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I have long thought that Charlotte may have what you want if you're willing to look for (and then support) it. I know what it's like to move to an area and not find a food product you hunger for: I couldn't find turnip greens in New Jersey, soft-shelled crabs in Tulsa and cranberries in Egypt.

But Charlotte has attracted entrepreneurs who have seen needs and filled them. However, these businesses may not be in your neighborhood. So dust off your GPS. I want to help connect you with a person who may have the food products you crave. Creative Loafing will have this column as a searchable archive online.

But I also need your help. If you are making something in your restaurant or shop -- like Kristin Bou Zeidan at La Parisienne Fine Chocolate: Chocolate, Coffee and Wine, who is primarily selling artisanal chocolates but also makes a sideline of Buffalo sponge candy (really) -- e-mail me.

I've learned that Charlotte has the unexpected. Andrew D'Rouco is a prime example. His family made sausages in their native Spain for hundreds of years -- before North Carolina was even a colony -- and now he continues that tradition in Matthews. That's right, Matthews. D'Rouco sells his delicious sausages to area restaurants and nationwide through La Tienda.

After my article on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx last October, I heard from many who had relocated here from the Northeast where Italian shops are abundant. And yes, Jackie, there is sfogliatelle in Charlotte. Check out Nona's Sweets (704-717-6144), in their new location at 9331 JW Clay Blvd. Nona's has dozens of items -- including crusty Italian bread -- which have other outlets in town as well, but I'm focusing on those items only found at one place. Note:

Items at Nona's are not sold by the pound as they are in the Northeast, but by the piece.

Nona's Sweets is your connection to these unique offerings: Cassada cake; Pasticciotti; Poppy seed and nut roll, a family recipe of Polish or Czech origins; Rainbow layer cookies (from upper state New York); Sfogliatelle.

Specific food items for the holidays: St Joseph cake, sold in June but available year round by request; Patua: a Christmas wreath of fried bowtie pasta soaked in wine, honey and chicory; Easter Grain (custard) pie; Braided Easter bread with baked eggs.

Know of other food items unique to the Q.C.? These can be regional foods or international. Talk to me:

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