Paella - KleeParis Madrid Grocery will be open regular hours, 10 AM – 6 PM on Memorial Day (Monday, May 28, 2018).   Come on in for paella ingredients or tapas supplies for a picnic, hiking, or boating trip, or for nibbles!  We just received a fresh shipment of chorizos, morcilla, butifarra, and other sausages for grilling, as well as rice, including 5 kg. bags of Valencian and Bomba rice, for those large parties.

Padron plantsMemorial Day kicks off gardening season and for a limited time, we’ve got Padrón pepper plants for sale.   It’s time to plant them!   Get them in the ground now, and peppers should be ready to harvest in mid-July.  If you have not tried these delicious peppers, pick them when they are 3-4 inches long.   Sauté them in olive oil until they blister on all sides.  Transfer to a serving dish, sprinkle with sea salt and eat!    About every tenth pepper has a spicy kick, which is part of the enjoyment.

Muga Prado Enea 2010Muga Rioja Prado Enea Gran Reserva Rioja 2010 ($80.00)   LIMITED – Only 8 bottles available.  Rioja fans, don’t miss this vintage!   The last time we visited Bodegas Muga, the family had just bottled the 2010 Prado Enea and their excitement over this vintage was palpable.    Muga wines are crafted with the utmost attention to detail, from their in-house barrel making (the only producer in Spain with an in-house cooperage, master cooper, and three barrel makers), the respect for their estate vineyards by practicing organic viticulture, and a blend of traditional and modern winemaking.    Their wines reflect a purity of fruit and a nuanced complexity from these careful processes.   The 2010 Prado Enea is 80% Tempranillo, and 20% Garnacha, Mazuelo and Graciano.  The grapes for Prado Enea are always the last to be brought into the winery, which ensures an ideal level of ripeness. The grapes are fermented in 10,000 kg oak vats without temperature control and no addition of yeasts, then aged for 12 months in 16,000-litre oak vats, thirty-six months (minimum) in oak casks and thirty-six months (minimum) in the bottle. After ageing, it is lightly fined using fresh egg whites.    “The Prado Enea from 2010 could very well be one of the finest vintages of their classical, long-aging bottling.   This is the most classical among the wines in the portfolio, the one with the longer élevage, a little bit like the wines from yesteryear but with today’s knowledge about vineyards and vinification/élevage. The fruit is from the cooler, higher-altitude vineyards.  It ferments in small oak vats built by their own tonneliers, and they like to delay malolactic until the spring by opening the windows so the cold from outside comes into the winery. It has very healthy and balanced parameters, and that’s what the wine feels like.  It’s never a dark wine, more of a ruby or bright color, and it has a nose of youth, subtle and elegant. But the quality shows in the unbelievable elegance and harmony on the palate, where the tannins are very fine, the flavors are subtle but deep and the length is just phenomenal. This is only medium-bodied, with perfect Philippe Viallet Savoie roseripeness and integrated acidity. This should have a very long life in bottle, especially as I had the chance to check the evolution of the 2004 next to this.”   97 points Wine Advocate

Maison Philippe Viallet Savoie Rosé 2017  ($12.99)  The Viallet family has been working the vineyards of Savoie, Apremont in the French Alps since 1966.   Son Philippe joined the business in 1984, after having studied winemaking in Beaune and is now the winemaker.   His delightful rose is 100% Gamay, grown on narrow and trellised, high altitude plots.  Offering up a crisp freshness, this Savoie rosé dances lightly across the palate while showing a gorgeous salmon color in the glass.   With juicy and intense notes of strawberries and red currants, it has spicy hints on the finish.  This is a thirst quenching and delicious pink wine!

French pool roseFrench Pool Toy rosé, Vin de France 2017 ($9.99)   The label on this wine may cause eyes to roll, but please read on!   We had the same reaction until we tasted this dry and quaffable rosé, and realized that it’s in a plastic bottle.   That opens up so many possibilities!   It weighs less than a glass bottle, making it uber-portable on hikes, picnics, or to locations that don’t allow glass bottles.  It floats, so can be chilled in a cold creek or lake.  It doesn’t break, so it’s much safer on a boating trip.   And it tastes good!