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Matt R.

Unconventional Beauty: Jolie-Laide Wines

TrousseauGrisGrapes

Trousseau Gris Grapes (Image from Scott Schultz’s Instagram)

Jolie-Laide literally translates to ‘pretty ugly’ but is more a euphemism to refer to something with unconventional beauty. Winemaker Scott Schultz of Jolie-Laide Wines is one of the small craft winemakers in California working hard to express the beauty of what many consider ‘unconventional grapes’.

Scott hails from Chicago and moved to Napa in 2007. Having worked in restaurants for a while, he’s been on most sides of the service-life from working the restaurant floor to sweating in the kitchen. When he moved to Napa, it was to head up the wine program at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon. After years of restaurant work, Scott decided to get more into the winemaking side of things. He volunteered to work a harvest and loved it! He worked at Realm for a few years as cellar master and currently works with Pax Mahle at Wine Gap Wines. He shares winemaking space with Wind Gap, Ryme Cellars, and formerly Arnot-Roberts; all like-minded winemakers searching for beauty in the unconventional.

Scott is sourcing grapes from unique vineyard sites all organically or sustainably-farmed. His goal is to highlight these unique sites, producing wines in lighter and fresher styles that are made with very minimal intervention. His wines, and thus the labels, change slightly each year, “like album covers,” as Scott says. This year’s labels feature botanical drawings of butterflies, inspired by lepidoptera taxidermy (those huge boards with various butterfly specimen pinned onto them for study); something unconventionally beautiful in its own way.

Come by either Market to try these fascinatingly beautiful wines. Scott doesn’t make very much of any of these, so grab them while you can!

TrousseauGrisWine2013 Jolie-Laide Trousseau Gris  -  $26.99
Trousseau Gris is one of the greatest wine grapes you’ve probably never heard of. A mutation of the red-skinned Trousseau grape, which is native to the Jura region of France, Trousseau Gris’ skin and juice are both a blush rosy pink hue. Once widely planted throughout California and more commonly known as Grey Riesling, there are very few plantings remaining here. Scott sources his Trousseau Gris from the 10-hectare Fanucchi-Wood Road Vineyard in the Russian River valley, an organically farmed vineyard that he shares with Wind Gap Wines. At first glance in your glass, it might be hard to identify this wine as either white or rose, and it truly does toe the line between the two. Aromatic notes of citrus, green tea, and stone fruit lead to a richly textured palate with flavors of orange zest, wildflowers, and gentle tea-like tannins. It’s layered texture would pair beautifully with a variety of food, but we recommend something simple like a whole grilled trout stuffed with herbs.

RossiRanchWine2012 Rossi Ranch Red Blend  -  $36.99
The Rossi Ranch Vineyard is a truly special place. One of the remaining true ‘field-blends’ where different grapes are inter-planted, this vineyard is home to Grenache, Syrah, Muscat, and Viognier grapes. Most other people who have used this vineyard in the past have ignored the white varietals, leaving them to rot on the vine, and have made wines with the more traditional blends of Grenache and Syrah. However, Scott felt this site needed to be expressed as a whole, so he co-fermented all of the grapes together! The percentage of the white grapes blended is small, less than 2%, but once you realize they’re there, the aromatics are unmistakable. The light floral touch from the Viognier and Muscat are complemented by notes of rose, raspberry, rich tannins, and a long spicy finish. Drink this lightly chilled and enjoy it on it’s own – no food necessary!

Upcoming Wine Events:

  • 18th Hour Cafe - Thursdays, 6-9PM – Drop-In - At 18 Reasons
  • Wine Tasting with Keelyn of Alexia Moore Wines – Friday, May 30th, 4-6PM – At Bi-Rite Divisadero
  • Wine Tasting with Daniel of Kermit Lynch Wines – Friday, June 6th, 4-6PM – At Bi-Rite Divisadero
  • Anchor Beer Tasting – Saturday, June 7th, 3-5PM – At Bi-Rite Divisadero
  • Producer Dinner: Mas de Daumas Gassac - Friday, June 6th, 6:30-9PM – At 18 Reasons
  • Organic Women Winemakers of Italy - Saturday, June 7th, 3-5PM – At 18 Reasons
Don’t hesitate to call us with any questions or special requests: (415.241.9760 for 18th St. or 415.551.7900 for Divis) or email wine@biritemarket.com.

Simon

The Joy of Masumoto Stone Fruit

It typically takes three to four weeks into California stone fruit season before the flavor of our local peaches and nectarines really starts popping with that celebrated balance of sweetness and acidity, but this year we’ve already got some great ones rolling in. Almost all of the peaches and nectarines that hit the shelves at the Bi-Rite Markets are from farms with which we’ve spent years building relationships, but last season we were able to take our peach and nectarine selection to the next level with a new farm-direct relationship.

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Mas Masumoto with his Rose Diamond Nectarines

Masumoto Family Farm in Del Rey, California is a beautiful eighty-acre orchard located fifteen minutes south of Fresno. It was purchased by the Masumoto family in 1948 and its current owner is third-generation farmer and author Mas Masumoto, who has mastered the art of building soil to support the growth of the beautiful fruit-bearing trees. At Masumoto Family Farm, fruit is always harvested at the perfect level of ripeness, and you’ll notice one thing all varieties of Masumoto stone fruit have in common: beautiful yellow flesh. The Masumoto family loves the tang of the yellow flesh of the fruit, and their fruit boasts a sugar/acid balance that is a dream-come-true for summer refreshment.

Due to the warm winter, Masumoto harvested this year’s first yellow peach variety earlier in the year than they can remember ever having done before, and this past week we received our first shipment of Spring Lady Peaches. This is a very juicy peach with medium acidity that falls into the clingstone category of stone fruit (meaning that the flesh of the fruit is attached to the pit, the best to eat but hard to work with in the kitchen, as opposed to freestone fruits where the flesh is detached from the pit, making them easier for canning, freezing or cooking). We’ve been enjoying these beautiful, delicious peaches and they’ve definitely primed our tastebuds for what’s still to come.

Soon after the Spring Ladies, we received the first of Masumoto’s Rose Diamond yellow nectarines. Mas’s daughter Nikiko, who is keeping the family farming tradition alive into its fourth generation, refers to this clingstone nectarine as a “mini firecracker.” The Rose Diamond is usually a large, richly-flavored nectarine with a dazzling red skin. This year, due to the lack of water caused by the drought, this nectarine is smaller than usual but is packing an extra-sweet punch.

masumoto peaches

Beautiful Masumoto Peaches

Early June should see the arrival of the semi-freestone Gold Dust yellow peach, considered by some to be the best early variety for eating. With its firm texture and rich, sweet flavor, it’s the textbook grilling peach. The Gold Dust will be followed shortly by one of the most popular varieties in California, the freestone Flavor Crest yellow peach, and shortly thereafter by everyone’s favorite, the freestone Sun Crest yellow peach (large with red-blushed skin and very juicy, it’s the peach that put the Masumoto family on the map). The last variety of stone fruit we’ll see from Masumoto is the clingstone Le Grand yellow nectarine, a large piece of fruit with rich, sweet flavor and firm flesh, making it great for producing nectarine ice cream!

PerfectPeachBook2

The Perfect Peach by the Masumoto Family

Tree-ripened peaches and nectarines truly are some of the most exciting treats of the summer. If you haven’t had the chance to sink your teeth into Masumoto fruit, you have the next couple months to swing by our Markets, so make it happen!

Stephany from the Produce Team at 18th Street is a huge fan of the Masumoto family’s fruit, as well as an accomplished cook, and she has pulled together a few recipes here to help you celebrate the season!

“Rose Diamond” Nectarine & Habanero Salsa

  • 6 ripe yellow nectarines, not too soft but with a little give (any bright flavored yellow peach or nectarine with medium to high acidity will work, but Masumoto’s “Rose Diamond” is particularly amazing & flavorful)
  • 1 habanero pepper, with slits cut all around sides but left whole
  • ½ bunch cilantro
  • 1 spring onion or ½ red onion, sliced finely
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Dice the nectarine into ¼ inch cubes. Add to a bowl with the slit habanero and stir around. Chop cilantro and onion finely, add to salsa. Season with salt and pepper.  Let sit for at least 15 minutes, then taste and add salt, and a squeeze of lime or honey to adjust the acidity or sweetness as needed. If it is spicy enough, you can remove the habanero, although cutting the slits as opposed to chopping lets the flavor get out without adding too much heat, and the floral notes of the habanero go particularly well with yellow nectarines & peaches. This can be done 1-2 days ahead. Store refrigerated.

Wonderful on grilled or roasted meats: chicken, pork, salmon. Try it on toast with ricotta or burrata for a quick appetizer, on fish tacos…the possibilities are endless!

Stone Fruit & Pt. Reyes Mozzarella “Caprese” Salad

  • 1 lb mixed stone fruit, ripe but not mushy: nectarines, peaches, plums, pluots, cherries…whatever you like. Or try a mix for color and flavor
  • 1 ball fresh mozzarella, such as the lovely Pt. Reyes mozz we have right now. Burrata is also delicious in this.
  • ½ bunch basil
  • A few handfuls arugula
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, such as Bi-Rite’s own PUBLIC label oils, something grassy with a peppery note is good to offset the sweetness
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Good sea salt, such as Maldon or fleur de sel…something with a crunch

Slice up your stone fruit and mozzarella. Layer the cheese and fruit on a large platter over the arugula. Tear some basil and sprinkle it around. Dress with olive oil, balsamic, and coarse salt. Eat right away!

This is a great alternative to the classic caprese while we let the tomatoes do their thing and get delicious! In the fall and winter I do the same salad with persimmons & citrus!

“Gold Dust” Peach-Ginger Shortcakes with Bourbon Whipped Cream

  • 4 yellow peaches, such as the “Gold Dust” we just got in from Masumoto (which is hands down one of the best peaches I have ever had)
  • A 1-inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated or minced finely (I use a microplane, one of my favorite kitchen tools)
  • A handful of brown sugar or turbinado sugar, depending on the sweetness of the peaches
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 cup heavy cream (I love Straus for the rich, grassy, buttery flavor)
  • 1 shot of your favorite bourbon whiskey- anything with nice caramel or brown sugar notes is delicious, like Bulleit or Elijah Craig
  • 4 shortcakes, from Bi-Rite Creamery or homemade (chopped crystallized ginger is a nice addition if you’re making your own!)

Dice or slice the peaches as you wish. Place in a bowl, and add a sprinkle of sugar and a pinch of kosher salt. If the fruit is very sweet it will need no more than 1-2 tablespoons. Add the ginger, stir, and set aside to macerate for a few minutes. This can be done up to 1 day ahead.

Whip the cream to soft peaks with the bourbon, a sprinkle of brown sugar (to taste), and a pinch of kosher salt. This is best done right before serving. Though it can be whipped a few hours ahead, the cream tends to break down after a day or so. To fix this, re-whip to desired texture.

To assemble: Warm shortcakes briefly in the oven to re-crisp (5 minutes at 375 should do it). Cut the shortcakes in half crosswise, and layer peach compote and bourbon cream over bottom half. Top with second half of shortcake and serve.  A little fresh basil or thyme adds a nice herbal note. A drizzle of salted caramel sauce is also a great addition.

Pickled “Gold Dust” Peaches

  • 6 peaches, ripe but quite firm. Masumoto says the “Gold Dust” yellow peach is particularly delicious pickled.
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup kosher salt
  • 1 tsp each coriander seeds, black peppercorns & fennel seeds- or whatever spices you like!
  • 3 dried arbol chiles (or use your slit habanero left over from the nectarine salsa!)

Bring everything but the peaches to a boil to dissolve the sugar and salt. Slice or dice peaches as desired and place in a clean jar. Let the liquid cool slightly. Pour over the peaches, let cool to room temp, then refrigerate overnight. Enjoy them the next day! They are a delicious addition to a charcuterie platter, grilled pork chop, or a grilled cheese sandwich. Their brightness cuts nicely through anything rich and fatty.


Matt R.

Memorial Day: Wine Picks & Wild Local King Salmon!

With the recent heat waves it feels like summer has already come and gone! But Memorial Day weekend is here and that means awakening those grills from their long winter hibernation. And since you’ll be doing some grilling and cooking up some BBQ this weekend, we’ve got our wine picks ready for you! Each of these is the perfect addition to a Memorial Day picnic or BBQ!

Unti2013 Unti Vineyards Rosé  –  $24.99
Unti Vineyard’s 2013 Rosé is made of mostly Grenache from their Benchland Vineyard, blended with about 20% Mourvedre. Located in Dry Creek Valley, Unti specializes in Rhone and Italian varietals, all farmed biodynamically. We love their rosé every year and the 2013 vintage is no exception! It’s light in color with plenty of mouth-watering acidity. A floral and fruity nose leads to a lush, yet crisp and dry palate the remindes us of fresh Provencal-style roses. Pair this with anything from whole grilled fish with spring veggies to simply a park blanket and sunshine!

SalmonPostIf  you’re looking for the perfect fish to pair with your Unti Rosé, look no further than our Memorial Day special on fresh-caught local wild King Salmon. We’re offering fillets of this beautiful fish from Half Moon Bay for just $19.99/lb. Don’t miss this incredible price, available through Tuesday, May 27 at both Bi-Rite Market locations!

Tendu2013 Matthiasson Tendu White  -  $19.99
Tendu is a joint project of Steve Matthiasson and his friend (and wine distributor) Matthew Plympton. In a fun-sized 1-liter bottle, it’s a nod to the ubiquitous liter bottles of Grüner Veltliner you might find in Austria. The blend consists of Vermentino, Cortese, and Arneis – all native Italian varietals grown right here in Northern California! We can’t get enough of this refreshing and approachable wine. Dry, crisp, and minerally, with flavors of tart green apple, flowers, fresh lemon, and just a hint of white pepper. What more could you want along side a BBQ or picnic? Be careful though, you just might drink the whole liter by yourself!

GreenRed2011 Green and Red Vineyards Chiles Canyon Zinfandel  -  $21.99
Jay and Pam Heminway first planted their vineyards on the hills of the Chiles Valley District of Napa in the 1970s. Today, the iron-rich soil and varied vineyard terrain provide ideal growing conditions for unique Zinfandel. The Chiles Canyon Zinfandel is a blend of all three of their vineyard sites, with elevations ranging from 900 to 2000 feet above the valley floor. Aged in half American and half French oak; the resulting wine couldn’t be more prefect for Memorial Day grilling! Black cherry and raspberry aromas, with plenty of spice and notes of espresso and clove make this great with most BBQ!

Tellus2010 Tellus Vinea Bordeaux Rouge  -  $19.99
Made by brothers and winemakers Jacques and Jean-Paul Pueyo, of famed Château Belregard Figeac, this Bordeaux blend is an incredible value. They harvest their grapes by hand from organic vineyards that border the Lalande de Pomerol appellation. The blend is mostly Merlot with a bit of Cabernet Franc, and Bi-Rite is the only retail shop in California to carry it! It’s a stunning Bordeaux with a soft perfumed nose, great structure, and long finish. The perfect red to accompany all your summer BBQs!

Upcoming Events:

 


Stephany

Summer Squash: Fun, Versatile & Perfect for Dinner!

Hi, I’m Stephany! I’m a member of the Produce Team at Bi-Rite 18th Street, and I’m also an experienced cook with a passion for food, community, and sustainability. This summer I’ll be writing a series of posts highlighting my favorite summer produce along with ideas for how to prepare them. This is the very first post and I’m delighted to share my passion for food with you.

SDinner1GeneralSquashUp first: summer squash. I get excited when summer squash comes in because it’s a fun, versatile section of our produce aisle that has tons of variety. Summer squash comes in a number of different varietals. Zucchini is the most well-known, but here at Bi-Rite 18th Street and Bi-Rite Divisadero we have lots of others, like Zephyr, Crookneck, Flying Saucers, Baby Acorn, Sunburst, Pattypan, Costata Romanesco and Eightball. Some of these don’t look like what you think of when you think of squash, but trust me–they taste great. Most squashes share similarities in flavor–fairly mild, sweet and creamy–and are a good foil for bolder flavors.

We get summer squash from some of our favorite local farms, typically first from Balakian Farms, then from Happy Boy, Tomatero and Terra Firma as the season progresses. They’re beautiful and delicious, but just as importantly, they’re also easy and fun to prepare. Summer squash can be eaten raw, but it also cooks quickly. It’s lovely in a shaved salad, tastes great roasted to bring forward sweetness, looks and smells beautiful next to those burgers and onions on your grill, and is rich and substantial sautéed. Smaller and rounder squashes like Eightball or Pattypan make fantastic ingredients for stuffings.

You can shave summer squash into ribbons using a peeler; you’ll find that it comes out almost like noodles, making it a great substitute for pasta. If your shave it into ribbons, you can salt it (called “cold-sweating”) and the salt will pull out all of the extra water; you can then hand-squeeze the water out after about five minutes. Then you can dress your noodles however you want. Personally I like them with pesto, basil or any kind of fresh, bright herb, and they also go well with cheeses, peas and other fresh summer produce like cherry tomatoes.

Here’s a favorite recipe of mine using summer squash that I hope you’ll enjoy! You can get everything you need for this recipe at either of our two market locations. Just ask our staff for help.

 SDinner1Ingredients

Summer Squash “Pasta” Salad

SDinnerFinalIngredients:

  • 4 long summer squash such as Zucchini, Crookneck & Zephyr, for shaving
  • 1-½ lbs mixed summer squashes such as Pattypan, Sunburst, Flying Saucer & 8 Ball, chopped into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 lb English peas, shelled
  • ½ pint cherry tomatoes, stems removed (I used Terra Firma Farm’s Golden Nuggets, first of the season! We also have their Sungolds & Sweet 100s)
  • ½ bunch basil
  • 1 stalk green garlic, bulb halved and greens finely chopped
  • 1 red spring onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar (or to taste. Any milder/sweeter vinegar would work- champagne or white wine, or lemon juice)
  • Olive oil
  • Golden Valley Farm’s Pepato Cheese to finish (Pepato is a wonderful peppercorn-studded aged sheep’s milk cheese from the fine folks who make Yosemite Bluff, down in Chowchilla, CA. The pepper complements the natural sweetness of the squash and other veggies.)

Directions:

  • Shave long squashes into ribbons using a mandolin or vegetable peeler. (If you don’t have one, a Benriner Japanese mandolin is one of the best kitchen tools you can have. They cost around $15 and are long-lasting and durable).
  • Place squash shavings in a bowl, and salt generously. Toss to distribute salt and set aside. The salt will pull out the excess moisture from the squash so you salad won’t get soggy. If you are eating it right away, you don’t need to do this, but it helps tenderize it as well.
  • Heat up a cast iron skillet over med-high heat. Add a little olive oil, and add half of the chopped squashes in a single layer. Avoid overcrowding the pan; if it is too crowded the squash will just steam. Giving them a hard sear caramelizes the sugars and brings out the natural sweetness, and adds a bit of nice crisp texture on the outside. Season with a little salt. Once they are browned, flip to brown on all sides. Set aside, and cook off the rest of the squash.
  • Wipe out the pan, add a little more oil, then drop in the English peas. Sauté for 1 minute or until just barely cooked. Set aside. Add a bit more oil, then add the green garlic and cherry tomatoes, sauté until the garlic is browned and the tomatoes are starting to split. Set aside.
  • Pound the green garlic with half of the basil to form a coarse paste. Add enough red wine vinegar, olive oil and salt to taste.
  • Toss with the squash “noodles,” roasted squashes, peas, tomatoes and spring onion. Finish with some torn fresh basil and shaved Pepato Cheese to taste.

 


Zach Berg

All I Want! Sprocket and Manchego!

AllIWant3As a Cheesemonger at Bi-Rite Divisadero, I have access to an array of beers right across the aisle from the Cheese Department. One of the many fun parts of my job is developing pairings of my favorite cheeses and beers to complement and draw out their flavors. My current favorite combination is Sprocket Bier and Artequeso Manchego.

Sprocket Bier won an intra-brewery tasting at Stone Brewery, hosted and judged by their three top brewers. Similarly, the Artequeso Manchego was a standout among the exhausting list of different Spanish Manchego cheeses available to us in the Bay Area.  At Bi-Rite, our Cheese Buyer Anthea has worked to select the perfect Manchego for us–creamy and yet salty and crumbly. The beer is a dark rye with big toasty notes that are balanced by a crisp dry finis –a perfect foil for the rich sheep’s milk cheese. Together they create a perfect snack!


Chili

4 Days Only! Friday-Monday Fresh-Caught Wild Local King Salmon Just $19.99/lb

Fishies

Wild Local King Salmon season is booming! To celebrate the kickoff of a bountiful season, we’re pleased to offer fillets of fresh-caught Wild Local King Salmon at just $19.99/lb, a special price we’ll be offering for just 4 days–from Friday, May 9 through Monday, May 12.

Fresh from Half Moon Bay and brought to us by our good friends at All Seas, this hook-and-line caught fish is beautiful; ideal for a special Mother’s Day weekend brunch, grilling, broiling, or as a centerpiece for dinner on a warm evening, such as Sam’s Eat Good Food recipe for Seared Wild Salmon with Late Spring Succotash.

SalmonRecipe


Jessie Rogers

Treat Mom Right! Mother’s Day Brunch, Flowers, Sweets & Gifts

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Mother’s Day is  Sunday, May 11th! We’ve got an array of great options to help make it special and memorable for your Mom. From the best local, artisan-made sweet treats and incredible sustainably-grown local flowers, to special sandwiches and Mom-worthy Brunch offerings, you can get it all at Bi-Rite Market. And why not spoil Mom with a bottle of bubbly?

 

Mothers Day Menu

The following items will be available all day Saturday and Sunday, May 10-11. 

House-Made Quiche with Roasted Wild Mushrooms,
Melted Leeks & 
Gruyère
$6.99/slice

Poached Prawns with Cocktail Sauce
$28.99/lb (3-4 servings/lb)

Happy Boy Farms Organic Sugar Snap Peas with Caramelized Organic Spring Cipollini Onions,
Fines Herbes & Toasted Almond
$13.99/lb

Brunch Specials

Available 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, Saturday, May 10 and Sunday, May 11
(or while supplies last)

Special Sandwich–only available at Bi-Rite Market 18th Street:
Smoked Trout Tartine with Fromage Blanc, Fried Egg & Shaved Asparagus
$9.99/each

Special Sandwich–only available at Bi-Rite Market Divisadero Street:
House-Made Buttermilk Biscuit with Ham, Egg & Cheese
$8.99/each

Strawberry Shortcake
Bi-Rite Creamery‘s House-Made Shortcake, Organic Local Strawberries & Vanilla Chantilly Cream
$6.99/each

Full Belly Farm mixed bouqet 2

Don’t forget the Flowers!

We’ll have an amazing selection of flowers and will be on-hand to create custom bouquets and arrangements just for your Mom! Bouquets are arranged by our head florist Eleanor and her amazing team. This season Eleanor is especially excited about Canterbury Bells from Full Belly Farm, Sweet Peas and Sweet Williams from Devoto Gardens, Peonies, and Full Belly Farm‘s pre-arranged organic bouquets.

Celebrate Mom with Bubbles!

Trac recommends a couple of his current favorites as a sure way to let Mom know how much you care! And they both make great additions to our Mom’s Day Menu!

Raventos I Blanc “De Nit” Sparkling Rosado $24.99
Who needs Champagne when Cava can be as good as this? This Rosado has a touch of Mourvedre to give it a dry cherry note. A very pretty sparkler that is perfect for an elegant brunch or dinner!

Renardat-Fâche Bugey Cerdon $22.99
A delicious off-dry sparkler from a father and son team. It’s pairs lovingly with chocolate or strawberry and is wonderful coda to the perfect meal.

In our Grocery Department: Sweet Gifts for your Sweet Mom!

Gâté Comme des Filles Chocolates
16piecealexandraMom deserves the best and Gâté Comme des Filles is hands down the best chocolate we have ever tried! These locally-produced chocolates are made fresh to order using locally foraged ingredients.  The flavors peak within the first few days after production when the flavors in each box are expressed to their full potential. Each ganache is hand-whisked, creating a filling that is both fluffy and rich. Each box contains Meyer Lemon, Spearmint, Cherry, and Almond, and boxes are available in 4-piece, 9-piece, and 16-piece sizes. A truly special treat!

Poco Dolce Bittersweet Chocolate Tiles
Mom will love these handmade squares of bittersweet chocolate, each with its own unique inclusions.  Every Tile is crafted by hand here in San Francisco and finished with a pinch of Grey Sea Salt. Get them in 6-Piece or 8-Piece Assorted Tile packs, or 8-Piece Burnt Caramel Tiles size.

Neococoa Truffle Assortment Boxes
Excite Mom with Neococoa’s decadent handmade truffles.  These melt-in-your mouth ganache-based chocolate truffles come in 5 signature flavors:  almond butter with smoked sea salt, zested lime, mocha cinnamon, crushed cacao nib, and toasted coconut. In 5-piece and 10-piece Truffle Assortments!

Dick Taylor Craft Chocolate
Award-winning chocolate that uses the finest fair-trade cacao while performing all steps in-house to turn raw ingredients into one of our favorite chocolate bars. We know Mom will agree! In Fleur de Sel, Maple Coconut, and Belize Bar options.

Kusmi Tea
Mom will appreciate Kusmi Tea–they’ve been producing high quality tea for 140 years! Unique and hard to find, Kusmi Tea is a favorite among cosmopolitan tea lovers! Try the Russian Tins, One Moment Tins, or the Essentials Box!

Inna Jam
Brighten up your Mother’s Day Brunch with Inna Jam!  Inna makes fresh, seasonal jams from organic fruit sourced within 150 miles of their Emeryville kitchen.  Their single-varietal jams are crafted so that each fruit varietal’s unique essence shine through in bright flavors.

Rodney’s Granola
Add some crunch to your Mother’s Day Brunch! Rodney’s Granola is hand-made in small batches using the freshest ingredients. Made with lots of love at the Bi-Rite Creamery!

Robert Lambert Dark Fruit Cake
Surprise Mom with the best fruit cake she’ll ever try! Robert Lambert hand-picks all of his ingredients which are carefully sourced.   All of the candied fruit in each cake is hand-made by Robert and each cake is soaked in bourbon whiskey. Slice thinly while the cake is cool- we recommend serving it chilled.

 

 

 


Jason Rose

Special Dinner Menu for Cinco de Mayo

mole plate

This menu sprang to life after our amazing intern Gillian Caballero Chase came to me and asked if we could cook a fun, delicious meal for Cinco de Mayo. Gillian is a student in the Culinary Arts and Hospitality program at City College here in San Francisco, and chose the Bi-Rite Family of Businesses as the location for her internship. Her mole negro was inspired by a culinary study abroad program last summer to Oaxaca, Mexico and it’s at the heart of a new grab-and-go dinner entree she’s been working on for our Markets. PeppersHaving been exposed to many amazing examples of mole from my time at La Cocina in the Mission District, I’m a tough critic, but it turns out that Gillian’s mole is the real deal. With its deep, dark, smoky and fruity tones, mole negro, or mole poblano, Gillian’s is so good that we have made it the star of the show for our Cinco de Mayo menu.

mole prepack

Gillian’s mole will soon be available as a pre-made entree.

To complement the mole, we have paired it up with dishes like ceviche, a crisp, crunchy jicama salad, rancho gordo beans, tomatillo-braised pork sopes, and lamb albondigas braised in a sweet, earthy apricot chile mulato sauce. We look forward to sharing this special menu with our many wonderful guests this Monday, May 5th. Buen Provecho!

 

 

 

Our special Cinco de Mayo Dinner Menu
will be available from 4pm to closing time
on Monday, May 5th

Chicken  Mole
Braised half-chicken with Mole Negro Oaxaqueño & Toasted Sesame Seeds

Grass-Fed Lamb Albondigas
Lamb Meatballs with Mint & cumin, braised in an Apricot-Chile Mulato Sauce

Ceviche
Citrus–cured Tilapia with Avocado, Cucumber, Onion & Shaved Jalapeño

Sopes with Tomatillo–Braised Llano Seco Pork Shoulder
Handmade Masa Cakes filled with Tomatillo–braised Llano Seco Pork Shoulder

Slow-Cooked Rancho Gordo Beans & Melted Onions
Slow-cooked Rancho Gordo Cranberry Beans with Melted Onions

Gratin of ‘Papas con Rajas’
Potato Gratin with Poblano Cream, Charred Peppers & Mexican Cheese

Jicama Salad
Jicama, Spring Lettuces, Peas, Shaved Radish & Grapefruit
tossed with a creamy Avocado Lime Vinaigrette

Cilantro Rice
Classic Mexican Rice tossed with Chopped Cilantro & Lime Juice

 


Christine Mathias

Graduation = Celebration!

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You did it. You’re done! You’ve run the gauntlet, slain the dragon, put in your hard time. You’re graduating! Or, your kid is graduating! It’s the season of accomplishment, of literal and metaphorical books closing. The work is done, and it’s time to sit back, relax, celebrate, and, oh yeah, EAT!

HatsFlyingBi-Rite Catering can make the eating part of your celebration delicious and easy. We can deliver pretty platters and baskets of food directly to your door – not the usual catering fare, either. We’re talking hand-prepared savory tartlets on light-as-air, buttery pastry. Crispy flatbreads with seasonal ingredients. Entrees of slow-roasted salmon and peppered beef sirloin. And organic kale! Our farro and kale salad has bright flavors. We also offer a wide selection of wine and beer for the of-age crowd. For the high schools grads among you we can deliver soft drinks, tea, and all manner of bubbly and un-bubbly water.

If you want to throw a big ol’ shindig, with servers passing around trays, a bartender mixing drinks, and a lot less work for you, we have that covered as well. Full Service events are something we rock at–and you get to play around with the menu a little more, too. Bi-Rite Catering can supply you with anything you need for your graduation season hoedown. You can peruse the menu, fill out an inquiry form, and the ball will be officially rolling! Good work and congratulations!


Bi-Rite’s Spring Wine Blitz is Here!

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Bi-Rite’s Spring Wine Blitz is here!
Save 20% on mix-and-match cases

Create your own cases from our entire selection of food-friendly wines.

One week only: April 28-May 4, 2014
at both Bi-Rite Market locations!

FREE delivery in San Francisco!

Call or email us to pre-order with a member of our Wine Team:

Email: wine@biritemarket.com

Bi-Rite Market: Western Addition
551 Divisadero Street (between Fell and Hayes Streets)
Phone: (415) 551-7900

Bi-Rite Market: Mission District
3639 18th Street (between Dolores and Guererro Streets)
Phone (415) 241-9760


Spring Cheeses! Celebrate the Season!

Laychee

In the world of cheese, spring is a very exciting time. It’s marked by a feeling of renewal and by the arrival on our local farms of green grass and lots and lots of baby animals! This makes it a very special time for young goat and sheep milk cheeses. The pastures are verdant and the kids (baby goats) and lambs that were born in March are running around the farm. With babies comes milk, and as cheese-lovers we benefit from this “freshening” in our own way: with an abundance of green grass and rich milk, we’re in fresh cheese heaven.

Bollie’s Mollies

 

 

We’re thrilled to welcome back with open arms a couple of cheeses that have been seasonally unavailable for the last few months. Lambs and kids are abundant at Pennyroyal Farmstead in Bonnville, and we’re celebrating the return of a couple of their cheeses. Early in the season, watch for Laychee, a beautiful fresh cheese with the silkiest of textures, made from a blend of goat’s milk and sheep’s milk and perfect for an array of applications. It’s delicate, pleasantly lactic and spreadable, great for brunch or as a base for a delicious crostini topped with preserves or sweet fresh fruit. Or you could just enjoy it with a simple drizzle of honey and a spoon!  Bollie’s Mollies, another delightful offering from Pennyroyal that’s aged for four weeks, is a denser, more toothsome option. It has a lovely light gray rind, thanks to penicillium album mold.

Kenne and Liwa

In other exciting news, Tomales Farmstead Creamery is milking their ewes for the first time! When we went for a visit in January, their herd manager was training the pregnant ewes to line up for milking in the milking parlor. Though we’ve had Tomales Farmstead’s Kenne on the counter for the last few months, it’s now being made with a blend of goat’s milk and the first of their sheep’s milk, which gives the cheese a richer, rounder finish with a hint of lanolin. Their farmstead-mixed milk is also being used to craft Liwa, a fresh, hand-ladled cheese that has a fudgy texture and more substance to it than some of our other fresh offerings. Cheeses from Tomales Farmstead Creamery are delivered directly to us from the farm each week.

I’m also excited to introduce you to our newest producer-direct relationship! Golden Valley Farm was started by Mario and Sandra Daccarett, who worked for twenty years as dairy nutrition and management consultants. As their children grew, they wanted a line of work that was more inclusive of the family, and are now the only sheep dairy in the San Joaquin Valley. From February to December they milk 340 ewes, and their son Mario Daccerett, Jr. transforms this milk into a number of different cheeses in a range of styles. The first cheese that we will feature is the Yosemite Blossom, a beautiful cheese with a snowy white coast that is aged for about four weeks. Expect a milky and creamy texture with a delicate flavor. It’s just begging for some fennel salami!

Come by and ask for a taste of our favorite spring offerings! And stay tuned: come June, we’ll start to see some of the first aged, raw milk cheeses made this spring!


Eat more artichokes!

ArtichokesItalians love artichokes and I know why! They’re healthy, surprisingly sweet, and easy to prepare at home.  They pair well with my favorite flavors and ingredients of Italy like lemons, garlic, olive oil, and fresh herbs like mint.  Artichokes are great in salads, risotto, pastas and even open-faced sandwiches–try one with a spread of fresh cream cheese and herbs!

I often see folks with looks of amazement and curiosity when they see a bountiful display of baby artichokes at Bi-Rite Market. They’re beautiful to look at, but some can be confounded about just how to approach enjoying them. Next time you find yourself pondering how to prepare and eat an artichoke, let us know and we’ll be happy to introduce you to this amazing flowering thistle with an incredible taste. They’re delicious and  ready to eat raw, but it seems like sometimes the biggest obstacle to enjoying artichokes is knowing how to peel and cut them properly. This can actually be done in a few simple steps; let me take you through it.

peeling

First turn the artichokes in your hands, peeling down the pale leaves as you go.

topping stem

Next, peel and trim the stem…

topping stem 2

…taking off any woodiness or tough skin. Remove any of the tougher tips that are left.

halvin' the choke

Now you can half the artichoke…

halvin' the choke 2

…by cutting down the middle.

quartering the choke

If you like, you can go another step and quarter it by cutting the halves.

You can also easily shave the artichoke into smaller pieces. If you do this over a salad with arugula or radicchio, the raw bits of artichoke will make a great topping that you can mix right into the salad as you would with shaved fennel. You’ll find that the baby artichoke tastes slightly bitter at first, but its sugars will quickly lead to a finish with a surprising sweetness.

Italy grows more than ten times the quantity of artichokes than we grow here in the United States. California provides nearly 100% of the U.S. crop, and about 80% of that is grown in Monterey County, close to our Markets.  Artichokes are generally green but many of my favorite farmers, like Bluehouse Farm in Pescadero, CA, grow purple chokes which have a stronger flavor–wilder with a more pronounced bitterness.

After I prep and trim up some baby artichokes, my favorite way to enjoy is to roast them in the oven, which really concentrates the flavor. Half the trimmed chokes and toss them with olive oil, chopped garlic, and herbs. Roast in a 400° F oven until tender and golden. Once they come out of the oven, season with a nice pinch of Maldon Sea Salt, a squeeze of lemon, and a bit more olive oil.  Enjoy!