Thanksgiving is next Thursday! My favorite holiday seems like it arrived extra early this year. Here at Paris-Madrid Grocery, we are fully stocked with French, Portuguese, and Spanish specialties which will add great flavors to appetizers, side dishes, and even the main course especially if you’re serving paella. Stop in and we’ll help you pick out wines for the holiday and put together a gorgeous charcuterie board.
This week we unloaded a pallet of French products. Just in time for Thanksgiving, we are fully restocked with spreads, tapenades, and pâtés which make simple and delicious appetizers.
Pick up an assortment of meat pâtés in jars and tins made by Henaff and Rougie. The selection includes duck rillettes, pork liver confit, and pork pâtés of several styles, Foie Gras in cans. Open a container, serve with French mini toasts, and enjoy a delicious appetizer. We’ve also got cornichons and a large selection of mustards to complete the pâté assortment.
Délices de Luberon vegetable tapenades are made in Provence, easy to serve, and the intense flavors will transport you to a sunny patio on the Cote’ Azur. Choose between eggplant, artichoke, or red pepper spreads, green olive or black olive tapenades. Simply spread on crackers and serve!
Mouettes d’Arvor fish rillettes are made in Brittany using traditional recipes and all-natural ingredients. Choose from salmon, mackerel, or sardine rillettes. Creamy and satisfying, they are excellent on crackers or crostini.
Chestnut products are here. We’ve got unsweetened chestnut puree, chestnut spread, and whole cooked chestnuts in a jar, perfect for holiday recipes.
Tempting French holiday sweets arrived, including chocolates filled with Poire Williams brandy, Calissons in gift boxes, Marron Glacé in decorative tins, cookies, and chocolate bars.
THANKSGIVING WINE RECOMMENDATIONS: Sadly, our Beaujolais Nouveau will not arrive by Thanksgiving this year. It’s coming in December and we’ll announce when it’s here. We do carry a tremendous selection of Cru Beaujolais (made from the same Gamay grape as Beaujolais Nouveau, from the same region, but aged longer). A Cru Beaujolais is a stellar treat on Thanksgiving.
The most important consideration in choosing Thanksgiving wines is to buy versatile, lively, and lower-alcohol wines. High-acid wines such as Rosés, Sauvignon Blanc, Chablis, and Pinot Noir from France, or Verdejo, Albariño, or Rioja from Spain all fit the bill, along with many other choices. Wines with great acidity will refresh the palate during an afternoon of nibbling, then carry you through the big meal. If you’re gathering with a crowd who aren’t full-fledged wine aficionados, stick to value wines that are also tasty. If your holiday is more intimate and you’re dining with wine lovers, by all means, serve better wines. Below are some recommendations, but please don’t hesitate to ask us for help.
In a hurry? Pick up one of our curated 6-bottle bags-o-wine. Choose from three different price points: Value ($59.99), Staff Select ($79.99), or Premium Select ($129.99) which feature varied wines, catering to every budget and mood. Find these right in front of the cheese case.
ALR Branco, Vinho Verde 2019 ($15.99) ALR is from Portugal’s Vinho Verde region, but its style is worlds apart from the spritzy, slightly sweet vinho verde wines that we sell a lot of, and drink ourselves. The 2019 ALR is made from biodynamically grown indigenous varietals – Loureiro (60%), Avesso (30%), Arinto (5%), and Azal (5%). From a single vineyard, the grapes are grown in granitic soils located 8 km from the Atlantic ocean, fermented in stainless steel tanks with indigenous yeasts. Light-weight, it clocks in at just 10.5% alcohol so it’s perfect for a long day of sipping. The slate notes and brilliant acidity makes it quite Riesling-like with gorgeous persistence and vitality. With flavors of lime, it delivers a fresh, saline edge and feathery weight.
Dovecote Sauvignon Blanc Côtes de Gascogne 2018 ($14.99) This is a cool climate example of French Sauvignon Blanc with bombastically fresh aromatics. A touch of Gros Manseng is added to the blend (sshhh…) to increase the mouthfeel and length of the wine. This brings extra structure to the Sauvignon Blanc and takes off the edge without masking Sauvignon’s classic varietal notes. Fermented in stainless steel, Dovecote offers up aromas of cassis buds and grapefruit. Citrus flavors with a salty edge are fresh and aromatic. Vibrant acidity means this wine pairs wonderfully with rich foods such as sauces, cheeses, and seafood.
Envidiacochina Albariño, Rias Baixas 2019 ($27.99) Certified biodynamic farming. “A complex nose of stone fruit, citrus, and a hint of thyme leads to a full, flavorful and creamy palate that exudes a lemon curd flavor that persists on a rich, long finish with excellent balancing acidity. A delicious and unique Albariño. 100% Albariño from vines of an average 30 years of age, fermented with ambient yeasts in stainless steel and aged 6 months with weekly battonage, after which it is blended with 15% of Frore de Carme Albariño from the previous vintage.” 92 points International Wine Review
Domaine Bigonneau Reuilly rouge, 2019 ($14.99) This stunning value is 100% estate-grown Pinot Noir from France’s Loire Valley, aged on lees in stainless steel. Intensely aromatic, it offers up floral and red cherry notes. Very fresh and lively, it is soft and smooth on the palate, and pairs wonderfully with rich Thanksgiving foods.
Grand Veneur Les Champavins, Côtes du Rhône rouge 2018 ($22.99) A stellar choice for those seeking a rich and complex red wine. 70% Grenache, 20% Syrah, 10% Mourvedre, organically grown. Aged in concrete vats and neutral barrels, 2018 Chaumpavins has superb mouthfeel. With an enticing bouquet of cherry fruit, violets, and spring flowers, this medium-bodied red has moderate tannins. On the palate, layers of cassis, vanilla, black pepper, cocoa, and minerals add to the complexity. Round, spicy and balanced, this wine offers pleasurable drinking any time of the year.
Tradición H Reserva Rioja 2015 ($19.99) Tradición H Riojas are a recent tasty discovery! A gorgeous classically styled Rioja, it shows notes of balsamic, earth, cigar box spice, and perfectly ripened fruit, balanced by fresh acidity. 90% Tempranillo, 5% Graciano, 5% Garnacha from 70-year-old vines. “A fine mix of dried red fruit, baking spice, tobacco, and olive aromas ranks as classic Rioja. A dry, fairly full palate reflects the quality of the 2015 vintage, while flavors of spiced plum, cassis, and tobacco avoid any tricks. A meaty, chewy palate confirms that this was made from excellent raw materials.” 92 points Wine Enthusiast
SCRUMPTIOUS AND EASY APPETIZERS
Piquillo Peppers stuffed with mackerel salad Makes 12 tapas:
All ingredients are available at Paris-Madrid Grocery.
1 can Piquillo Peppers, drained
2 – 4 oz cans Albo or Matiz brand Mackerel packed in Olive Oil, drained
12 Lemon stuffed olives, chopped
4 Tablespoons Capers
½ teaspoon Sherry Vinegar
⅓ cup Benedicta French Mayonnaise
Mix the stuffing ingredients together.
Drain the piquillo peppers, then holding them point down in the circle formed with your thumb and forefinger, use a small spoon to fill them with the stuffing mixture.
Variation: For extra depth, use anchovy-filled olives.
Montadito with Sobrasada sausage, goat cheese, and honey Serves 12
Montaditos are open-faced sandwiches that can be any combination of ingredients, limited only by creativity and taste. This recipe uses Sobrasada, a style of chorizo from Mallora that easily melts under the grill. Pictured are other delicious combinations served Montadito-style.
12 slices of baguette
12 slices of sobrasada (appx 8 oz)
12 slices of Caña de Cabra goat cheese (appx 8 oz)
12 slices of fresh pear (optional)
1 teaspoon of honey
Toast the baguette slices, then lay a piece of sobrasada on each one. Heat under the broiler until the sobrasada begins to melt (3-5 minutes). Remove from broiler and put the slices of goat cheese and pear on top. Drizzle a bit of Spanish honey over the top and enjoy.
Stuffed Rice Balls – 12 servings
2 cups cooked Bomba rice
8 oz Sliced Jamon Serrano, chopped
1 jar Romesco sauce
Mix the Jamon Serrano pieces with the cooked rice to blend. Form into 12 balls, then cover with plastic wrap. Twist tightly to form into a ball. Refrigerate for an hour or more to meld the flavors.
To serve, carefully unwrap the rice balls onto a plate and serve with the Romesco sauce on the side.