Welcome to our January Box
We have carefully curated and hand selected each product, have met each farmer and maker to be sure their products are delicious and their business practices align with SacTown Bites' philosophy. We think of this as a 'food tour in a box' where you get to taste some of the best products from the Sacramento Valley delivered right to your door. We look for organic ingredients that are sustainably grown and try to partner with smaller purveyors that make excellent products, although they may be lesser known in the marketplace. We have provided you with details about each product and partner, as well as some informative videos. So let's begin!
Keto Chocolate Chip Cookies
El Fluff Bakery – Woodland, California
El Fluff Keto Bakery in Woodland, California was born out of a need for good quality, good tasting treats that were low in sugar. When Sarah was pregnant with her son she developed gestational diabetes. She switched to a keto diet and managed her blood sugar with diet and exercise. But she still had a sweet tooth and didn’t want to eat overly processed, lousy tasting treats, so she began making them on her own. When the pandemic hit, she and her husband Joel needed to get creative, and decided to launch El Fluff. Joel also adopted the Keto diet to lose some pandemic weight and here is what he says about it.
“Keto is a low carb, low sugar, high fat diet. It was originally developed to treat children with epilepsy. People will eat up to about 30 net carbs or 50 carbs a day to get their body into a state of ketosis where your body burns fats more efficiently. The keto diet has been found to help with weight loss and lowering blood sugar. Even people who aren’t on a keto diet can benefit from eating keto treats instead of ones that are high in sugar and carbohydrates.”
Combined, Sarah and Joel have backgrounds in cafes, tea shops, restaurants and bars in the Virgin Islands, Boston, London and California. What sets their bakery apart, beside being Keto and those delicious chocolate chip cookies, is they also are creating items that reflect their diverse cultural background. Joel is Mexican American and Sarah is Puerto Rican & Italian. It just so happens all of these cultures have rising numbers of diabetes. They wanted to make treats that they grew up loving. One of their most popular items is the Concha, which is a Mexican sweet bread roll shaped like a seashell. They will soon be launching Besitos de Coco, which are Puerto Rican coconut cookies, and they are working on Italian Cannolis.
You would never know El Fluff Bakery Chocolate Chip Cookies are low in sugar and gluten free. The best thing is they are made with all natural ingredients and no artificial sweeteners. You can indulge in these cookies guilt free… but be warned, they are addicting!
Preserve Winters – Winters, California
In our book, you can never have too many mustards in your refrigerator and it’s always nice to have a whole grain mustard on hand. It’s a must for pairing with Bratwurst and Sauerkraut. But it’s also great on salmon, potatoes or whipped into an easy salad dressing. We love this mustard made by Chef Jay of Preserve Winters because it uses simple, wholesome ingredients.
Preserve Winters is a cafe in Winters, California, that was opened in 2011 by Sara and Cole Ogando. Cole was born and raised in Winters and he and Sara together discovered they had an inherited passion for preserving food, cooking, canning, charcuterie and distilling.
"My motivation is very simple," says Cole, "everyone used to know how to take any extra food they had and save it for later, how not to waste. We must hone these skills and preserve them in our collective minds in order to share them with future generations.”
They began with house cured charcuterie and artisanal cocktails, but soon expanded the menu once they were able to add a full kitchen. They brought on Chef Jay in 2018. In March of 2020 they closed their doors due to the pandemic. Their name, Preserve, came full circle as Cole rushed to preserve all of the restaurant's food from spoiling. He pickled produce, dehydrated bread, and made jams out of remaining fruit. They are surviving by offering take-out and they sell their preserved foods online. The Jalapeño Jelly is a local favorite and comes from a recipe handed down from Sara’s grandmother.
Preserve Winters is exactly the type of restaurant that must survive, for so many reasons, but mostly for contributing to preserving our food culture and traditions. They are passionate about sourcing locally and Chef Jay has developed close relationships with local farmers. Winters is after all, in the heart of California’s agriculture and is surrounded by outstanding small farms such as Terra Firma, Full Belly Farms and Eatwell Farms. They source nuts from Mariani Nuts and quail from legendary Wolfe Ranch Quail that got started by sourcing to Chez Panisse and Thomas Keller's The French Laundry. We look forward to when they reopen, and in the meantime we will be indulging in their delicious preserves.
Blue Corn Tortilla Chips
Chando’s Tacos – West Sacramento, California
If you live in Sacramento then you have probably heard about Chandos Tacos. Maybe you’ve even experienced Chando’s. Standing in a long line along busy Arden Way, as the aroma from the grilled meats wafts into your face. Watching the cook grill your taco filling before your eyes, making you hungrier and hungrier until you decide you need four tacos instead of three. Once you get your tacos, you sit out back in the modest covered patio by the gravel parking lot. During the summer, misters blasting coolish air down on you. No talking, just eating.
Chando’s started off as a food truck serving Tijuana style street tacos. They make some of the best to be had in Sacramento. Their popularity grew quickly and they expanded with new locations, since opening in 2009. Owner Lisandro ‘Chando’ Madrigal hadn’t always planned on selling tacos. His real dream was to open up a tortilla factory in Sacramento. Lisandro grew up in Tijuana and helped his father manage his tortilla factory. Working in sales at Apple for years, Lisandro began bringing his homemade tacos to potlucks. Their popularity urged him on and he began Chandos. It wasn’t until the tortilla factory opened in March of 2020, that he finally left his job at Apple.
The poor timing of opening in March of 2020 is lost on no one. But Chando’s is hardworking and his business is a family business, with many of his relatives holding key positions in the company. He gathered the family and together they developed ways to survive. They offer take out and a genius option - taco kits. They even include a how-to with the kit. They will survive. Thank goodness. Losing such a wonderful Sacramento family business would be a travesty. Their tortilla factory supplies all of their taqueria’s with fresh tortillas and chips, and you can buy their chips at a few select locations, such as Corti Brothers in East Sacramento. And if you've never had their tacos, we highly recommend you go stand in line at their Arden location just for the experience, and well the tacos. Get four!
The Allspicery – Sacramento, California
This special custom tea blend hails from Sacramento’s best source for all things herbs and spice, The Allspicery in downtown Sacramento. This blend contains ingredients that are adaptogens that are known to promote healing the nervous system and creating balance and wellness. It also tastes delicious and is soothing. We all can use a little relaxation in our lives, am I right?
The Allspicery is Sacramento's very own spice shop, founded by Heather Wong, winner of the Calling All Dreamers competition and won. When she opened her storefront in downtown Sacramento five years ago, she was the only one-stop spice store in town. She opened the shop almost on a whim. She was a longtime lover of spices and world flavors, and she and her husband had the good fortune to travel the world, eating their way through their travels, before they settled in Sacramento. She was a lifelong cook, especially of exotic cuisines, and when they moved to Sacramento she grew frustrated with the lack of spices available to her.
Master herb blender Stephanie Schaber has been working with Heather at The Allspicery for years and is the crafter of many of the blends they offer. Learn more about Stephanie and her passion for medicinal folklore and astrology by reading our article here.
Artisan Dark Chocolate and Sea Salt Brittle
Brittle California, Fair Oaks, California
Oh my gosh, this brittle! It is so yummy and buttery and drizzled with dark chocolate and sprinkled with sea salt. We need say more? Probably not, but we will. We were pretty excited to discover this artisan brittle from Brittle California, not only because they are local, and it's delicious, but also because they offer a nut free version. All of their flavors are amazing, such as the Brittle.Cinn which is inspired by Mexican Hot Chocolate and packs a spicy punch. We also love Brittle.Buzz which is, you guessed it, drenched in ground espresso beans and drizzled with chocolate.
Owner Heidi, began Brittle CA in 2015, with an old family recipe for peanut brittle . They wanted to give the recipe a modern twist and embarked on a mission to add a variety of unique and sophisticated flavors, using only Blue Diamond Almonds, from California, thus the name.