Patricia Wells visited Paris-Madrid Grocery on Wednesday. What a pleasure to meet her (in our shop!). I am a huge fan. A journalist and cookbook author, Patricia and her husband Walter moved to Paris in 1980; in 1984 they purchased a farmhouse with a vineyard in Provence and began dividing their time between Paris and the farm. Back in the day, we honeymooned in Paris and the print version of Patricia Wells’ The Food Lover’s Guide to Paris was our bible (an era before smartphones), and we avidly read her columns in the International Herald Tribune. Now she can be read everywhere online at patriciawells.com. She writes a terrific blog with Parisian restaurant reviews, recipes, with great photography; read it if you’re in Paris! But, the reason for her visit was to pour a taste of the wine being produced at Clos Chanteduc, their Provençal property. It’s a terrific rouge Côtes-du-Rhône, and it is now on our shelves. See details about the Clos Chanteduc Côtes-du-Rhône 2016 below.
SPECIAL HOLIDAY HOURS ON SUNDAY, DECEMBER 18: WE WILL BE OPEN FROM 10 AM – 6 PM
Paris-Madrid Grocery is on TikTok! This wonderful shout-out to our shop and products, especially the tinned fish, is fast-paced and beautifully made. Thank you!
We’ve got Raclette cheese in stock, the essential ingredient in the melted cheese comfort dish called, well, Raclette. I associate Raclette with skiing – after a day of powering down the slopes in cold temperatures, what could be better than hot cheese served over roasted vegetables? And here right now, just go for a walk in our freezing temperatures and you’ll work up an appetite for Raclette. It’s traditional to make Raclette for several people, with 1/3 to 1/2 pounds of cheese per person. Serve the melted cheese over boiled or roasted potatoes, a variety of salami or cured ham, grilled onions, bread, cornichons, or anything else that whets your fancy. If you don’t have a fancy tabletop Raclette grill, use clay cookware. Simply lay slices of cheese and desired vegetables or meats in a shallow cazuela or clay cooking tray available at Paris-Madrid Grocery. Heat the cheese assembly under a broiler until the cheese melts and starts to brown, then serve.
WINE CORNER We’re ecstatic to now have the wines of Clos Chanteduc, Artadi and La Rioja Alta on our shelves. The store is chock-full of great wines and great foods, so stop in and stock up on holiday specialties!
Clos Chanteduc Côtes-du-Rhône Rouge 2016 ($17.99) This delicious and affordable red is 70% Grenache, planted in 1950, and 30% Syrah grown organically. The 3-ha vineyard, at 300 meters elevation is enclosed by trees, hence the “clos” designation. Grapes are aged in vats and amphorae. Very bright with hints of spice and red fruit, it dances across the palate. With a few minutes of air, a gorgeous mouthfeel develops with hints of mineral. Very balanced on the palate, the fruit notes are well integrated with the oak. This is an excellent food wine, great for large group meals.
Artadi Vinas de Gain Tinto 2018 ($23.99) “The young red 2018 Viñas de Gaín is from a variety of vineyards in Laguardia and Elvillar aged in oak for nine months. It has cold fruit and a very fine thread in the palate, fine tannins, long and balanced, and very fresh. It has depth and complexity. A very good wine, it transcends its price point, like an upgraded version of 2016.” 93 points Wine Advocate
Artadi Valdegines 2019 ($72.00) Made from a single vineyard. “The 2019 Valdeginés comes from an east-facing plot of five hectares opposite La Poza de Ballesteros. The plot was planted 35 to 40 years ago at 600 meters in altitude in the village of Laguardia, and it gets the morning sun. 2019 is a fresh and fruit-driven vintage. Despite the warmth of the year and the lack of water, it has ripe fruit. And it has mellow acidity, but the palate is not heavy; it’s quite fluid. It’s harmonious and with very fine and round tannins. A gentle and elegant Valdeginés with lots of licorice, which seems to be the character of the year. The wines are quite approachable and ready in general, but this over-delivers.” 94 points Wine Advocate
Artadi El Sequé 2019, Alicante ($49.00) “The 2019 El Sequé was produced with ripe Monastrell grapes from organically farmed vineyards at 600 meters in altitude in Alicante on sandy and clay soils. The wine matured in 500-liter French oak barrels for 12 months. It’s a classical Mediterranean vintage with ripe fruit and notes of aromatic herbs, varietal with some notes of tree bark and an earthy minerality. It’s juicy and has fine tannins, a little more rustic than 2020.” 93 points Wine Advocate
La Rioja Alta Viña Alberdi Reserva Rioja 2018 ($25.99) This is a bold and balanced Viña Alberdi Reserva, from a vintage when the winery only made Alberdi, due to a poor harvest. Thus, grapes that would normally be used for higher-end wines were used in Alberdi, resulting in a more complex Alberdi. “the only wine made by La Rioja Alta in 2018 was VIÑA ALBERDI! So, this is a super- Viña Alberdi, which shows very good depth and complexity, perhaps a more modern and fresher style. The wine has a seamless palate and a juicy texture, with more color than other vintages, more intensity, more fruit… It has grapes from very good vineyards and poor soils that were never destined for this wine. Highly recommendable and very versatile. It has the potential to age.” 92 points Wine Advocate
La Rioja Alta Viña Ardanza Reserva Rioja 2015 ($42.00) Decant this fabulous wine for 45-60 minutes before serving. “a blend of 78% Tempranillo and 22% Garnacha (because they found that they needed a little more volume in the wine) from a powerful, warm and ripe year. They consider 2015 a very good vintage; they compare it with 2001. The wine matured in used American oak barrels—the Tempranillo for 36 months and the Garnacha for 30 months. I find it to be more tertiary, with hints of leather and cured meat, and a little wild, very spicy. It has a powerful palate with plenty of tannins, and it even feels that it needs some more polishing of perhaps powerful food…” 94 points Wine Advocate