Experimenting with herbs and spices in everyday cooking can be very intimidating. When I first became a spice buyer, I myself was overwhelmed by the seemingly endless number of herb and spice varieties that are out there, and it wasn’t until I was preparing to teach my first spice class at Formaggio Kitchen that I truly delved into one of the spice world’s most basic yet versatile berries: the peppercorn.
Posted in Buyer's Guides, Herbs, Salts & Peppers, Spices | Tagged black peppercorns, food, green peppercorns, Maricha pepe, Maricha Red Sarawak peppercorns, Maricha Rosso "Red" peppercorns, mixed peppercorns, pepper, peppercorns, piper nigrum, red peppercorns, Tellicherry peppercorns, white peppercorns, whole pepper, whole spices | 1 Comment »
We’ve long been enamored with grower Champagnes – those wonderful bubblies that are made and bottled by the very same people who cultivate and harvest the grapes. So trendy have these Champagnes become that it can easily be forgotten that the oldest winemaking tradition in this part of the world involves a relatively small group of specialty establishments who have a different approach to making the world’s premier sparkling wine. Known as the Grandes Marques, these houses rely mainly (but not solely) on grapes and wine purchased from select growers. What they contribute is artful sourcing and blending. These establishments bear some of the most recognizable names in Champagne: among them, Taitinger, Bollinger, Pol Roger, Moët & Chandon, and – the original – Ruinart.
Brothers Gilles and Thierry Faravel make wine in some of the most weirdly beautiful geography in all of France: in Gigondas, one of the crû villages of the southern Rhone Valley and in the very shadow of the rocky outcropping known as the Dentelles of Montmirail.
Posted in Christmas, Holiday, New Year's, Wine | Tagged Christmas, Domaine la Bouïssière Gigondas, food, food gifts, France, gift ideas, gift wines, Gigondas, holiday, sampler, Wine | Leave a Comment »
The holiday season is upon us, and once again this year we’ve asked our wine buyers at both shops to recommend the wines they’re most excited about gifting this year. These are not every day wines, but rather special bottles that you will want to gift or sip with loved ones. If any of these wines strike your fancy let us know so we can set a bottle (or more) aside for you, as some of them are rare and available in very limited quantities.
Posted in Christmas, Hanukkah, Holiday, New Year's, Wine | Tagged 1979 Kopke Colheita Port, 2005 CUNE “Contino” Rioja Reserva, 2012 Domaine Comte Abbatucci "Cuvee Faustine" Rouge, 2012 Domaine Tempier "Cuvée Classique" Rouge, Bandol, Corsica, food, food gifts, France, gift ideas, gift wines, La Cigarrera Amontillado VOR, La Rioja, Mourvèdre, Portugal, Provence, Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Sherry, Spain, Tawny Port, Tempranillo, Wine | Leave a Comment »