I needed to pick up some spices and stopped by Penzeys Spices in downtown Menlo Park the other day. It’s their only location in all of Northern California and luckily, not too far away from me.
Penzeys is to cooks, what a candy store is to kids. It’s a visual and olfactory treat to step through the door. You can open sample jars and get a good whiff of each spice. Everything smells incredible and oh so fresh. And the variety of some spices is just astounding.
Who knew there was so many different kinds of cinnamon? I thought there was just the one kind (the one in the supermarket labeled brown cinnamon) but no, they have four different ones there. I got the Vietnamese Cinnamon-Extra Fancy, it smelled so strongly of cinnamon, it made me want to run home and bake something. And you know, I’m no baker.
I also got a free jar of Bangkok Blend (sweet peppers, garlic, ginger, black pepper, galangal, hot peppers, lemon grass, basil and cilantro) from the peel-off free gift coupon on their catalog cover. It was my choice of 1 of 3 turkey seasonings, the other two were Poultry Seasoning or Bicentennial Rub. No turkey here, so I’m thinking of trying it out on an unsuspecting block of tofu.