Category Archives: Food & Drink

Lusty-Monk-Mustard-Asheville

Aye, Matey, A Lusty Monk Mustard I Be

I love me some spicy mustard and Lusty Monk hands down delivers. Made locally in Asheville, North Carolina, Lusty Monk is made exclusively of fresh-ground, hand-crafted, natural ingredients.

How to describe the taste. Hmm. When I was six years old I remember sitting in the sun room of my great grandparents’ house in Queens, NY. It was September. I believe a Jewish holiday.  Four generations of my family were gathered around a tiny television watching the Yankees play the Red Sox in a rare one game playoff to see who would advance to play the Royals.

Every Yankees and Red Sox knows what happened. Bucky Dent, of all unlikely Yankees heroes, stepped to the plate in the seventh inning and smacked a three-run home run over the green monster to give the Yankees the lead. They went on to win 5-4 in another crushing example of why the Yankees will always be better than the Red Sox (despite any recent evidence to the contrary).

That game represents the most vivid and joyous sports memory of my early childhood.

So what does this all have to do with Lusty Monk mustard? While we rooted for the Yanks my great grandma brought in a tray of snacks including salami and mustard. Though I was just six years old, I must have wolfed down half the plate. Yum.

That great Yankees’ win, salami, and delicious spicy mustard were forever cognitively linked in my brain and intertwined with emotions of victory, security, and ultimate satisfaction. One bite of Lusty Monk Mustard brings it all flowing back. I love it.

Why It’s Green: Natural products are made primarily of natural ingredients – extracted directly from plants and animals – with minimal processing. They avoid synthetic ingredients such as artificial colors, preservatives, and sweeteners.

Buy: Lusty Monk Mustard

Santosha Chocolate Yumminess

Raw Chocolate – Dark, Organic, Vegan, Crazy Yummy, Healthy

One of the many delights of moving to Asheville is discovering the numerous locally made natural and organic products. I think it’s fair to say that Santosha Chocolate is the best chocolate I’ve ever tasted. That’s not just the higher altitude of this mountain town talking.

My favorite, Single Origin Peru, packs all the benefits of dark chocolate into a 4 oz. bar that only has 6 grams of sugar. I mean, are you f$#@ing kidding me?!!! 6 grams of sugar! That’s insane for a chocolate bar.

From the company:

We make our Single Origin Peru with equitably-traded, shade-grown, Criollo cacao beans from Peru’s Piura region. The Criollo cacao variety is a rare gem that comprises less than 5% of the world’s cacao production. Raw cacao is one of the healthiest foods on the planet – full of vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants, and living enzymes. We sweeten our chocolate with coconut palm sugar, one of most flavorful and lowest glycemic sweeteners available.

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Thank you, Dan Row, you somewhat odd yet clearly visionary, knife wielding chocolatier.

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Why It’s Green: All of the ingredients are organic.

Buy: Santosha Chocolate