What’s in store for December

This article was originally published in December 2013

In the wine department

Bubble on a budget

It’s not just France’s Champagne region that likes to celebrate — there’s a whole world of festive wine to be explored. Medici Ermete Lambrusco Secco is a true Lambrusco, another of Emilia-Romagna’s gifts to our palates and souls. Black raspberries with hints of dark rhubarb blow a kiss through a veil of bubbles. Prefer something brighter? Try Giro Ribot Cava Brut. Lemon blossoms and peaches are the theme, with a streak of bright citrus, fine bubbles and an all-around sunny attitude. There’s also Antech Blanquette de Limoux “Réserve Brut” (Quite the Find!). It’s one of our first “finds,” and we’re still amazed at what this wine delivers. It’s lemony, with a tinge of apple and an impressive minerally elegance.

 

In the cheese department

Decadent cheeses

Cheese lovers have to embrace the season’s spirit of generosity when it comes to Mt. Townsend Trufflestack — otherwise, they’ll eat it all themselves rather than serve it to their guests. Soft, dense Seastack cheese has been infused with Italian black truffles and a touch of sea salt. The truffle’s natural aromatics blend with the complex, subtle cheese in a way that keeps you nibbling. If you do end up eating all the Trufflestack, all will be forgiven if you add a wedge of Fromage d’Affinois to the cheese plate. This method of cheesemaking removes the water from milk before making the cheese, and the result is wonderfully rich, creamy and mild.

 

In the grocery department

Taste the season

Fidalgo Bay Coffee Roasters’ beans are roasted in small batches and delivered to PCC the same day from their Skagit County, Wash., roasting plant. Their seasonal Yuletide blend, built from Peruvian organic and Fair Trade certified beans, has rich, spicy chocolate flavors.

Snoqualmie Gourmet Peppermint Stick is only available for a short time. This premium frozen dessert is made in small batches, using exceptional, locally sourced ingredients.

Angie’s two flavors of Holidrizzle popcorn aren’t genetically modified, don’t contain high-fructose corn syrup and are certified gluten-free. There’s White Chocolatier Peppermint, with flecks of peppermint and a drizzle of white chocolate, or Dark Chocolatier Sea Salt, with the perfect salty-sweet crunch.

Related Reading

Smart holiday feasting

During the holidays it’s easy to overindulge given all the festive foods surrounding us at home, at work and at parties. If you are worried you may be overdoing it and would like to better control the number of delicious calories you consume at your next holiday feast, here are my top five tips for smart holiday feasting.