Paris Grocery News 8/6 Saturday, Aug 6 2011 

This is my last newsletter for Paris Grocery. I’d like to say thanks to all of you who came into the shop (sometimes with color printouts of the newsletter, ready to use as a shopping list) and said nice things about the writing. It was always really pleasing to hear that you liked it. To say goodbye, I’m going to feature my all-time favorite things here in the shop. You can bet I’ll be stocking up before I leave.

Thanks for being such fun customers, and bon appétit,

Rachel

Will always be in style, will never break: the Picardie salad bowl.

Duralex “Picardie” Salad Bowl

I love this stuff, especially the iconic Picardie tumblers, which to me represent the Platonic ideal of a glass. We carry the tumblers in four sizes, and we also have ramekins, bowls, and plates. Before I leave today, I’m picking up the salad bowl (only $9!) for all my summer salads and for a never-break mixing bowl.

Trust me, these are delicious.

Dolin Vermouth de Chambéry

The only Vermouth that has earned an AOC designation. Dolin has none of the cloying sweetness or overly bitter qualities found in bottom-shelf Vermouths. The particular mixture of plants found near Chambéry give a fresh, restrained, and elegant nose with a subtle, complex, and bittersweet palate. I love this on its own with ice and a hefty piece of lemon peel, but it’s also great in cocktails. $13.99

André Neveu “Le Grand Fricambault” Sancerre Rosé 2010

André Neveu’s vineyards are located in Chavignol, on the silex soil of Sancerre’s hillsides. This exquisite, highly aromatic pinot noir rosé reflects this flinty terrain. Light yet concentrated, it exudes aromas of fresh strawberries and offers unbelievable minerality. While any day of the week, you might find me sipping any one of our incredibly tasty value roses, this is the one I’d really like to treat myself to. $24.99

Alpha Loire Domaines “Sables Blonds” Touraine Rouge 2009

This 100% Cabernet Franc is loaded with minerals and notes of earth and dark berries. It’s juicy and lightly tannic, making it ideal for a range of dishes, from pizza to vegetable tarts to flank steak. This is one versatile red, and is a great entry level choice for those wanting to try out cab francs. $9.99

Domaine Pierre Sparr Marquis de Perlade

Made in the traditional method, this sparkling wine 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 a big sweet and savory spreads, such as charcuterie, cheese platters, fruit, and nuts. While working here, this became my go-to festive sparkler, so now when I taste it, it reminds me of Christmas, birthdays, and raucous brunches with friends. $9.99

Lovely boxes, amazing teas.

Kusmi Tea

This stuff is so good! FloFab recently sang its praises, noting its beginnings as “the tea of the czars in 1867 in St. Petersburg.” Kusmi is now based in Paris, and its lovely black tea blends, often scented with flowers, citrus, or vanilla, have many fans. The packaging is really pretty, and each box comes with 20 muslin tea bags for $15.99 In stock now:

  • Russian Morning: a classic breakfast blend of China, Ceylon, and India teas.
  • Prince Vladimir: a Russian-style blend of China black teas with lemon, grapefruit, and spices.
  • Anastasia (as in, the princess): Earl Grey with lemon, lime, and bergamot.

Tarragon, Walnut, and Piment d'Espelette.

Mustards!

Oh, yes. Mustard sells like crazy here at the shop, because it is delicious. My favorites are Edmond Fallot Tarragon Dijon (awesomely vivid green and excellent with meats, vegetables, or in potato salad) and Walnut Dijon (so good on ham and cheese sandwiches). A new item that I’ve been enjoying is the Parfum des Oliviers Mustard à la L’Ancienne au Coulis de Piment d’Espelette (grain-style mustard with Basque pepper). It adds texture and spices to meats. Vive la moutarde!

You can look forward to future newsletters and updates from the rest of the staff of Paris Grocery and the Spanish Table!

Thanks for reading,

Rachel

and

Steve Winston and Sharon Baden

Owners, Paris Grocery

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Paris Grocery News 5/21 Saturday, May 21 2011 

A six-pack of our favorite rosés. (My sneakers not included.)

Wine @ PG

We’ve been buying up 2010 rosés like crazy, and right now we’re offering a grab-and-go six-pack of our new favorites. The price is $55 (or $110, if you’d like a full case of two bottles of each selection). The half-case discount of 10 percent and sales tax are both included in the price, and we’re throwing in the chic Paris Grocery black-and-white wine carrier, too. A glass of the pink stuff is like summer in a glass!

Our six favorite pink swillers.

Jean-Luc Colombo Cape Bleue Rosé 2010

Top Rhône producer Jean-Luc Colombo created this intoxicating rosé at his childhood home of Cape Bleue. Made with 40 percent Syrah, 40 percent Mourvèdre, and 20 percent Counoise, it’s perfumed and fresh, with notes of peach, rose petal, and white pepper.

Château Bas “L’Alvernègue” Coteaux d’Aix en Provence 2010

Château Bas goes back centuries; near the vineyard are Roman temple ruins. This wine presents a fantastic value for a Provençal rosé. A blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Cinsault, it offers a nice balance between freshness and fruitiness.

Domaine de Couron Vin de Pays des Coteaux de l’Ardèche 2010

This producer never fails to make excellently drinkable, classic southern style wines. This 100 percent Grenache wine has a dry finish, with delicate notes of strawberry  and cherry.

Domaine le Clos des Lumières Côtes du Rhône Rosé 2010

A fun, medium-bodied Rhône rosé, made from 45 percent Cinsault, 30 percent Grenache, 15 percent Mourvedre, and 10 percent Syrah. With ripe strawberry and floral notes, the wine shows nice persistence and a hint of spice at the end.

In Fine Ventoux Rosé 2010

A ripe, full flavor rose from the valley of Mt. Ventoux in the south, which allows for a slow ripening. Lots of stony minerality and elegant fruit. 80 percent Grenache and 20 percent Cinsault.

Elicio Vin de Pays de Méditerranée 2010

This hot pink rose displays a richer, creamier style. Made with 80 percent Grenache and 20 percent Cinsault, it’s fruit forward, with flavors of raspberry. It stands up well to spicier fare.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 5/7 Saturday, May 7 2011 

Consider a box of unique cookies for Mom. Fossier's Biscuits Roses are best when dunked in Champagne, which is so fancy it's almost unbearable.

Gifts @ PG

We love Mother’s Day; it’s a chance to celebrate any mother or mother-figure in your life. We’ve got so many gifts and sweets and snacks that would make a terrific gift for Mom, it’s ridiculous.

Until a shop in Seattle makes decent macarons, consider making your own!

I Heart Macarons by Hisako Ogita is full of charming, colorful pictures as well as specific technical instruction for making macarons. Our book section is bursting with cookbooks, France-located fiction, and wish-fulfillment nonfiction about living in France.

Everyone needs tiny footed dishes.

Victoriana Noir Footed Dishes by Rosanna are great for mustard, chocolates, or spare change. We also carry teapots, plates, and mugs from this local designer who specializes in sophisticated whimsy.

We’d also be glad to help you put together a collection of sweet and savory foodstuffs: jams, mustards, olives, vinegars, cookies, and more. Happy Mother’s Day!

Wines @ PG

A rebel's last yell, my favorite pink, and an exceptional Cab Franc.

2010 Marcel Lapierre Raisins Gaulois Gamay

Marcel Lapierre was a renowned producer of Beaujolais wines, and his death last year marked a sad end to a vivacious man and a tireless advocate for biodynamic production and non-interventionist winemaking. He was one of the “Gang of Four” rebel winemakers in Beaujolais, a group of vitners dedicated to making natural, delicious wines and bucking convention and appellation when necessary. Despite his disregard for the system, Marcel was one of the most respected producers in France. His Raisins Gaulois Gamay is absolutely charming, grapey, and fresh, with spicy black cherry notes and a little dustiness. Though not an “official” Beaujolais, it shows how great these light-hearted wines can be. We’ve brought in three cases of this delicious wine—it’s not to be missed!

2010 Domaine de Fontsainte Corbières Gris de Gris

This remains one of my absolute favorite rosés, over several vintages. It’s a unique “Gris de Gris” that’s made from both Grenache Noir and Grenache Gris, along with a few other southern French varietals. Bruno Laboucarié show the same care with his rosé as with his red wine, harvesting by hand and pressing whole clusters of grapes to preserve their delicate aromas. Incredibly fresh, with zippy strawberry notes and superb minerality. This will make a superb accompaniment to olives, grilled shrimp, and other savory snacks common in Corbières. Bring on the sunshine!

2009 Catherine & Pierre Breton Chinon

Imported by Kermit Lynch, who knows a thing or two about funky, interesting wines. We’re big fans of this producer, as well—their unique, terroir-driven wines are a hit on the bistro scene in Paris. This Cabernet Franc is full of dark fruit and savory, olive notes, with mostly smooth tannins. Check out what Kermit Lynch had to say about the Bretons.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 4/22 Saturday, Apr 23 2011 

A picture of an Easter window display taken by the bosses last year while vacationing in Burgundy. Chocolate creatures sort of blur the line between charming and creepy, don't you think?

Wine @ PG

For Easter (or just taking advantage of a lovely spring day) brunch, I recommend pink and/or bubbles. (Surprise, surprise.)

Pink and/or bubbly.

Jean Paul Trocadero Brut Rosé Vin de Savoie ($9.99)

A vivacious sparkling rosé. Fruit forward, tasting of strawberries and cherries, with immense effervescence, this wine combines the best qualities of rosés and sparklers. A great pick for bridal showers, deck parties, or just lounging on the “beach” (whatever strip of backyard, park, or mini-porch you call your own). Peppery and fun.

Domaine Balivet NV Bugey Cerdon Méthode Ancéstrale ($22.99)

Very fresh and zesty, this sparkling rosé from Savoie complements a varied brunch spread. It’s made in the same process as artisanal cider, meaning only one fermentation as opposed to two fermentations  (as is done with champagne and most crémants). 100-percent Gamay, it’s off-dry and unique, with flavors of cherry and ripe apple with a touch of sweetness. It has low alcohol (8-precent) and shows good minerality and acidity in the mouth, with fresh grape aromas in the nose. Really tasty and a pretty, delicate pink color in the glass.

2010 Pascal et Nicolas Reverdy “Terre de Maimbray” Sancerre Rosé ($24.99)

Sancerre is usually known for its chalky white wines. Pinot Noir also grows there, however, and the cool climate makes for elegant, lacy rosés that are mineral-driven. Located on steep hills, this family-run estate is thought to be one of the finest Sancerre producers in France. From old vine Pinot Noir, the wine is a lovely faded pink, with a perfumey, floral nose and strawberry and cherry on the palate. While cheap rosés from the Rhône and Provence are wonderful, if you’re a rosé lover, you owe it to yourself to try this exceptional rosé from the Loire.

Food @ PG

Last-minute brunch necessities.

Canterbury Naturals Crepe Mix ($4.99/14-oz.)

You asked for it, and now it’s here! Crepe Mix. Just add eggs and water. And nutella and berries (not really, that’s just my serving suggestion).

Comté de Fruitière ($4.25/quarter lb.)

The crowd-pleasingest cheese ever. This raw cow’s milk cheese from the Jura is aged 5-6 months. It offers a fruit nectar aroma and a more delicate nuttiness than more aged Comté. Almost sweet and bursting with flavors of fresh milk and butter. Great melted,  in salads, or with fruit.

D’Artagnan Duck Bacon ($9.99/8-oz.)

This stuff is insanely delicious. Regulars drop by on weekend mornings to grab a package, along with a bottle of sparkling, and it always gives me a serious case of brunch-envy (it’s a thing, look it up.) Made from Moulard duck, with no nitrates or nitrites or growth hormones or anything. A smoky and rich flavor, with a lean texture. Duck. Bacon. Yum.

There are so many things in this shop for brunch, it’s silly. Jams and honey and cheese accompaniments and olives and chocolates and on and on. We ought to rename ourselves the Brunch Store. Come by and see us for all your weekend snack attack needs!

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 4/3 Sunday, Apr 3 2011 

The first delivery of rosés! Can you stand it? (You can't.)

Wine @ PG

“April is the cruellest month, breeding

Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing

Memory and desire, stirring

Dull roots with spring rain.”

From “The Waste Land” by T.S. Eliot

Apparently, perpetual sad guy Thomas Stearns never shopped at Paris Grocery. (Though I love the way he places those gerunds at the end of the line). But it’s hard for us to be cranky about this blustery spring weather when the first crop of rosés has officially arrived at the shop! Like so many shining flowers emerging from the cold bed of winter, these wines glitter with the promise of summer.

Sorry to be so corny. I just really really like rosé.

Chateau L’Ermitage Costières de Nimes Rosé 2010

This Rhône blend of 50% Syrah, 30% Grenache, and 20% Mouvedre is a perhaps slightly more fruit forward wine than the Provence rosés. It’s a vivid carmine color, with bright notes of melon and strawberry and a touch of spice and minerals. This is my pick so far for a “summer swiller”: that cheap rose that pairs with just about anything, making it perfect for larger groups getting together for a picnic or bbq. ($8.99)

Domaine Sorin “Terra Amata” Côtes de Provence Rosé 2010

Robert Parker called winemaker Luc Sorin one of the most exciting in the South of France, and his wines are served at some of the finest restaurants in the Côte-d’Azur. They have gained a reputation for being smooth and appealing, making for an excellent match with many styles of cuisine. The Côtes de Provence rosé is their best-known wine. A lovely, dusky pink, it’s light and refreshing, with intriguing notes of herbs. ($11.99)

Triennes Rosé 2010

Primarily made from Cinsault, the juice for this Provençal rosé spent only a couple of hours in contact with the skins, resulting in a very pale color and delicate texture. It’s  bottled early to maintain its vibrant freshness. This one is my favorite, and I think it’s one of Sharon’s, too; it’s just such a beautiful wine. Light strawberry and red currant notes, with a vibrant minerality and an ethereal creaminess on the finish. It’s got that Provençal quality that I like to call “fruit and rocks.” ($15.99)

Château du Rouët Côtes de Provence Rosé 2010

Delicate and delicious; a perfect evocation of Provençal-style rosé. Made with a blend of 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah. The grapes are hand-harvested from volcanic gravel soils that washed down from the Esterel mountain range. We love the curvaceous bottle! ($14.99)

Cheese & Butter @ PG

Le Wavreumont. (Say that five times fast.)

Back in stock!

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)

Perfectly round, perfectly yummy.

Soumaintrain

A cow’s milk cheese from Yonne in northern Burgundy. Like Époisses, the wheels are washed with brine and marc de Bourgogne. Pungent, gooey, rich, mushroomy, and barnyardy- some even say it displays umami. Try it with a Chablis for a particularly blissful experience. George, our resident cheesemonger, is obsessed with this cheese.  ($24.99/each)

Beurre d’Isigny

Isigny Sainte Mère is a well-known brand of dairy products. The milk they use comes from the cows of many cooperatives who eat the nutritious grasses of northwest France all year long, allowing for higher trace amounts of iodine and other minerals. These charming paperboard tubs of sweet, unsalted butter are great for use in baking or just as a spread. ($6.99/each)

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 3/5 Saturday, Mar 5 2011 

Venerable wines from Maison Louis Latour.

Wine @ PG

Selections from Maison Louis Latour.

Louis Latour Marsannay Rouge 2006 ($18.99)

“Lean and solidly built, despite its ripe cherry notes up front. Tannins and acidity dominate now, but this has a stony character and length, with loads of mineral on the aftertaste. Best from 2010 through 2020.” 90 points Wine Spectator. We loved this earthy and complex Marsannay; it really smoothes out on the finish.

Louis Latour Beaune “les Vignes Franches” 1er Cru 2009 ($40)

2009 was a magnificent year for Burgundy. The vines enjoyed ideal conditions during the entire cycle. They basked in the sunshine throughout the maturing phase, resulting in grapes of extraordinary quality. This Beaune Premier Cru is incredibly concentrated, with delicate white pepper notes.

Simonnet-Febvre Crémant de Bourgogne Brut Rosé ($18.99)

Simonnet-Febvre is the only producer who uses grapes from Chablis in their Crémant de Bourgogne. Chablis is the closest part of Burgundy to Champagne, so you get the same bright minerality that comes from the soils of Champagne without the high price tag. Aged for 3 years, this crémant offers powerful aromas of red currant and raspberry. Round and smooth in body, it’s elegant and toasty with fine bubbles and a huge finish.

Cheese @ PG

Wheels of cheese both tasty and adorable.

Revisiting the clean, grassy flavors of Basque cheeses.

Izarou

Our new favorite cheese. This pasteurized sheep’s milk cheese from the Basque region is deliciously buttery, creamy, and mildly sweet; it pairs perfectly with summer fruits. One customer swore it tasted like movie popcorn, but most people just exclaim superlatives. Made by acclaimed cheese maker Gabriel Coulet, who also produces one of the best Roquefort cheeses on the planet. $27.99/lb

Vallée d’Aspe Chèvre

This aged goat cheese epitomizes an authentic chèvre from the French Pyrenees. Complex and delicate nuances:  fruity, tangy, and a little salty. It finishes with an irresistible caramelized nuttiness. $30.99/lb

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

Cooking @ PG

The Blue Ribbon Cooking School on Fairview along Lake Union holds popular cooking classes every Monday night. They’re fully interactive, and of course, you get to sit down and eat what you make. In the next month or two, Blue Ribbon will be hosting a few French-themed cooking classes that we thought you’d like to know about. Sign up on their website; space is limited!

March 7: Culinary Destinations: Classic French Bistro with French Wines.

March 28: Fabulous Food Fast and Easy: Jacque Pepin’s Way with French Wines

April 4: Essential Techniques: Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 2/20 Sunday, Feb 20 2011 

 

Good fonts on the outside, good chai on the inside.

Hot Drinks @ PG

This past Saturday, we were joined by Jillu Zaveri, founder of Seattle-based company Jaipur Avenue, for a chai tea tasting. Thanks to Jillu and her husband for spending time with us, and thanks to our customers for coming by. Lots of chai went out the door, and we’re looking forward to your feedback. Jaipur Avenue makes all-natural, just-add-water chai tea mixes; we sampled Original Masala (a perfect balance of spices), Saffron (exotically sweet), and Cardamon (earthy and fully spicy). These flavors, as well as Ginger and Vanilla, are now available at the shop. The packaging is particularly pretty, and fortunately the product inside lives up to the outside appearance. You may be asking yourself, why chai? Well, why not? It’s delicious, it’s local, we’re cold, it’s warm. Also, George insists that chai tea is all the rage in Paris (note: George has not been to Paris). While he may be making that up, it wouldn’t surprise me. Parisians, for all their sometimes stodgy (yet charming) reverence for their own culture, are a truly metropolitan and increasingly global bunch. And this will continue to be our explanation for the funny things we like to buy for the shop that aren’t strictly French, including Linghams Malaysian hot sauce, Les Moulins Mahjoubs Tunisian olive oil, Finnska Finnish licorice, and now Jaipur Avenue Indian-by-way-of-Seattle chai tea.

Wine @ PG

 

Cheap, cheap, not-as-cheap.

Two closeout deals on full-bodied, easy-drinking rosés, and Sharon’s new favorite red.

Abel Clement Rhone Rosé 2009 ($8.99)

Fresh and light on the palate, with notes of wild strawberry and a touch of spice. 80% Grenache and 20% Syrah. The perfect wine to enjoy during the ever-increasing daylight hours.

Mas Carlot Costières de Nîmes Rosé 2009 ($8.99)

A more fruit-forward style, with a good amount of body and a clean finish. Stands up to dishes with plenty of flavor and spice; try it with ratatouille or Mexican food. 60% Grenache and 40% Syrah.

Domaine Charvet Moulin-à-Vent “La Réserve d’Amélie” 2009 ($18.99)

Sharon tasted this by the glass at nearby Lecosho, and came back raving about it. It’s her new favorite wine (this week, at least). This is the only wine we carry from this up-and-coming cru of Beaujolais that produces very fine and full-bodied iterations of the Gamay grape. Juicy, dark fruits and a hint of earth.

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 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

Paris Grocery News 9/16 Friday, Sep 17 2010 

We predict red wine, with a chance of movie nights.

Wine @ PG

New to the shop: a cider that delivers pure apple goodness, and a sparkling rosé from an underrepresented region that totally charmed us.

Sidre Doux & Bugey Cerdon

2008 Eric Bordelet Sidre Doux ($13.99)

Eric Bordelet took over his family’s estate and orchards in 1992, and he is passionate about elevating the standards of cider production and bringing cider to the export market and restaurants. In addition, his ciders are produced organically and biodynamically. Although sweet in comparison with the Brut, off-dry would be the appropriate description for this bright and delightful sparkling apple cider. The Doux is produced from the same vats as the Brut, but a small amount of residual sugar is left in while the former is fermented dry, leaving just a touch a sweetness to round out the cider on the palate. At 4-percent alcohol, it’s a remarkable drink for aperitifs or light meals.

Domaine Balivet NV Bugey Cerdon Méthode Ancéstrale ($22.99)

Very fresh and zesty, this sparkling rosé from Savoie is a fabulous addition to just about any occasion. It’s made in the same process as artisanal cider, meaning only one fermentation as opposed to two fermentations, as is done with champagne and most cremants. 100-percent Gamay, it’s off-dry and unique, with flavors of cherry and ripe apple with a touch of sweetness. It has low alcohol (8-precent) and shows good minerality and acidity in the mouth, with fresh grape aromas in the nose. Really tasty and a pretty, delicate pink color in the glass.

We’ve also brought in two fantastic value wines for the transition to fall. We’re already craving stews and roasts and gratins, and we wanted to stock up on tasty bistro-style reds that we could reach for without too much thought. Get those ovens and stovetops working again, pour yourself a glass, and settle in for a rainy night.

Value Reds!

2009 Chateau La Croix du Duc Bordeaux ($9.99)

A blend of 80% Merlot, 10% Cab Franc, and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine has a soft texture with bright boysenberry and black cherry flavors. Smoky notes of chocolate and menthol provide punch and structure. This Bordeaux has terrific balance and a mineral finish, and it will stand up to hearty winter meals

2009 Mas de Boislauzon “La Chaussynette” Vin de France ($9.99)

The brother and sister team of Daniel and Christine Chaussey are the sixth generation to run the esteemed Mas de Boislauzon estate. They’ve continued to build their reputation with superlative Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Cotes du Rhone wines. La Chausseynette is essentially declassified Chateauneuf, made with a blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Mourvedre. It’s bright and juicy, with lively notes of blackcurrant and blackberry and a peppery, spicy finish. A red to reach for all season.

And finally: we still have some bottles left of our favorite Summer Swiller: the 2009 Abel Clement Rhone Rosé ($7.99). It’s fresh and light on the palate, with notes of wild strawberry and a touch of spice. Perfect for a meal of pasta with late-summer tomatoes. Get it while it lasts!

Craves @ PG

Chocolate-Hazelnut Spreads Line Up For Battle

It’s the Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread Wars of 2010! Who will emerge victorious: Nutella, Noisette+Cacao, Nocciolata, or Loacker ?  To the victor go the spreads.

Feed Your Mind @ PG

The French Country Table by Laura Washburn

This is exactly what we’re looking for in these suddenly cold, grey days. A winter’s worth of perfectly simple-to-execute bistro dishes, ranging from soups to meat to gratins to dessert. These are the recipes you’ve always meant to work into your repetoire: cassoulet, ratatouille, tartiflette, gratin dauphinois. Hopefully you’ll still be hungry by the holidays, because the Chocolate Chestnut Tarte would be the perfect merry sweet. Also, the photography by Martin Brigdale is enough to make you chuck your fancy flatware sets and all-white plates for  mismatched antiques and vintage tableware.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

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