March 15 Wednesday, Mar 21 2012 

Paris Grocery News
March 15th, 2012

We got a lot of new products in over the last week, so come in to check them all out! I could only pick out a few favorites to share this week though. Without further ado:

 

Chateau Haut-Mongeat Graves de Vayres Blanc 2010

40% Semillon, 40% Muscadelle, 20% Sauvignon Blanc. Light gold in color, this delicious blend is fresh and lively with a palate-cleansing, racy acidity and bright, ripe fruit. The bouquet is highly aromatic with abundant notes of apple, pear, pineapple, and flowers. Drink it as an aperitif or serve with almost any seafood, pork, or chicken. Excellent with spicy dishes! $10.99

Chateau D’Arlay NV Macvin du Jura Rouge

A wine-geek’s wine, Macvin expands our understanding of wine in general and is a fascinating, adventurous treat. One third brandy and two thirds Pinot Noir grape must, this Macvin is held 4 years in casks and one year in old oak before being released. The result is curious, rich, layered dessert wine with plenty of spice. It reveals huge intensity along with some sweetness and glycerin from its red liqueur, with some slight peppermint notes as well. 95 points, Wine Advocate $21.99 350 ml

Tirecul la Graviere Monbazillac 2007 Les Pins

“Tirecul la Graviere is recognized as the top property of the [Monbazillac] AOC. The fame of Chateau Tirecul la Graviere has spread far and wide over the last several years. Most notably, Robert Parker has awarded the property two 100 point scores and compared it with Sauterne’s Chateau d’Yquem. With good acidity and a solid backbone, these wines can last for decades, a rarity in wines from this area of Southwest France. These wines are magical, defining examples of the best that Monbazillac can offer. 80% Semillon, 20% Muscadelle botrytized grapes grown in chalky soil, seeing some French oak. $19.99 500 ml

2009 La Granacha Vielles Vignes

The 2009 La Granacha is made from 100% old vine Grenache (some parcels are nearly 100 years old). Also aged in tank before being bottled unfined and unfiltered, this is the most powerful La Granacha yet made, tipping the scales at nearly 16% natural alcohol. The belief that such a powerful wine can not also be elegant is disproved by the precise, fresh, lively kirsch liqueur notes intermixed with tobacco leaf, loamy soil, and forest floor characteristics. This delicious, deep ruby/plum-colored, round, generous, glycerin-filled wine can be enjoyed over the next several years. 90 points Wine Advocate $14.99

2010 Andezon Cotes du Rhone

The classic cuvee, which has long been selected by importer Eric Solomon, is their 2010 Domaine d’Andezon, a blend of 90% Syrah and 10% Grenache. While there are critics of Syrah grown in the southern Rhone, even the cynics agree that the old-vine Syrah from the Gard has a special character to it. This wine comes from 40+-year-old Syrah vines and 60+-year-old Grenache vines, bottled unfined and unfiltered after being aged in both tank and concrete. Dense ruby/purple, with a stunning nose of blackberry liqueur and jus de viande (beef/meat juices), its thrilling, intensely pure, full-bodied mouthfeel, good freshness, and striking floral character all combine for one of the very best bargains in dry red wine that readers are likely to find anywhere in the world. 91 points Wine Advocate $14.99

2010 Domaine de Fees

The newest cuvee is from a single estate, located just to the west of Lirac, called Domaine des Fees. Bottled separately, there are 1,000 cases for the US market and this blend of equal parts Grenache and Syrah, aged completely in concrete tanks, is stunning. Gorgeous notes of roasted meats, Provencal herbs, sweet black cherry liqueur, and licorice as well as spice jump from the glass of this dense, ruby/purple-tinged wine. Fresh, full-bodied and juicy, with a velvety texture, it is a beauty that would be best drunk over the next 3-4 years. Think of it as a Chateauneuf du Pape wearing a Cotes du Rhone mask.90 points Wine Advocate 

$14.99

Cheeses

 

Brillat Savarin

Nirvana on a cracker! One of the most decadent cheeses you will ever eat, Brillat Savarin aux truffles is named after the so-called “Father of Modern Cooking.” The decadently creamy texture and milky flavor of this fresh cheese pairs beautifully with the earthy and aromatic black truffles. Definitely a cheese to share with friends! Try it with buttery crackers for a savory snack or paired with fruit for an over-the-top dessert. $46.99

Montealva

Montealva is a semi-soft pastuerized goat cheese form Cadiz. Like Amercian goat cheeses Montealva is creamy, but has more of a moist chalky texture on the pallete. The mild slightly piquant goat tang translates into vibrant lemon tones and a lasting citrus finish. $20.99

Dark Chocolate Fondue with Fleur de Sel

This charming chocolate fondue is a mixture of 70% dark chocolate and fleur de sel, adding a little kick to a favorite dessert. The ceramic cup is microwaveable, or it can be heated in a double broiler. Either way, use it to dip your favorite fruits and cookies and see what a little fleur de sel adds to a sweet treat! $22.99

We’ve always loved and carried Traou Mad de Pont Aven cookies from Brittany. Made with salted butter, these thick biscuits are supremely dunk-worthy. But in honor of the Gauguin exhibit at the Seattle Art Museum, we’ve brought in these adorable Gauguin tins of cookies. Stop by the Paris Grocery after seeing the masterpieces and pick up a tasty souvenir! $13.99 each

Pan Ducale Bastoncini Biscotti-Cantuccini. I opened these biscotti today for purely scientific purposes, and half the box was gone by noon. The same fate befell all the biscotti pictured above. Seriously addicting, these biscotti have the right balance of crunch and crumble to hold up by themselves or go with your morning coffee. Available in almond or chocolate-hazelnut. $6.24 each.

 

For the latest Paris Grocery news and musings, join us on Facebook! Archives of this newsletter and other articles can be found on our blog.

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

Ellen

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

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

Paris Grocery News 7/11 Monday, Jul 11 2011 

No sleep til Brooklyn! (Because they're on a sugar high from these awesome syrups.)

New @ PG

Fancy syrups, hearty salami, and a texture-driven sweet: our new favorite things.

Florence Fabricant’s “Food Stuff” column in the New York Times is starting to get downright creepy. Every piece is either about some lovely product we just bought, or some new product we’d be stupid not to get. Thus: Royal Rose syrups! Handcrafted in Brooklyn, these organic syrups beautify cocktails, sodas, and desserts. Available in rose, lavender-lemon, cardamom-clove, and three chiles. Because we will do anything that FloFab tells us to do. $11.99 ($10.99 for the three chiles.)

Our love affair with Zoe’s Meats continues. Just in time for summer, we’ve brought in their Genovese salami. It’s a slightly larger diameter salami that’s completely nitrite free with a lean pork-to-fat ratio. Made with pinot grigio (rather than the sweeter sherry wine that they use in their house salami), its milder, juicier flavor makes for a great picnic salami that will go well with a varied spread. $21.99/lb

Share if you must.

Stroopwafels! (We really like saying that.) These incredible Dutch cookies are also referred to as “butter syrup waffles” (!) or “honey syrup waffles.” What they are: A gooey layer of buttery honey goodness smooshed between two chewy waffle cookies. Some people will say they are a little too sweet. Step slowly away from such people while concealing the bag of stroopwafels behind your back. They’re yours now. $5.39

Wine @ PG

Taking a break from our rosé obsession. (But omg there are so many good ones in the shop right now you have to come buy rosé!)

Yep, we're still buying great whites and reds.

Vignobles Fontan Domaine de Maubet 2010

Gascony whites never fail to please. This blend of Colombard, Ugni Blanc, Gros Manseng, and Sauvignon blanc is refreshing without being too acidic. Tropical fruit on the nose, and an interesting note of grassiness on the finish. The screw-top bottle makes this one picnic-friendly. $8.99

Domaine A. et P. De Villaine Bouzeron 2009

For a perhaps more elegant get-together. This wine is made with Aligoté doré, a regional varietal that makes for versatile and aromatic wines. We love this Bouzeron; it’s crisp and lean with earthy, stony notes. It’s got a ton of finesse and understated earthiness. Excellent as an apéritif, and would pair well with seafood or a plate of cheeses. $26.99

Château Mazeau Bordeaux 2009

For those who still crave a deep red during the summer, we’ve brought in this nice quaffer from Bordeaux. Juicy red fruit flavors that deepen on the palate into a lingering, dry finish. Notes of licorice, coffee, and tobacco (oh, yeah). Can’t go wrong with price, either: $9.99

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 3/18 Friday, Mar 18 2011 

 

(Serving Suggestion.)

Sweets @ PG

Yet another bonanza of goodies, just arrived from France. (We’ve got the excess of packing peanuts to prove it.)

Fig and Walnut Caramels

Some insane trifecta of deliciousness is achieved here with this combination of caramel, fig, and walnut. They’re so earthy and sweet and chewy and crunchy, all at the same time, that you’ll feel deeply satisfied with even just one. (But you better get a few, you know, for later.) (79¢)

Calissons

A traditional treat from Aix-en-Provence. A chewy paste of almonds, sugar, and Cavaillon melon with a touch of orange rind and just the right amount of royal icing. (99¢)

Chocolate Truffles

Supremely creamy dark chocolate truffles, dusted with cocoa powder. Yep. The gold-foil packaging is pretty great, too. (60¢)

Les Confitures à l’Ancienne Drinking Chocolate

This amazing drinking chocolate made with raw cane sugar and the finest cocoa beans won the NASFT Outstanding Beverage Award in 2002. With undertones of fruitiness and natural vanilla, this mix makes a mean cup of hot cocoa. (75¢/sachet or $14.49 cube of 14 sachets*)

*The cube was mistakenly priced at $5.99 and listed as such in the newsletter; $14.49 is the correct price. Sorry for any confusion!)

Marshmallow Ropes

Do like the cool enfants and eat these adorable marshmallow ropes right out of the package! Or cut them into comically large squares and float them in a bowl of drinking chocolate. Pick your favorite flavor: lemon, raspberry, or violet. ($1.99)

Dunk 'em.

And: cookies!

Biscoff

The demand for speculoos spread continues apace here at the shop, so we thought it wise to bring in the original cinnamon-stoked cookies as well. These are a Flanders tradition, known stateside for being served on Delta flights. Make a cup of coffee and sit back like you’re flying Delta first class, unless that sounds awful, in which case think about how you’re enjoying the cookies without having to go through the hassle of air travel. ($3.99)

Fossier Biscuits Roses

These airy yet hardy biscuits from Reims, near Champagne, are infused with a touch of vanilla and dressed with a coat of powdered sugar. They’re meant to be dunked, in anything from milk or tea to wine, an aperitif, or even a glass of Champagne, which is so charming we just can’t stand it. Also, the Fossier website offers recipe ideas for tower-like cakes using the cookies like Jenga pieces that are quite ornate and ladies-who-lunch. ($6.99)

Gavottes Crispy Crepe Dentelles

These biscuits from Brittany are made of many many crispy layers, wound around each other like “the dance that lends them their name.” (A gavotte was, obviously, a Breton dance involving lots of spinning and twirling). Available in regular flaky goodness, as well as with milk or dark chocolate coating. ($4.99)

Wine @ PG

Newest of the new.

This just in! (As in, I just put these new wines on the shelf five minutes ago.)

Domaine Força Réal Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2005 ($8.99)

Crazy good price. This medium-bodied southern red has some intense rusticity, with notes of graphite and dark fruit. A good quaffer, especially with something particularly meaty or savory.

Enclos du Petit Chien Cheverny Blanc 2009 ($12.99)

Another fantastic value from the Loire Valley. This 90% Sauvignon Blanc, 10% Chardonnay is, to quote Sharon, “yummy.” Expressions of herbs and minerals, and a nicely round creaminess in the mouth, revealing that the seemingly tiny edition of Chardonnay makes for an excellently balanced quencher.

Domaine des Braves Régnié 2009 ($14.99)

This 100% Gamay from Régnié, the most recently recognized cru of Beaujolais (1988), starts out with some residual sugar and floral hints of violet, but then deepens into dark berry notes and a smooth, refreshing minerality. We’ve noted the exceptional quality of Beaujolais wines from this vintage, and this one is no exception.

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 1/29 Saturday, Jan 29 2011 

The milk of Tarine cows is used to make luscious Alpine cheeses, such as Beaufort, which is our choice when making French onion soup! Picture from Olive White Photography.

Food (& Cheese!) @ PG

“The onion is the truffle of the poor.”

French Onion Soup (Adapted from Bistro Cooking by Patricia Wells)

I find this version one of the lightest onion soups I’ve tried; perhaps it’s because the onions are roasted first. Be sure to use good white sweet onions (yellow onions can turn bitter). If this is likely to become a family favorite, it’s worthwhile to invest in traditional onion soup bowls. Makes 2 servings.

1 very large (1 pound) white onion (such as Bermuda), thinly sliced

10 sprigs thyme

1 bay leaf

1 clove garlic, minced

2 tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted butter

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/4 cup dry sherry

32 oz unsalted chicken stock, preferably homemade

2-4 slices crusty baguette

2 cups (about 5 ounces) grated Beaufort cheese

1. Heat olive oil and butter in large sauté pan. When butter has melted, add onions, garlic, thyme, and bay leaf. Cook slowly over very low heat for at least 30 minutes until onion is very soft and most of the liquid is absorbed. Add the sherry, turn the heat to high, and simmer for a few minutes until most of the sherry has been absorbed.

2. Turn on oven broiler. Bring the stock to a simmer in a large nonreactive saucepan.

3. Evenly distribute the cooked onions between 2 soup bowls. Pour in the simmering stock. Place a round or two of bread on top of each; evenly distribute the grated cheese. Place the soup bowls under the broiler and broil just until the cheese is melted (2 or 3 minutes). Serve immediately.

Wine @ PG

Yay, wine!

St. Cosme Little James’ Basket Press Rouge NV ($12.99)

Another example of a high-end producer (in this case, Louis Barroul, a 14th generation producer of Gigondas) making a delightful low-end wine that we can’t resist. This 100% Grenache is made using the solera system; it’s bright and juicy with moderate tannins. A great, easy-drinking wine!

Domaine de la Chanteleuserie “Cuvee Alouette” Bourgueil 2009 ($14.99)

Another example of a supremely drinkable 100% Cabernet Franc. This Bourgueil exhibits pure fruit flavors, with a delicious earthiness. Low tannins make it quaffable but it still offers great length and power.

2008 Philippe Raimbault “Apud Sariacum” Sancerre ($22.99)

There is no more beautiful expression of Sauvignon Blanc than the wines of Sancerre. The cool climate, chalky soil, and passion of the small producers bring this grape to the height of its aromatic, austere elegance. Philippe Raimbault, a ninth-generation producer, puts enormous care into his small family of wines. This Sancerre has flavors of limestone, crushed rocks, and a heady, enticing florality that is nevertheless retrained. An excellent, refreshing texture for a pure finish.

Craves @ PG

Gratin bowls

We love ceramics from Graupera; the Spanish Table offers many of their pots, tagines, and casserole dishes large and small. New to Paris Grocery are these stout soup bowls ($11.99), perfect for individual servings of French onion soup. The quality of the glazes and materials means they’ll stand up to heating, dishwashing, and even microwaving for many years to come; we also love how these ceramics tend to look better with a bit of use (we think food even TASTES better when cooked in well-used ceramics).

Gifted @ PG

Bistro Cooking by Patricia Wells

This week’s recipe came from this classic, easy-to-follow book of bistro favorites by Patricia Wells. She’s an incredible authority on French cuisine, and this book offers up some choice bistro-culture knowledge as well. I want to try Oxtail Terrine (pg. 125), Leek Terrine with Truffles (pg. 82), and Zucchini Crepes (pg. 92). Her recipe for Riz au Lait (pg. 250) looks promising, as well; it calls for orange and lemon zest which always makes things taste better.

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 11/21 Sunday, Nov 21 2010 

(Serving Suggestion.)

Wine @ PG

Here’s a recommended lineup of wines for the Thanksgiving meal, from bubbly to white to red. And there are so many more amazing options here at the shop: cremants, rosés, Burgundy, Bordeaux, dessert wines, and more.

Stephane Coquillette “Carte d’Or” Brut Champagne ($47)

This delicious Champagne is comprised of 60 % Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay grapes, which are culled from the Grand Crus and Premier Crus of the harvest. Exhibits amazing complexity with notes of melon, berries, toast, and buttered brioche. A persistent finish and fine bubbles: a divine way to start off your feast!

2009 Frédéric Gueguen Petite Chablis ($16.99)

What a delicious wine! Very characteristic of what a Chablis should be: crisp, clean, and elegant. Aromas of tart green apples, toasted almonds, grass and a touch of minerality. This wine pairs well with a wide range of foods, making it our choice for an outstanding Thanksgiving white wine.

2009 Marcel Lapierre Morgon ($24.99)

Marcel Lapierre was a renowned producer of Beaujolais wines, and his death this year marks a sad end to a vivacious man and a tireless advocate for biodynamic production and non-interventionist winemaking. His beloved Gamay grape gets its full expression in this vintage: Exuberant strawberry and red raspberry threaded with lilac, striking notes of blood orange rind, nutmeg, toasted pecan, blond tobacco, and subtle hints of game and forest floor. Silken in texture, sappy and pungent, this finishes with an exhilaratingly animated exchange of fruit, flower, and mineral elements and a sense of levity rare for its vintage.” 93 points Robert Parker

Meat @ PG

 

Pâté de Campagne

Pâté Provençal

Coarse yet spreadable, this pork pâté has bits of green olives and red pepper throughout. Flavorful, with plenty of herbs and spices. $14.99/lb

Pâté de Campagne

This country-style pork spread is coarsely textured and generously seasoned with black pepper. We like seeing who gets the carrot slice on top! $15.99/lb

Mousse Basquaise

Inspired by Basque flavors. Made with duck liver, roasted red bell peppers, and port wine. A bit of spice breaks up the creaminess of the mousse. $16.99/lb

Truffle Mousse

A delectable combination of chicken liver, truffles, and sherry. Savor with baguette and either a light Beaujolais or a sweet Sauternes. $18.99/lb

Duck Mousse with Port Wine

A savory, spreadable mousse made with duck liver, port wine, and spices. No artificial ingredients. Delicious! $20.99/lb

Goose Mousse Supreme

Made with goose and duck liver, and Sauternes. Set in aspic with oranges. One of our most popular mousses, this one is truly indulgent. $25.99/lb

And this just in: Fois Gras Mousse from D’Artagnan!

Craves @ PG

Syrups.

It’s the season of syrups. The distillation of fruit, flowers, or nuts into sugary liquid form, making everything sweeter and therefore better. We’ve got some fantastic options for adding flavor to your hot drinks, cocktails, whipped cream, and sweet treats. We have a wide range of Monin syrups, including grenadine, almond, caramel, and peppermint. Try maple spice or pumpkin spice to make a flavored whipped cream for pies and tarts. We also love L’Épicerie de Provence syrups. Cassis works for making celebratory Kir Royale cocktails, and we recommend Violet, Lavender or Chocolate Hazelnut in baked goods and candies.

Gifted @ PG

Le Souk Ceramique.

These brightly colored ceramics from Tunisia are all made and painted by hand. 100 percent food safe, and appropriate for use in the dishwasher and microwave. Above is the “Sauvage” pattern; we have over 6 patterns available in bowls, plates, mugs, teapots, and more. A beautiful tradition of craft making continues!

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Rachel

and
Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News 9/3 Saturday, Sep 4 2010 

A most delicious bivalve

September. Please note the last letter. Yes, it’s an r. Get your shuckers ready because it’s oyster season! A group promoting the wines of the Loire Valley has ingeniously paired up with local restaurants and oyster farms to bring us Muscadet Seattle. This event spotlights the fantastic natural affinity between the crisp, mineral-driven Muscadet wines and the sublime sea flavor of oysters. Both are also incredible adventures in texture. Eric Asimov of the New York Times recently revisited Muscadet, and he suggests that it’s actually a quite versatile wine that could also pair well with other seafood dishes, poultry and pasta. We say: when it comes to Muscadet and food, we’re fine with trying out every combination possible (in the name of culinary exploration, of course).

Wine @ PG

2008 Clos des Briords Muscadet Sevre et Maine Sur Lie VV $16.99

While there may not be a more natural pairing than Muscadet and oysters, straying from the beaten paths will bring delightful surprises. The high acidity and low alcohol brighten flavors and refresh the palate, enhancing and marrying the flavors of seafood, herbs, and seasonings. This one comes from an old vine planting, and the wine is aged on the lees for 18-24 months. With the exquisite minerality that is typical of Muscadet, the wine exudes fresh notes of limestone and sea breeze. The slight salinity is off-set by a touch of creaminess on the palate. It is one of my favorite whites in the shop.

“Bright straw. A piercing, energetic array of citrus and floral scents, complicated by strong minerality and a note of white pepper. Bitter lime pith and quinine flavors gain flesh and weight with air, taking a turn to sweeter tangerine and quince. Strikingly balanced and precise, with a long, spicy, mineral-dominated finish. This should be even better with a couple years of bottle age.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer

2009 Bonnet-Huteau “Les Dabinières” Muscadet de Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie $14.99

Run by Rémi Bonnet (president of the region’s Maîtres Vignerons cooperative cellar) and his brother Jean-Jacques, the estate is based around the ruins of a château dating to the Middle Ages and has 48 hectares under vines, with some 42 ha planted with Muscadet. This particular cuvée has loads of finesse and a bright texture on the palate.

“Demurely scented with under-ripe honeydew melon, white peach, fresh lemon, clover, and a hint of chalk dust. Soft in feel and expansive on the palate for its genre, yet tingling in its bright citricity, it offers generous refreshment. The strong personality of this cuvee comes in its terrifically long, animating finish, with saliva-inducing salinity and citric juiciness.” 91 points Robert Parker

2008 Chateau de la Chesnaie Muscadet de Sèvre et Maine Sur Lie $12.99

Bernard Chéreau owns three separate estates within the house of Chéreau Carré, which occupies one of the most privileged positions in Nantes. Chateau de la Chesnaie represents a 25-year old parcel in the heart of Sèvre-et-Maine. Chéreau uses only indigenous yeasts and ages his wines on the lees for four months, putting him at the forefront of pushing the boundaries of Muscadet production. We found the 2008 vintage to have a wonderful freshness, with notes of seashell and lime. Mineral-laden and with a dry finish, this wine would be excellent with any delicate preparation of shellfish or oysters.

Craves @ PG

Casali Choco-Bananas

These little chocolate-covered banana candies are enormously popular. I’m not sure if it’s because they’re cheap (they are), or because of their must-look-and-touch packaging (reptile brain), or because they’re delicious (yep, that too). Try them frozen! You will thank me.

Feed Your Mind @ PG

About Alice by Calvin Trillin

This book is not about food or wine, although it is written by the illustrious Calvin Trillin, who has often taken food as his subject. This slim little hardcover book is, obviously, about his wife, Alice, written five years after her death. It’s just a divine little book. He creates a glowing portrait of a hilarious, complicated, engaged, and uniformly charming woman with whom he made a long, lovely life. The picture above is taken from the back cover, and I think it’s worth the $6.99 price alone to be able to take the book down from time to time and get some ideas about how to live with grace, and maybe to complain about how people don’t dress like that anymore.

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