Hungry gridlocked crowds packed San Francisco's Moscone Center this week, seeking out the most delicious, unusual and oddball bites at the world's largest food trade event, the Winter Fancy Food Show.
This year's show, which ran Jan. 19 to 21, featured more than 1,360 purveyors, who served up gallons of condiments, mounds of chips and thousands of pounds of cheese, toffee, tea and more to the 18,000-plus visitors.
The hot trends included gluten-free foods that actually taste great; chocolate and more chocolate; piles of jerky flavored with lime, chipotle and tamarind; and sriracha-infused everything -- including candy canes, mayonnaise, popcorn, chips and even lip balm.
In addition to the usual array of frighteningly creative dishes, this year's event also featured some delectably good and good-for-you foods. Here's a sampling of some of the very best bites, most of which can be found at your local market now or very soon.
Altar Herbal Martini
Five elegant, alcohol-free concoctions made with herbs, tea, spices, fruit and vegetables make for interesting sips with enough layered flavors that they don't even need alcohol. Chill, for example, is made with Asian plums, Thai lemon grass, fresh fennel, kumquats, Chinese schizandra berries, jasmine and black tea. Find it at BevMo for $20 per 32-ounce bottle.