COLUMBIA — Hidden behind one of Columbia’s many large grocery stores, World Harvest International & Gourmet foods is truly a treasure. Each aisle explores a different region’s cuisine or ingredients, be it Northern Europe, Southeast Asia or the Mediterranean. It’s the perfect place to collect all the components of an authentic Tiramisu or to find something new to try. If you’re a picky eater, don’t bother showing up — this specialty store is all about adventure.
Suggestions to fill your cart:
- Fromage d’Affinois: a rich, buttery and easily spreadable French cheese. It takes and looks like butter, only better. This cheese on fresh bread or slices of apple would be a great addition to a picnic as it’s filling and easy to share.
- Piquanté peppers: small peppers imported from South Africa that are sweet at the beginning but leave you with a kick of spice at end. They are sold with the seeds and stems removed, making them a great vessel for other flavors. Fill them with a crumble of feta or a spoonful of pesto, and it will be an easy appetizer.
- Patric Chocolate: locally crafted, deep dark chocolate meant to be savored. The bars range from 65 percent to 70 percent cacao and may taste very bitter in the first bite, but as the chocolate warms up on your tongue, fruity flavors are released and a bit of sweetness comes through.
- Chicago Flats: simple, but amazingly addictive, these crackers are too good to open alone. The “all flavor” variety is a favorite, as they are the closest taste to a New York City everything bagel in Columbia.
- Kipferl: half-moon-shaped German hazelnut cookies that have the consistency of shortbread but with a nuttier flavor. With a bit of crunch and overall flakiness, these cookies are better than most that come out of a package. The ideal pairing would be a cup of creamy tea or coffee.
World Harvest International & Gourmet foods is located behind Gerbes off Nifong Boulevard, 3700 Monterey Dr.; phone: 442-3833. Hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday.