July Foodie Penpal Swap

I convinced my good friend Jacquelyn to participate in the swap this month. She signed up to the penpal swap over at Meshell.ca. Guess who she got assigned to? Lucky me!

So what did The Gourmet Housewife give me for July? Flavored balsamic vinegar. But wait, I feel like I need to preface this with a back story. Jacquelyn is obsessed with balsamic vinegar. She has often times said she’d drink it. I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s already done it. So when she hinted that she was going to pick me up something from a new local spot called Oliv, I was sure it was going to be a gourmet balsamic vinegar. I just didn’t realize how exotic of a flavor she’d end up getting me.

This is a White Strawberry Peach Balsamic Vinegar.

Oliv specialty balsamic vinegar

This stuff is sweet and thick, almost like a flavored syrup. Which makes sense because Jacquelyn suggested that this would go nicely over some fresh fruit. She also suggested mixing it with some booze and club soda. Which, yes, we are totally doing the next time we get together!

Next up for my Foodie Penpal Swap with The Lean Green Bean Blog I received a care package from Melanie over at Dulcet Devotion. She admitted in her little note that she was stumped at first about what to send a gluten-free vegan. Lucky for me she found some amazing treats from her local farmers market. An artisan hot sauce made by Jungle Heat called Scorpion Sting (which contains scotch bonnet and jolokia peppers!!) and spicy dark chocolate called 5 Chili Bullet from ChocoSol Traders. Both gluten-free and vegan! We have quite the hot sauce collection started and this was a welcome addition! And chili chocolate? Heck yes! I haven’t cracked open the hot sauce yet, but that chocolate was amazing. It’s like she knew us well. Yes Melanie, you chose well. You sure chose well.

hot sauce chili chocolate

In related news, I’ve decided to take a break from the Foodie Penpal Swaps for a couple months. For a couple reasons. Mostly that I don’t have time right now and it’s getting a bit expensive with shipping. I will come back to it when things return to normal a bit better.

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2 Responses to “July Foodie Penpal Swap”

  1. Kendra
    August 22, 2012 at 2:08 pm #

    So is that balsamic gluten free? I couldn’t tell from Oliv’s website. What are the ingredients?

    • Megan
      August 23, 2012 at 7:44 am #

      It sure is. Here’s the answer I received from Oliv regarding their products:

      “Thank you for your enquiry. Our product variant name also lists our ingredients, as all our products are 100% natural using only the ingredients listed on the bottle. Our Balsamics start off as grape juice which is cooked to a must, then go through a wooded aging process and ends up in your bottle several years later. When we flavour, we add only 100% natural essential oil to create our flavours.

      For your bottle of Strawberry Peach Balsamic, we have an taken an aged white balsamic and added strawberry and peach essential oils. Exactly what is on the label. You will also see the nutritional information listed on the back of the bottle, confirming the contents.

      So, short answer: Yes it is gluten free and vegan. Enjoy!”

      I love that it’s all natural and the flavors are amazing! I hope you have a chance to try some at their store. They do tastings!

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