What a special year this has been: International staff wine travels, exclusive market offerings, prodigious single barrel whisk(e)y bottlings, famous guests, countless customer tastings, Cellar School, pop-up suppers, the launch of Henry Provisions, and the foundation of design work for a new venue for private dining (this is a secret...shhh)...well, we confess to a little bit of delicious exhaustion...and, an even more packed year ahead. Below, a few ideas to organize your own thoughts and goals for wonder on your dinner table and how we might help...
THREE RESOLUTIONS FOR YOU AND WINE IN 2020:
RESOLUTION No.ONE. BEGIN YOUR "CELLAR."
Once per month, when you discover a bottle of wine that you absolutely adore, and overhear a staff member suggesting that "this one will continue to mature and develop for at least a few years..." PURCHASE A FEW EXTRAS. Example? The La Rioja Alta "Viña Ardanza" Rioja Reserva Selección Especial, 2010. This bottling is blow-your-hair-back wonderful right now. Winter grilling? Yes ma'am. Casual tapas (snacks) really can be "dinner?" Yes Sir! How about two years from now? How about five or even ten years...or even longer? Just ask me, I've set aside two full cases in my own cellar hedging on this very bet. How will you know? Well, you needn't build a fancy wine cellar of marble counter tops and walnut shelves...but, to confess, you MUST purchase at least slightly more bottles of wine than you will drink on the more immediate side of things. If you'd ordinarily treat yourself to a bottle, purchase three bottles and set two aside for a rainy day. Drink one two years from now...and just see how long you can wait for that third bottle. If you'd ordinarily lay in six bottles, purchase a case of twelve and cash in on a lovely discount. RESOLUTION, RESOLVED: BEGIN YOUR "CELLAR."
RESOLUTION No.TWO. SLASH AND INCREASE YOUR BUDGET.
Once per month...or every other month (or twice per week!), wander into the Shop and instead of picking up two bottles at your customary weekday budget, purchase just one bottle and increase that comfort zone by just a little... never ever feel uncomfortable about the bottle price on something you hope to enjoy at the dinner table (or snuggled up on the couch), but occasionally explore some of the finer things in life and find out, first-hand, what words like "Single Vineyard" and "Grand Riserva" and "Premier Cru" and "Collectible Vintage" mean for the flavors and aromas and the enjoyment they mean for you. Make a night of it: With your special treat of a bottle comes the opportunity to carve out some extra time in planning the evening you pop that cork. If you were going to order pizza, pick up the ingredients and make it, instead. If you were going to thaw some store bought meatballs, dig out grandma's recipe and do it the old-fashioned way. Bottled salad dressing? Well, you get the idea. RESOLUTION, RESOLVED: SLASH AND INCREASE YOUR BUDGET.
RESOLUTION No.THREE. FLIP YOUR SHOPPING SCHEDULE.
Pick a casual 'schoolnite' evening and embrace our staff's approach to food and wine pairing: stop by our Shop before heading to the market or grocery store. As Thomas and I always say, "food is easy to change...we're the ones making it...wine, though, that's a little above my pay grade." In other words, rather than fitting the wine with the chicken dish you've already settled on making, why not stop by our Shop first and chat about a bottle of Vouvray and the fresh, bold moves you might make. Before you know it, you'll be down the road picking up fixings for a yellow curry chicken simmer sauce and jasmine rice. Dinner will still be on the table in less than 30 minutes, but you'll have hopped on a brand new flavor train all because Thomas shared with you that 2017 is a stinkin' delicious vintage for Loire Chenin Blanc. You see? RESOLUTION, RESOLVED: FLIP YOUR SHOPPING SCHEDULE.
So, bottoms up to YOU and YOUR upcoming YEAR of DELICIOUSNESS. Thank you, from the very bottom of our hearts, for making us a part of your dinner table, and may 2020 be your BEST yet.
Allie + Henry + Jacob + Zappydog