissolves. The resulting drink is a bright cherry or raspberry flavor. I totally want to drop these into champagne. I just hope Grandpa Joe and I don’t bump into the newly-washed and sterilized ceiling.
Available in specialty grocery stores starting in Mid-August 2019.
Don Pablo Bourbon Infused Coffee
My attempts to find interesting coffee products at FFS were hampered a bit by my complete disinterest in coffee as a drink. So I imagined them as hot cocoa products instead, and a bourbon-infused hot cocoa sounded interesting to me. I did take a hearty whiff of the coffee grounds and they smelled lovely, so I’m thinking they taste pretty good as well. It’s made by soaking coffee beans in bourbon, drying them, then roasting (which cooks off the alcohol but leaves the flavor).
Available in September online, Amazon and select big box retailers.
Nestea Peach Black Tea, Lemon Black Tea and Raspberry Green Tea
It wouldn’t be summer without some iced tea, now would it? Nestea was showing some new flavors and new formulas of its bottled iced teas. All three had nice flavors that weren’t too tart or overwhelming. The Raspberry Green Tea was pretty light on green tea taste and sweetened with beet sugar. The Peach and Lemon had beet sugar but also Stevia to sweeten.
Available now at select grocery chains and discount retails, more outlets coming.
Republic of Tea The Bates’ Tea, Violet & Mary’s Tea, and Lord & Lady Grantham’s Tea
Get out your corsets, the Downton Abbey movie is coming! And now you can trade zingers with your favorite salty granny over a cup of Republic of Tea’s new Downton movie themed tea bags. I didn’t taste these, but they smelled lovely. The Lord & Lady Granthams’ flavor is Black Tea with Royal Spices, Violet & Mary’s is Caffeine-Free Ginger Mint Herb Tea (because can you picture Violet amped up on caffeine?), and The Bates’ Plum Pudding Black Tea.
Available starting August (leading up to the movie release in September) in specialty and natural foods markets and CostPlus World Market.
iQ juice Vitalize w/CBD
The CBD sign drew me in to the iQ juice booth, but what made it really interesting to me were the juices themselves. My jury’s still out on this whole craze, so I didn’t taste its Vitalize with CBD pre-production samples, but another variety I did try – Fat Burner – was truly delicious. I find the idea of a really good base juice with CBD as an ingredient more appealing than something where flavor is secondary to the CBD. The owners told me they chose fruits for Vitalize with anti-inflammatory properties (like dark berries), to play off of CBD’s similar benefits.
Available before the end of 2019 at specialty grocery and health food stores and select mass-market retailers.
Mingle Blood Orange Elderflower Sparkling Mocktails
Mingle is a line of non-alcoholic sparkling mocktails that can be enjoyed as-is, or mixed with your tipple of choice. Obviously a great option for non-imbibers, but I also think it’s handy for lazy folks like myself who never seem to have all the ingredients for classy cocktails. Its new blood orange elderflower flavor was refreshing and fruity but not overly tart.
Available starting in Mid-July at regional grocery chains and select domestic retailers.
Tap Drops Tokyo, London, Vienna, Paris, Rome, and New York
TapDrops sells tiny bottles of liquid that, when added to purified water, recreate the water of other major cities of the world. You could have the bagel-perfecting water of New York City in Peoria. Apparently the coffee in Rome is something wonderful, and you can get closer to recreating it at home with these drops – or just enjoy the tap water of your favorite metropolis without all the annoying travel.
Available now online, retail distribution TBD.
Jardin Floral Infusions Rose, Honeysuckle, and Lavender
Jardin Floral Infusions are one of the most visually attractive items I saw at the show. I mean – look at those pearly swirls! These are meant to be mixed with champagne or spirits as an enhancer, but I can see them going nicely into any clear drink. I tried the Lavender and Honeysuckle. They’re very subtle flavor-wise, which is great because flowers can get overwhelming fast. The bottles are so lovely I’d totally bring them as hostess gifts.
Available now at specialty grocery and wine stores across the Northeast.