July 2017 Orangeglad & 10% off Coupon Code!

To kick off my last week before I head back to the old/new grind, I thought I’d focus on something sweet with my July review of Orangeglad, a monthly artisan dessert subscription.

If you’d like to try out one for yourself use my code ST10 for 10% off your order.

Lovely packaging as usual:

CC Made – Berkley, California
About the Company:
“’As a currency trader, brokers took us to the most amazing restaurants.  It opened up a whole new world for me.’  Cassandra Chen recalls. ‘ I realized that, even though my family’s expectation was that I would stay in my successful professional career, it just wasn’t for me.  On a whim, and wearing a skirt and heels, Cassandra walked into Vertigo Restaurant and asked for a job in the kitchen.  She w shored on the spot and told to ‘stage’ (kitchen lingo for ‘trail after the cook and work the line’). She had found her calling.  Manuel was born to Peruvian/American parents.  When he was 22, he worked at the Highlands Bar and Grill, where he learned about gourmet food and fell in love with wine.  With Kermit Lynch’s encourage, he moved out to California and worked for josh Jensen at Calera Wines deepening his love for the art of winemaking.  Later, under the tutelage of master sommelier Larry Stone, Manuel passed his level 1 exam.  In 1997, Cassandra and Manuel’s paths crossed.  They were both working for Traci des Jardis at the newly opened restaurant Jardiniere.  Through moving on from the restaurant, getting married, and having kids, their love for food never waned.  With Cassandra’s experience in the pastry kitchens, they started a line of caramel product and thus CC made was born.
Toasted Sesame Seeds with Nori Sea Salt Brittle

(2 oz Bag: $3.50)
Description: “Roasted organic sesame seeds with bright sea taste of nori and sea salt dusted on top,, this brittle will bring a whole new meaning to reinvented snacks.
Verdict: Nice!
Brittles aren’t really my favorite treats, but this had an appealing flavor that wasn’t overly sweet.  The sesame/nori addition made it feel sophisticated.  I think it would be an interesting addition to a fruit/cheese/nut dessert plate.

Potato Chips with Cracked Salt Pepper Brittle
(2 oz Bag: $3.50)
Description: “Potato chip combined with buttery brittle and topped with cracked black pepper, the perfect harmony of savory and sweet will make your taste buds dance.”
Verdict:
Not for me
The pepper on these treats came through quite clearly and they are much more savory than you’d anticipate in a brittle.  I just didn’t like the chip aspect, which is purely subjective.  I’m sure someone else would probably love these.
Classic Artisanal Popcorn
(3 oz Bag: $5.00)
Description: “Handcrafted to perfection, Cassandra and Manuel wanted to make something that was hard to find on the market – a really flavorful and quality caramel.  What they learned was that to develop a deep rich flavor form the simple ingredients of just sugar and water required an open flame, patience, and perfect timing.  This is the reason why mass manufactured caramels lacked the depth of flavor that they were craving, so they had to create ones that satisfy their standards for gourmet popcorn.
Verdict: Love!
I adore caramel popcorn and this one had a lovely, deep caramel flavor and a really nice texture.  The caramel wasn’t too thick or thin and the popcorn had a nice crunch.  My favorite item in the box!

McTavish Shortbread – Portland, Oregon
About the Company:
“McTavish Shortbread is baked daily in Portland, Oregon using old world techniques and recipes handed down through generations.  They use only all natural ingredients with no added preservatives.  They are a family owned company that takes pride in producing consistent, high quality melt-in-your-mouth, tastes like your Scottish Grandmother baked it-SHORTBREAD!  Their promise is to deliver handmade goodness to cookie lovers everywhere because everyone deserves a really good cookie!
Scottie Dog Shortbread
(Estimated Retail: $1.32)
Ice Cream Sprinkle Shortbread
(Estimated Retail: $1.32)

Description: “Using an age-old Scottish recipe, McTavish Shortbread bakes deliciously rich, traditional shortbread, perfect for summer!”

Verdict:
Hit!
This sub *really* loves to include shortbread cookies.  Typically, I like them but they aren’t my favorite cookie or dessert and not something I actively seek out.  However, these were delicious and probably some of the best shortbread I’ve had.  I couldn’t find these exact cookies on the McTavish site, nor can you buy them individually so I estimated the price based on the cost of a dozen of their seasonal shortbread.

OVERALL
Verdict: Great products, not great value
Let’s start with the good stuff.  I thought this box was well curated and the treats all felt like sophisticated spins on classics.  As usual, they were packed really nicely and even though not everything was to my taste, I could tell they were excellent quality.  Now the bad part, the value is just too low for a monthly sub.  I receive this box free in order to review it, but if I’d paid for it, it would have cost $25. After doing the math, I come up with an estimated value of only $14.64 for the included items.  That includes my estimate on the individual cookies and without shipping and packaging.  I appreciate that these treats would be pricey for us to purchase and have shipped individually, but I feel like we need to be closer to the $20 value mark to justify this as a monthly box.  Right now, with this price point and value, I’d say that this is a sub more suited for gift giving.  It’s great for folks you don’t know super well or who don’t need anything else taking up space in their house.  As a gift, paying a little more isn’t quite as daunting as shelling it out every month just for yourself.

What type of value do you expect from a sub box versus what you paid for it?

THE BACKSTORY
Orangeglad is an “artisan dessert box that sends handcrafted, unique and exclusive desserts each month. Eat delicious treats created by local artisan chefs throughout the country, and learn about the amazing people behind each item.”

Single Portion Box: 5 Deluxe Sized Treats
Curated from around the country
Makes 1-2 people happy
Cost: $25 per month (shipping included)

Double Portion Box: 10 Deluxe Sized Treats
Curated from around the country
Makes 3-4 people happy
Cost: $40 per month (shipping included)

Managing your account is easy. If you want a break, you can cancel or skip at anytime, with absolutely no hassle.

Coupon Codes: Use code ST10 for 10% off your orders

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Popsugar Must Have Box – December 2013

And it’s that time again for the Popsugar Must Have Box.  For info on Popsugar subscriptions along with some coupon codes jump down below. Now let’s dive into the December Must Have Box.

BraceletBracelet Closeup
Lulu Frost for Popsugar Bracelet
(Retail: $110.00)
Verdict: Hit!
Lulu Frost seems to be a big hit with a lot of celebrities and is “known for mixing vintage and modern elements to create timeless baubles”.  This bracelet won me over because it has baguettes (they are a favorite of mine and don’t show up as frequently as I would like) and it has an art deco vibe (another favorite but this one does show up pretty often).  The only downside to this piece is that the design is only on the front while the back has the “Lulu Frost for Popsugar” logo.  With this style bracelet that logo is bound to show when the charm dangles.  I wish it had something more decorative in the back and maybe just a little dangle tag by the clasp to indicate the designer. The retail value of this item is more than three times the cost of what I paid for this box, so we’re off to a great start.


Wrapping Paper
Mixt Studio Holiday Gifting Set
(Retail: $9.00)
Verdict:  Hit!/Gift
It seems no matter how much wrapping paper I buy, I always run out at an inopportune moment, so I was happy to see this in my box and it promptly made it’s way onto Christmas gifts.  The “snow drift” print in particular is incredibly striking and has made my Mom’s Christmas gift look all the more amazing.

Mascara
ModelCo Fibre Lashxtend Black Mascara
(Retail: $)
Verdict:  Hit!
Once upon a time I fell in love with a Fibre mascara and then..gasp..they changed the formula.  Then, of course it didn’t work for me anymore.  I’m still in search of a replacement for that fibre mascara I once loved and lost, so I’m happy to try out a new one.  I’ve never tried anything by Modelco so it will be fun to play with a new brand.  The mascara also includes a cute little mirror right on the tube.  This  came with a coupon for $10 off plus a free ultra lip gloss.

Flutes
Govino Go Anywhere Flutes
(Retail: $12.95)
Verdict:  Gift
I have a lot of glasses.  It’s one of those things that people seem to love to give me plus I inherited a ton of my grandmother’s, so I am well stocked up.  In order for me to add on a set of glasses I have to love them and these just don’t speak to me.  The fact that they are shatterproof and plastic isn’t really appealing either.  I feel like if I’m at an event casual enough for plastic, it’s time to bring out the giant red beer cups, that I won’t have to wash when all is said and done.  These do however complement a Christmas gift I already had planned so they are getting packed up with that.

Popcorn
CC Caramel Corn
(Retail: $4.00)
Verdict:  Hit!
The only problem with this was that there wasn’t more of it.  It was delicious and I had to fight my boyfriend in order to get some.

Nail Wraps
NCLA Peppermint Lane Nail Wraps
(Retail: $16.00)
Verdict:  Hit!
As I’ve mentioned before, 2013 was the year that I got into doing my nails.  I’ve been meaning to try some nail wraps but haven’t gotten around to it.  These designs seem pretty basic and I think they’d work great as accent nails with my Julep colors.

Chocolates
Ghirardelli Squares Chocolate
(Retail:$8.40/Retail: $4.25)
Verdict:  Gift
I love chocolate but since this time of the year is filled with so many amazing confections and treats I decided to add these to some Christmas gifts and share the calories—eh, I mean the love.  Yeah, the love.

Full Box
Overall:
Hit!

With my discount for purchasing multiple months in advance I paid 33.88 for this box and it had an estimated retail value of $184.60.  I either liked or could gift everything  so it was definitely a win for me.  I do think the appeal of this box lies with the high ticket item.  If you like that Lulu Frost bracelet, everything else is just gravy.

What did you think of this box?  Hit or Miss?

The Backstory

Popsugar is a women’s lifestyle subscription that delivers a monthly box of fun, full-size products hand-selected by Popsugar editors.

In addition to Popsugar’s monthly must have boxes, they have some seasonal special edition boxes that contain uber luxe items.  The price tag on these boxes is higher, but the products you receive are high end.

Popsugar Pricing:
Monthly – $39.95
3 Months – $109.85
6 Months – $214.70
12 Months – $404.40

Coupon Codes:  REFER5 = $5 off sitewide
POPSUGAR10 = $10 off a 3 month subscription