You are currently browsing the Ted Kennedy Watson posts tagged: French


A Few Favorite Rosé, All Under 20 Bucks

Ahhhhhh, it is that time of year again. Nope, scratch that, as a good rosé is really quite lovely any time, but this time of year it is much more abundantly available. Rosé can range considerably in quality and price. This group hits the sweet spot for under $20 a bottle, which always make me quite happy when we are hosting a large dinner or party. All French and all the palest of pink, which always tickles me. There really are so many yummy rosé out there, but it can be overwhelming. Keep in mind AIX, Domaine de Fontsainte and Triennes. A winning trio!



 

 

Our Spring/Summer Order of Mariage Frères Has Arrived!

Always a happy day when our shipment of Mariage Frères tea arrives from Paris. To have the shelves nice and full and freshly restocked makes our tea drinking customers quite happy. We carry the iconic black tins filled with loose tea, as well as the boxes of muslin tea bags. With over 16 varieties, there is always one to please. We ship this daily, so please give the shop a ring to place an order at 206.652.8350. You may also shoot us an e-mail at purveyor@watsonkennedy.com with questions on our stock or to place an order.



 

 

French Bath Mitts at WK

I soooooo love these, Just In, French bath mitts. An old vendor of ours stopped carrying them and we were without for awhile, which had me so bummed as we have carried mitts since we first opened our doors. Le Jacquard Francais, the famed linen company in France to the rescue! Used in place of a washcloth, they have become a Watson Kennedy classic. Paired with a bar of soap, they make a chic & useful gift–a combo I quite like. Happy to have them once again grace our shelves and vignettes.






 

 

2014 Château Bel-Air Lussac Saint-Emilion 

Wine Wednesday brings us this 2014 Château Bel-Air Lussac Saint-Emilion brought in to the US from my friends at Peloton Imports in Seattle & Napa. We had this bottle with our first supper back to Hawthorne last week along with food from one of our favorite places in the hood, Local 111. Being in the country, by the time it takes us to drive to pick the food up, our order is ready. This wine drinks like a much more expensive version. The folks at Peloton do this so well, finding producers who create exceptional wines at exceptional value. Plus, they ship! You don’t have to buy 6 bottles, but if you do, shipping is only a penny for 6 or more bottles. They are one of my go-to sources for when we are planning a party up here and I want wine delivered. 

Now about this amazing wine: Château Bel-Air is in the heart of the Lussac Saint-Emilion appellation. The 50-acre estate has been in the Roi family for more than a century, and it is today run by Jean-Noël Roi. The estate makes several Merlot-based wines, and the flagship wine is the Cuvée Jean Gabriel, made from vines that are an average of 30 years old. Cuvée Jean Gabriel is a relatively new wine for the estate, debuting with the 1998 vintage. It is 50 percent Merlot and 50 percent Cabernet Franc and it is an homage to one of the past patriarchs of the family, Jean Gabriel Roi. It was made with help from consultant Stéphane Derenoncourt. About 12,000 bottles of Cuvée Jean Gabriel are made annually. 

Click Peloton Imports to check out this bottle and oh so many more. Happy Wednesday from the Hudson Valley!



 

 

Domaine Daulny 2016 Sancerre

Wine Wednesday is recommended to us by Micheal Teer at Pike & Western Wine. Every so often at the end of my work week, which typically finishes up at my Market shop, I will enjoy a glass of wine with some of my 86 Pine framily–Peg, Camilla & Emily. This was a ‘you fly, I buy’ bottle Cam picked up for us at the end of a busy day, knowing I love crisp white wine. A glass was perfect then, without food, and I enjoyed a glass last evening with dinner. Around 20 bucks it is pretty darn perfect and has quite a bit going on.

From my Google searching, as you all know I prefer to leave the ‘wine speak’ to the experts: The classique cuvée from Etienne Daulny is made with grapes coming from his fifty or so parcels around Verdigny including some in Perriers, Mont Damnés and Chaudenay. Aged purely in stainless-steel tanks, this is bright and pure–just the way we like our sauvignon blanc, with grassy notes, citrus fruits, and hints of blackcurrant bud. Those who favor nervy, taut Sauvignon Blanc will love this tangy version. The palate is crisp and fresh with beautiful minerality.



 

 

Cassoulet To Go from Café Campagne

OK, you know you must really like something quite a bit when you write about it twice. Know I am smiling as I type this, but you must also know you have a 54 year old brain when you forget that you have written about it in the past… When Google searching with a question this early morning, my prior post from 2015 popped up. What a lovely post! Again, insert smile. Anywho, I love it so much it deserves a second showing. Café Campagne ‘Cassoulet To Go’ is one of my favorite take-away treats to serve at home on a chilly eve, and is our Wine & Dine Wednesday yummy post for the week. Chef Daisley Gordon has served the same cassoulet recipe for close to 25 years. Gordon’s variation uses two sizes of white beans to create an appealing texture, adding housemade morsels of sausage and duck confit. Add a salade verte, haricots verts, a baguette slathered in butter, your favorite red, and off you go. Perfect for two or order extra and host the easiest, yummiest small dinner party ever. That they are my neighbors at 86 Pine Street in the Market means you can pop in and say a quick ‘hi’ after you run in to pick up your order. Happy mid-week everyone! 



 

 

Les Jamelles Malbec 2015

Wine Wednesday is a bottle of Les Jamelles Malbec 2015. Gotta say, I was pretty swayed by that stellar label while I perused the wine selection at our new fab neighbors at the First & Spring shop, Cone & Steiner. We are big Malbec fans in the Watson Sive household, so I am always happy to find a new easy wine to have with a simple week-night meal. A little bit of backstory from web searching.

Tasting Notes
: This elegant, ruby colored wine tinged with red boasts a spicy nose with hints of licorice and notes of red and black fruit. It is soft and well-structured on the palate with solid fruity flavors and fine tannins that give this wine its elegant length. This Malbec is the ideal match for Mediterranean cuisine, pizza, couscous and tagines, as well as assorted meats, cheeses and grilled red meats. It is also delicious with chocolate. 

History: Les Jamelles Cépage Rare collection which is aimed at introducing wine lovers to a selection of heritage, forgotten, or little-known varietals that make up the viticultural heritage of southern France. These wines are the result of a long quest that allowed us to discover vineyards in which the vines thrive and flourish. We learned to determine their optimal yields and how to best vinify the grapes.

Origin: 
Malbec, is said to have originated in France’s Quercy region and the vineyards of Cahors. It was then introduced into the Gironde and Touraine regions around 1810. It resulted from a cross between Magdeleine Noire des Charentes and Prunelard. It is the main varietal used in the Cahors area of appellation as well as being cultivated in the Bordeaux region. 

Character: 
This early-ripening grape yields very fruity, aromatic, deeply colored wines that are rich in tannins and well-suited to ageing. It is often used for the production of rosé wines. This rather capricious varietal needs to be able to reach full maturity. It expresses its full potential when grown in poor soils. Although it can produce 80 to 100 hectolitres per hectare, it produces its best quality wines when yields are limited.

Terroir: 
Malbec is rare in the Languedoc region. However, we discovered two very different vineyards whose 30-year-old vines produce low yields of high quality grapes. These vineyards, whose surface area is approximately one hectare, are located in the Languedoc area of appellation where the earth is very warm and strewn with galets (rounded stones). These grapes give depth and color to the wine, with their tangy red berry flavor, lend finesse and freshness.



 

 

Le Jacquard Francais Special Offer for WK 

Very excited to announce this incredibly generous offer extended to our customers from our beloved Le Jacquard Francais in France. Order one of their tablecloths by November 5th from us and receive as their gift, napkins to match. Depending on the size tablecloth, it will be 2, 4 or 6 napkins. We had the great pleasure years back to visit their factory and watch the linens being created. It was such an awesome experience and we left with an even greater appreciation for the amazing detail of their work. These truly are heirloom quality. Contact Barb@WatsonKennedy.com with questions or to place your order if this is of interest to you. 



 

 

Les Gardettes Rosé

Wine Wednesday brings a new rosé to my ever-expanding roster of French varieties. My eye went right to that label, being a lover of all things crown related, which was the first thing that grabbed me. Our island grocer stocks wines both high & low, but there is always a heavy concentration of rosé this time of year under $20, which is hits the sweet spot for me for the beloved pink. So in the basket it went to be enjoyed for a dinner for two under the umbrellas on what has turned out to be a stupendous city and island July.

From the maker: Named after the two guardian towers of the castle, Les Gardettes is the entrance to the castle and to the Montfaucon range of wines. Concentrated in both color and flavor, the Les Gardettes rosé delivers a healthy dose of French relaxation just like good rosé should. This blend of Cinsault, Counoise and Grenache is a true rosé de saignée (French for “bleed”) where some of the wine is removed from the vat leaving a smaller amount of wine left to bleed with the skins which intensifies color, tannins and concentration. Les Gardettes is full of strawberry, peach and other stone fruit flavors supported by good acidity and freshness.



 

 

A Stellar Rosé Trio, All Under $20

Wine Wednesday is a trio of rosé that are the top of my list when I am looking for bottles under 20 bucks. So often we are serving rosé for a crowd, so it is nice to able to get a nice assortment without breaking the bank. The above three never disappoint. French rosé has a special place in my heart, especially when it is pale, pale pink. I have written about each of these three singly but wanted to give them a shout-out again, this time as a grouping. They make for a festive little wine tasting at your next gathering. Nothing overly serious, just a fun way for folks to mingle, pour themselves a glass, and mingle some more. It is also a great way to keep guests quite happy if you need to step away to tend to further meal prep. Triennes, Domaine de Fontsainte (brought into the States by Kermit Lynch of Berkeley, of which I am a huge fan), and AIX. When in doubt if you are standing in the wine aisle, grab one or all three of these bottles for an exceptionally good pink option/options.