Heads Up! The 14th of July is the French national day and it’s time to start thinking about that great, Gallic-themed party or picnic you plan to host. The 14th of July–it’s called “Bastille day” outside of France, but never in France! “Le Quatorze Juillet” is a day of celebrating French culture. On this day, French often watch the military parade on TV in the morning, and then they meet up for a dinner among friends or family, maybe even a barbecue or a picnic by the water, or in a city park. Some cities organize city-wide meals. In the evening, the French watch fireworks and then go dancing in a “popular ball” which is often organized by the village–French people love to dance! Villages also sometimes organize French bowling competitions, games for children, when there are no fun fairs around! In Paris, there is a huge concert on the Champs-de-Mars, under the Eiffel Tower. There are also special massess held which are attended, but less so than in earlier times. All in all, it is a joyous occasion–Bonne Fête Nationale!
Paris-Madrid Grocery is a great place to begin shopping for your Bastille Day needs. We have all sorts of French charcuterie, cheeses, beans, cornichons, moutarde, and lots of wine to supply any holiday gathering. We recently started to carry the famous dry-cured ham, Jambon du Bayonne. Speaking of Jambon du Bayonne, it’s often considered to be the culinary pride of Southwestern France. It’s not a reach to think of jambon de Bayonne as the Champagne of ham, it’s the result of hundreds of years of expertise in raising pigs, and curing their meat, which has resulted in a product that is described as the “flower of French gastronomy.” Incidentally, like Champagne, these hams are regulated and protected by its own appellation. Pork, salt and air-curing (and dedicated know-how) are all that’s required to produce these artisanal hams. Be sure to stop by and try a sample. You can special order a whole leg, or slice a quarter-pound or better, anytime.
20% off cazuelas with handles. Available in chocolate or terracotta, in 17 cm (one quart) or 25 cm (four quarts), while supplies last. Made in Spain, this clay cookware is beautiful, versatile and durable. Use it on gas or electric heat, in the oven or dishwasher, and bring it directly to the table for serving.
Three New Wines That Overdeliver!
2016 Domaine Poli Ile de Beauté Niellucciu Rosé $14.99
This Coriscan rosé was featured last week by Eric Asimov (20 Under $20: The Savory Side of Rosé, New York Times). Described as salty, savory and refreshing, I would add that it’s a compelling mouthful of bright fruit notes and extremely thirst quenching. We’ve also got Triennes Méditerranée I.G.P. Rose 2016 in stock ($14.99), another wine described in Asimov’s article as “smells of berries and flowers with savory, saline edges.”
2009 Señorío de P.Peciña Reserva Rioja — SALE, now $22.99 (regularly $27.99), 18 bottles available.
Rioja fans, snap up this winel! Winery founder Pedro Peciña Crespo established his small Rioja winery in 1992 on his family’s 40 to 50 year old vineyards. Peciña wines are traditional-style Riojas, perhaps influenced by Pedro’s 18 years as vineyard manager at venerable Bodegas La Rioja Alta. The 2009 Reserva offers up elegance, notes of leather and tobacco, with dark cherry fruit. Bright and lifted on the palate with a velvety texture and fine tannins, its medium weight makes it an excellent wine with charcuterie or paella.
2012 Fontaura Nexus Ribera del Duero $14.99
A clean and fruit-driven, young wine from Frontaura. It possesses a pleasant ripeness, with aromas of berries, walnuts, and balsamic notes, which is covered by an overlay of sweet, spicy oak that is nicely integrated. The palate is medium-bodied with some grainy tannins. A delicious wine for a very reasonable price. Highly recommended!
Taste Lustau Sherries at a dinner on Monday July 10th at Pintxo Restaurant. And then head down to Paris-Madrid Grocery to purchase your favorite. We’ll either have it in stock, or will order it for you. For details about the event, click here