Owner and chief truffologist Dean Bingham worked for many years as an architect and brings his design talents to bear on the menu of handmade truffle delights using a cantilevered balance of imported chocolate and structurally sound local ingredients. Start with the basic truffle, a 56% cocoa semisweet center with a hint of Mexican vanilla, all enrobed in a 70% cocoa covering, all of which will 100% fit in your mouth. Try flavor combinations such as Maine blueberries with Cold River vodka, Italian roast coffee with cayenne pepper, or lemon and apricot with Sunset Acre Farms goat cheese. Despite increasing pressures from the powerful nut-dairy-gluten lobby, all of the truffles at Dean's Sweets are nut-free, and dairy-free and gluten-free choices are available.
At Eat More Cheese, cheese reigns king over a diverse selection of specialty foods, including salami, dried fruits, jams, and chocolates. The shop corrals its cheese from across the U.S. and abroad, taking pride in a process that ensures each of its products is properly cared for and in peak condition upon hitting the shelves. Inside the shop, the Eat More Cheese staff fosters a welcoming environment, and encourages customers to sample as much cheese or ask as many questions as they please before making a purchase.
Hoping to revive the culture of the neighborhood butcher shop, with its personalized service, attention to detail, and artful products, restaurant-industry veterans Justin Rosberg and Jason Parent took a gamble on their first New Hampshire butcher shop in 2003. Dubbed The Meat House, their store quickly earned a foodie following, spawning additional franchise locations across the country. Today, The Meat House’s Mission Viejo location stocks fine cheeses, prepared side dishes, other gourmet grocery items, and hundreds of wines alongside the usual selection of traditional and exotic meats. Butchers also explain how to prepare each hand-carved cut of meat, sharing recipes, best slicing practices, and cooking techniques for giving pork chops the flavor of justice.
Each autumn, the tree branches at Ricker Hill Orchards begin to bow under the weight of a new generation of McIntosh apples, as they have for more than 200 years. Since 1803, the same family has cultivated the orchards, which today nurture several varieties of apples, pears, and peaches. Along with produce aisles along the East Coast, the fruit fills the baskets at Wallingford’s Fruit House, where shoppers just may save them from another fate: the bakery. There, raspberries, peaches, and blueberries tuck into pies or turnovers and hand-rolled crusts envelop apples to become fresh dumplings. The store also bakes fruitless sweets such as donuts and cookies and bottles fresh cider for pouring over a coach’s head after he wards off all the crows from the field.
In the fall, visitors can explore the orchards and pick apples themselves, hunting down such varieties as Cortland and Red Delicious. Wallingford's Fruit House’s backyard lets youngsters lose themselves in a variety of ways, from the corn maze to the petting-zoo animals’ thought-provoking lectures about delicious grass.
We wanted to bring the forgotten, ho-hum sandwich into the gourmet, great tasting, great for you arena. We use only natural chicken, no hormones, fresh mozzarella and fresh herbs just to name a few. Our soups are made in house with stocks that we make ourselves using only the freshest ingredients.