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Archive for 2010

Wine Blitz Preview Tasting @ 18 Reasons

We hope everyone is enjoying their leftover turkey and diligently finishing off their cases of wine from the November Blitz. Bi-Rite Market’s final Wine Blitz of the holiday season is almost upon us! Starting Thursday, December 9th and ending Sunday, December 12th, your purchase of any 12 or more bottles of wine will be 20% off. We even offer free delivery anywhere in San Francisco for a case or $150 worth of wine. This is your last opportunity to stock up on wine for your holiday parties, New Year’s Eve bubbly, and gifts for all the wine lovers in your life. Our next big sale isn’t until May 2011, so don’t miss out! (more…)

Holiday 2010 Catering Menu Specials

Place your holiday party catering order early– the calendar is filling up fast!

Savory Tartlets with Butternut Squash, Caramelized Onions, Apples, Pt. Reyes Blue Cheese and Sage (30 pieces) $55

New Potato Cups with Cauliflower Puree and Chives (30 pieces) $60

House-smoked Salmon and Tobiko Caviar on Anna’s Daughter’s Rye with Caper Cream Cheese and Fresh Dill (30 pieces)  $70

Endive Spears with Crab Salad, Winter Citrus, Parsley and Chervil (30 pieces) $75

Truffle-Infused Frittata with Mushrooms, Potato and Chives (36 bite-sized pieces) $50

Marin Sun Farms Filet Mignon – Served with Horseradish Sour Cream Sauce (serves 12-15)  $135

Baby Lamb Chops- Grilled to Medium-rare and Served with Romesco Sauce (24 pieces) $90


All Cupcakes are Available in Full Size ($30 per dozen) or Mini ($20 per dozen)

  • Pumpkin Cupcakes with Macadamia Crunch Buttercream
  • Chocolate Midnight Cupcakes with Peppermint Buttercream and Crushed Candy Canes
  • Sour Cream Chocolate Cupcakes with Caramel Peanut Brittle Buttercream
  • Spice Cupcakes with Caramel Buttercream

Holiday Cookie Box: a selection including Gingerbread Cutouts, Linzer Cookies, Hazelnut Thumbprints, Mexican Wedding Cookies and more! (2 dozen) $40

Double Chocolate Tartlettes: Mini Chocolate Pastry Shells filled with Rich and Creamy Chocolate Ganache (30 pieces) $45

Classic Cream Puffs Filled with Hazelnut Cream (1 dozen)  $20

18 Reasons hosts a Tiny Holiday Bazaar and a Big Art Opening: Dec 1st, 6-9PM

Get a head start on your holiday shopping, support local producers, and celebrate a fabulous artist all in one night!

For the aspiring DIY crafter,  get a home cheese making kit. For the tidy cook, select some beautiful handmade kitchen towels, and for the the entertainer with an eye for style, find a live edge wood cutting board. We will also have jams, cards, and much more – all from only 9 vendors:  Maria Schoettler, INNA Jam, FarmCurious, Jam it, Pickle it, Cure it., Slow Jams, MRCW, Sweet Pea & Rose, Ambatalia, and Pie Bird Press.  18 Reasons will also be selling our brand new memberships and t-shirts.

Maria Schoettler’s gorgeous calendar of seasonal, local, fruits and vegetables was the inspiration for tonight, so it is only fitting that her original artwork will be on the walls and for sale, along with her new 2011 calendar.

And since we don’t believe in shopping on an empty stomach, we will offer wine and homemade snacks to fuel your evening.

Welcome to our new site!

I’m excited that you’ve found your way to our new website– WELCOME! We worked hard to make this a real reflection of who we are today. Our old site was fine for finding basic info…but we wanted the site to be more– to feel like you’re walking into the Market on a given day (minus the great smells). There are a few new things I think you’re gonna love:

Our Blog

This is where we’ll have the chance to tell the full story behind all the great food we feature in the Market. It’s always a challenge for us to give the amazing products we love the attention they deserve on the floor. We want you to know how they got to our shelves– about the people who grew the vegetables or the winemakers who labor over the grapes for the wines we sell. Most of all, we want you to hear it from the perspective of our buyers who are making these decisions every day. (more…)

Hanukah Menu 2010

Available Tuesday 11/30 through Wednesday 12/8

  • Matzo Ball Soup $ 7.99 / quart
  • Chopped Chicken Liver with Caramelized Onions $3.99 / half pint
  • Potato Latkes $3.99 each (more…)

Great video for the kids!

Free Range Studios puts out awesome movies about our food system, and never fails to provide a balance between quality information and entertainment value. This video on fruits and veggies in grocery stores is one that my girls are always asking me to watch again and again with them. “May the Farm Be With You!”

What we look for in natural wine: the Bi-Rite Manifesto

In going after wines that compliment the flavors in food, we’re easily led towards an appreciation of  natural wines. The world of natural wines can be confusing to navigate, so we’ve written up our own “manifesto”:

Grapes are grown in a vineyard that is farmed organically or biodynamically. Herbicides are not used to control weeds, but the soil is plowed where possible, often with nitrogen-enhancing cover crops between the rows to encourage soil vitality, deep root growth and aeration.

Grapes are harvested by hand, bringing mature, clean fruit to the winery. Yield (grapes per acre) is controlled by pruning (limiting the number of buds per plant) and by retaining lower-yielding old vines.

Fermentation occurs using only indigenous yeasts naturally present in the vineyard and cellar, allowing the true flavors of the grapes and the terroir of the soil to be expressed. (Of course “stuck” fermentations or vintages with high levels of rot may require added yeasts.)

Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) is not used, or is limited to as small a dose as possible. Wine-making without SO2 is difficult. In the opinion of most natural wine-makers, it requires that grapes are grown organically in vineyards with healthy wild yeast populations. In addition, it requires time, experience and careful work in the cellar from a wine-maker that is committed to making a wine that is a true expression of their vineyard. Low-sulfur wines can have beautifully complex flavors  and pure aromatics  with more “terroir” character.

Fall 2010 Menu

From our Deli Case

  • Special Sandwich: House Smoked BBQ Beef Brisket with Creamy Cole Slaw on an Acme Roll
  • Farfalle Pasta with Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Preserved Meyer Lemon and Pistachios
  • Lentil and Spicy Roasted Yams with Capricho de Cabra goat cheese and Arugula
  • Roasted Green Beans with Wild Mushrooms, Roasted Chestnuts, Grilled Radicchio and   Housemade Heritage Pork Pancetta (more…)


We’re Serious About Turkeys

At Bi-Rite we get pretty serious about Thanksgiving, especially about turkeys. As the centerpiece of Thanksgiving dinner, turkey has become cliché due to its sheer abundance and reputation for bland dry meat. (more…)

What to bring to a dinner party: Acetaia Leonardi Balsamics

I’ve learned a lot of things from my Mother, but one of the most important pieces of advice that she drilled into me is to never arrive empty handed to a dinner party. I absolutely agree on this guidance but can get stuck from time to time on what to contribute to the event.  Wine can be difficult to pick out, especially if I don’t know what we’re eating. Flowers can be lovely but time-consuming to the host if they have to find a vase. Everyone loves dessert, but my delicious contribution could potentially throw off a well-planned party.

I’ve realized over time that the best gift is one that the host can continue to use long after the celebration ends. My favorite present to give right now is the Acetaia Leonardi Three Year Balsamic Vinegar along with a wedge of Parmesan Reggiano; the incredible aromas of caramel, honey, and burnt raisins found in the balsamic pair spectacularly with the nutty, sweet, umami flavors of our Parmesan Reggiano. This gift lends itself perfectly to a dinner party, serving as an impromptu appetizer, dessert, addition to a salad, or drizzle/shaving  over entrees. The best part, however, is that the host can continue to use both the balsamic and cheese many more times, remembering the fantastic celebration and thoughtful gift that you contributed. (more…)


The Perfect Holiday Gift: Robert Lambert Fruit Cakes

Holiday fruit cakes have gotten a lot of slack over time, and in all honesty, some of them don’t hold a candle to Christmas cookies (ahem the ones with neon green and pink fake fruits that don’t taste like fruit at all.) We’re proud this season to be selling exquisite fruit cakes hand-made by award winning cookbook author and chef Robert Lambert.

The White Fruit Cake is Robert’s grandmother’s original recipe.  Although he removed most of the glacéed fruit and added his own, the cherries and pineapple are still there. To those he’s added Brazil nuts, local pecans and whole blanched toasted almonds. The walnuts are doused with boiling water before toasting to reduce their bitterness.  Deeply ripe oranges from DeSantis Farms are squeezed for juice just before it’s added; their golden raisins are also there.. Lambert’s own candied young ginger, candied bergamot, Rangpur lime, Meyer lemon and blood orange peels are all included. Each cake is soaked in the finest French cognac, topped with a California bay leaf and candied white grapefruit peel star.

But there’s more! Cooks traditionally made both a light and a dark cake, so named by the tone of their fruit and batter. Lambert’s Dark Fruit Cake, with molasses, brown sugar, port wine and spices, is darker in flavor as well. Since Robert’s grandmother’s recipe was lost, he worked from many old sources to forge a unique take on this classic.  He mixes in cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, 10-year-old Ficklin port, local hazelnuts and pecans, plus the walnuts and fresh squeezed OJ from DeSantis Farms. He uses their dark raisins in this one, plus prunes, and their black figs soaked in Pear William eau de vie. Kadrawi dates, an ancient variety, come from Flying Disc Ranch in Thermal, California. The recipe isn’t complete without his own rare candied Texas lemon and Buddha’s hand citron, bergamot, blood orange and white grapefruit peels, and candied young ginger. Each cake is soaked in Jack Daniels bourbon whiskey, topped with California bay leaf and candied blood orange peel star. Whew!

Recipe for Fall: Thai Style Carrot Ginger Soup

If you’ve been taking carrots for granted (we don’t blame you, it happens!) it’s time to re-discover them. Their combination of sweetness and great vitamins is hard to beat. We worked up a soup recipe that makes them shine with zing from fresh ginger, and a hint of sweet richness from coconut milk. Cozy up and let us know in a comment how you tweak it your way!

Carrot-Ginger Soup

Makes about 8 cups.

1 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs. butter

1 large yellow onion, diced

Kosher salt

1 ½ lbs. carrots, peeled and diced (about 4 cups)

3 Tbs. chopped ginger

1 Tbs. mild curry powder

4 cups vegetable or chicken stock (homemade or low-sodium)

15 oz. can coconut milk

1 Tbs. lemon or lime juice, more as needed

Heat the olive oil and butter in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the onions and 1 tsp. salt and cover the pot. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add the carrots, ginger, and curry and continue to cook uncovered for another 2 minutes to “bloom” the spices. Add the stock, bring just to a boil over high heat, and then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot partially and continue to simmer for another 20-30 minutes, or until the carrots are completely tender.

Carefully puree the soup in batches in a blender and return to the pot. Stir in the coconut milk and lemon juice and rewarm gently. Taste and season with more salt or lemon juice as needed.