Tag Archives: Syrup

Stonewall Kitchen — Sample Basket Review

9 Feb

Stonewall Kitchen is a specialty foods store based out of Maine. It started back in 1991, vending its goods from the confines of a farmer’s market, and has now expanded to big chains throughout the country, as well as the internet. Stonewall Kitchen has kept very closely to its roots, and has time, and time again, proved capable of canning, jarring, and boxing little bits of Maine for the world to enjoy.

I was fortunate enough to receive a sample package from the kind folks at Stonewall Kitchen, which is wonderful considering I’m a huge fan and avid consumer of their goods. They provided me with Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Sauce, Caramelized Onion Mustard, Roasted Garlic Onion Jam, Peach Chutney, Roasted Peach Whiskey Sauce, Bourbon Molasses Sauce, Wild Maine Blueberry Champagne Jam, and Double Chocolate Pancake & Waffle Mix. Like all of their products I’ve tried, these were no different–that is, they were all incredible delicious and unique.

Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Sauce: For chocolate sauce aficionados out there, Stonewall Kitchen’s “Dark Chocolate Sea Salt Caramel Sauce” doesn’t get much better. The boldness of dark chocolate, sweetness of caramel, and saltiness of sea salt is a killer dessert topping combination and one that’s tough to beat. Suggested Usages: sundaes, yogurt, straight-up with a spoon.

Caramelized Onion Mustard: It’s hard to convince me to use any other kind of mustard besides good ole deli or Dijon, but the addition of sweet, caramelized onions seals the deal. Even after using this mustard just once, slapping this in a sandwich or on a hotdog is not only a no-brainer, but a necessity. Suggested Usages: turkey sandwich, hotdog.

Roasted Garlic Onion Jam: For those accustom to jams being fruity, leave your pallets at the pantry door. The Roasted Garlic Onion Jam’s texture might seem a little adventurous at first glance, but you’ll be using it with cheese plates and even on burgers in no-time. Suggested Usages: cheese and crackers, hamburgers.

Peach Chutney: Chutney is a very common pasty sauce in Indian cuisine, but it’s also easily adaptable into American foods as well. Stonewall Kitchen’s Peach Chutney blends together sweet mango and heat-filled spices to create an ideal spread, dip, and even topping. Suggested Usages: spread for sandwiches, dip for tortilla chips or pita bread, topping for yogurt.

Roasted Peach Whiskey Sauce/Bourbon Molasses Sauce: Both the Roasted Peach Whiskey Sauce and the Bourbon Molasses Sauce aren’t exactly A1–but then again, why would you want them to be? The sauces draw sweetness from the peaches and molasses, as well as the boldness from the whiskey and bourbon. Essentially, they’re the bomb. Suggested Usages: ribs, chicken, salmon.

Wild Maine Blueberry Champagne Jam: At first glance, there are so many blueberries in the Wild Maine Blueberry Champagne Jam, that it almost just seems like a jar filled with fruit. But upon further review, the reason there is so much fruit in the jam is because that’s what high quality jam should look like. Suggested Usages: toast, topping for yogurt, topping for pancakes.

Double Chocolate Pancake & Waffle Mix: Stonewall Kitchen’s Double Chocolate Pancake & Waffle Mix takes the approach I wish more folks would–“Why don’t we just add chocolate?” We’re not just talking about dull chocolate powder, but explosive, fine chocolate, evenly layered into a fantastic pancake/waffle mix.

Cookshop — Hype Unfounded

18 Oct

There are always those restaurants friends incessantly urge you to try. You know those restaurants–they have huge lines out the door, feature semi-exotic takes on classic dishes, and are often filled with lots of fun, young, and beautiful people. Cookshop, in the heart of Chelsea, fulfills all of those dangerous quotas. So naturally, it sat loudly atop my “must-eat” list.

Unfortunately, those restaurants tend to live on hype instead of execution and service. This was certainly the case with Cookshop. I excitedly went to the teaming restaurant for dinner with family, and immediately noticed the lacking service. Our waiter was extremely inattentive, but it also appeared as though the restaurant was understaffed. “Maybe the food will make up for it,” I positively thought.

I should have stuck with my generally pessimistic, New York roots. The beet soup was chalky, the pork was overcooked and fatty, and the chicken was bland and had overwhelming sauces. I’d also like to mention they were “out” of two dishes we wanted to order, so that too was disappointing.

Despite my dinner experience, I somehow couldn’t just let go of Cookshop. “Maybe brunch will be better,” I again, positively thought. Considering I’ve stopped giving change to people on the train years ago, I find it odd I was falling for Cookshop’s facade. What kind of New Yorker am I?

I decided to stop in for brunch to give Cookshop another shot. I ordered the buttermilk pancakes with seasonal fruit compote and syrup–that is, about 45 minutes after I was seated. I honestly must have read the entire newspaper and beaten BrickBreaker three times before the waitress realized I had a pulse. Mind you, the restaurant wasn’t even packed, so it’s not as if orders were flying in. I assume the chef was also reading the newspaper and playing BrickBreaker.

Like dinner, brunch too missed the mark–the pancakes were bland, the compote was too sugary, and the syrup was probably Duane Reade brand (do they make syrup?).

With the plethora of great food in Chelsea–and in New York for that matter–there’s little reason to waste your time and money in Cookshop. For a laughable average of $27 per entree, you could be slapping high fives at Spice Market with Jean-George. Trust me, he loves high-fives.

156 10th Ave (between 19th St & 20th St)
(212) 924-4440

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