Quoi de neuf?
What’s new? Part of the fun of working here is that we get to introduce new and interesting products to our customers. Some are whimsical and others are practical and utilitarian. We also like to search out values and offer food products that are off the beaten path; wines and cheese from lesser-known appellations, and charcuterie from the ever-growing number of domestic, artisanal producers, from the Pacific Northwest, and New York. Here are some of the new items that are available this week.
Chalkboard Serving Bowls $22
The ideal serving bowls! This box set includes a trio of stackable ceramic chalk bowls. Their chalkboard exterior allows you to label and decorate each bowl for a personalized and creative way to entertain.
Domaine du Vallage $24.99/lb
I have heard this rich, triple creme cow’s milk referred to as “a cheese you’d leave your boyfriend for”; it truly is a showstopper! Decadent and densely creamy with a hint of saltiness, and a sweet, buttery finish. Hailing from the Champagne-Ardenne region, this triple creme is extremely wine friendly, but we love it best with champagne.
Ceramic Butter Bowl $22
This ceramic butter dish is equipped with a bowl-shaped insert, designed to hold a stick of butter and keep it at the perfect consistency for spreading. Once filled with a little bit of water, the crock creates an air-free seal whilekeeping the butter at room temperature. Indispensable!
A cousin to Coulommiers with a bit more depth. This cow’s milk cheese has a sweet and milky flavor with forest aromas that are enhanced by its decorative fern leaf. The creamy texture is balanced by just the right amount of saltiness.
Pacific ‘Sensation Anis’ from Ricard. $21.99
Looking for a refreshing Summertime drink that won’t slow you down? What could be more French than a refreshing glass of pastis? The natural extracts of anise…without sugar, alcohol, and zero calories! Enjoy it at every moment, and with everyone! The original version of the famous aperitif without alcohol! Just add five parts chilled water to one part of Pacific ‘Sensation Anis’–it’s that easy. Enjoy!
Three Off The Beaten Path
This week I’d like to introduce you to three very different wines; one is a terrific Champagne value; the other is a distinctive Provençal rosé–definitely not your every day rosé! Last is a wine from the Languedoc; from Pic Saint-Loup to be specific–long a source for great Grenache-Syrah-based wines!
NV Champagne Baron-Fuenté Brut ‘Tradition’ $30.00
Baron Fuente is a négociant that owns almost 90 acres of vines and purchases another 90 acres sur pied, meaning that they pick the grapes, which gives them a lot more control over the quality of the finished wine. This is an important distinction since many négociants buy sur lattes, meaning in bottle. The Brut ‘Tradition’ is a blend of 30% Chardonnay and 70% Pinot Meunier, which perfectly illustrates the capabilities of this grape from the Marne Valley. It’s grown in vineyards along the banks of the Charly-sur-Marne, and is responsible for imparting the flavor of the Brut ‘Tradition.’
“The wine possesses a light yellow cast, with a very fine mousse. The bouquet is discreet and elegant with notes of brioche and candied or stewed fruits, with a light honey aroma. The mouth is supple and well balanced. Unctuous, with a good length on the finish.” –Winery notes.
Clos Cibonne Cotes de Provence Tibouren ‘Cru Classé’ 2014 $26.99
Having undertaken a complete renovation project in the early 90s, this historic estate is once again making terrific wines, and has regained its rightful place as one of the 18 Cru Calssés in the Cotes de Provence.
Clos Cibonne’s regular rosé bottling is 90% Tibouren, a highly valued but not widely-planted grape from Provence, and 10% Grenache, sourced from 30 plus-year-old vines planted in schist soil. The wine is aged on the lees and under a fine veil of flor for one year in 100-year-old foudres before bottling, so it hits the market the year after rosé wines from other estates.
The wine possesses aromas of orange peel, with spicy notes. On the palate, the wine is fresh and vibrant, with fruit tones and saline notes. Unique and distinctive!
Mas Foulaquier ‘L’Orphée’ Pic Saint-Loup 2014 $24.99
The Mas Foulaquier vineyards are located at the foothills of the Cevennes in Pic Saint-Loup, the largest of the Northern Languedoc appellations. Being located inland and at a higher elevation allows for fairly large temperature differences between day and night, which ensures freshness and finesse in their wines. The estate has been organically and biodynamically-certified since 2005.
A blend of 50% Grenache and 50% Syrah. It opens with earthy and floral aromatics that are balanced by rich dark blueberry, plum, pepper and violet flavors on the palate. The finish is soft, with a stony minerality. The Mas Foulaquier L’Orphée has plenty of concentration to stand up to a hearty meal. A great find!
Kelsey & Manuel