Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
Dec 15, 2009 10:38 AM

Penzy's Garlic Powder

Ok, to strike preemptive, I usually use fresh garlic, that said...
A couple years ago, when Penzy's opened a store here, I was impressed with the incredible smell of the garlic powder. I bought some, and it wasn't like any other I ever tried. It became a lazy way to impart garlic flavor quickly, and sometimes just to boost a sauce etc.
It was really good.
Earlier this year, they had a sign up to try " Our new garlic". I asked the salesperson why they would change suppliers of what was the best dried garlic. She told me that it supposedly reconstituted better, and tasted more like fresh.
Wrong. I don't know if it's just me, but this stuff is no better than any cheap grocery store brand.
Very sad.
There must be more to why they did this. Did anyone else notice? Anyone know the real reason behind the story?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. That really sucks. I haven't ordered Penzey's garlic for a while and was just about to place a new order. Crap. I've never been head over heels in love with their garlic (it IS dried garlic) but, compared to what's available to me locally, it was definitely good quality and extremely reasonably priced.

    How could they possibly have 'improved' on it? This has 'new coke' written all over it. I'll bet any amount of money that the new garlic is cheaper- that this decision was based upon the bottom line and has nothing to do with an 'improved' product.

    I used to be a big Penzey's fan, but, after purchasing ancho chili powder on multiple occasions that had grit in it and now this... my perception of them has dimmed considerably.

    I'll still probably give them my paprika and cumin business, but, if it's true and this garlic powder has taken a turn for the worse, I think the days of recommending them highly to friends and acquaintances have drawn to a close.

    1 Reply
    1. re: scott123

      This may be beating a dead horse (four year-old thread) but many of the spice blends I recently bought from Panzy's are loaded with salt and in fact have salt as the first ingredient--meaning I paid premium spice prices for mostly salt weight.

    2. are you talking about a garlic "powder" as opposed to their granulated garlic? We use the granulated for dry rubs and such.

      1 Reply
      1. Just as an aside... you really do need a granulated garlic when making a BBQ sauce or chili powder. Fresh isn't the same in these two situations. No judgment from this CHer.

        That is not good news about the Penzey's garlic though... I just bought a new jar and haven't opened it yet (the granulated kind)

        3 Replies
        1. re: iluvcookies

          Well, in my experience and especially since cooking from Bon Appetit Y'All, garlic in BBQ recipes and for spice blends like Creole and Cajun call for either fresh minced garlic or garlic powder. In fact I believe I've never seen any mention of granulated garlic at all.

          I like Penzey's and buy from them frequently, but have recently found another spice supplier which fills in the gaps when I can't find what I want from Penzey's...Savory Spice Shop:

          1. re: Gio

            Thanks for the pointer to Savory Spice Shop. I just checked out their website and am impressed! Penzey's does seem to be going more and more in the direction of putting growth and profit over quality. It is good to have an alternative.

            1. re: PinchOfSalt

              I second The Savory Spice Shop. I get my HBI granulated garlic there. (After The Spice House discontinued it.)

        2. Thanks for posting this. i was thinking of ordering the garlic powder because I love the garlic salt. Even though fresh is preferable the garlic at my local grocery store has been awful lately. It's nice to have a back up when you need one.

          1. Not Penzey's too! Why does everyone go cheap, rather than focus on quality and authenticity? It's heart breaking.
            I order all my "exotic" spices from Penzey's, such as Garam Masala, Vindaloo curry powder, shallot pepper, etc. as the local grocery stores just don't carry much variety, and I am not going to drive all over town to ethnic or specialty shops to buy one spice here, and one spice there.
            It's a shame about the garlic. Have you told them how you feel about it? I know they are a family owned company, and probably really do care about what you have to say. I'm sure they would welcome your feedback.
            I will probably continue to order more unusual spices from them, as it is so easy to have them delivered right to my door. And the prices are very reasonable.
            When you talk to them (if you do), tell them that their fans would prefer to pay more for our spices than for them to cheapen what they have to offer.
            I bet they are feeling the crunch of our economy - most folks probably are buying whatever grocery store brand seasonings they can find, and not spending their money on such things as special or higher quality spices.

            1 Reply
            1. re: aces551

              It appears that they are going the way of the big spice companies and using garlic produced outside the US instead. Sad to see the quality spice company sacrifice quality for cost. I completely agree, that for exotic spices they have been great, but are those going to start suffering now?

              I know the topic is on powders, and this may not be the right season but try the experiment if you can. Go to the super market; buy the cheapest clove they have and the more expensive locally (or at least US) grown produce. There is a HUGE difference in flavor and I know which one I prefer. If you can afford it, buy what tastes good to you, not just what the company provides.