I just received my first catalog since about January or maybe December. You know what that means, don't you? It's almost the time when the rest of the world launches into Fruitcake Season. For me, it's just business as usual. If anything, I've been a bit tardy--I think I've had more fruitcakes reviewed by this time in previous years.
In any case, I've received my Texas Manor fruitcake, which I will review soon, but I wanted to report on the catalog I just got. It's from Holy Spirit Monastery, and it looks like they did a redesign on their packaging. I don't think I got one of their catalogs last year (I tried their cake the first time at the end of last year, and did an online purchase), but it's very nice indeed. They have a few different fruitcake size options, and also sell other items, like fudge, including one that I would love to try: "Southern Touch," which contains peaches, pecans and a touch of peach brandy....yum. In any case, if you look at my review of this cake, previously they had a rather austere but real tin. I'm just checking the catalog right now and they might have ditched the tin altogether: they say that the round cake as well as the loaf are "packed in attractive gift boxes." They are actually pretty cute boxes, but it doesn't look like they've updated their website to match their catalog, so I can't show them to you.
Here's what's weird, though: the original tin I got last December had a sticker on it proclaiming the cake to be from "Brother Basil's kitchen." When you go to the website, there is copy there describing a Brother Patrick as their master fruitcake-baker. However, my catalog disagrees, claiming that indeed Brother Augustine is the master fruitcake-maker. So who is it?
Frankly, Ragtime Cowboy Joe (yeah, I don't know him, either) could make my fruitcake--I don't care, as long as it's good. Most monasteries don't really say who, in particular, makes their cakes. It's kind of funny that Holy Spirit is trying to put a human edge on this and just succeeds in confusing me.
It don't matter. This catalog looks darn good, and also includes some pretty calendars if you're into contemplative abbey photos, as well as other foodstuffs, like apple butter and some Trappist coffee from Venezuela. I think the catalog contains a much nicer presentation of their products than their website. If you're into fruitcake, you may want to request one. I'm thinkin' I need a bit of a Southern Touch to my holiday season . . .