GTBank Food and Drink: A Story in Sweets
This past week, GTBank Food and Drink was here again!
For those who have no idea what I speak of, GTBank Food and Drink is an annual food festival which showcases the finest of culinary crafts across Nigeria. It is hosted by Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank). This year’s festival would be the 4th of its kind.
GTBank Food and Drink is my kind of scene. A wide variety of foods that cater to every craving coupled with vivid aromas and fast paced consumers is pure perfection to me. I love the thrill!
Prior to this festival, I’d never attended Food and Drink. For some inexplicable reason, I was never in Lagos when it was time for the festival. This year, however, I blatantly refused to let that be my situation.
A couple of days before the festival, I came across a food personality test and believe me, I got beyond excited!
I’m a sucker for personality tests so I immediately opted to take the test. When the results came in, it was decided that I have a Sweet Tooth and am therefore a Jedi Jedi Candidate. They weren’t lying though! I do have a more-than-mild sweet tooth and I’m always trying to find the balance between savoury and sweet with my taste buds.
The results did inspire me though. I decided that I was going to be the best Jedi Jedi candidate in the business. How, you ask? I went in search of every sweet treat that caught my eye at the fair and I tried them all - to the detriment of my teeth and waistline but okay! Here are some of the things I tried:
The Night King – Hans and Rene
The Night King is one of Hans and Rene’s Game of Thrones inspired flavours. The series has inspired special edition flavours influenced by characters and visuals.
The Night King is a fior di latte gelato. Verbatim, ‘fior di latte’ means ‘flower of milk’ or ‘milk flower’ as the case may be. Usually, it refers to fresh mozzarella made from cow’s milk. In this case, it refers to the purest form of gelato possible – all cream, no flavours or additives. Just sweetened pure cream.
I have no idea how this sounds but honestly, the night king was delicious! My favourite thing about this gelato was the texture. I cannot actively put words to how smooth it was. It was so smooth, I felt like a cloud was melting in my mouth. The gelato’s sweetness was very well balanced; neither overpowering nor understated. I’d definitely try this again sometime.
Red Velvet Cheesecake Ice Cream and a Double Chocolate Muffin – The Ice Cream Factory
The Ice Cream Factory is a favourite for me, to be honest. Every single time I’m at Circle Mall or Maryland Mall, I find my way to the Ice Cream Factory. The store draws me like a moth to a flame.
When I passed by their stand at the festival, I attempted to resist the siren call of the cones but I failed. I hightailed to their stand as fast as my legs could carry and I ordered my factory staples – the red velvet cheesecake and the double chocolate muffin.
I thoroughly enjoyed the red velvet cheesecake but my favourite part of this combo was the double chocolate chip muffin. The muffin was divine. Fluffy and moist, the muffin had me rolling my eyes back in ecstasy.
Baileys Trifle – Honey & Cloves
The Honey & Cloves Baileys trifle – a multiple layered dessert – was set to combine two things that have me by the heart: Irish cream and sweet treats. I had very high hopes for this but honestly, I didn’t enjoy it as much.
My tiff with the trifle was that I could barely taste the Baileys in the dessert. When eating alcohol infused desserts, I want to be able to detect – but not be overwhelmed by – the flavours infused in the mix. The trifle just didn’t give me that. Overall, it wasn’t a bad dessert but one more shot of Baileys wouldn’t have hurt anyone.
Oatmeal Cookies and Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies – A Pinch of Spice
I love cookies! My Oma – God bless her soul – used to make my siblings and I cookies all the time. Almond, chocolate chip, peanut, you name it!
The oatmeal cookies were honestly one of the best things I’d tried all day. They had a slight crunch, awesome texture and were extremely flavourful. Even if the coconut chocolate chip cookies weren’t warm, the chocolate chips still melted in your mouth.
I loved these so much, I went back to the festival the next day… but they were sold out. Sad, I know.
56% Milk Chocolate – Loshes Chocolate
Aesthetics are everything and Loshes Chocolate easily proves this to be a fact. I found Loshes’ stand pretty close to the end of my sojourn of sweets. I was tired, full and I felt like I had all the festival had to offer. I was pretty wrong.
The real eye catcher with Loshes Chocolate bars is the packaging. The packaging is so nicely done! It’s classy, sleek and solid. Each variant (milk, white, dark or a mix) is given its base package (a solid colour) and a sleeve which contains vital information such as the chocolate variant.
I didn’t have the chocolate bar until I got home and when I finally did, I was slightly confused. My confusion stemmed primarily from the fact that the chocolate wasn’t necessarily sweet. It had an amazing texture – smooth and seamless – but I wasn’t quite on board with the flavour. Upon visiting their website, I realised that the 56% milk chocolate is actually a dark chocolate infused with milk chocolate to give it a slightly sweet flavour.
I was a bit miffed because when I’d spoken to one of the vendors at the stand, I asked about this and I was told it was indeed milk chocolate.
At day’s end, I did enjoy the bar. I just wish I’d been better prepared for the flavour.
Spiced White Hibiscus Tea with Honey – Sari Herbal Living
My threshold for resisting iced tea is extremely low so honestly, I didn’t bother trying.
The spiced white hibiscus tea was extremely refreshing. Its distinct flavour balanced by the mild sweetness of the honey made the iced tea one of my fair favourites.
Aside the tea, Sari’s stand was extremely aesthetically pleasing. I’m still trying to decide what I liked best about it: the flowers hanging from the walls or the giant sign which read “Tea Lover!”