In a nutshell: The annual spectacle known as Super(Duper)Market offers a bevy of handmade foodie-related goodies from around the nation to delight visitors of all kinds.
When I found out about the second incarnation of Super(Duper)Market, I was giddy with enthusiasm. I had gone to the inaugural pop-up at Chelsea Market last summer and fell head over heels for the various nationwide vendors and their sheer number of samples. The three-day pop-up event celebrates some of PAPER Magazine‘s favorite artisanal food-makers from the East Coast, West Coast, and in between-coast, and this year was no different.
One thing’s for sure: I highly appreciated the wider aisles and open seating at this year’s Nolita location compared to last year’s tightly-squeezed Chelsea venue! The event was much more relaxed and allowed for more leisurely browsing.
Me and cheddar go together like butter on a spreader. Bread and I hang out without a doubt. Rhyming aside, Jack’s Chedbred is a cheesy, corny delight. It seems the secret is in the placement and layering of the cheese; founder Jack Sorock noted in an interview that “cornbread is textually one note. I made it more self sufficient by putting cubes of cheese on top and a crumble finish that gives it the richness it deserves. I think the cheese bite gives it a little bit of the drama.”
Any cornbread that incorporates a three-year-aged Vermont cheddar is fairly legit in my book. The modestly-sized cubes are moist with a good crumb and come in a modest selection of flavors, including a delectable breakfasty Maple Bacon: the porky saltiness and maple sweetness inspired swoons from my taste buds. I encourage cornbread connoisseurs to give Jack’s a whirl!
I’ve already stated my obsession with bread previously. Breads Bakery fit just the ticket. The chocolate babka sample I tasted was divine; the thick veins of Nutella and Belgian dark-chocolate chips threaded darkly through the laminated dough, its golden sheen thanks to a sugar-syrup-lacquer painted on before a quick nap in the oven. This is one bakery I am surely going to hit up post pop-up.
One of my favorite ice cream parlors in San Francisco, Humphry Slocombe did not disappoint and appeared in New York for a second showing at the pop-up. Having devoured their Secret Breakfast (bourbon and cornflakes) and Blue Bottle Vietnamese Coffee before, my new scoop of choice? The Malted Dulce de Leche. Literally translated as “candy of milk,” the creamy, super-sweet-with-caramel-undertones scoop hit the spot. The floral notes from the peppercorns in the Salt and Pepper sounded interesting as well…
Having discovered the tantalizing chocolate brand Askinosie in all sorts of boutiques and specialty shops, it was amazing to finally see the small-batch bean-to-bar chocolate producers in the flesh! I am truly impressed by their commitment to intimately know the communities that farm their beans and make 100% traceable products. I’m a huge fan of their 62% dark milk chocolate with fleur de sel, a luxuriously creamy silk upon the tongue. Also, they need to win an award for the best chocolate bar name: “Salt Flakes and Pistachio Play Hopscotch on the Dark Goat’s Milk Chocolate Ancho Chile Altar.”
The following joke came to mind when I dug into La Esquina‘s hearty, chunky dips:
Bartender: We don’t serve salsa and guacamole here.
Salsa: I must say that I’m experiencing mild disappointment.
Guacamole: It’s okay, Salsa. You’re just too hot for these fools to handle. No need for us to turn brown with envy.
Salsa: Yeah, let’s dip.
Four different products–Salsa Roja (mild and hot varieties), Salsa Verde, and Black Bean Dip–were available for sampling and purchasing; they’re also available at their Mexican restaurant on the border of Nolita and Little Italy. The black bean version was my favorite with its subtly smoky, savory kick. The crisp tortilla chips on hand were merely supporting cast members to the true stars of the show.
I heard “drinking vinegar” and furrowed my brow momentarily; unusual, but intriguing. Pok Pok Som proved to be a pleasant, refreshing surprise! The tonic may be more commonly known as a “shrub” (or maybe that’s just me and my excessive food terminology coming into play) and can be part of both non-alcoholic beverages and full-strength cocktails. Som features the cool tartness of vinegar and the aromatic, deeply concentrated taste of your flavor of choice. I sampled the Apple Som, which resembled a bubbly apple cider when paired with soda water; other flavors include Pineapple, Pomegranate, Raspberry, Honey, and Tamarind.
Perhaps the cutest things to purchase were Clare‘s adorable crocheted oysters. Such a great gift idea.
Other nifty vendors:
I can already bet that next year’s rendition will be super-duper! (Or even better, supercalifragilisticexpialidocious?)
268 Mulberry Street
New York, NY