Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Sugarfina - Champagne Bears

I should just start by saying that Sugarfina is full of wonders. Champagne Bears are just the start. They also have Cuba Libre Rum & Coke Gummies, Belgian Ale Gummies, and Single Malt Scotch Cordials. Not to mention their non-alcoholic selections! I ordered a couple of things from them, but I'm going to have to order more, I think.

First, shipping and packaging information. The gummies themselves were $6 for 3.5oz (other sizes were available), and the shipping was $14.95. It was so expensive because they had limited shipping options available. Apparently, this is because they are afraid of how the candy holds up in warmer weather (fair enough). However, I'm going to wait to order again until the shipping limitations are over. As much as I love my candy, I don't need it within 2-3 days.

As for the packaging, it's lovely-a simple blue and white design. I would actually be comfortable giving these away as favors for a get-together without any changes, which I think is a cool bonus-feature.

The gummies themselves are a mix of pink and clear. They're the size of every other gummy bear you've ever eaten. However, they taste a bit more grown up. The website implies that there are actually two flavors, Brut (the white) and Rosè (the pink). I have to admit, I didn't notice the distinction until I reread the website, and I'm not entirely sure if I can taste it now or if it's just placebo. To me, the pink gummies taste a little stronger. They're fruity with a tiny bit of a bite, and actually remind me of sparkling cider. The white gummies seem like a milder version of the pink-still a light fruity taste with none of the bite.

Overall, these are absolutely delicious. If you have a reason to celebrate (or you just feel like treating yourself), you absolutely must check these out!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Wicked Good Cupcakes - Sea Salted Caramel

I decided it was time to review the Sea Salted Caramel Cupcake in a Jar from Wicked Good Cupcakes. I previously reviewed their Summ-ah Strawberry flavor. You should check out that post for details about my shipping experience. A basic overview: Total cost for two cupcakes was $29.12, including shipping. The packaging was cool.

I enjoyed the Summ-ah Strawberry flavor, so I had high hopes for the Sea Salted Caramel. (Note: It's referred to as Sea Salted Caramel on their website, but the label on my jar said Salted Caramel. It's the same thing.) It did not disappoint. It could be because I tend to be partial to salted caramel flavored things, but overall, I think it was a pretty delicious cupcake.

The top had a generous layer of caramel frosting, which was delicious and not too sweet. The white cake was good, and moist (though not too moist). There was also a layer or two of caramel tying the whole thing together.  The website says that there are supposed to be white nonpareils sprinkled on the cupcake, but I didn't notice any, which also happened with the Summ-ah Strawberry. It's okay though, I didn't miss them!

Each jar is supposed to equal roughly two cupcakes, but I went through this one a lot more quickly than the Summ-ah Strawberry. I think it was a combination of two things. One, it was less sweet which made it easier (for me) to eat. Two, my jar seemed to be less full than it was with the Summ-ah Strawberry flavor (see the image on the right). I still definitely got my fill of cupcake, so I'm not complaining.

This is definitely a great cupcake for people who don't have a huge sweet tooth, but still like to indulge every once in awhile.

Do you have any suggestions for food I should try out? Send me an email at internetepicurean@gmail.com or leave a comment!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Lollyphile - Habanero Tequila Lollipops

I have to admit, I had no idea what to expect when I ordered Lollyphile's Habanero Tequila flavor. I'm not even 100% sure why I ordered it anymore. I'm not even a huge fan of spicy things! Because of that, I was a little hesitant to try it when it finally came time to.

First impression: "Wow, this lollipop is bright yellow. That's usually not a good sign." Seriously, it's much brighter than it is in the picture. Definitely the kind of yellow that you see on caution signs.

 Eventually I got the courage to taste this lollipop and found myself... pleasantly surprised. Despite promising "tongue searing pain," the resulting burn was actually kind of pleasant. It was reminiscent of cinnamon gum. There was also a slight salty flavor, which I assume is the tequila. Overall, not a bad lollipop.

I ordered three types of lollipops from them (4 lollipops of each flavor) and paid about $30 plus $6 shipping. It took around a week for my order to actually ship, but once it did it got here fairly quickly.

Conclusion: Don't get this lollipop if you're looking for a hardcore spicy experience. However, if you enjoy mildly spicy things (or cinnamon gum) then you need to check this lollipop out.

Do you have a product you think I should check out? Send me an email at internetepicurean@gmail.com or post a comment!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Ziva Chocolates - Chocolate-Covered Maple Peppered Bacon

It seems like mixing savory flavors with chocolate is a new trend these days. I've had a wide range of chocolate bars with sea salt and bread crumbs and everything else, and enjoyed most of them. When I saw Ziva Chocolate's Chocolate-Covered Maple Peppered Bacon I decided I had to try it. Mostly because I love bacon, and the bacon in that picture looks delicious.

As you can see on the left, the bacon I got looks a little less picturesque. However, I didn't exactly work hard to stage it beautifully. Note the texture visible near the bottom. This is apparently "hand-ground black pepper."

I was incredibly excited to take the first bite... only to discover that chocolate-covered bacon is not my thing. Now, I think that if you do enjoy chocolate-covered bacon you absolutely have to try this. The ingredients are clearly high quality. The bacon and chocolate by themselves are delicious. Unfortunately for me, though, the combination just isn't my thing. I don't know what it is, but something about the combined flavors is just a little bit off-putting. However, I did notice that they have Chocolate Salted Caramel Bacon... maybe I'll give that a try sometime.

As for general information about the shipping experience: I got the package about a week after I ordered it. I actually ordered it from their Etsy Shop. I have no idea if there's a difference in shipping times depending on where you order from. The total cost was $22 ($12 for the bacon, $10 for shipping). It appears that shipping is even more expensive if you order from their online store. I'm not entirely sure if the shipping is worth it, though if you are a connoisseur of bacon and chocolate, I think this product is worth trying out.

If you have any ideas for products you want me to review, leave a comment or email me at internetepicurean@gmail.com.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Just Add Honey - berries!

Tonight's post is about the berries! tea from Just Add Honey. It turns out that Just Add Honey does have a decent amount of retail locations, but not in every state. I actually received a sample of this tea in a monthly box, Bonjour Jolie, so I cannot speak about the shipping experience. This tea came in a teabag, but it looks as though the tea that you can purchase through their website is loose. The berries! tea costs $6.50 for a 1oz tin and $3.50 for 1oz with no tin.

As you can see, the tea turned out a lovely pinkish red color. The website recommended that I drink it chilled, so after letting it steep for somewhere around 5-6 minutes, I put it in the refrigerator for an hour or so (somehow, I don't own any ice cube trays).

The tea contains hibiscus, elderberries, blueberries, raisins, and black currants and is caffeine free. It's vaguely reminiscent of Celestial Seasonings Wildberry Zinger. However, I'd describe the flavor of berries! as a bit less intense. Comparing the ingredients, it's probably because Wildberry Zinger contains a few stronger berry flavors, such as strawberry and blackberry. I think that this tea would be perfect for any fans of Wildberry Zinger who prefer loose-leaf tea.

 For those of you who haven't tried Wildberry Zinger, if you're a fan of anything hibiscus flavored, I think this is a great tea for you. I wouldn't say that this has particularly strong notes of any of the other ingredients, but the overall blend is definitely pleasant and refreshing.

Don't forgot to check back tomorrow for more great reviews! And if you have any ideas for things I should review, make sure to leave a comment or email me at internetepicurean@gmail.com!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Leccare Lollipops - Apples & Honey

I got a sample of Leccare Lollipops' Apples & Honey flavor in a monthly box I receive-Bonjour Jolie, if anyone's interested. Note: It's a box strongly geared towards women. That means that I can't tell you much about the actual shipping experience. However, based on their website, it looks like their lollipops are 3 for $4.50, with $5.50 for shipping (an additional $1.50 is added for additional items). That seems a little steep to me, but they do have some tempting flavors (Watermelon & Sea Salt and Cherry Basil stood out to me in particular), so I might give in and splurge a bit to try them out. Also, the lollipops that they have available all seem to be in diamond or heart shapes, whereas the samples I received were circular.

Getting the lollipop out of the wrapper was not the easiest thing in the world. I tried to do it delicately, but it stuck enough that I considered getting some scissors and cutting through the wrapper. In the end, I prevailed, though my hands were left a little sticky. I'm going to attribute this to the less-than-climate-controlled mail room my apartment building has. Such are the risks when you buy food online.

The color of the lollipop was hard to capture in a picture. It's a very pale, translucent green. The picture available on their website is fairly accurate, I would say.

As for the taste... well, it's more honey than apple, for sure. Definitely skip this if you're not a honey fan. However, the apple provides just enough tartness to make this a unique flavor experience. If you love honey (or sweet things) then you should definitely try this out!

Later today I'll be posting a review of some tea that I also received in my Bonjour Jolie box, so keep an eye out for that. If you have any ideas about products I should review, drop me an email at internetepicurean@gmail.com or leave a comment!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Wicked Good Cupcakes - Summ-ah Strawberry

Welcome to the first post of Internet Epicurean. Put simply, I intend for this blog to take the mystery out of buying food online. The internet is an amazing resource for certain kinds of food (primarily baked goods and candy), but it's hard to know exactly what you're getting when you buy online, and there's often a bit more of an investment involved (shipping costs, etc). On this blog, I will feature a variety of foods that are primarily available online. The places I feature might have brick and mortar stores, but probably not particularly widespread ones.

Now, onto the first review. Today I will be reviewing Wicked Good Cupcakes Summ-ah Strawberry flavor. Wicked Good Cupcakes is a cupcake store based on Massachusetts. Currently they only have one brick and mortar store, though their website states that they're opening another one soon. Their online store features cupcakes and brownies in jars. I ordered two flavors (stay tuned for my review of their Sea Salted Caramel flavor). I ordered them on August 8th and they arrived about a week later. The total cost was 29.12 for two cupcakes. Shipping to CA cost $15.22, but it might be cheaper closer to the East Coast.

The first thing I noticed was how adorably they were packaged. They even came with plastic spoons! Interestingly, the package wasn't nearly as heavy as I expected it to be, though I suppose that makes sense. Cupcakes aren't very heavy after all.

Getting the cupcake jar out of the Styrofoam was actually a bit of a struggle, though I eventually prevailed. I have to admit, the cupcake doesn't look the prettiest in the jar. The label obscures the view of the layers. However, the bright pink color of the strawberry cupcake did match the label nicely.

Opening the jar was easy (a silly detail, but kind of important for a weakling like me!), but the frosting on top of the cupcake managed to stick to the lid of the jar, leaving me with a decent amount of cupcake on the lid. I'm going to guess this wasn't the intended outcome. However, it did give me a great way to get a picture of the cake texture (see below).

Now, onto the flavor. The Summ-ah Strawberry jar contains strawberry and vanilla cake, vanilla butter cream and (apparently) hot pink nonpareils. However, I didn't see much sign of the nonpareils. It had been a little hot here lately, so it's actually possible they were delicate enough to melt. 

The cake was pretty delicious. It doesn't have a particularly strong (or realistic) strawberry flavor, but it definitely tasted summery. The vanilla butter cream made a great addition to the mix. The cake wasn't the most moist cake I've ever had (I'm going to guess partially as a function of being shipped across the country) but there was enough butter cream to add a little extra moisture to every bite. There are multiple layers, so you never find yourself lacking on frosting. According to the website, each jar contains roughly the equivalent of two cupcakes. I would definitely believe that, because I was feeling a bit full about halfway through the jar.

A side note: Jars are actually great ways to eat cupcakes. I've attempted to tackle large cupcakes with a fork or spoon before, and just ended up getting crumbs everywhere. With a jar, the crumbs all end up back in the jar, saving every bit of deliciousness.

Overall, I would say these would make a great gift, either for a birthday or even just something to cheer up someone who's been having a less-than-great time lately. If you're a lover of cupcakes, I would even say they're worth trying just for fun. One of the other benefits of the jar is that the cupcakes can last up to 10 days without refrigeration, so they're actually worth having around the house if you have a bit of a sweet tooth.

I hope you enjoyed my post! Tomorrow I'll be talking about the Apples & Honey lollipop from Leccare Lollipops.

Do you have a food you would like to see featured on this blog? Leave a comment or email me at internetepicurean@gmail.com.