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Support Local? A review of the Tabanca Box Subscription Service


Tabanca box packaging
As if my excitement of receiving a Diembox was out there, I came across Tabanca Box, another local subscription service and I was over the moon! I have to admit that I'm loving these local services that are coming out of the wood works and I'm hoping to see more emerging as time goes on. Back to Tabanca Box.
Marcia Seales-Rodney, the creator of TabancaBox describes it as "the Caribbean's first food subscription box service from the Caribbean, catering for the Caribbean Diaspora. We specialise in bringing the Caribbean to your doorstep." Tabanca Box currently has three offerings:
The Tabanca Box - which is the monthly subscription service
The Standard Boxes - which are readily available boxes. This box can be ordered at any time and there is no recurring cost attached.
The Collaboration Boxes - which are one-off boxes that are only available for a specific period of time. These boxes are normally done in collaboration with other subscription service providers.

NOW ON TO THE GOODIES!!!

What's in the Hot Box? check it out!
I received the Hot Box to review. Now anyone who knows me well knows that "spicy an me eh no fren!" But, after devouring everything, I can conclude that I can deal with the heat... or at least some of it... Some items I can handle, others left me gasping for water, for air, for ice, for life!!! This box does live up to its Hot Box name for more than one reason though. Some products warm you up on a rainy day, others hit you so hard with heat that you're left wondering if your tongue fell out your mouth. The products included in the Hot Box are:
- Habanero Pepper Sauce's Trinidad Scorpion pepper sauce and Habanero sauce
- dek's Black pepper sorrel relish and Cocoa pepper relish
- House of Arendel's drinking cocoa and cocoa powder
- An assortment of Paula's spicy channa, mango, cherry and tamarind snacks from Caribbean Treats
An assortment of the Paula's brand of snacks, this
took my back to my childhood
Now I have encountered some of the brands before. Habanero's Pepper sauce is a staple in my household as my mother fancies the brand, and it just so happen that the two samples I received are her two favourites. The Habenero pepper sauce, I can handle, it packs heat, and I love the taste of it. The Trinidad Scorpion pepper sauce? Lawd have mercy, that one is a potent brew and I only recommend those for the avid pepper sauce lover and definitely not for the faint of heart.. or tongue? Lol, but in all, the quality of their sauces is amazing.
Habanero's pepper sauce and Trinidad Scorpion
pepper sauce, hottest thing I've ever eaten to date
I have also encountered the Paula's brand. I'm sure most of us have. This brand is a popular locally and can be seen in nearly every supermarket. I will admit, I had not indulged in their products in a long time, so It did bring about a bit of nostalgia when I had them. My favourites were the spicy channa and the spicy mango. 
As for the brands I didn't know, what I can say is that I'm glad I know them now. dek's relishes are amazing!! Never in my life would I have imagined a sorrel and a cocoa relish, but his concoctions are so tasty with kick of heat that leaves me wanting more. I put these relishes on everything I eat and now that I am suffering from dek's withdrawal syndrome I need to make contact with him to get some more and try his other offerings. 
dek's Black pepper sorrel relish and Cocoa pepper
relish. They were so tasty!!
And last but most certainly not least, are the products from the House of Arendel. Hands down, their product offerings are simply divine!!!! The drinking cocoa, which has a blend of spice added to it, is perfection. If you're an avid cocoa tea drinker, then this is for you! I got to try the cocoa powder once, and it was really good, but unfortunately after I mentioned it to my dad (who is also an avid tea drinker) I have not seen the cocoa powder since, but! He did say that he enjoyed it, which translates to, "when yuh getting more?". Subsequent to this, I crossed paths with the family who owns House of Arendel at the South Market, which resulted in me purchasing their dark chocolate bars and their daughter's brownies which were so rich and moist! If only she'd give me the recipe lol.
House of Arendel drinking cocoa, perfect for all cocoa
tea lovers 
All in all, the Tabanca Box's Hot Box did not disappoint and I was left very satisfied with what I received. Although there is no cost breakdown presented in the box, I think that it is worth ($20USD/month) it since you get the convenience of a curated list of locally made goodies delivered to your door. I also think that the Tabanca Box is absolutely ideal for the Caribbean national living abroad who just wants a taste of home and since they offer international shipping to the US, UK and Canada, our Caribbean people abroad are not left out. 
House of Arendel cocoa powder, I used this in a
chocoloate mug cake that I made, but ate it before I
remembered to take a photo.
If you're interested in getting a box but you're not ready to commit, they do also offer a trial box. You can connect Tabanca Box on via Facebook and Instagram and if you're interested in subscribing, you can visit their website. As for me, I'm very excited to see what other goodies they have in store, but in the meantime, I need to restock my relish and cocoa goodies.



I wonder if dek's get their cocoa from House of Arendel? Hmmmm... 

Regards,
Tshenelle aka Nelly B.


UPDATE: So after publishing my review I was contacted and informed that in order to accommodate a more cost effective means of shipping, the cost of the Tabanca Box is now $30USD/month.