Paris Grocery News 7/8 Sunday, Jul 11 2010 

"Prise de la Bastille" by Henri Paul Perrault (1928) Perrault's Prise de la Bastille. Happy Bastille Day!

It’s hot!

There’s not much else to say, is there? Let’s jump right in, because we’ve got a ton of ideas for the perfect hot weather wines and treats. If you can take these ideas and somehow add a hammock, a beach, or even a stretch of concrete in the city made for resting, all the better.

Also: Bastille Day is next Wednesday, July 14. There’s a big celebration at Seattle Center this Sunday, July 11, featuring music, art, wine, and the World Cup final on a giant screen. Festivities begin at 10:30 am and last until 6:00 pm. For more info, go to

We’re also big fans of Le Pichet’s annual bash with live music, a fantastic “street food” menu, and usually a rousing sing-along of Le Marseillaise. Held on the actual holiday, Wednesday, July 14, starting at 6:00 pm and lasting until the wee hours.

Wine @ PG
Buy six or more bottles and get 10% off!
The Reign of the Rosés

I’ve already waxed poetic about rosé wines in a previous newsletter. I don’t think it is any secret that we all adore this delicately hued wine. We drink them year-round, but there’s something that is just so right about drinking rosé while the sun bathes your skin in a warm glow of belated summer. With a whole crop of 2009s in, I thought it was a good time to introduce you to some of the new members of our rosé garden.

2009 Domaine Tempier Bandol Rosé ($39.99)
The AOC of Bandol owes its distinction to Domaine Tempier. Lucien and Lulu Peyraud inherited the estate from Lulu’s father in the 1930s, and their passion for this plot of land along the Mediterranean inspired their neighbors and brought the likes of Kermit Lynch, Paula Wolfert, and Alice Waters to their doorstep. Today, Bandol’s Mourvedre-based Rosés are among the most sought after rosés in the world for their ability to age, their complexity, and their incredible texture. Domaine Tempier continues to be the leader among its peers, with its rosés regularly scoring over 90 points.

“Very rich and complex, featuring flavors of dried cherry, plum, raspberry, with hints of melon. Chocolate and spice linger on the ripe finish, with a hint of meatiness. Drink now through 2013.” 90 points Wine Spectator

2009 Le Galatin Bandol Rosé ($21.99)
A classic Provençal rosé from an organic estate. The grapes are hand harvested and pressed with the utmost care. With 50% Cinsault, 25% Grenache, and 25% Mourvedre, the wine is pale, with incredibly fresh raspberry and strawberry on the nose. Light, minerally, and crisp, it shows why rosé is so popular along the Côte d’Azur. Absolutely killer with a tomato and goat cheese tarte.

2009 Domaine Lafond Roc-Épine Tavel ($16.99)
Tavel is an AOC that produces only rosé, and is purported to have been Honoré de Balzac’s favorite wine. Located across the river from Chateauneuf-de-Pape, Tavel benefits from having three kinds of soils, one dominated by limestone and slate, another by sand and rock, and the third by the galets roulés. The variety of soils, combined with the complexity of the Tavel blends, make their wines one of the few ageable rosés. This one is a sublime blend of Grenache, Syrah, and Cinsault, with a touch of Clairette and Grenache blanc, plus a few other Rhone varietals. It is full-bodied, fleshy, with sweet strawberry, raspberry, and licorice notes and a touch of florality.

2009 Chateau de Manissy “Cuvée de Lys” Tavel ($18.99)
In the style of Tavel, this is a muscular rosé with heady fruit on the nose and the palate. What is a little unusual is that is almost equal parts red (Grenache, Cinsault, Carignan) and white (Clairette, Piquepoul, Bourboulenc) grapes. The gifted young vitner, Florian Andre, convinced the religious order who owned Chateau de Manissy to let him work their 40-85 year old vineyards. I doubt they have regretted that decision, as this Tavel is pure, focused, and elegant. A lingering minerality balances the plush fruit. It stands up to a variety of dishes.

2009 Pascal et Nicholas Reverdy “Terre de Maimbray” Sancerre Rosé ($24.99)
Unlike Bandol and Tavel, 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.

Cheese @ PG

Snack Attack!

If you’re a true Seattleite, you’re probably already complaining about the heat. And you may be experiencing a sad reduction in appetite after all these cold months where bulking up was a biological necessity. This week we’re featuring our favorite cheeses for a simple snack, where the only accompaniment need be a few slices of charcuterie, some olives, and a glass of rosé. Most of these cheeses do double duty, working just as well when melted in a number of summer recipes. Enjoy the heat, and for the delicate among you, take heart: it’ll only last a couple of weeks.

Valée d’Aspe
This wonderfully earthy raw sheep’s milk cheese is crafted by Basque artisans in the shadow of the Pyrenees. Firm, but not flaky, this cheese evinces its mountainous terroir with savory notes of nuts and olives, a vibrant tanginess, and a classic grassy finish. Wonderful with charcuterie and olives.
$5.99/quarter lb

Bleu du Bocage
This goat’s milk blue from Vendée in western France has become an instant staff favorite. Enticing meaty aromas and a nutty yet clean finish, with a more delicate bite than some other blues. Melt-in-the-mouth texture. Melt it on lamb burgers!
$9.49/quarter lb

Tome Jacquin

A deliciously fudge-like texture and a mildly grassy goat tang make this a cheese to swoon over! The layer next to the distinctive rind on this chèvre from the Loire Valley adds a buttery, more aged flavor. An unctuous finish on the palate.
$5.79/quarter lb

Rouge et Noir Camembert

Yellow Buck Camembert has a soft and buttery texture, with a nutty tanginess. It was reintroduced by the Rouge et Noir label to commemorate 100 years of making Camembert , which have always been made with authentic Old World cultures.

Shepherds Chèvre Logs
This domestic fresh goat cheese won us over with its perfectly semi-soft and spreadable texture. Made in small batches with Grade A hormone-free milk. Try it in pasta, salads, savory tarts, or alongside fresh fruit. Five flavors: plain, peppercorn, garlic herb, tomato basil, and herb spice.

Seafood and Meat @ PG
Get your protein.

New this week, and perfect for picnics and simple snack plates:

Coeur de la Mer Boquerones
These marinated white anchovies are sustainably harvested in Oregon. They are ready to enjoy; serve them up as a tapa or add them to salads or pasta. Try all three flavors: traditional, chili, or garlic and spices. $10.49 for a 7-ounce pouch.

Creminelli Sausages

We love charcuterie from the renowned artisans at Creminelli. We’ve brought in two new flavors at a terrific price point. Salami Piccante is the real pepperoni deal, a spicy pork salami made with paprika and hot peppers. Pizza night is calling. Salami Casalingo, or “household” salami, features the merest amount of salt, pepper, and spices to let the pork flavor shine through. A fantastic addition to a antipasto plate. $9.99 for a 5.5-ounce link.

Craves @ PG

Picholine Olives

We pack out several types of olives from bulk, so that you can get the freshest flavor. We love Picholines for their juicy, fruity snap- perfect as a snack with an aperitif.

Feed you Mind @ PG

The Provencal Cookbook

Guy Gebba, a chef and teacher at Chateau de Berne in the Var region of Provence, guides you through the basics of Provencal cooking and living. Beautiful photos and surprisingly simple recipes, perfect for the home chef who is feeling the heat.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Abi & Rachel

Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery

Paris Grocery News, 6/11 Saturday, Jun 12 2010 

They smile because they're thinking about all the delicious cheese at Paris Grocery!

Show your colors

Since Steve and Sharon are carousing around Spain and Portugal, some of us have (maybe) been using the computers to sneak in glances at the FIFA matches. We’re just trying to create an authentic atmosphere. Isaac even said he’d buy us a round if France beats Mexico next week. To lend some snazz to your festivities, we have stickers and French flags large and small. Don’t forget that le foot is always more fun with cheese, charcuterie, and a few glasses of wine! And yes, we have some recommendations for you.

Wine @ PG
Buy any six bottles and get 10% off!

2006 Mas de la Dame Les Baux de Provence “La Gourmande” ($15.99)
Mas de la Dame is a certified organic estate on the rocky slopes of the Alpilles mountains. The Faye family has been growing grapes and olives there for four generations, committed to preserving the natural beauty of the estate using techniques such as hand-harvesting. Equal parts Grenache and Syrah, “La Gourmande” is a full-bodied, rich, and layered wine. Smooth raspberry, blackberry, and vanilla flavors are anchored by tones of scorched earth and licorice. The finish displays delicious notes of cherry skin and spice. Mas de la Dame wines have become part of France’s cultural landscape, distinctive in their squat Calvados bottles, and mentioned by Simone de Beauvoir in her memoirs.

2009 Domaine Sorin “Terra Amata” Côtes-de-Provence Rosé ($10.99)
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, excellent matches for many styles of cuisine. The Côtes-de-Provence rosé is their best-known wine, a lovely, dusky salmon colored wine. It is a blend of both red and white grapes, primarily Grenache (40%), with the five Southern Rhône reds and two local whites, Rolle (5%)and Orgi (5%). It is rich and fruit forward, full of strawberry and raspberry, with nice acidity and a hint of spice on the finish. Pour yourself a glass and you will feel like you’re on the Riviera!

2009 Domaine Sorin Bandol Rosé ($17.99)
Bandol, located right along the Mediterranean between Marseille and Toulon, is the spiritual home of Mourvèdre. The rosés from this tiny AOC have been lauded by the likes of Alice Waters and Kermit Lynch, and with Domaine Sorin’s blend of Mourvèdre (60%) and Grenache (40%), you’ll join in the chorus of praise. Produced in a much more limited quantity than the “Terra Amata”, this rosé is floral and peachy, with great verve and a seamless finish. It is perfect with summer fare such as seafood pastas, grilled fish with fennel seed and herbs, or vegetables with pistou.

2007 Domaine Sorin Bandol ($24.99)
A voluptuous red wine, the Bandol from Domaine Sorin is 85% Mourvedre, with Syrah (10%) and Carignan (5%). It is fermented in huge oak casks, and then transferred to barrels for a 16-month aging period. Blackberry, tobacco, and dark fruit are fused with earthy notes of leather, cedar, and a chewy finish. Spectacular with lamb and red meats, this wine is a favorite at Campagne Restaurant.

Cheese @ PG

Swiss, Swiss, French: three new cheeses we love.

Scharfe Maxx
A slightly smoky, deeply beefy, and immensely tangy cheese from Switzerland. Aged for 6 months, this thermalized cow’s milk cheese is washed with brine and herbs, giving it a powerful and sharp (scharfe) flavor and a dense, creamy texture. A fantastic melting cheese! $6.75/quarter lb

Moser Brie
From the Swiss cheesemaker Moser in Switzerland. This bloomy rind cow’s milk cheese is washed with riesling-sylvaner wine, imparting notes of flowers and apples. Creamy, sweet, and earthy: you’ll love this little brie! $11.99/each

This tangy and slightly savory cheese from the Loire Valley is like two cheeses in one: next to the rind it’s buttery and smooth, while in the center it’s light and creamy. Amazing with Loire whites and delicious as is or melted. Try thin slices layered on top of a summer vegetable tart and bake to toasty perfection. Bonus: check out the price! $3.99/quarter lb

Food @ PG

Cheese’s favorite cracker.

Feeling the need for a cracker that would make for delicious pairings with our wide range of cheeses, we looked around and finally chose the 34 Degree Crispbreads from Colorado. They’re baked without oil, delivering a light and airy cracker with delicate flavor. We’ve got tons of ideas for each flavor:

Natural: This neutral cracker is a pure flavor vehicle. Try it with sharp or pungent cheeses, such as Munster, Scharfe Maxx, and earthy blues such as Fourme D’Ambert. Also great for pâtés.

: Adds a touch of nuttiness to buttery bries and triple creams, such as Fromager d’Affinois. Also great with semi-soft cow’s milk cheeses like St. Nectaire or Le Somport.

Cracked Pepper: Delicious with young and aged goat cheeses such as Pave de Jadis and Bucherondin. Also fantastic with our salami from Zoe’s Meats.

Rosemary: Calls out for fresh chèvre, such as Le Picandou or the herb-coated Fleur Verte. Would also bring out the grassy notes in one of our Basque sheep’s milk cheeses, such as Abbaye de Belloc.

Lemon Zest: Try it with Saveur de Maquis, a Corsican sheep’s milk cheese with a ricotta-like texture, or Tome Jacquin, a fudgy goat cheese with great complexity. Great with fresh berries.

Feed your Mind @ PG

Merde: The real French you were never taught at school

You’ll be able to properly insult your rivals and brag about your team with this book and its sequel, “Merde Encore”. They are the ultimate guides to French slang in all its colloquial glory.

Craves @ PG

Fentiman's Curiosity Cola

A naturally fermented soda, with ginger and herbal extracts.

Thanks for reading, see you soon!
Abi & Rachel

Steve Winston and Sharon Baden
Owners, Paris Grocery