Review: Taste of Turkey Gift Box from the World of Hyatt

Did you catch the offer from World of Hyatt called Try The World? Hyatt wants to “connect us to the people, places and experiences at the heart of our world.” Their Try The World concept involves a “box of the month” filled with foods and ingredients from all across a specific country. I decided to give this Try The World a go, and ordered the first three boxes. The total cost was $105, so that’s $35 a box. I’ve never subscribed to a box of the month club before!

For the first month, the country Hyatt chose was France (read the gift box review here). When I opened this month’s box featuring Turkey, I realized I still really loved the box the goodies arrive in. I love the colors, the creative artwork, and the packaging. All very stylish and classy.

The box came with a large fold-out card that talked about the chef that put these items together and the card also explains each product. This Turkey sampling was created by Chef Nurdan Erdem. She’s the owner of Enfes NYC. I noticed a few changes in the gift box. The box still came with the fold-out card but the photos on the card of the products are not necessarily what came in the box. I found this confusing. One change I really liked is that now on the back of the fold-out card there are three different recipes that include the gift box ingredients. This make sense and seems to me like a good addition.

There were eight items in this box, and let me just say up front this box is a winner! There are two nut packages to sample. One is a bag of hazelnuts and the other is a bag of pistachios. I love nuts and especially anything with hazelnuts, so for me this was great.

The apricots were delicious and didn’t last long! The apricots I often get from the store are from Turkey, so I was familiar with Turkey being a major apricot producer. What I learned from the fold-out card is that Turkey is the largest producer of apricots in the world!

If you’ve ever flown Turkish Airlines business class (which is actually one of my favorite business class experiences, and I’ve flown it quite a few times), you’ll recall that at the beginning of the flight, the crew comes around with a piece of Turkish delight for you to taste. There are many kinds of Turkish delight and this gift box included Pomegranate Turkish Delight. Fall is pomegranate season, so I’ve been eating fresh pomegranates for the past few weeks. Nevertheless, having never tasted pomegranate Turkish delight before, I rather enjoyed it. It hit the spot as a small hit of fruit and a nice sweet treat.

Do you like helva? It’s made with tahini and either sugar or honey. I like it a lot and have sampled many different kinds. This helva was good but too sweet for my taste. I like helva that doesn’t crumble so easily and is richer in tahini. That being said, if you like helva, you’ll enjoy this helva. It’s a wonderful treat to offer people when they visit or take to someone’s house for a gift.

The fold-out-card implied that I’d be getting black tea but instead I got Turkish Coffee. You know that coffee is my favorite beverage, right? So no complaints from me on coffee instead of tea. Turkish coffee is very strong and I’ll enjoy it!

The last two gift items are Sumac and Rose Water. Sumac is a popular spice in Turkey. It’s used to season food and also it’s great sprinkled over hummus. I haven’t made hummus lately, so I’m waiting until I do to try the sumac. The Turkish Rose Water was the most surprising item. I’ve never tried it. According to the fold-out card, you can use it to make a refreshing drink by adding one part rose water to ten parts water. I’ll do this very soon and can’t imagine it won’t taste good. In fact, the back of the card came with a recipe for Baked Dried Apricots with Rose Water, but I ate all the apricots before I saw this recipe :)

Seems to me the bottom line with these box of the month ideas is whether it’s worth the money and would you use the items. Also, would this make a nice gift for people? The answer to this making a nice gift is absolutely YES. The packaging was lovely and if you know anyone who cooks and enjoys Turkish food and treats, this is a very creative gift idea. I have family and friends who loved traveling in Turkey and enjoy Turkish food. They would love this gift!

For me, every item in this box was a winner and as I said, some of them didn’t last very long! The $35 price point seems fair. Not a great deal, but neither does it seem overly priced. If you were to go to Trader Joes or World Market and try to replicate these items, I think you’d spend close to the same price, or more.

Did you take Hyatt up on their Try The World box of the month idea? Did you think it was worth it? Do you use, or gift, other box of the month clubs? I’m curious which ones people really enjoy, so please let me know in the comments below.

P.S. I still have two more boxes to review, Italy and India. Which do you want me to review first?

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