On Sugar, Spice, and Everything Nice

March 4, 2011

 

You may have noticed that it’s kind of a love-fest over here the past few posts. I just really think that it’s important to take a minute to recognize people who are doing something rad. Otherwise, how will they know that you appreciate what they work so hard to do. That may seem a little sappy coming from a generally hard-edged person like myself, but I’m feeling really softy over these spice girls. I am totally not shilling for them!

Jackie and Becky of Savory Spice, Westfield

(ZOMG SPICE GIRLS – LET ME GET ALL SPICE UP YOUR LIFE JOKES OUT OF THE WAY NOW.)

I am totally in love with Savory Spice in Westfield, NJ. I would move in if they would let me. Here is a brief rundown of why I am obsessed.

1. THE WORLD’S BEST SMELL. The smell draws you in from the busy main drag. It smells simultaneously like home and the exotic, smoky and sweet. It somehow manages to smell like everything you love about cooking. It’s inspiring and makes my mouth water.

 

Pink Peppercorns

 

 

2. EVERY SPICE YOU COULD EVER WANT, FRESH AND IN BULK. They have everything. From Pink Peppercorns, to Fumee du Sel (aged in Chardonnay barrels!!!). From Ras el Hanout to the world’s best Cumin (you know i’m a cumin buff). From the gorgeous Black Onyx Cocoa to Grains of Paradise. Bakers and cooks will be equally psyched on their selection. Everything is in big glass jars, with smaller testers for smelling and tasting. I smelled their myriad curry blends for what felt like forever. There is attention not only to quantity but quality here, because they sell in bulk, they grind fresh batches of most everything each week. There are never any fillers, MSG, gluten, or anti-clumping agents used because there is no need. You can buy an ounce, or a jar. Their baller Tikka Masala blend and their Parmesan Pesto (THIS ON POPCORN 4-E) are their biggest sellers.

 

Hot Sauce

3. They are a lady family operated store that is party of a small family-owned franchise. The sisters didn’t have a background in retail, but they knew they wanted to work in food. They were tired of the hours of restaurant work, but also on the necessary dependence on so many other people, from chefs to staff. They are quick to point out the benefits of working with family, most importantly, trust.  That is so awesome to me.

HOT

4. They are helping to build an awesome community of small food business owners. They are helping to show average shoppers that shopping for food can be more than a one-stop hurry-up ordeal. You can build a relationship with a shop owner and coming in to refill your spice containers. They are working with local restaurants to wholesale spices. They are networking with other local small business owners to create a real community. For example,  Jackie and Becky do spicy wine-pairing talks at a local wine shop, Cool Vines, and that is rad.

Recyclin'

5. They know their jazz. There are awesome recipes all over the store. Recipes submitted by customers and created by shop owner. They are easy to make without feeling dumbed down – recipes for Harissa Spiced Green Beans and Grilled Pinchitos with Yogurt Lime Sauce. They can tell you their favorite recipes, how to grind peppercorns, or why they love a certain salt most. Their customers range from first timers, to would-be chefs, and they have the expertise to help them all.

DIY

So, in short, check them out. If you are within an hour, I would say you should drive there.

Tell them you saw them here!

138 E.Broad Street

Westfield, NJ, 07090

If not, you can order online or hit them up on Facebook.

 

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