Sungak crackers from Persian Basket
Arezoo Armaghan created Persian Basket to make it easy for all of us to find the foods she grew up with in Iran. Her online market is filled with hundreds of intriguing products. We could browse and fill our shopping cart for hours. When asked what she’d recommend as a substitute for those boring crackers on most cheese boards, Armaghan suggested barbari naan or Sungak crackers. We had a hard time choosing between the two, but the crackers won, because we loved the light, crunchy texture and the combination of five different seeds — pepita, sunflower, flax and black and white sesame. The label on the package says, “We are not responsible for your addiction to this product,” and it’s a fair warning, because we found that everyone who tried these crackers could not stop saying, “Oh, just one more.” They tick all the boxes: baked, vegan, kosher and delicious. You might find they’re more popular than the cheese on your cheese board!
$11.07 per 7.2-ounce container. Available at persianbasket.com.
Alcohol-removed sparkling rosé from Sovi
Maybe you expect to serve wine with your cheese board, but not everyone at your table is interested in having a drink with alcohol. Or, perhaps you’re entertaining people who love wine, but, on this day, they want something alcohol-free. Julia and Alex Littauer of San Francisco, California-based Sovi have created the solution. They work with a family-owned winery in Clarksburg, California, distilling their wine to remove the alcohol, adding a little grape juice concentrate to enhance the flavor, and adding bubbles before putting the wine into cans. The result is a beautiful sparkling beverage, bubbly but dry, with the nose and color of a rosé, but less than half a percent of alcohol by volume and only 25 calories per can. It drinks so much like a regular rosé that some of our testers had to check the can in order to believe it was alcohol-removed wine.
$24 per pack of four 8.4-ounce cans. Available at drinksovi.com.
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