Monday, September 14, 2009

The Spice Tin

Saturday was my 17th wedding anniversary ~ I'd forgotten. So instead of being lazy and maybe doing a little creative experimentation, we, me and the hubs, went to Murphys. My dream town founded in 1849, the little tourist mecca surrounded by Sierra Nevada wineries, art galleries and handmade candy shops, the town I want to start a perfumery. We didn't stay long, just drove up for lunch, a little perusing of stores and shops along the main tourist street. Whilst perusing, out of the corner of my eye I read the word, "Spice". Buried behind a climbing and mountain rig store, off on a little side street and from inside the world's cutest little wood building wafted the dense and delicious aroma of spices. The Spice Tin, a new shop just opened in May by Patty and Jan Shulz, is perhaps one of the sweetest (aside from the candy store, of course) finds in town. They stock nearly everything a culinary and perfumery artist could possibly dream of ~ sumac that smells smokey and piquant, almost like mild red chili peppers blended with lemon rind, it has a rich dark burgundy-red color that looks a bit like dried blood . . . but it smells delicious! And it's no wonder I was drawn to it as it's used in my favorite food ~ Greek! The Spice Tin's walls were lined with jars and jars of delicious little gems like blue juniper berries, spicy, nose drilling Jamaican jerk seasoning, chilies, chilies and more chilies , cardamons green, black and seedy, sesame seeds of black and white, pink, black and white peppercorns, salt from everywhere on the planet, several, perhaps a half dozen, different lavenders ~ it was a cornucopia of aromatics! I purchased several aromatics for tincturing, a few for adding into scrubs, and some for culinary purposes. We were helped by Emily, who was very knowledgeable and friendly ~ you can see Emily, Patty and Jan on a little video they made about The Spice Tin that they put on their website. Go watch it! The Spice Tin made the trip worthwhile.

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