September 23rd Sunday, Sep 25 2011 

Paris Grocery News
September 23, 2011
September 25th is our two year anniversary, can you believe it? To those of you who have been with us from the start, a special thank you! It’s also an exciting week because we just received our copy of Food and Wine Magazine for October 2011, and the Paris Grocery is featured on a national list of best places to buy French wine. Check us out on page 106. To celebrate both occasions, we’re transitioning from our summer rosé six pack special to a fall red six pack. Take a tour through France with this grab-and-go six pack, and keep our Paris grocery reusable wine tote bag as a souvenir! Six tasty reds include wines from Bordeaux, Rhone, Cahors, and the Loire Valley, with a selection of different varietals. It’s a great way to jump-start the fall season and try some new wines! $58.00 includes sales tax.

 

Also this week we were nearly overwhelmed with two huge shipments, mainly of the glorious meaty and cheesy variety.

 

Take a long look at the brilliant, decadent little amuse-bouches above. Sweet, dark prunes soaked in armagnac (a distinctive brandy from gascony) and stuffed with foie gras. They’re called french kisses, and are a total knock-out. With such intense sultry flavor, these are the perfect size to get a mouthful that lingers on the palate. $15.49 for a set of six or $2.99 each.

Uncured Smoked Duck Bacon.

Yes, it’s back! a fresh batch of duck bacon. Made from moulard duck breast, this unique bacon can be enjoyed on its own for breakfast, or can be used to enhance other dishes. Try it on a salad, in a pasta, with haricot vert, or any other place you would normally use bacon to bring a richer flavor to the table. Or for a muskier, wilder flavor, try our wild boar bacon! duck bacon-$16.49, wild boar bacon- $9.49.

Foie Gras Mousse

Buttery texture, sumptuous flavor, this foie gras is perfectly fatty and perfectly fresh. light and creamy with a hint of good Sauternes wine added to the baked terrine to enhance the luxurious taste of the foie gras .Whether you want to spread it on baguette or, as many chefs are doing these days, try pan frying it, you’re in for a real treat.

But we’ll save some meats to talk about next week. In the meantime, we have two amazing cheese specials. We accidently ordered too much of two great soft cheeses, so we’re pricing them to move quickly. Our mistake is your windfall!

Purple Haze Cyprus Grove Chevre (left)

This is a beautiful soft goat’s cheese from California. The unexpected marriage of lavender and wild fennel pollen distinguishes Purple Haze and makes it utterly addictive. Delicate and sophisticated, this cheese is the winner of Best of Show, California State Fair Cheese Competition, 2009 and Best of Class, U.S. Cheese Championship 2011. I’ve eaten two of them already. You won’t find a price like this anywhere else. $1.99
Smoked Mozzarella (right)

The smoky outer layers of this cheese peel back to a sweet, soft center. This is a great little cheese for snacking on, and is perfect for kids or others who don’t appreciate your pungent gooey bleus or camembert. Melt it over mushrooms or asparagus for a perfect pairing of earthy and smoky flavors. Again, a steal at just $1.99!

Thank you for reading and we’ll see you in the shop!

Ellen

Paris Grocery News 5/14 Saturday, May 14 2011 

Manzanita, from Oregon, is a dry goat's milk cheese with a molé-spice coating and an eye-catching shape.

Cheese @ PG

This weekend, it’s the Seattle Cheese Festival at the Pike Place Market! Take a break from the madness upstairs and come visit us and our sister store, the Spanish Table. We’ve stocked our case with tons (seriously, TONS) of cheeses. Here’s a list of some of our freshest wheels, organized by type, which I find is a great entry point for learning about cheese and figuring out what you like.

For more information about all the cheesy happenings, go here.

We just cut into a new wheel of gorgeous Tome de Bordeaux! Picture from Culture Magazine.

Goat’s milk, aged:

Tome de Bordeaux

This goat cheese from the caves of Jean d’Alos wears a coat of fennel, rosemary, and thyme, with a starburst pattern of juniper berries, white peppercorns, and bird’s-eye peppers. The cheese is soft yet compact, with an enticing aroma and a clean, sweet, and earthy flavor. Taste the rind for some texture and powerful herbal flavor! $32.99/lb

Pave de Jadis: goat's milk cheese with an ash rind.

Goat’s milk, young, ash rind:

Pavé de Jadis

So named because of its shape: a pavé is a small paving stone. This goat’s milk cheese from the Loire Valley is dusted with vegetable ash and has a fudge-like texture. The taste is very clean, mild, and lemony. $16.99/lb

Sheep’s milk, blue:

Roquefort Coulet

This raw sheep’s milk cheese from Pascal Coulet is a superlative example of Roquefort. A  perfectly crumbly and moist texture, with a gorgeous snow-white interior and elegant green veining. The flavor begins slightly mild, then sweet, then smoky, and fades to a salty finish. Wow! $34.99/lb

Sheep’s milk, semi-hard:

Brique Agour

This award-winning Basque sheep’s milk cheese is renowned for striking an ideal balance between sweet and salty flavors. Slightly firm in texture, with a nutty, complex undertone and notes of Parm. Try it with a black cherry spread and a medium-bodied red. $24.99/lb

Samples of Cremeux de Bourgogne on Raincoat Crisps. Something you may just see this weekend at the shop.

Cow’s milk, triple cream:

Crémeux de Bourgogne

A cow’s milk triple-cream cheese from a small family of producers in Burgundy. Rich but not overwhelming, with hints of fresh butter. A fantastic cheese with champagne and fruit– at dessert or any time. We love them on crackers with nuts and fruit, like Raincoat Crisps. $16.99/lb

Cow’s milk, soft, washed rind:

Langres

This cow’s milk cheese from the Champagne region has a dense texture and a rich, creamy flavor with distinct notes of sour milk and a long finish. Unlike many pungent washed rind cheeses, Langres is milder and more delicate. Pairs perfectly with French bubbly. $12.99/each

Cow’s milk, washed rind:

Le Maréchal

Le Maréchal is a semi-hard raw cow’s milk cheese, made by hand in a tiny dairy in the small Swiss town of Corcelles-Aux-Payernes. It owes its rustic flavor to the herbes de Provence that are rubbed onto the cheese during the aging process. Named for the cheesemaker’s great grandfather, the village blacksmith (le maréchal-ferrant), this cheese, like the man, has a robust tough-skinned exterior concealing a rather warm heart. $25.99/lb

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 4/15 Friday, Apr 15 2011 

A cheesemonger's wedding cake.

Cheese @ PG

We’ve brought in some specially-priced wheels of our favorite cheeses.

Fleur Verte

Absolutely one of our best-selling cheeses, now at 5 dollars less a pound. This fresh goat cheese from Périgord is adorned with thyme, tarragon, and pink peppercorns, and it has a dense and cake-like texture. The flavors are lemony and boldly herbaceous. A beautiful cheese to look at and to eat—I call it the “wedding cake” of cheeses. ($24.99/lb)

Chistou: du vache et du brebis.

Chistou

Istara is well-known for their sheep’s milk cheeses from the Basque region. This one’s fun for being a mix of 50-percent sheep’s milk and 50-percent cow’s milk. It’s semi-hard, with a creamy texture. We found it slightly piquant, with equal notes of grassiness and nuttiness. ($15.99/lb)

Tomme de Savoie

A cow’s milk cheese from the mountainous Savoie with a distinctly raw milk flavor: beefy, hazelnutty, and pleasantly milky. With about 30-percent fat content, this is the most creamy “low fat” cheese out there. Enjoy with liver-stoked pâtés and light red wines such as Beaujolais. ($9.99/lb)

Can't go wrong with Camembert.

Camembert le Pommier

Earthy, buttery, and aromatic, this classic cheese from Normandy has a tender crust that crumbles when spread. Small production, high quality milk from family farmers, and superior ripening by affineur Herve Mons make this a superior Camembert to the many mass-market varieties out there. ($7.99/each)

Books @ PG

Two of my favorites from our latest shipment of new releases and new sale books.

Patricia Wells: food legend and cookbook factory.

Salad as a Meal by Patricia Wells

After a long winter of hot, fill-me-up dishes, a Big Salad for a meal sounds just about right. There’s a lot going on in this book beyond the obligatory frisée aux lardons recipe; I spot influences from specific French regions, Europe, Asia, and California spa cuisine. There are plenty of meat and seafood-based recipes, along with a few soups, starters, and even a section on bread and other accompaniments. And I have a weakness for cookbooks that don’t skimp on the colorful photos—I often copy the gorgeous plating ideas, even if I’m just cooking for one!

Adam Gopnik: If Molière had been born in Philly.

Paris to the Moon by Adam Gopnik, author of the New Yorker‘s “Paris Journal” from 1995-2000. One of my absolute favorite books, and certainly one of the most wry and tender books on living in Paris (in a crowded and sometimes mediocre field of rosy-hued memoirs). Brand new, but only $9.99!

“The chronicle of an American writer’s lifelong infatuation with Paris is also an extended meditation—in turn hilarious and deeply moving—on the threat of globalization, the art of parenting, and the civilizing intimacy of family life. Gopnik’s insights are infused with a formidable cultural intelligence, and his prose is as pellucid as that of any essayist. A brilliant, exhilarating book.”  —Francine du Plessix Gray

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 3/12 Saturday, Mar 12 2011 

Do goat cheeses taste better when topped with a cute label? Answer: No (but it doesn't hurt).

Cheese @ PG

A goat cheese with a bit of age and a few washed rind cheeses with a bit of funk.

Crottin Frais du Périgord

These tiny drums of barely aged goat’s milk cheese come from Périgord, a region of Bordeaux known for its goat cheese delicacies. A soft and creamy texture, with a nutty flavor. Fantastic when heated and placed on salads or toasts. $1.99/each or 2/$3

Oh, you monks.

Le Poteaupré

This oozy washed rind cow’s milk cheese was created by the Trappist monks of the Chimay Abbey in Belgium. Intensly earthy, with flavors of wild mushroom, toasted hazelnuts, and a finish that resembles buttered popcorn. Pair with a Chimay or a fruity red. $15.99/lb

Les Frères

Don’t you love it when siblings play nicely? Semi-soft washed rind cheese created by the Crave Brothers in Waterloo, Wisconson. This mild American cow’s milk cheese is earthy and pleasant with flavors of sea salt and bitter herbs.  Pair with white wine or sparkling. $15.99/lb

Trois Laits

Another stunning cheese from affineur Pascal Beillevaire. This Pyrenees washed rind cheese has the creaminess of cow’s milk, the nuttiness of sheep’s milk, and the subtle herbaceous tang of goat’s milk. Rich, complex, and beefy, with notes of Alpine grasses, marjoram, and sage. $32.99/lb

Wine @ PG

It's still cold; we still prefer warmth.

So, we may have gotten ahead of ourselves with talk of rosé season and patios. Here’s a few more delightful reds to keep you warm for this last bit (please?) of drizzly winter.

Domaine Astruc  Vin de Pays de L’Hérault Vielles Vignes Carignan 2008

Smoky aromas. Round on the mid-palate, with supple and balanced tannins. Minerals and spice, with a note of bitter chocolate on the finish. ($9.99)

Chateau Jouanin Bordeaux 2009

Explosive and full-bodied, this 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc is aged for 15 months in new and used oak. Flavors of menthol, eucalyptus, and juicy red and black fruits. ($12.99)

Domaine de Nalys Châteauneuf-du-Pape 2007

Delicious, with loads of minerals and plenty of length. 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah. 92 points: Stephen Tanzer, Wine Advocate. ($43)

Craves @ PG

Just think of all the Manhattans you could make.

Les Parisiennes griottines

A customer favorite. These delicious Morello cherries have been pitted and prepared in a Kirsch liqueur. Griottines are famous throughout the world for their freshness and refined taste. And the grand, Belle Epoque packaging is simply too much. Add to desserts, aperitifs, and cocktails. ($24.99/18.5oz jar)

Feed Your Mind @ PG

Called "the poet of the appetites" by John Updike.

We’ve brought in a range of titles from the luminous American gourmand, Mary Frances Kennedy Fisher (thankfully known as M.F.K. Fisher).  Corny, but: she’s a personal hero of mine. Consider this quote from “The Gastronomical Me” (emphasis mine):

“People ask me: Why do you write about food, and eating and drinking? Why don’t you write about the struggle for power and security, and about love, the way others do. They ask it accusingly, as if I were somehow gross, unfaithful to the honor of my craft. The easiest answer is to say that, like most humans, I am hungry. But there is more than that. It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it.”

In stock (all are necessary):

Consider the Oyster

The Gastronomical Me

An Alphabet For Gourmets

How to Cook A Wolf

As They Were

Two Towns in Provence

Long Ago In France: The Years in Dijon

Sister Age

 

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

 

Paris Grocery News 2/12 Saturday, Feb 12 2011 

 

Heart-shaped cheese. You know you love it.

Cheese @ PG

Oh yes, we brought in Valentine’s Day cheeses. What do you think, we’re made of stone? Pictured is the delightful Coeur du Berry ($10.99/each), an ash-rind fresh goat cheese with a dense texture and tart notes of lemon. We like the heart shape, but we suggest chopping it in half if you’re feeling rebellious to the saccharine mood. We also have customer favorite Grès Champenois ($7.99/each), a triple cream from Champagne, packaged with a red heart sticker at this time of year. It’s silky, oozy, nutty, rich, and tart—pair it with fizzy for an indulgent evening. L’Explorateur ($9.99/each) is another classic triple cream. Made in Ile-de-France, this cheese has buttery, mushroomy notes and a supremely creamy texture. No hearts on this one, just a rocket ship that celebrates the first U.S. satellite.

Wine @ PG

Heading south for terrific values and big, bright flavors.

Pretend You're in the South of France.

Les Fontanelles Sauvignon Blanc Vin de Pays d’Oc 2009 ($7.99)

With grapes selected from the vineyards of the small village of Puicheric in Southern France, this white is light, dry, and brimming with citrus notes. It offers a great mouthfeel and a clean finish. We are looking forward to white wines and couldn’t resist bringing in this unbelievably priced refresher!

Chateau du Seuil Coteaux d’Aix en Provence Rose 2009 ($10.99)

A textbook Provencal pink wine: fruit and minerals in harmony. A blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Grenache, Syrah, and Cinsault. We brought this is last summer, and it’s holding up remarkably well, so we brought some more in. We’re able to offer it at this reduced price (was $14.99).

Domaine la Bastide “Les Genets” Syrah 2008 ($11.99)

Flavors of dark ripe fruit, coffee, and black tea, this 100% Syrah is essentially Corbières without being able to call itself that. This producer is known for exceptional wines, and we couldn’t resist the terrific value on this cuvée.

Craves @ PG

Blood orange: You heard it here first!

We’re more than a little excited about the latest Vosges chocolate offering—a 70% dark chocolate bar infused with blood orange caramel, hibiscus flowers, and Campari. It’s what we imagine a Tuscan afternoon tastes like. While we’re at it, we’d like to officially note that blood orange seems to be the new “it” flavor (we should have been more careful when we called “pie is the new cupcake” and “mostarda is the new chutney”: we didn’t get any credit for those.) Grab one of these attractive and unique chocolate bars for the attractive and unique one in your life.

Gifted @ PG

Nine ways to spice things up.

We love to buy spices and herbs in bulk; it avoids the price of expensive packaging and gives us a chance to offer a great value. We’ve put together these fantastic boxes of nine herbs and spices; they’re sort of a starter set for French and Moroccan cooking necessities. Just the right amount to experiment and find your new favorite seasoning! Each box includes the following:

  • Tarragon: French tarragon has a mint-anise taste that is particularly suited to vinegar and fish. It also goes well with poultry, vegetables, and fruits. Use it in the classic sauces remoulade and béarnaise.
  • Sel Gris de Guerande: This fine French sea salt with traces of mineral-rich grey crystals has been hand-harvested in Brittany. Its high moisture content gives it resilience on red meat, vegetables, cheeses, and chocolates.
  • Juniper Berries: A bittersweet, piney aroma. Crush juniper berries before using them in marinades for game, beef, or pork.
  • Lavender: A soft, floral aroma and taste pairs nicely with dishes both sweet and savory. Use in baking or roasts.
  • White Peppercorns: White pepper has a slightly musky aroma and flavor which goes especially well with meats such as pork. Gentle heat and invisible color make them a great alternative to standard black peppercorns.
  • Herbes de Provence: A mixture of thyme, marjoram, savory, and other herbs, but it’s the dried lavender that gives this blend its unique flavor profile. Pairs well with poultry, soups, and sauces.
  • Green Anise: Very sweet and aromatic, with a licorice-like flavor. Used as often in savory dishes with seafood or poultry as in sweet pastries and desserts. An essential herb for many French and Moroccan dishes.
  • Yellow Mustard Seeds: The most commonly used mustard seed. Used in pickling, sausage-making, and boiled vegetable dishes such as cabbage.
  • Berbere Pepper: A melange of spices made with chile pepper, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg, fenugreek, and garlic. Sort of a cross between a spicy paprika and a curry, it’s commonly used in Ethiopian cuisine.

 
Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 2/2 Wednesday, Feb 2 2011 

Bright, chilly wines for bright, chilly days.

Wine @ PG

Looking to some whites and a sparkling to lighten the mid-winter stretch.

Chidaine Touraine 2009 ($16.99)

This is a perfectly executed and endlessly refreshing Sauvignon Blanc. Very aromatic, with fresh citrus notes, it has a chalky texture and a brilliant minerality. It drinks well above its mid-teen price point, rivaling some Sancerres. With the hints of sunshine, we’re starting to look more to crisp whites, and this is one of our favorites. Pair with Le Chevrot.

Domaine Pierre Sparr Marquis de Perlade ($9.99)

Made in the traditional method, this sparkling wine is ideal for festive gatherings.  It is a blend of Pinot Blanc, Chenin Blanc, Macabeu, and Chardonnay from the wonderful Alsatian producer Pierre Sparr.  Crisp, with lovely notes of green apple and a touch of honey and toast, this sparkling wine complements cheese platters, fruit and nuts beautifully.  It’s also a super value! Pair with Chaource.

Domaine de l’Idylle “Cruet” Vin de Savoie 2009 ($11.99)

Savoy is a region better known for its landscapes and cheeses than its wines, and that’s a crying shame. Just west of Burgundy, in a cool climate with steep terrain, grow a range of rare grapes, aromatic and bright. Domaine de l’Idylle has been making wines in the village of Cruet since 1840. This one is 100% Jacquère, a native variety that is vivacious and fragrant. Exuding pear, citrus, and floral notes, with bursts of green apple and minerality. The short period of sur lie aging gives a nice complexity and sleek body. A perfect foil to the richness of fondue and raclette, it also makes a wonderful choice for Kir (white wine with crème de cassis). Pair with Raclette.

Cheese @ PG

Old favorites, back in stock.

Le Chevrot

Try this full-flavored goat cheese with a Loire Valley white. Le Chevrot is produced in the Poitou region. It’s wonderfully “wrinkly” rind is fully edible, and the interior is creamy. Le Chevrot displays sweet, nutty flavors with a zesty, almost lime-like finish. ($11.99)

Chaource

The ultimate party cheese! This triple cream cow’s milk cheese from the Champagne region has a slightly fruity taste and a melt-in-the-mouth texture. Creamy and buttery, it’s amazing when paired with sparkling wine. ($11.99/each)

Raclette

This is an incredible value! A raw cow’s milk cheese with a supple texture and a full, beefy flavor. Even better when melted to make the traditional warm-you-up dish, raclette savoyarde. ($12.99/lb)

Craves @ PG

J'adore le saucisson.

We love products from Fabrique Delices because you know you’re getting a minimally processed product made without artificial ingredients. Rosette de Lyon is a dry salami made with all-natural pork raised with no antibiotics, no added hormones, and 100% vegetarian feeds. Slice it roughly and snack on it with some crusty baguette, hard cheeses, and olives or pickles. Francois, one of our wine reps, knows this is the real deal, Lyon-style saucisson, and he always grabs one or two when dropping by with wines for us to try.

Gifted @ PG

All dressed up and nowhere to go (thankfully).

This week’s suggestion for a Valentine’s Day gift: make your sweetheart dinner, and make it in 10 minutes. We love this black and white bowtie pasta from Donne del Grano; it’s an artisanal durum wheat pasta that looks as good as it tastes. For sauce, we prefer San Marzano arrabiatta sauce, because a little spice never hurt anybody.

 

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 12/11 Saturday, Dec 11 2010 

 

Food En Tube

Wine @ PG

 

Rainy Day Wines

New to the shop: Three unique wines with a bit of richness for the rainy days ahead.

Schroedel Brut Rose Cremant d’Alsace ($17.99)

This estate lies in a Alsatian village known for an exceptional microclimate of sunny and dry days, which allows the grapes to ripen gradually for supremely aromatic and concentrated wines. This pink cremant is made with 100% Pinot Noir. We loved this yummy wine.  It presents lovely green apple aromas with a round mouthfeel and toasty notes on the finish.

2008 Albert Bichot Pouilly-Fuiseé ($18.99)

Bichot is a leading producer of elegant Burgundy wines, and this Pouilly-Fuissé is no exception. We found it zesty, we notes of lemon and beeswax. Structured, with plenty of minerals and just a hint of residual sugar, making it an excellent choice to stand up to a creamy winter gratin. A lovely Chardonnay.

2006 Domaine des Tours Vin de Pays de Vaucluse Réserve ($18.99)

From Jacques Reynaud, the famed producer of Chateau Rayas in Chateauneuf-du-Pape, comes this impressive red. A blend with predominately Grenache, this wine has an initial herbaceous delicacy that explodes mid-palate to an incredible, length finish. It really sneaks up on you! If you love the bold wines of Chateauneuf, you’ve got to try this “baby Rayas.”

Cheese @ PG

Go for the goat.

Chabiquet. By Jacquin, genius of both cheese and fonts.

Chabiquet

Intensely yummy. This fresh chèvre is based on Chabichou cheeses of the Loire Valley. Its fluffy texture makes it a perfect goat cheese for crumbling into a salad. Subtly sweet, delicate notes of lemon, and a melt-in-the-mouth texture. $4.99 each

Bleu de Chèvre

It’s  a goat/brie/blue!  A soft-ripened blue cheese made with goat’s milk. Creamy, buttery, spreadable, and savory! $19.99/lb

Tomme Corse de Chèvre

This rustic tomme from Corsica shows off the flavor of the rough mountain diet of the goats. It has a semi-smooth and textured paste, a fiercely herbaceous flavor, and a wonderful chèvre tang on the finish. $31.99/lb

Craves @ PG

Funky Fallot Mustards

Tasty condiments in attractive packaging are some  of my favorite items in the shop because they’re both fun and practical. I think they make great add-on gifts for food lovers, and you’ll probably want to grab one for yourself while you’re at it. My favorite foods “en tube,” all pictured above: Le Cabanon Harissa, San Marzano Tomato Paste, and Jean Gui Anchovy Paste (get over it, it’s delicious). And Edmond Fallot dijon mustards are a classic; for a more unique flavor choice, consider walnut, blackcurrant, or tarragon.

Gifted @ PG

Stamp Your Way to Paris.

Yellow Owl Workshop makes beautiful handmade objects for an everyday bit of whimsical design. Their limited edition paper goods and stamp sets are playful and charming, featuring simple graphics and pops of color. We love the Paris Stamp Set—a larger stamp with a stylized depiction of the we-love-it-even-though-it’s-a-cliché Eiffel Tower and a smaller stamp depicting a cafe table and chairs, both housed in a sweet little cheesecloth bag. For 10 bucks, this has got to be our favorite Francophile stocking stuffer!

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery