Taste Trunk is a new subscription box company and I think they did a wonderful job reaching out to bloggers right before or after they launched. I started seeing reviews of promotional sample boxes in late June and quickly got interested because I love good food and I’ve been wanting to try a box that inspires people to cook. I love all the snacks I’ve been getting in other boxes, but… I’ve been wanting to experiment with preparing food a bit more. The one thing they didn’t do very well with the launch is that they added a $5.99 shipping fee after sending all the information to the bloggers. I ended up subscribing a few days later than I otherwise would have because I was surprised by the fee that appeared near the end of the order process. All the bloggers said “$29 + free shipping” and that fee moved the box from “less than $30!” to “approaching $40 per month.” I’m not sure why “less than 30” and “more than 30” is such a big difference, but… it feels kind of big.
Anyway… they have four box/trunk options: Health, Gourmet (the one I got!), Sweet, and BBQ.
This is what my August Gourmet Trunk contained… http://instagram.com/p/dF6k1Jkaje/ (video)
Presentation: I liked that everything seemed to be secure in the box, that the info/recipe card bag was very cool (old ads!), and that they included a recipe for each item.
1. Cucina & Amore Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto: I love tomatoes and was super happy to see this pesto in the trunk! I like the jar, but agree with others who were a little annoyed that all the information was on the label that you had to remove to open the container. I never got a chance to forget what was in that unlabeled jar, though… my boyfriend decided to purchase a bunch of beef patties at Trader Joe’s, and I decided to start flavoring the patties/burgers by spreading a little pesto on top. Several bloggers mentioned that they could only find this product on Amazon.com, but I recently spotted it on a display shelf at a major grocery store (QFC) near Seattle. I was happy to see it was easy to find and kind of sad because I could have easily discovered this item by walking into a major grocery store. (Value: $3-4)
2. The Jam Stand’s Drunken Monkey Jam: I was happy to see this jam in the trunk because some bloggers have received their jars in other subscription boxes, and had positive things to say. I love everything I’ve read about the company (now following them on FB!) and quickly ran out of jam because I started making a lot of peanut butter & jam sandwiches (for myself and my boyfriend). (Value: $10)
3. The Girl & The Fig Lavender Sea Salt: I have no idea what I’m going to use this for because I probably won’t make the “lavender blondies” mentioned on the recipe card… but I love this item and “liked” the restaurant on Facebook right away. I don’t have plans to visit Sonoma, CA in the near future… but I visit California every once in a while, so it can happen. I love the name and the food pictures I’ve seen on the page! The (sea) salt… I’ll come up with something or give it to a friend who I see frequently (so I can try whatever he/she makes). ;) Maybe I’ll talk to the friend who made lavender truffles (after visiting a lavender farm) a few years ago… (Value: about $3-4)
4. Iveta Gourmet Scone Mix – Apricot: I’m sure these scones are fantastic and I do hope to try them… but I don’t really want to make them (unless I’m going to a potluck or something) because I don’t want to end up eating a bunch of scones. I like their website and that they have a gluten-free section. Too bad I didn’t get one of those boxes because then I could make the scones and share them with my sweetie. ;) (Value: about $7.50)
5. Two Snooty Chefs Kansas City Steak (spice blend): I like the name, the ingredient list, and that the company is based in a city that’s very close to Seattle. Apparently barbecues aren’t a big part of my life right now so I haven’t had a chance to use this product, but I’m looking forward to changing that. I “liked” their Facebook page because I like the brand and because they’re local, but their page isn’t very exciting because they’ve only posted a few times this year. (Value: $5.95)
6. Susan’s Gourmet Salsa Relish: I love tomatoes and usually like salsa, so I was pretty excited about this big jar. I heard it’s good on tilapia, but I ended up serving it with… rice and beans, I think. I’m glad I tried this salsa/product, but… it definitely wasn’t my favorite. I think it tasted too much like… vinegar. (Value: $4.25)
Total estimated value of products: $33.70+
What do I think? I’ll probably end up giving 1-2 of the items away (as gifts!) and I didn’t end up liking one of the items, but I still love this trunk/box because I got to learn about some cool companies and try some new food.
Can’t wait to get my September trunk!!