Some people might consider the endless aisles at San Francisco's Winter Fancy Food Show a shopper's paradiseespecially if they want their paradise filled with rain forest teas, sea salts from around the globe and colorful silicone-coated gadgets like rolling pins and honey drippers. F&W discovered some trends that are worth following (stylishly packaged Australian artisanal foods) and some that are not (wasabi-flavored cheese). The following are our favorite finds; look for them at specialty food stores or online.
ORIGINE ALL-NATURAL VINAIGRETTES When Origine came across a collection of winning entries from a salad-dressing contest that took place over a hundred years ago in a small town in Alsace, the company became inspired. The result: a line of vibrant, fresh-tasting condiments in cool swing-top bottles. Flavors include classics like red wine vinegar with garlic, and more modern combinations like lime and cilantro ($7 for 9 oz at Wild Oats).
PALAPA AZUL SORBETS AND ICE CREAMS Traditional Mexican recipes and top-notch ingredients make this fun new line from Los Angeles-based Palapa Azul so good. The cinnamon-laced Mexican chocolate and the creamy sweet corn ice creams are standouts; also terrific are the sorbets, which range from pineapple to hibiscus flower ($4 for 1 pint at Whole Foods Markets).