I stumbled upon RawSpiceBar recently and Brian and I were immediately intrigued. We cook a lot and are always looking for new ways to (pardon the pun) spice up our meals. Our CSA just started for the year (if you’re not familiar with local crop-shares, google immediately for one near you), so we are spending extra time in the kitchen trying to use up all the veggies that we get weekly.
The way RawSpiceBar works is this – each month they send you 3-4 freshly ground, small-batch, premium spice blends and corresponding recipes for each. It costs $7/month and they send quite a bit for that price. The spices are themed around a geographic location each month, and trust me – these are not spices you already have in your pantry. Needless to say, we were SO EXCITED when RSB graciously agreed to send us a sample box to review.
First, let’s talk about the packaging. It’s perfectly minimal. My kitchen table tends to fill up with subscription boxes that are only half-filled with items, so I appreciate a compact delivery. The spices were wrapped in a pretty paper envelope, and each spice is in a resealable paper pack and labeled with info about the seasoning. Smart, simple, environmentally conscious.
This month’s box was themed around Jamaica. The package included a sheet explaining the history of Jamaican cuisine and the cultural influences on the food. It explains a bit about jerk seasoning and pairing flavors to suit the style. I found this to be really well-thought out and gave a bit of a history lesson as well. If you’re familiar with my posts, you know how much it irks me when boxes name a theme that has nothing to do with the items included. Pay attention, box curators – this is how you theme a box. RSB put quite a bit of thought into developing this spice pack and it shows.
The first spice pack was the most obvious – a Jamaican jerk blend. I would have been a bit disappointed if they hadn’t included a jerk blend in the Jamaica box. I was really interested in what they used to make it, and fortunately the label has the ingredients! This is a mix of allspice, thyme, white onion, garlic, brown sugar, cayenne, pepper, black peppercorns, habanero, pepper, nutmeg, cinnamon, and a whole lot of love. It. Smells. Amazing. Jerk seasoning is perfect for summer grilling; in other words, this pack will not last long.
You may notice that this pack appears to be torn at the top. That is because I have literally no self control and tore into it with the ferocity of a thousand beasts. Mango salsa happens to be one of my favorite summer foods, and I became a creature of pure id when I first laid eyes on it and couldn’t wait for a picture. Sorry. This pack is a blend of sweet paprika, allspice, and ginger root, which turns out to be a magical combination. I would buy a mango salsa spice blend scented candle if that was a thing. Is it a thing? It should be.
The third spice pack was Jamaican sweet spices, a blend of white and black sesame seeds, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The label explains that this spice blend is meant to create a sweet, light dessert. How cool is a dessert spice blend? See what I mean about guaranteeing you don’t have these in your pantry?
I should mention here that the recipes are great. They’re simple enough for anyone to make but are far more unique than your standard go-to meals. They truly showcase the spice blends and contribute to the expert curation of the whole package.
Final Rating: A+
Guys, I am a fan. RawSpiceBar has won my heart (and stomach). I love food subscription boxes, but this one is special and different from the rest. Fresh spices add so much to a plate, and the blends they make are simply delicious. I am so excited to add this subscription to my rotation! Check out RawSpiceBar for yourself by clicking here!
Jill received this product for free in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are her own.