My friends over at Irish Taste Club sent me one of their delicious boxes of goodies for free this month, so here’s my review – and thanks Tom and Pauline.
The food box is full of Irish artisan products from across the island of Ireland, and is perfect for those of us living abroad who crave the taste of home. Ireland isn’t known for its food, I think we can all agree we are most widely known for being able to drink a lot and being good “craic” And while this is true, Ireland actually has great food. Locally sourced products from farmers markets in Ireland are hard to beat, there is a certain freshness to our food that is just hard to find anywhere else. So let’s dive into what was in this month’s box.
First up, I’m going to start with the chocolate, because you just can’t get the same chocolate over here in Canada as you can at home in Ireland. The box contained two chocolate bars and a hot chocolate swirl stick from The Chocolate Garden of Ireland which makes luxury hand-made chocolates amongst other things. Located in Carlow, The Chocolate Garden of Ireland makes gluten free chocolate using the finest quality natural ingredients and it did not disappoint! The chocolate bars were fruit and nut, which I am usually not a fan of, but the chocolate was so smooth and creamy, that I didn’t mind the fruit and nuts! The hot chocolate swirl stick was also so tasty, full of flavour, and again, it was just so creamy – I loved it.
Next, we had Irish mixed-seed crackers from Sheridans Cheese Mongers, which are famous for – you guessed it – cheese! They are located in Galway, as if I needed another reason to love Galway more than I already do! The mixed-seed crackers were delicious and even better, the box also contained the Sheridans Christmas Chutney, which paired beautifully with the crackers. I mean, the chutney was to die for and myself and Phil polished it off in about 3 nights. I’m actually wondering how I am going to get my hands on this chutney again. It was so dense and bursting with flavours, including carrot surprisingly, and paired with the crackers, it was a match made in heaven.
Then we had Irish Oat Porridge from The Foods of Athenry. I wasn’t in love with this product. There wasn’t anything wrong with it, and it tasted great, but I just feel like it wasn’t any different to the oatmeal that I can get here in Canada.
Next up was the Stem Ginger Shortbread cookies from Ditty’s Home Bakery. I loved these and just made my day having a few with a cup of tea after a long day at work. They were soft and crumbly and the added flavour of ginger was subtle but very tasty. They tasted so fresh, you would never know they came all the way from Ditty’s bakery in Derry.
The last item in the box was Cranberry Sauce from Kylemore Abbey and I actually haven’t tasted it yet because I am saving it for Christmas dinner! I’m dying to taste it but I’m going to do my best to wait until Christmas.
All in all, there were 8 items in the box and I loved them all with the exception of the porridge, which again, I didn’t dislike, but it’s not something I miss from home. Everything in this month’s box really did give a taste of Ireland and it left me wanting more. I’ve actually just ordered a box for December which we will enjoy over Christmas. The beauty of this box is that it’s different every month, and you don’t know what you are going to get until the box arrives in the mail, so if you like surprises, this is for you! Tom and Pauline, the owners, also put in a sheet with a little welcome note, along with some information on each of the products, which I thought was a lovely personal touch. The other thing I love about Irish Taste Club, is that you are supporting a lot of small and local Irish producers, that to me, is fantastic. So, if you feel like a taste of home, or even if you’ve only ever visited Ireland but want to try more of our local Irish food, give this a go, you will love it. If you’re in Canada, it costs $68 per box including shipping. You can purchase as a once off, or you can sign up for a monthly subscription for 3, 6 and 12 months. I’m already excited to receive my next one! Get yours at www.irishtasteclub.com