Local Treats (Winter Garden Edition): David Ramirez’s Chocolates & Macaroons Review

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Macaroons are everywhere, and they should be. This decadent French treat has been around for centuries and has not lost its *insert trendy French word here to describe anything cope/cool/wavy/sassy, followed by a suffix of -ness*. These petite treats, of so very delicate and challenging to make are competition to many other baked goods, and you can find a variety in the Orlando, Winter Park and Winter Garden Area.

David Ramirez’s chocolates, a Winter Garden Plant Market vendor, has decadent varieties of macaroons. They’re honestly one of the best I’ve ever tasted, amongst my favorite (another favorite being Le Macaroon, in Winter Park). My first time there, I noticed the generous sizes and fun flavors, such as mango raspberry, staple flavors like vanilla, chocolates, strawberries, rose and lavender to fun fall flavors, like pumpkin and apple pie. My first out of three was the birthday cake. The “upper shell” and bottom tasted like a standard macaroon vanilla flavor, but the cream filling was a perfect replica of cake batter with fun sprinkles.The texture was pillowy.

Image may contain: foodThe pumpkin, my favorite, was spicy in terms of fall flavors, with a great combo of sweet and last- the mango raspberry, my favorite, has a perfect balance of mango and tart raspberry. On another visit, I tried bacon and peanut butter. Addicting. I love anything salty and sweet, and found this eccentric pairing a winner. Salted caramel was also memorable. The caramel having a deeply buttery aftertaste to dance with the salt.

 

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The chocolate varieties are a fun and colorful assortment. I decided to give the cinnamon habanero chocolate a try. Perfection. The dark chocolate subtly hugs the cinnamon and the habanero peeks its head out. Not at all overpowering.

 

 

Have you ever tried this chocolatier or the macaroons/gelato? What were your thoughts? Don’t forget to rate, comment and subscribe!

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The Subtle Bliss of Maple Bacon

Some of the best bacon I have sampled has been Oscar Meyer’s thick-cut maple bacon. I picked up a pack while going grocery shopping, fried it up and ate it on a hogie. The balance of sweet maple syrup is a delicate balance of flavor when paired up to with the salty and appetizing bacon flavor. The smell is fantastic; sweet maple, smokey bacon and a full-bodied finish on the nose.

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The bacon would be an amazing  to incorporate into sweet dishes (cakes, cupcakes, muffins, ice cream) and treats. Add spicy mayo, lettuce and tomatoes to make a unique BLT, or add it to a salad featuring fruit (mango, pineapples and nuts) for a fresh twist. Maple bacon can, of course, become a separate cooking venture constructed in any kitchen. Here is a link.

New Bacon Provolone Marinara Sauce Review

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Cracked turkey and cheese melt with the sauce. A side of mango habanero kettle chips.

Presto has seemed to have jumped on the bacon bandwagon, as they have introduced new bacon provolone flavored marinara. I tried it, and think it’s a creative flavor. The overtone is a rich tomato base decorated with bacon bits. The scent of bacon reaches into the nose and rests there for a moment. There is a smokiness and slightly sweetened aroma that makes the mouth water. The soft provolone cheese flavor is muted in comparison to the bacon bits within the sauce. I thought of possible pasta and meat dishes that can meld well with the flavors of cheese, tomato and bacon and came up with these few ideas:

  • Use in pasta without meat. This allows the flavors of the bacon marinara to resonate in the bland starch.
  • Use in pasta with sausage. The sausage and bacon flavors paired with cheese and tomato in conjunction to the starchy pasta should blend well.
  • Use it as a spread on a sandwich. My favorite use for this has been the third option. I’ve used the bacon marinara on a cracked black pepper melt with white cheese. When warmed, this sandwich turned out to have heavy accents of cheese melded with the smoked bacon and tomato flavor.

Bacon Provolone Marinara Yumfactor: I give this one 3 tongues and a taste bud (3.5 stars our of 5). It’s fun to try and experiment with, plus it’s somewhat versatile. I love the creativity of the flavor. It’s not something I would buy every time I run low of marinara, but it’s worth a try.

 

Have you tried this item? What are your thoughts? Don’t forget to rate, comment and/or subscribe!