Fitness, Food, Wine & Travel

Holiday Goodies and Gift Ideas

Here’s a little roundup of gift ideas for your favorite food or beverage enthusiast!

First up, I’d like to mention Bela Sardines.


  • Bela Sardines are high in protein, very low in fat with little or no carbs!
  • Rich in omega-3 fatty acids (helps reduce the occurrence of cardiovascular disease), extremely low in contaminants such as mercury.
  • A good source of vitamin D, calcium, B12, Co Q10, and protein. Enjoy this wholefood vs. a vitamin.
  • BELA Sardines do NOT contain any GMOs
  • Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Wheat Free and Kosher, and are extremely low in contaminants such as mercury.
  • Bela sardines are not heavily processed or engineered like other on-the-go nutrition options, such as nutrition bars or supplements, and are rather a naturally nutritious wholefood for any health conscious individual.
  • The Paleo dieters dream meal.

Sustainable: BELA Sardines, the classic Mediterranean sardine (Walbaum Species Sardina Pilchard) are wild caught by local Portuguese fishers from the Atlantic Ocean, hand packed in traditional European manner and canned at the port within 8-hours of the catch; each effort ensures our sustainability is unsurpassed. The aluminum tin is also highly packable and recycle-able.

Affordable: A tin typically rings in under $3 at Whole Foods Market and online at They are also available across these regions in: Harris Teeter (South East), The Fresh Market (Mid-Atlantic/Southeast), Sunflower Markets(Southwest), Mollie Stones (Bay Area), Fairway (NYC), New Seasons (Pacific NW), as well as Vitamin Cottage (Rocky Mountains)

A fish symbolizes good luck, fertility and creativity – include a sardine dish on your party menu!

Bela sardines come in 4 different flavors:

Lemon Flavored Extra Virgin Olive Oil
As you would eat them in London, our famous lightly smoked sardines and the finest Portuguese extra virgin olive oil infused with lemon.

Lightly Smoked in Olive Oil
Simple. Delicious. Lightly smoked sardines packed in the finest Portuguese olive oil.

Lightly Smoked in Tomato Sauce
Mediterranean style, these sardines are lightly smoked and packed in a light tomato puree with a splash of the finest Portuguese extra virgin olive oil.

Cayenne Pepper Flavored Extra Virgin Olive Oil
This is a true Portuguese favorite, lightly smoked sardines in the finest extra virgin olive oil infused with Cayenne pepper.

You can find Bela Sardines on Facebook here & on twitter here.


Next up, Balls of Steel!



Balls of Steel are two stainless steel coolers which chill whiskey or spirits faster than ice. BOS will keep spirits at the optimal temperature level without hindering the spirits taste so that one can enjoy the full flavors of their beverage and hold onto those low notes which any spirit veteran strives to protect.

Most importantly BOS supports a cause that is positively changing lives of those not only suffering from testicular cancer, but as well as their family and friends. Creating a support network for those struggling and supporting the research for a cure.

Other items for purchase on the a Balls of Steel website are BOS bracelets, BOS T-shirts, and BOS tongs to remove the coolers from your favorite beverage.

To order some Balls of Steel of your very own, you can go here. You can find Balls of Steel on Facebook here or on twitter here. Deck the balls!


For the wine lovers, I’d like to present Ritual Pinot Noir:

Ritual_alta  Pinot Noir

Ritual Pinot Noir is an artisinal wine bringing legendary Chilean Vintner Agustin Huneeus together with consulting winemaker Paul Hobbs to produce a small bottling of a Pinot Noir from the renowned Casablanca Valley. Comparable to Sonoma wines, this is priced below most California wines and offers very high quality- hand picked, double hand sorted and fermented with wild yeast. It retails for $19.99.
Here are the tasting notes: An elegant wine with density and richness.  Vibrant flavors of cherry and raspberry, soft tannins, fresh acidity and a lingering finish. To learn more about the wine you can go here. You can find the wine and the Veramonte wine group on Facebook here.
And lastly, I would like to tell you all about a little treat that hails from my hometown. Her name is Esther Price. Usually I don’t encourage the consumption of sugar, but as Def Leppard says Pour Some Sugar on Me!! 😛
Esther Price Candies started when a woman (named Esther!) learned to make fudge in her home economics class. With her new knowledge, she came home that day and asked her mother if she could make more. Later on, Esther would take chocolates to her co-workers at a department store in downtown Dayton, Ohio. Even after starting her family in 1926, these same co-workers encouraged her to continue making candy for them to buy.
So now I am encouraging you to try a little bit of Esther’s candy. 😉 Go for the gusto and order their Light and Dark Chocolate 2-Lb. assortment. I’d say they’re most known around town for making chocolate covered cherries, so that’s a great pick, too. To take a peek at the inventory you can check out their handy dandy candy key!! Pics of everything EPC makes!
You can find Esther Price Candies on Facebook here.
Happy Holidays! 🙂

2 responses

  1. M. C. Ross


    I found this to be an ‘interesting’ article – i don’t really know much about sardines – so a thought came to mind – maybe you could do a piece on sardines – not what you did below, but a comparison between the say top 5 brands? Personally, i thought the cayenne ones sounded good – I have never acquired a taste for them, and they usually look pretty “ugly” – might include a good way to eat them – my father used to eat them out of the can, but shouldn’t they be eaten in a certain way?


    mike ross

    December 13, 2012 at 11:20 am

    • I think Andy and I are going to grill them. 🙂 That sounds pretty yummy to me and a pretty approachable way to eat them.

      December 14, 2012 at 1:10 pm

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