The BSFW blog offers a periodic airing of our staff's observations and musings about things we find in our market and, frankly, can't live without. This is not a dispensing of erudite information from high on the mount; this is us sharing with you the aspects of the fine wine, craft brew and gourmet worlds that pique our interest.
This congenial approach is something we take seriously - so please feel free to comment! Afterall,it's our customers that inspire us to do what we love to do - and do it even better than before at every opportunity.
We aren't the kind of store to give you the hard sell, as you well know - we just get really excited about sharing the truly cool things we've found!
What better time to get excited than now? I certainly embrace my inner-elf! I absolutely relish coming up with fun, personal ideas for my friends and family and then basking in the glory of watching their reaction to what I've found for them.
1. Kopke Fine Tawny Port, which comes in a convenient 375ml size ($11.99)
2. Duck Foie Gras ($21.99 and the gift that can become part of your Christmas day 'pre-game', too!)
3. Macallan 12 Year "mini me" ($8.99)
4. Marcona Almonds ($4.99)
5. Ball Square Wine/Bottle Opener ($9.99)
6. Ball Square Shot Glass ($2.99 - helpful also in case the natives get restless)
7. Op & Top Netherlands Brew 11.2oz ($5.44)
8. Marquis de la Tour Bubbly 375ml ($5.99)
9. Taras Boulba Extra Hoppy Ale 11.2oz ($4.44)
10. Cafe Tasse Chocolates ($2.49/bar)
11. And... for the person you love (to go out with) City Dining Cards 2012, featuring 50 $10 Discount cards for Boston's finest establishments ($20)
Last Saturday our very own Will Durbin manned the Tasting Station for a sampling of Aperitifs. These unique, simple yet sophisticated spirits proved they are, indeed, perfect for satiating your guests this holiday season!
Since so much information was imparted about the spirits themselves as well as best uses, we thought it might be helpful to follow the tasting with a few notes about each, and recommendations for cocktails also. Here we go!
Imbue Bittersweet Vermouth - The flagship aperitif of Imbue Cellars. This American vermouth was created for sipping on the rocks, with complexities such as elderflower, dried tangerine, vanilla, lemongrass, and honey coming to bear. Of course these same notes provide just the kind of head-turning aromas and flavors that make for interesting cocktail-mixing! Whether you're a purist or not, this Oregon-based spirit is one to lift yours. $24.99
Strega - Here we have an old-school Italian liquor that has been produced in Campagnia since 1860. Strega's is a recipe for success, with approximately 70 undisclosed herbal ingredients combining forces to deliver an award-winning product (San Francisco World Spirits Competition Gold Winner). Over ice or mixed, this is a party pleaser. $34.99
Krown Swedish Punsch - Could it be Scandanavia's most famous liquor? It is! Made with sugar cane and spirits from the East and West Indies, you'll discover rich toffee, smoke, leather and molasses notes. Our cocktail curious crowd Saturday night deemed this their informal favorite. It's a natural! $29.99
Elizabeth Allspice Dram - Here we have a holiday natural! This Aperitif also known as Pimento Dram was the beesknees here in the U.S. in the early 1900s, but an importing hiatus thereafter ensured this all-spice berried liquor became scarce all too quickly. Today Elizabeth is back in fashion, with clove, cinnamon, nutmeg and pepper notes making it a natural component in classic cocktails like the favorite "Lion's Tail" popping up around town, Wassail, and mulled wine! $31.99
Drop on by to grab a bottle for your cocktail party or soiree this holiday season, or to see what other Aperitifs we have on hand!
We recruited Foundry on Elm's lead Mixologist (or is that bartender? or chef?), Andy Kilgore, to host a special seminar for customers interested in mixing it up - and mixing it up right! The event sold out well in advance and those who attended wanted to know when they could come back for Part II.
We grabbed a little bit of footage to give everyone a bite-sized taste of the seminar, and whet whistles for the next event (still TBD - check our Events page often for updates!). I the meantime, see if you can whip up Andy's Bourbon Classics, using Michters, our Spirit of the Month!
2.5 oz bourbon
3/4 oz mint simple syrup (mint + sugar + water)
Mix together in julep cup; stir well. Sprig of mint garnish.
3/4 oz bourbon
1/2 oz Cointreau
3 dashes angostura bitters
3 dashes Peychaud's bitters
Stir over ice and top with champagne.
2 1/2 oz rye bourbon
1/2 oz maraschino liquor
1/4 oz green chartreuse
1 dash orange bitters
Stir well and serve up with a twist.