Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Paris Grocery seattle

January 21, 2016

Bonjour les Amis,

In 2014 my husband & I adventured to Japan, in 2015 we devoured Italy… This year we’re thinking we might just trade in our passport-requiring wanderlust and save our money for the kitchen of our dreams.

I’m envisioning a Seattle/French stay-cation:
eat Croissants at Honoree Bakery
watch Breathless, Jules et Jim, Trois Couleurs Trilogy
take an epic chicken cooking course at the Pantry at Delancey
have a Cassoulet party with ingredients from Paris Grocery

Do you have any suggestions?

À bientôtj’espère,
Catherine, Kelsey, Manuel & the entire Paris Grocery crew

JUST IN! Grimaud Farms Muscovy Duck Legs (located in our freezer)
$12.99 for 2 

Now you can make your own confit! For a less-daunting recipe, I recommend The Complete Robuchon’s ($40), and then there’s Paula Wolfert’s The Cooking Of Southwest France ($39.95) version if you’re up for confiting 5 lbs like a true Gascon. AND OF COURSE WE ALSO STOCK DUCK FAT for $12.99 lb.

Domaine de las Rabelais ‘Mis en BouteilleCuvee Rouge 2012, Loire $11.99
This definitely falls in the category of ‘Moreish wine’, but please don’t view that as a derogatory comment. It just really does mean that when you pour yourself a glass, you will want more.
As I sit by the fire sipping this, musing about the price, I am quite content with this 100% Cab Franc and I think you will be too. Does it require food? Non. Did it hit the spot with a bowl of French lentil soup? Oui. Brought in by Barrique Imports, a local importer who fancies small family estates across France. A delicious wine for any night of the week.
Domaine Notre Dame des Pallières “Les Moures” , Gigondas 2012 $19.99
This wine absolutely flies off the shelf. We have very smart customers; nothing warms you up with such lovely Rhône intensity as a well-made Gigondas.

Crous St. Martin Chateauneuf de Pape 2014 $24.99
WOW. Last night I dined at delicious Peyrassol Cafe last night for my husband’s birthday, and out of all the wines we opened, this was the red I kept coming back to–especially with the boeuf bourguignon. As Manuel says, this is truly a find…gotta love direct imports!!!
“What a find! Made from 80% Grenache, 10% Syrah, and 10% Mourvedre. The nose reveals aromas of cherry, mulberry and fine spices. Possesses a nice, round mouthfeel, expressing depth & smoothness with aromas of kirsch, black currant, and spices such as thyme, licorice and white pepper. Soft & silky tannins. This is a Chateauneuf-du-Pape that’s hard to beat fo the price! Will pair excently with roasted meats, lamb, and a variety of hard cheeses.” -MM

Domaine Chapelle Bourgogne Aligote 2014 $17.99
The Washington Post calls Aligote, “a wine for the explorer spirit”. Aligote is both a grape & a region, situated in the upper Santenay  and commonly planted at the tops & bottoms of slopes. When given AOC status in 1937–a dubious honor at best– Aligote was no longer admitted into Grand Cru sites and planted on cheaper real estate. Just as pork is “the other white meat”, Aligote is “the other white grape”, which plays second fiddle to Chardonnay. When combined with creme de cassis, Aligote becomes a Kir. On its own, discover stone fruit & citrus, minerals and a lanolin finish. 

KIR: BURGUNDY’S CLASSIC COCKTAIL
The drink Kir started with Aligote and here is the legend behind it. After the Nazi’s stole all of Burgundy’s best wines, Canon Felix Kir (a Resistance hero who went on to become mayor of Dijon) came up with the nest best thing: a red-tinted beverage combining local wine & creme de cassis. Guess what that was called???

Peureux Cassis ala Creme de Cassis $27
Gorgeous presentation. Use a few teaspoons of the Creme de Cassis  & then add a couple of the delicious black currants to your glass.Kir Moderne

Pour 2 teaspoons crème de cassis into a wine glass, followed by 5 ounces chilled Aligoté. Mix and serve.

Kir Normand

Pour 1 ounce crème de cassis into a wine glass, followed by 3 ounces French dry sparkling cider. Garnish with lemon twist.

D’Artagnan Label Rouge Tarbais Beans $23.99 500g
“The Red Label certifies that a product has a specific set of characteristics establishing a superior level to that of a similar current product” -French Ministry of Agriculture
I naturally associate Tarbais with France & Cassoulet… BUT I just learned that these incredible white beans were discovered by Columbus via the Aztecs!!! These magic beans were eventually planted at the foot of the Tarbes mountains in the Pyrenees, and the unique pebbly soil/mild climate produces one of the most sought-after legumes in the world. Are they worth splurging on? Creamy & thin-skinned, I must agree with D’Artagnan’s description: an edible tour de force. The quintessential Cassoulet bean.

Camembert Fondue en Boite from Anne Willan’s  The Country Cooking of France $50
We have two types of Camembert en Boite (in a  box) that will work for this recipe.

serves 3 or 4

one 250 g Camembert in its box
2 Tbs Calvados or white wine
Country bread slices

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Remove the Camembert from its box, discard the wrapping, and return the cheese to its box. Prick the cheese with a fork, then sprinkle with the wine, letting it trickle into the holes. Put the lid back on the box. Bake the cheese until it feels soft & melting when you press it with a finger, 12 to 15 minutes.

Remove the box to a plate, surround it with bread slices, and take off the lid. Let everyone dip in.

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Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Paris Grocery seattle

January 14, 2016

“I love oysters. It’s like kissing the sea on the lips.” -Léon-Paul Fargue
Mes chers amis,

One evening this week while I was leafing through Patricia Wells’ Salad as a Meal cookbook  $16.99 (reg. $34.99)  in search of healthy French meal ideas, I made a startling discovery–in Bordeaux, Merguez & oysters are a natural pairing. In this case, PW suggests you enjoy a white Bordeaux as your accompanying wine, which is really quite brilliant. (I read this while coincidentally enjoying a delicious glass of the recently arrived 2014 vintage of Ducasse Bordeaux Blanc–see below…)Honestly, I’d never thought of pairing oysters with a white Bordeaux (like many, my first thoughts are Muscadet or Sancerre), but in hindsight this makes perfect sense. “Every market in the region has at least one or two oysterman and on weekends roads are lined with little trucks or tables offering oysters to passersby”, Ms. Thorissen shares. Sounds kind of heavenly, doesn’t it?
Pack a picnic basket & take a culinary roadtrip to Paris Grocery this week to find out why Seattle is buzzing about us…

À bientôtj’espère,

Catherine, Manuel & the entire crew at Paris Grocery
___________________________________
Oysters with Merguez adapted from a recipe by Mimi Thorrisen, A Kitchen in France $40
Here in the NW, we are indisputably privy to incredible seafood. And while I fantasize about chilled oysters with some fancy granita in the dog days of summer, I know that the reward of winter is amazing 
huîtres.

Typically, I prefer to enjoy oysters raw and in a fairly pristine fashion, but this recipe got me thinking about mixing things up a bit… Please enjoy, and tell me what you think.

6 oysters
1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter (or if you prefer, olive oil)
2 or 3 Merguez sausages
1 clove garlic, sliced finely
1 shallot, minced
A dash of ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons of red wine
Olive oil, to drizzle
A few sprigs of chives, finely chopped
Coarse sea-salt & freshly ground black pepper

For the garlic breadcrumbs
3/4 cup/45 g breadcrumbs
1/2 clove garlic, minced
Mix both ingredients together in a small bowl.

Slit the sausages sideways and squeeze the meat out of the skins.

Heat the butter in a sauté pan over medium heat. Cook the shallots until softened, add the sausage meat, garlic, thyme, nutmeg, salt and pepper and stir, until the meat is cooked. Pour in the wine and continue to cook for 3 minutes. Take off the heat & set aside.

Shuck the oysters. Place 2 teaspoons of the sausage filling on top of each oyster. Sprinkle garlic breadcrumbs on top and drizzle a bit of olive oil. Arrange oysters in an oven-proof dish or tray and place under a preheated grill for about 3 to 5 minutes, or until the breadcrumbs are golden. Sprinkle the chives on top. Serve immediately.

Chateau Ducasse Bordeaux Blanc 2014, Bordeaux $16.99
Try the delicious fresh vintage!
Fall in love with white Bordeaux. Made by a perfectionist winemaker who owns an estate founded in 1890 and discovered by Kermit Lynch over 40 years ago . This delicious bottling Kermit Lynch has a juicy roundness (but no oak), a mineral streak made for shellfish, topped off with a kiss of lime: a perfect marriage of Sémillon, Muscadelle, and Sauvignon Blanc.  Trust me, this wine is lovely & affordably tempting any night of the week, oysters or not.

Le Pigeoulet en Provence 2012, Vin de Pays de Vaucluse $17.99 

New vintage! The Brunier family’s holdings include Vieux Telegraphe (perhaps the most celebrated cru of the Southern Rhone.) This affordable, everyday Vin de Pays is fresh, rich & fruity and terroir-driven. 35-year-old vines grown in rich clay soil, Le Pigeoulet comes from the foothills of the noble La Crau plateau. Grapes are grown on the warm flats around Chateauneuf de Pape and the cooler foothills of Mt Ventoux. Hand-harvested Grenache with a small balance of Syrah, Carignan & Cinsault–silky & clean with the essence of fresh strawberries. This wine loves grilled merguez.

THIS WEEK’S SHOPPING LIST

D’Artagnan Lamb Merguez 8.5 oz $13.99
Flown in from NY

Fabriques Delices Lamb Merguez $16.99 approx 12 oz
Made in California in a traditional French style

CHEESE OF THE WEEK

Chabichou du Poitou, Appellation d’Origine Controlee $13.99 each
The lemon & mineral flavors in this cheese come from vegetation that springs from the Haut Poitou limestone, which in turn flavors the goats’ milk. In the 8th century, Muslim troops left behind 732 goats after being defeated at Poitiers. Their loss was our gain.
Do not fear its appearance, as the tinges of d’îlots gris bleu (blue-gray islands) are a sign of authenticity.

Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Paris Grocery seattle

January 8, 2016

Coucou,

Wake up, it’s a new year! I hope your 2016 is off to a great start… A little French cutie came in this week with his Maman who was ecstatic to discover us. Enchante, Mara!


For the second year in a row,  I sped off for a voyage vers les îles San Juan, after locking up Paris for the night. Knowing that we wouldn’t arrive at our destination until around 11:30 pm, I packed us a New Year’s Eve picnic for our journey on the water.

No Vichyssoise this year, but once again my husband & I covertly drank Champagne out of our blue Duralex tumblers on the ferry… You won’t tell will you?  🙂  And enjoyed snacks on le Souk’s Tunisian plates which kept our picnic classy. I love leaving these pieces in our friend’s cupboard as a usuable thank you note.

Later on that weekend, we enjoyed a rack of lamb & the world’s best French sidedish, Puree Aligote ala Mimi Thorisson. (If you’ve heard me say it once, I’ll say it again, I highly recommend buying her cookbook, A Kitchen in France: A Year of Cooking in France.)

We hope to see you soon and send you our very best wishes for 2016. And hey–Saturday is National Cassoulet Day! Come see us for Tarbais beans, duck fat, duck confit & a hard-to-find ingredient, Epices Rabelais, which adds an authentic & unique touch.
________________
Last but not least, this is a virtual thank you note to Seattle’s Bakery Nouveau, who yesterday dropped off a gorgeous loaf of Stollen with the sentiment, “We love your store. Happy holidays!”  Bakery Nouveau, je t’aime!!!

A Bientot,
Catherine, Manuel & the entire Paris Grocery crew
________________________

Cassoulet (de Paris Grocery)
Celebrating Le Fete des Rois, Three Kings Day (or Epiphany) is an annual Spanish Table tradition. Spanish Table/Paris Grocery owners Steve & Sharon always host a party for the staff & close family friends. And on a table piled with Spanish & Portuguese dishes, Sharon’s magnificent Cassoulet took center stage. Here is her recipe, only slightly altered for the home cook…

Serves 20 or more, depending on the appetites

1 pkg Poitrine Salee or Iberico smoked Pancetta
16 oz Toulouse Sausage
8 oz Saucisse de Canard aux Figues
3 onions, studded with one clove each
6 carrots
3 lbs dried Tarbais/white beans, soaked overnight and rinsed
3 tablespoons olive oil
Fine sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
14 oz duck fat
5 lbs pork shoulder roast
Two packages Grimaud duck confit
1 large onion, sliced
18 cloves garlic, chopped
3 pounds canned crushed tomatoes
3 teaspoons Herbs de Provence
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
2 cups bread crumbs

Tie the clove-studded onions and carrots together in a double layer of cheesecloth and put with the beans, sausage, and bacon in a large, deep, heavy-bottom casserole. Cover with water at least 3 inches above the top of the bean mixture. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer until the beans are almost tender, about 1 ½ hours. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid. Discard the onion and carrots in the cheesecloth. Transfer the beans and meat to a bowl, cover loosely with foil, and set aside. When cool, slice the sausages and cut the bacon into bite-size pieces.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Roast the pork shoulder in a shallow roasting pan until the internal temperature reaches 150 degrees. Remove and when cool enough, cut into cubes. Cut the confit into bite-size slices.

In a large casserole, heat 3 tablespoons of the duck fat over medium-high heat. Add the sliced onion and garlic and cook gently until the onions are translucent and golden. Add the canned tomatoes, thyme, and cooked beans. Stir in about 2 cups of the reserved bean cooking liquid, transfer to the oven and bake for 30 minutes at 250 degrees. Remove from the oven and stir in the parsley.

Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Add the meat, stir to combine and sprinkle the bread crumbs over the top. Drizzle with the remaining duck fat, and cook until the crumbs are nicely browned and the cassoulet is very hot.

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
I love this article from Decanter & hope you will take up some of these resolutions as well. Like…SUPPORT INDEPENDENT WINE SHOPS!

Here’s one of the gorgeous wines Sharon was prescient enough to stock up on… This wine is sold out in most shops, but we have a secret stash.  Come to us if you have someone you want to impress!

We love Domaine Janassse in any year, but would personally jump on the bottles we still have from the incredible 2012 vintage. A gem to stash for 20 years, or decant & relish now. Check out these stellar reviews on Cellartracker which confirm it’s drinking beautifully even in its youth.

2012 Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes    $120.00
“Most likely one of the top 2-3 wines produced, the 2012 Chateauneuf du Pape Vieilles Vignes is a rough blend of 80-85% Grenache, 10% Mourvedre (which was harvested October 10) and the balance Syrah, that hit 15.4% natural alcohol. Seeing the same elevage as the 2011, it sports an inky purple color as well as spectacular array of black and blue fruits, violets, liquid flowers and underbrush to go with an energetic, seamless and full-bodied profile on the palate. Lighter weight than the 2007 and 2010, it possesses notable freshness, purity and elegance. It should benefit from short-term cellaring and thrill for upward of two decades. Drink 2016-2032″
96 points, Wine Advocate

CHEESE OF THE WEEK
El Trigal 1 Year Manchego, La Mancha $21.99
Believe it or not, the cheese I’m starting off with in 2016 is a Manchego, but not just ANY Manchego.

Being the sister store to Spanish Table, Paris carries the largest selection of Manchego in town–from 3 month to 1 year old, raw milk to pasteurized. And after the dangerous job of reviewing them all, El Trigal’s One Year reigned as my favorite. The Corcuera Family was the first in all of Castilla La Mancha to make and commercialize Manchego Cheese, and they use same day milk resulting in an ultra-buttery taste–trust me it makes the difference. I know these days you can get Manchego at the supermarché, but it just can’t compare.

Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Paris Grocery seattle

December 28,2015

Bonjour les Amis,

As 2016 comes to an end, we can thank King Clovis who invented the marvelous tradition of celebrating New Year’s with Champagne. Apparently in the 5th century, King Clovis promised his Burgundian princess bride that if he won his next battle, he would covert to Christianity. He won & the house wine of the King of Reims became Champagne…

“Royalty loved the novelty of sparkling wine. It was said to have positive effects on women’s beauty and man’s wit.” 17th century Champagne goggles!

Some say Monk Dom Perignon perfected the Champagne bottling process by using thicker bottles & creating a cage for the cork, although not everyone agrees on giving him credit for the invention. He indisputably taught the world about natural fermentation & helped shape the future of Champagne. Sante!

New Year’s Eve Hours: 10:006:00PM; Closed New Year’s Day

Tous nos vœux pour cette nouvelle année,
Catherine, Manuel & the entire Paris Grocery crew 

_______

New Year’s Eve Champagnes and Sparkling Wines 

New Year’s Eve is just around the corner, so it’s a great time to load up on some bubbly to share with family and friends. Champagne and other sparkling wines, such as Crémants, always lend an air of celebration to any gathering, and can make it even make it memorable. With this in mind, we are happy to present some of our favorite Champagnes and sparkling wines that are sure to impress.


Before we start, just a few words about Champagne: the three major types and what distinguishes them. There are three general classifications of Champagne producers imported into the USA: Maisons, Cooperatives and Vignerons. The Classification code (e.g., RM-20098-01) appears in fine type, usually at the bottom of the front label, and occasionally, on the back label.

Maisons (RM – Champagne Houses) are the largest classification comprising about 85% of all Champagne imported into the United States. Champagne houses buy their grapes from grape growers from all over the region. The Maisons focus on blending grapes from different regions and vintages to produce a consistent taste year after year. These are the large Champagne brands that have familiar names such as Moët, Veuve Clicquot, Tattinger, etc. Maison Champagnes are widely available and can be found at most reputable wine shops, and upscale grocery chains.

Cooperative Champagnes (CM) are typically wines from a specific village in Champagne and, usually, from locally-grown grapes. There are a variety of ways in which these co-ops function, but normally, the growers supply their grapes to the co-op and the chief winemaker makes the final wine. Perhaps, the most famous of these is Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte.

The last classification, Vigneron, or Grower Champagne (RM), also affectionately dubbed ‘Farmer-Fizz’ by Terry Theise, undoubtedly, America’s premier Champagne selecter/importer. These are the grower-producers of the Champagne world. The word ‘vigneron’ means winemaker, although it really refers to a farmer who cultivates a vineyard for winemaking purposes. Growers typically own small parcels of vineyards in very specific places within the Champagne region. These vignerons tend to the grapes and bottle the wines themselves–it’s because of this fact, that they are considered artisanal products–they are unique wines and expressive of the vineyard and the grower’s own connection to the vineyard. As Terry Theise puts it, you should drink Farmer-Fizz if you’d rather drink Champagne from a farmer than a factory—Veuve Clicquot produces approximately 1.4 million cases of their yellow label Champagne, annually–good point!

Of course, Grower Champagnes aren’t necessarily better than Maison Champagnes, it’s a matter of personal tastes, and availability. I prefer Grower Champagnes because they tend to be more distinctive, requiring a little more thought than an automatic grab at a familiar brand. At a minimum, you should try a couple and make up your own mind. Of course, I’d never turn down a bottle of Bollinger La Grande Année! And now, for some of our favorites.

NV Baumard Crémant de Loire ‘Carte Turquoise’  $19.99  
Domaine des Baumard lies tucked away in the tiny village of Rochefort-sur-Loire, just south of Savennières, in the very heart of the ancient Duchy of Anjou. All of Baumard’s sparkling wines are Crémant de Loire and thus subject to stricter regulations than your run-of-the-mill mousseux.  A blend of Chenin Blanc and Cabernet Franc, the Carte Turquoise has been produced at the Domaine des Baumard since 1957. With notes of cassis, blackberry, pear, quince and citrus notes. The Carte Turquoise end with a delicate and elegant mousse. A simple, charming Crémant that comes at a reasonable price.

NV Champagne Billecart-Salmon Brut Réserve  $50.00
Among the half-dozen top family-run houses in Champagne, the family has been producing wines in Mareuil-sur-Ay since 1818. A beautifully made reserve Champagne built on a style comprising full fruit and finesse. This is a blend of 40% Pinot Meunier, 30% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay. Full-bodied, showing earthiness in the aroma, with plenty of ripe, candied apple fruit on the palate. Firmly structured, it builds in intensity to a long vanilla and nutty aftertaste. Possesses a creamy texture and elegant, tiny bubbles. This superb Champagne was unavailable for a long time; its return in the past few years is certainly welcomed.

NV Champagne Gaston Chiquet Blan de Blancs D’Aÿ Grand Cru  $65.00 (RM) 
One of the finest aperitif Champagnes in the market, and one of my all-time favorites! Farming 23 hectares of vineyards situated within the perimeter encompassing Dizy, Aÿ, Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and Hautvillers, the Chiquet Family has been producing wine since the 1930s. Fresh and fragrant, the wine positively dances on the palate, with hints of fresh citrus, biscuit, chamomile and racy green apples. Possesses nice, tight bubbles on the finish. This is a wonderful Grand Cru Champagne and worth every penny!
92 Points, Wine Advocate

NV Champagne Henriot Brut Souverain  $45.00 (NM)
Just like the label says, Henriot has been making Champagne since 1808. The Henriot family’s hallmark of richness, elegance and depth is maintained in part by exceptionally high standards regarding its reserve wines. The Brut Souverain benefits from an addition of up to 20% reserve wines from a number of different vintages in the Champagne Henriot library; one of the largest percentages of reserve wines in Champagne. The Brut Souverain is both expressive and refreshing, with notes of citrus and yellow fruit and fragrances of elderflowers, as well as, pastry aromas, such as brioche, toast, and grilled almond. On the palate, it’s lively, fresh and balanced, with pastry, vanilla, morello cherry, and candied plum notes. Nicely textured, with a clean, refreshing finish marked by citrus fruit aromas. Makes an ideal aperitif Champagne, or as an accompaniment to lighter dishes.

NV Champagne Vilmart & Cie. ‘Grand Cellier’ Premier Cru          $70.00 (RM)
My favorite Premier Cru Champagne! It’s distinctive and very elegant–truly a luxury Champagne. It is made from free-run juice only and is a barrel-fermented wine. Rich and luscious, with aromas of orange blossom, mint, herbs and spice, this wine has richness and great depth of flavor. This wine comes from prime Champagne territory–right on the 49th parallel–in the quiet, Premier Cru village of Rilly, within the Montagne de Reims. Made by the brilliant Laurent Champs, this wine has attained near-cult status as the food Champagne, par excellence—try it!
92 Points, Wine Advocate

NV Champagne Aubry Brut  $43.00 (RM)   
“… Bittersweet perfume suggestive of gentian and iris mingles with intimations of fresh lime and sea breeze that in turn manifest themselves on a seductively silken palate in both juicy, vivacious exuberance and mouthwatering saliva inducement. A scallop-like sweetly saline and mineral amalgam takes hold in a vibrant finish that leaves me caught between the urge to linger and the urge to take the next sip…”
91 Points, Wine Advocate

NV Champagne Delamotte Brut Blanc de Blancs   $60.00  (NM)
The sister estate of the iconic Salon Champagne; both in existence and producing Champagne since 1760. All stainless steel fermentation, a small percentage of reserve wine (10%) and low dosage make for a very rich, round Champagne, with stone fruit notes, toast and persistent bubbles.

-Manuel

CHEESE OF THE WEEK

Fleur de Maquis, Corsica $35.99 lb
This cheese is EXTREMELY hard to come by, so when I finally got 6 rounds in, I got to call a lot of happy Corsicans.
Fleur de Maquis is named after the dense thickets of underbrush on the island of Corsica. Made from the milk of Lacaune ewes, and then coated with a mixture of rosemary & fennel. With time, the cheese absorbs the herbal flavors. Ask for a taste of this gorgeous rare cheese & I think you’ll fall hard.

COCKTAIL CENTRAL
We have a huge selection of craft cocktail components…

Bitters:
Fee Brothers
Scrappy’s
Bittermans
Regan’s
Peychaud’s
Angostoura
Bittercube
Dr. Adam Elmegirab

Gourmet Cherries:
Toschi Amarena Cherries in Syrup
Griottines Wild Morello Cherries in Kirsch
Jack Rudy’s Bourbon Cocktail Cherries

THE FRENCH WAY TO RING IN A NEW YEAR

Oyster Plates $10.99
Pradel Oyster Opener $14.99

Serve oysters in style! We found these ceramic oyster plates for you & ordered up some authentic French oyster knives with a beechwood oyster holder.

Foie Gras
We have a freezer packed with foie boards from La Belle Farms & Hudson Valley Duck Farms in upstate NY.

Favols Confit Fleurs de Violettes $8.50
This lovely condiment comes from the Aquitaine region in  SW France & uses the simplest ingredients: cane sugar, water, pectin, violet flower, citric acid, concentrated blackberry juice. Adds French flair to cheese or foie gras.

White Toque Escargot in Shell with Butter $11.99
Chill some Champagne & pop these in the oven…
White Toque’s Escargot are regarded as #1 in flavor & texture. These are wild helix snails cooked in an aromatic bouillon, processed in Burgundy in the oldest snail factory in France. 12 prepared snails in shell, flavored with a parsley garlic butter. Don’t defrost, just bake for 10 minutes. That’s it! Get some bread ready to sop up the delectable sauce.

Gougeres adapted from Around My French Table by Dorie Greenspan $40
This recipe is perfect for a New Year’s party as it can be made in advance & goes swimmingly with Champagne.

ingredients

  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup French flour
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups coarsely grated cheese, such as Gruyère or Cantal (about 6 ounces; plus a scant amount Mimolette for color)
  • preparation

Position the racks to divide the oven into thirds and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.

Bring the milk, water, butter, and salt to a rapid boil in a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan over high heat. Add the flour all at once, lower the heat to medium-low, and immediately start stirring energetically with a wooden spoon or heavy whisk. The dough will come together and a light crust will form on the bottom of the pan. Keep stirring—with vigor—for another minute or two to dry the dough. The dough should now be very smooth.

Turn the dough into the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or into a bowl that you can use for mixing with a hand mixer or a wooden spoon and elbow grease. Let the dough sit for a minute, then add the eggs one by one and beat, beat, beat until the dough is thick and shiny. Make sure that each egg is completely incorporated before you add the next, and don’t be concerned if the dough separates—by the time the last egg goes in, the dough will come together again. Beat in the grated cheese. Once the dough is made, it should be spooned out immediately.

Using about 1 tablespoon of dough for each gougère , drop the dough from a spoon onto the lined baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches of puff space between the mounds. Using about 1 tablespoon of dough for each gougère, drop the dough from a spoon onto the lined baking sheets, leaving about 2 inches of puff space between the mounds. Slide the baking sheets into the oven and immediately turn the oven temperature down to 375 degrees F. Bake for 12 minutes, then rotate the pans from front to back and top to bottom. Continue baking until the gougères are golden, firm, and, yes, puffed, another 12 to 15 minutes or so. Serve warm, or transfer the pans to racks to cool.

Serving
Gougères are good straight from the oven and at room temperature. I like them both ways, but I think you can appreciate them best when they’re still warm. Serve with kir, white wine, or Champagne.

Storing
The best way to store gougères is to shape the dough, freeze the mounds on a baking sheet, and then, when they’re solid, lift them off the sheet and pack them airtight in plastic bags. Bake them straight from the freezer—no need to defrost—just give them a minute or two more in the oven. Leftover puffs can be kept at room temperature over night and reheated in a 350-degree-F oven, or they can be frozen and reheated before serving.

Paris Grocery
1418 Western Ave
Seattle, WA 98101

206.682.0679
www.parisgroceryseattle.com

Mon-Sat 10-6
Sun 11-5

Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Paris Grocery seattle

December 21, 2015

Paris Grocery Holiday Delights!

Now that the end of year holidays are fast approaching, it might be a great time to load up on some fine wines and bubbly to share with family and friends. Champagne and other sparkling wines (Crémants) always lend an air of celebration to any gathering, and a bottle of fine wine can elevate a meal and make it memorable, not to mention, impressing a boss, family or friends when presented as a gift! With this in mind, we are happy to present some of our favorite gift-worthy wines & Champagnes, as well as, gifts and stocking stuffers for your favorite Francophile!

Arnaud Soubeyran Callssons de Provence   $17.49
What do French people buy for Christmas? These traditional marzipan melon candies from Provence which we can barely keep in stock.

BABY CIE

These French plates are absolutely adorable & tres Francais. We have sippy cups, silver ware, plates & bowls, all made in dishwasher-safe melamine.
They go for $3.99 to $13.99.

Our French kids table has Dr. Seuss books, tableware & fun stuff galore. Merry Christmas enfants français!

Le Cadeaux Melamine Tableware    $8 – $27
This stuff is incredible because it emulates Mediterranean ceramics, but is made of durable dishwasher safe Melamine. That means you can throw it in your picnic basket, take it on your boat or camping, use it for parties with no worry.
We’ve got salad plates, baguette trays, appetizer plates, cutting boards, serving trays…
Click on each pattern for a view: CitronRomanaRooster BlueRooster YellowMalaga

Jacquard Francais Tea Towels    $16 – $23
The term ‘tea towels’ came from British households where only fine linen was used to dry expensive tea service pieces. Made in France since 1888, these towels are simply gorgeous. 100% combed cotton in vibrant colors–they can also double as place mats. I was at a friend’s house for dinner & hers were over a decade old–I marveled at how well the colors held up & how soft they became over the years. These are something you will want displayed in your kitchen, not just stowed in a drawer.

Kusmi Tea Brunch Assortment   $28.99
All your Kusmi favorites packaged together–5 tins of Paris’s favorite tea.
An assortment of three exclusive Russian blends. Anastasia, a blend of Earl Grey, lemon and orange blossom, Kashmir Tchai, a blend of black teas with spices based on the traditional Nepalese recipe and Imperial Label, a subtle blend of green tea, cinnamon and licorice. Those who love full bodied teas will delight in English Breakfast, with its blend of black teas from Ceylon and Assam. You will love the refreshment of Spearmint green tea after a meal.

Gift Champagnes & 90+ Holiday Wines To Consider!

NV Champagne Vilmart & Cie. ‘Grand Cellier’ Premier Cru    $70.00
My favorite Premier Cru Champagne! It’s distinctive and very elegant–truly a luxury Champagne. It is made from free-run juice only and is a barrel-fermented wine. Rich and luscious, with aromas of orange blossom, mint, herbs and spice, this wine has richness and great depth of flavor. This wine comes from prime Champagne territory–right on the 49th parallel–in the quiet, Premier Cru village of Rilly, within the Montagne de Reims. Made by the brilliant Laurent Champs, this wine has attained near-cult status as the food Champagne, par excellence—try it!

NV Champagne Billecart-Salmon Brut Réserve    $50.00
Among the half-dozen top family-run houses in Champagne, the family has been producing wines in Mareuil-sur-Ay since 1818. A beautifully made reserve Champagne built on a style comprising full fruit and finesse. This is a blend of 40% Pinot Meunier, 30% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay. Full-bodied, showing earthiness in the aroma, with plenty of ripe, candied apple fruit on the palate. Firmly structured, it builds in intensity to a long vanilla and nutty aftertaste. Possesses a creamy texture and elegant, tiny bubbles. This superb Champagne was unavailable for a long time; its return in the past few years is certainly welcomed.

NV Champagne Gaston Chiquet Blan de Blancs D’Aÿ Grand Cru  $65.00
One of the finest aperitif Champagnes in the market, and one of my all-time favorites! Farming 23 hectares of vineyards situated within the perimeter encompassing Dizy, Aÿ, Mareuil-sur-Aÿ and Hautvillers, the Chiquet Family has been producing wine since the 1930s. Fresh and fragrant, the wine positively dances on the palate, with hints of fresh citrus, biscuit, chamomile and racy green apples. Possesses nice, tight bubbles on the finish. This is a wonderful Grand Cru Champagne and worth every penny!

2012 Domaine du Cayron Gigondas   $40.00  
Domaine du Cayron is located between Avignon and Vaison la Romaine, at the foot of the Dentelles de Montmirail. The estate was founded in 1936, and is run by the fifth generation of the family, the Faraud Sisters, Delphine, Cedrine, and Roseline. Most of the vines are between 20 and fifty years old.
“One of my favorite estates in Gigondas, Domaine du Cayron’s 2012 Gigondas doesn’t disappoint. Made from 70% Grenache, 15% Cinsault, 14% Syrah and a splash of Mourvèdre that’s fermented with 100% whole clusters, it shows a classic Cayron perfume of basil, wild herbs, sweet dark fruits and mint. Medium-bodied, supple and elegant, it’s already hard to resist but will evolve nicely through 2022.”
91 points, Wine Advocate

2012 Domaine de la Janasse Chateauneuf-du-Pape Vieilles Vignes    $120.00
One of the truly iconic French wines, Chateauneuf-du-Pape is a wine that is recognized by wine novices,  as well as by cognoscenti, and thus, makes a great gift. Domaine de la Janasse, run by the brother and sister team of Christophe and Isabelle Sabon, produces a variety of cuvées every year. The Vieilles Vignes bottling is made from 85% Grenache, 10% Mourvedre and the rest is Syrah, and offers blockbuster notes of blackberry, violets, spice and serious minerality to go with awesome mid-palate depth and layers of sweet tannin. This wine is a keeper and will evolve in the bottle over the next 10-15 years.
96 points, Wine Advocate

Le Petit Haut Lafitte Pessac-Leognan 2010   $43.00
Effectively, a new second wine from Chateau Smith Haut-Lafitte. This Pessac-Leognan wine is a blend of 55% Cabernet Sauvignon and 45% Merlot, all grown on deep gravel, destemmed and fermented in small, temperature-controlled stainless-steel tanks.
“Very engaging from the start, with a blast of boysenberry and blackberry fruit that grabs your attention, while notes of licorice snap, violet and black tea fill in the background. Open, pure and ready to drink now. Drink now through 2021.”
91 points, Wine Spectator

2010 Chateau Haut -Bages Liberal Pauillac   $77.00
I love this wine! It’s totally balanced, with a real feel of Pauillac sophistication. Chateau Haut-Bages Libéral’s neighbours are the fabled Chateau Pichon-Lalande and Chateau Latour, but the estate has managed to keep prices reasonably low so it’s more affordable than most. A terrific effort and a great value! Did I mention the soaring  finish?
“One of the best efforts from this estate since the 1982, this wine remains fairly priced. It exhibits ripe blue and black fruits, a dense plum/purple color, good acidity buttressing a remarkably rich, fleshy, sumptuous texture, and oodles of smoky black currant and blueberry fruit. Ripe, heady and rich, this wine will probably benefit from 2-5 years of cellaring despite its precociousness and keep for two decades.”
92 points, Wine Advocate

Saturday, Jan 23 2016 

Bonjour chers lecteurs,

I’ve never been to France for xmas, but David Lebovitz has–
“…Christmas is taken pretty seriously around here. It’s considered a close, family holiday and even though the big department stores have spectacular window displays, Christmas hasn’t been overtly commercialized and kids are content when la grande-mère hands them a bag of fresh clementines, and don’t throw tantrums if they don’t get the latest version of the impossible-to-get video game. At least in my French famille.”

Should you want to sneak some Calisson into your sweetie’s stocking, we’re open until Christmas Eve (10 am -4 pm), closed Christmas Day.

Laisse tomber la neige,

Catherine

If you can’t afford a trip to France, here’s some idées for the next best thing.

Sur la Table “Winter Dinner in France” cooking class
(school supplies: come to PG for your Gruyere, mustard & French butter)
River Valley Cheese “Artisan Cheese Making Classes”
(school supplies: come to PG for a slate cheese board to show off your creations, and French jams for cheese)
Farm Stay at the Gite, Monteillet Fromagerie
I stayed at Joan & Pierre-Louis’s lovely Gite in Dayton, WA for my birthday one year. It is a cheese-lovers dream as your fridge is stocked with fromage straight from the farm.
(school supplies: make sure to bring lots of French wine!)

DUCK FAT COOKIES

Sablés à la graisse de canard
from David Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen, Recipe & Stories $28 (save $7!) 

Makes 45 to 50 cookies

Ingredients:

1/4 cup (30g) dried currants or chopped dried cherries (Available next door at Spanish Table)
1 tablespoon Armagnac, Cognac, or brandy
6 tablespoons (85g) chilled duck fat
4 tablespoons (2 ounces/55g) salted or unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
11/4 cups (175g) all-purpose flour 3/4 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt

In a small saucepan, heat the currants over low heat with the liquor until the liquid is completely absorbed. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or by hand in a bowl, cream the duck fat, butter, and sugar on low speed just until well combined. Mix in the vanilla.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add it to the fat-butter-sugar mixture, stirring until the dough comes together. Then mix in the dried fruit pieces.

On a lightly floured countertop, knead the dough briefly until smooth. Shape it into a rectangle, and cut the dough in half lengthwise. Roll each piece of dough into a log 6 inches (15cm) long. (If the dried fruit makes the dough crumble a bit, stick your thumbs into any fissures to seal them, pressing the dough back together, then continue to roll it into cylinders.) Wrap each log in plastic and refrigerate until firm, at least 30 minutes. (The dough can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated, or frozen for up to 2 months.)

To bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350oF (180oC) and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.

Slice the dough into 1/4-inch (.75cm) rounds and set them on the baking sheets, evenly spaced. Bake the cookies, rotating the bak- ing sheets midway through, for 12 minutes, until golden brown across the top. Remove the cookies from the oven and cool on the baking sheets until crisp. The cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.