Bethany Clough

Pick your favorite: These (mostly) local foods are in the running for Food Expo awards

From cold brew coffee to gin, the 2017 Fresno Food Expo featured these new local products.

A sneak preview Taste, Tally and Tweet event was held before the main event July 26-27, 2017.
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A sneak preview Taste, Tally and Tweet event was held before the main event July 26-27, 2017.

Just how yummy are those barrel-aged bourbon caramels? How about that local rocky road ice cream? Bone broth, anyone?

These foods and others made in California are in the running for the Fresno Food Expo's Consumer Choice Award and New Product Award. The public gets a chance to pick their favorite starting at 9 a.m., Saturday, July 7 and running through 11 p.m., Sunday, July 22.

The public can vote on the Consumer Choice Award via the Food Expo's website or its Facebook page.

See which companies and their foods are competing below.

The awards are a little different this year. The show is now open to food exhibitors from around the state, though most of the entries for the awards are from the central San Joaquin Valley.

The public will vote for the Consumer Choice Award and finalists will be submitted to a consumer panel that will choose the winner. The panel has 20 people chosen by Food Expo management to reflect California's demographics, including ethnicity, age, income, education and gender. The winners will be announced during the Expo’s breakfast event Thursday, July 26.

A panel of judges will pick the New Product Award winner. The judges include representatives from Albertsons/Vons/Safeway, Bristol Farms, Erewhon Markets, Whole Foods Market, Walmart, and special guest, the Supermarket Guru, Phil Lempert.

The Fred Ruiz Entrepreneurial Award will also be given to a company that is a pioneer in innovation, a steward in its community, has a risk-taking mindset, extraordinary passion for California’s food industry and demonstrates outstanding leadership.

If you're going to vote on the Consumer Choice Awards, you'll want to sample them, right? We've listed where they're available below, but keep in mind that it sometimes can be a little tricky finding them as these are small companies and some are new products. If you can't find them, call the company that makes them and ask where to find them.

Here are the entries for the Consumer Choice awards that the public can vote on.

Organic peach papaya sweet potato energy drink, 51FIFTY Enterprises. Available: Food 4 Less, Save Mart, Fastrip, Food Source, Golden Gate and some Safeway and Vons stores.

Marmalade moscato wine, Agajanian Vineyards & Wine Company. Available: Agajanian Vineyards, Pinot's Palette and Broadway Liquor Mart.

Smokin' Bits and Pieces of flavored dry-roasted almonds, Benton Enterprises/Heart Ridge Farms. Available: HeartRidgeFarms.com.

Guacamole salsa, Bobby Salazar's Mexican Foods. Available: Save Mart, Vons.

Organic, whole, small-batch cow's milk with cream top, Burroughs Family Farms. Available: Fresno Lassen's, Village Market in Turlock, Sacramento Co-op, Davis Food Co-op, Berkeley Bowl, Rainbow Grocery in San Francisco.

Oatmeal cookie walnut butter, Crazy Go Nuts. Available: See website.

Fresno chili crush olive oil, Enzo Olive Oil. Available: Enzo's Table and EnzosTable.com.

House roast coffee, Lanna Coffee Co. Available: By subscription, LannaCoffeeCo.Com and various local businesses, including The Revue coffee shop.

Barrel-aged bourbon caramels, MARICH Pancrafted Chocolates. Available: Marich.com.

Rocky road ice cream, Producers Dairy. Available: Various supermarkets in California.

Dog's Dig 'Em all-natural double peanut butter honey dog treats, Saint Francis Homeless Project. Available: Over 100 stores.

Taco Works tortilla chips, Taco Works, Inc. Available: FoodMaxx, 5671 E. Kings Canyon Road, Fresno; Smart & Final, 790 W. Shaw Ave. in Clovis and various Smart & Final locations in the central San Joaquin Valley.

Pandan coconut brioche bread (pandan is an Asian tropical plant), The Brioche Lady. Available: Farmers Markets at Kaiser Permanente, Manchester and Old Town Clovis or by special order.

Honey walnut butter, The Nutty Gourmet. Available: Amazon.com.

Signature bone broth, The Osso Good Co. Available: OssoGoodBones.com.

Half Dome California wheat beer, Tioga-Sequoia Brewing Co. Available: Save Mart, Total Wine & More, and various other liquor stores.

Heart-shaped lahvosh crackers, Valley Lahvosh Baking Co. Available: ValleyLahvosh.com, Save Mart, Vons, Sprouts and other stores.

Hazelnut bourbon, Velvetree Foods/Wicked Harvest. Available: See website for various stores and restaurants.

Walnut butter, Wellnut Farms. Available: See website for stores in Northern California carrying the butters.

Bethany Clough: 559-441-6431, @BethanyClough
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