Paris Grocery News 10/9 Sunday, Oct 10 2010 

We love you, Cab Francs. No matter what they say.

Wine @ PG

This week we’re featuring some fantastic values in Loire Valley reds. These are all 100 percent Cabernet Franc, a grape that is quite popular in France, especially in the Loire Valley, but is better known stateside as a grape used in blends, particularly those from Bordeaux. Depending on production practices, the grape can produce fruitier or more herbal/vegetative flavors than other varietals. It’s also noted for a certain floral quality, especially violets. Some palates, unused to these qualities, may find themselves off-put by a Cab Franc wine, but we think they’re worth getting to know better. They are typically medium-bodied and easy to drink , but with a cerebral, what-is-that-exactly quality. And at  these prices, you can’t go wrong.

Sables Blonds Touraine Rouge 2009 ($9.99)

This Cabernet Franc is loaded with minerals and notes of earth and dark berries. It’s juicy and lightly tannic: perfect for flank steak. We liked this wine so much that we brought in a case of it to compete with our larger buys of Côtes du Rhone and Bordeaux; like those more typical options, this is one to grab for any simple cold-weather dish.

Saumur Rouge “Les Epinats” 2009 ($9.99)

This Cab Franc uses grapes from a single vineyard that is abundant with silex, giving the wine a dense backbone of minerality. A lovely transparent ruby color in the glass, with delicate aromas of violets. Bright and lively on the palate, with a hint of cherries and licorice. Just enough grip and a supremely balanced finish:  this wine really offers bang for your buck.

Bourgueil  Rouge “Beauregard” 2009 ($10.99)

We tasted this directly after the Saumur, and while it had some similarities in terms of texture, its flavors were slightly more complex. Dark notes of blackberry brush up against something like pencil shavings. Bourgueil is known for being a bit more rustic than its neighbor Chinon, but we sort of like that: this wine really sings when paired with the right foods. The bright acidity and herbal notes of tarragon make it a natural with lamb sausages.

Cheese @ PG

Rogue River Blue

This cow’s milk cheese from Sonoma is aged for one year in “Roquefort-like” caves. It has vibrant hints of hazelnuts and sweet pine, with a clean, woodsy finish. Each wheel is wrapped in grape leaves and soaked in pear brandy, giving the cheese a supremely creamy texture.

$38.99/lb

$9.75/quarter lb

Fleur d’Aunis

This washed rind semi-soft cow’s milk cheese from Charentes-Poitou is rich, creamy, and slightly nutty. The rind is brushed with Pineau des Charentes, a fortified wine made with Cognac. A easy cheese for snacking, with just enough complexity.

$15.99/lb

$3.99/quarter lb

Folie Bergere

A fresh goat cheese from Belgium with a savory coating of herbs. The dense texture is similar to a dry ricotta, and it has a less mild tang than other chèvres. Earthy and delicious!

$32.99/lb

$8.25/quarter lb

Back in stock: we have fresh wheels of Morbier (the washed rind classic with a center line of ash), Cantalet Dore (the “French cheddar” that’s so good with apples), and Gabietou (the dreamy cow’s and sheep’s milk cheese created by Herve Mons).

Craves @ PG

Candied Orange Peel Strips

Imported from France, these have a fantastic balance of sweet and tangy flavors and a delightfully toothsome texture. Packed in a touch of syrup to retain moisture and freshness. In addition to myriad baking and confectionary uses, candied orange peel strips make a fantastic accompaniment to cheese or dark chocolate. People have also been known to just eat them, one by one, until they are all gone: but these tales may just be the stuff of sweet tooth legend.

Feed Your Mind @ PG

Around my French Table by Dorie Greenspan

This attractive and rather huge book promises over 300 recipes from Greenspan’s classic “French dinner table” repertoire . The book is organized extremely well, with nibbles, vegetables, and desserts getting just as much attention as beef, chicken, and seafood. The recipes are surprisingly simple. In fact, Julie Child once told Greenspan,  “You write recipes just the way I do.” High praise from a true master!

 

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Advertisements

Paris Grocery News 8/20 Saturday, Aug 21 2010 

There goes Tin Tin, unearthing the mysteries behind Burgundy and Bordeaux. (But we don't recommend sharing your wine with your pooch.)

Wine @ PG

Chateau de Campuget Costières de Nîmes Blanc ($9.99)

Nîmes is one of the most charming towns in France I’ve ever seen, and their wines fit the setting. This delightful white is a blend of Viognier, Roussane, Marsanne, and White Grenache. Light and direct, balanced and limey. Delicious citrus peel, green apple and floral notes. Clean, breezy finish.

François Chidaine Vouvray ($24.99)

A lovely Chenin Blanc from the maker of our favorite Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc. François Chidaine again shows his craftsmanship with this aromatic wine that holds your attention from the rounded start to the bright, mouthwatering finish.

“Greenish yellow. The stoniest of these 2008s, displaying scents of Meyer lemon, orange, melon and nectarine, all underscored by zesty minerality. Very pure and focused in the mouth, offering juicy pit fruit flavors, a hint of honeydew and refreshing citrus zest notes. Becomes richer with air and finishes with excellent precision and juicy persistence.” 91 points Stephen Tanzer

Bergerie de l’Hortus Coteaux du Languedoc Rosé ($17.99)

A blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvèdre, this wine is perfect for lovers of Rhône rosés! Full bodied, defined, with ripe red fruit and a touch of pepper. The minerality really shines through at the finish. Refreshing and beautifully balanced, its weight makes it a great match for heartier fare, such as cured meat and grilled seafood.

Domaine d’Eole Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence Rosé ($14.99)

This wine comes from a family-run vineyard in Provence. The vines on their 40ha are raised organically, and the grapes are hand-harvested. This rosé is slightly creamy, with plush cherry and berry flavors. The acid is balanced though, with a zippy vein running through the ripe fruit. Come get it while the sun still shines!

Domaine de Piaugier Côtes-du-Rhône Villages Sablet Rouge ($14.99)

Sablet sits just down the road from Gigondas in the Rhône Valley, and is equally blessed with diverse and interesting soils. Jean-Marc Autran is the fourth-generation winemaker for this family-owned estate, and the family’s passion and experience shows in the quality of their wines. The Sablet Rouge is mostly Grenache, with about 30% Syrah. It is superbly balanced, with great texture. The sweet dark fruit is very aromatic, and the fruit gives way to a brooding mid-palate. The finish is persistent, but not heavy. Overall, a delicious wine and an amazing value.

Cheese @ PG

We’ve brought in some new cheeses this week, and none of them are French. Mais pourquoi? you ask, Gallically indignant. Parce que they are just that good. The first two are from Belgium, France’s friendly neighbor to the north. The last is from Italy, and we’re sure you won’t have an easy time finding it anywhere else. These are special cheeses, and we’re excited to bring them to you. Tasting is believing, and we’re generous with samples: we hope to see you in the shop soon!

A blue-veined cheese for blue-blooded cheese lovers.

Grevenbroecker

How the cheesemaker produces the attractive paste of this Belgian blue remains his secret, but it’s most likely formed by slowly layering the curds among sprinkles of penicillium, without ever piercing the cheese. Fudgy, buttery, and appealingly mellow.

$32.99/lb

$8.25/quarter lb

Le Wavreumont

A newly commissioned cheese for the Belgian city of Liège, made with raw organic cow’s milk from the area farms. Inspired by the long tradition of monastery cheeses, this has a  creamy, palate-coating texture and a complex, eggy flavor. Deliciously snackable!

$25.99/lb

$6.49/quarter lb

Speziato Al Tartufo

A semi-soft cow’s milk cheese from Italy that we couldn’t resist. Black truffles dot the interior, and the aromatic rind is dusted with black truffle oil, cinnamon, and nutmeg. It’s creamy and delicately woodsy, and you won’t find it anywhere else.

$27.99/lb

$6.99/quarter lb

Food @ PG

Whether or not the sun shines, we’re still thinking in terms of the easy-does-it, less-is-more summer cooking routines. This week we brought in some new items, and also got some of our customer favorites back in stock, that fulfill the promise of savory flavors and quality meals without taking too much effort.

Rillettes du Périgord from Fabrique Delices isa delicious spread made from duck meat that’s been simmered in spices, juices, and fat, so the meat can soak up as much flavor as possible. Serve with cornichons,  mustard, and
crackers. We like the convenient 7-ounce containers, so that you get just enough to share or save what’s left for yourself.

Escargots In-Shell with Garlic Butter from White Toque is the easiest fancy frozen food we’ve ever seen. Authentic wild Helix snails are prepped and in shells with a divine garlic butter with parsley and red pepper. Just pop the tray in the oven and in 10 minutes, you’re a gourmand.

Mediterranean Fillo Quiches, also from White Toque, make a great appetizer with their summery flavors. Each package comes with 4 each of the following flavors: Artichoke and Sundried Tomatoes; Pepper, Olives, and Feta; and Spinach and Cheese. If you want to make your own fillings, we also carry White Toque’sMediterranean Fillo Quiches, which includes 15 fully baked mini shells, in which you can make your own snacks or desserts.

Cucina Fresca is a local company that makes all natural, small-batch fresh pastas. This week we brought in two of their awesome flavors: Four Cheese Tortellini and Roasted Butternut Squash Ravioli. Grab a can of San Marzano tomatoes or a Shepherds Chevre goat cheese log for an easy sauce and you’re set for a late summer meal.

Craves @ PG

Pink Peppercorns! Packed out in 8-ounce containers.

Feed Your Mind @ PG

One Pot French by Jean-Pierre Chalet

A collection of classic recipes with great coverage of the basics. With this cookbook, it is easy to master authentic French recipes.