Nonna Box is an Italian gourmet food subscription that brings authentic Italian flavors from a specific region for only $69.95 per month. You’ll get a box of 6 full-size products that are hard-to-come-by and local to the Italian region of the month.
DEAL: Get $5 off your first box! Use coupon code SALUTE.
The Italian region of the month is Tuscany!
There were several info cards included in the box that are sealed in this navy blue envelope.
This one tells you more about the story of Nonna Gabriella’s Tuscan Life. Each edition of the box features a different region of Italy, enlisting the help of a local Nonna to share nostalgic memories, locale custom, and a few of her favorite recipes!
The back shows a silhouette of Tuscany, identifying the origin of each item in the box.
Another card shares some Tuscan history, highlighting the region’s fame for vicuña poverty, as well as some of the fantastic wines from the region.
These cards gives you a short description of the items in the box, with an emphasis on the cultural significance of the product. The cards describe how the food fits into the local culture, share a bit about the brand included in the box, and tell you how the locals like to eat it.
The subscription also comes with several recipe cards to fully immerse you in the Tuscan flavors. The recipes are suggested by the local Nonna, and they incorporate the products in the box. At the end of each recipe is an additional blurb and photo sharing even more about the region.
All the products in my Nonna Box!
Il Boschetto Grigliata Herbs (grinder bottle half this size currently offered for $18.50 on Amazon): This rugged sea salt blend pairs large rocks of salt with a generous amount of Italian herbs in large pieces.
This combination is ideal for grilled meat or fish. While it contains some expected ingredients, like rosemary and bay leaves, it also includes some surprises, like juniper, cinnamon, and pink pepper.
Morelli Pasta With Truffle ($8?): This pasta is unlike any I’ve seen before. It is made with real truffle infused into the dough, which is quite different than the usual application via shaving or through a sauce. It also is unique because they add the wheat germ back into the dough for a nuttier, more substantial taste. This technique allows for a more flavorful pasta, while achieving the classic texture and consistency of a milled flour pasta.
The interior of the labeling card included several recipes that complement this pasta. It also listed some other varieties of pasta made by Morelli – they even make a salmon pasta!
Antonio Mattei Biscotti With Almonds ($15.99): The Antonio Mattei Company has been making biscotti since 1858, and their expertise shows in these delightful little biscotti. I was first impressed by the packing – the bag was completely full of biscotti and held a surprising amount.
The biscuits themselves are very beautiful, with whole almonds showing where the biscotti where sliced – they had so many almonds that some pieces looked like torrrone! Each piece of biscotti had a unique profile, and the non-homogeneity made for wonderfully crispy peaks and troughs. They had a firm crunch without being too hard, and the flavor was pleasant, like an almond Nilla wafer.
Badia a Coltibuono Extra Virgin Olive Oil ($14.97): While Chianti is synonymous with wine, the region also produces wonderful olive oil. Because of its natural state and lovely flavors, this oil is intended for use as a table oil or for finishing dishes, not for cooking.
This first, cold pressing produces an oil that is a bit green in both flavor and color, with fruity and peppery notes.
Bonelli Masoni Panforte Fichi E Noci ($20?): This traditional, robust cake is the sweeter of two traditional styles of small, dense, breads from the region (the other is spicy and filled with pepper and spices). This version is loaded with figs and nuts.
It came wrapped in hermetic pack, and a bag full of confectioner’s sugar was included for dusting.
The cake is very sticky and dense – the paper ring made it easier to extract from the foil.
The bread is dark and hearty. It reminded me of a a fruitcake, except the fillings were desirable figs instead of candied peels. The texture is very moist and sticky, but not gooey.
F.Ili Chiaverini & C. Marmellata Arance Con Scorze (€4.49, about $4.75): This marmalade is made from both the fruit and peel of the orange, giving it a rich flavor. It has a dark color and remains very loose and saucy.
The peel is shaved very thin, and the marmalade has a nice proportion of orange to peel, without too much of the latter.
Nonna Box has definitely become our pick of the Italian food subscription boxes, and we really appreciate the intense focus on culture and tradition. Each item is grounded in the food history of the region, and the monthly local nonna, along with her recipes, creates a palpable link between the produce of the region and the way in which the locals prepare and consume it. It is nice to have several recipes to make, though some are fairly complex. The box has a very authentic feel, shown by the reverence for local food culture and the deliberate avoidance of a scattershot pan-Italian take on Italian food. The products themselves were of admirably high quality, and very tasty, too!