Tag Archives: Albariño


March 31, 2016

Tip a glass to our few days of sunshine with the first Rosado of the season!
2015 Ostatu Rosado Rioja  70% Tempranillo and 30% Garnacha from 60 year old vines.  Lightweight and aromatic, with wild strawberry flavors and nuances of spice.  Very dry, it offers up a rich palate, balanced by refreshing minerality.  Fans of Provençal-style rosés will love this rosado.  Take a sip, relax, and know that summer is around the corner!
   Don’t wait to pick up a few bottles of this because the distributor will be sold out by next week.
2014 Licia Albariño, Rias Baixas ($16.99) 2014 Licia is extraordinarily tasty and fit to be quaffed on a sunny day.  Licia’s vineyards are in O Rosal and Condado do Tea, the warmest sub-zones of Rias Baixas that produce the ripest fruit.  Licia is dry and steely with bright citrus notes and a fresh minerality.   With creamy apple and quince notes offering stoniness and weight, this is a solid Albariño at a great price.   What really impressed me about this wine is its pure freshness.  It will rock in 70 degree weather, especially with a plate of shellfish or cheese.
Enjoy the outdoors while the great weather lasts, by keeping meals simple.  Make fancy bocadillos (sandwiches) with a loaf of crusty bread.  Mix and match ingredients, such as our Bruschettas (Piquillo Pepper and Artichoke or Piquillo Pepper and Eggplant) topped with a sheep’s milk cheese such as El Valle Semicurado.   Or chop green, pitted olives, mix with Spanish Bonito Tuna and alioli and spread on bread.  Slices of roasted Piquillo Peppers withBlack Empeltre Olive spread paired with Majorero goat milk cheese is divine.   Brush slices of bread with flavorful extra virgin olive oil and top with slices of Chorizo or Jamon Serrano with Manchego cheese to make a classic sandwich. Or, peruse our shelves and invent new combinations!    

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Filed under Albariño, Cheese, Fish, Food, Garnacha, Jamon, Meat, Rioja, Rose, Spain, Wine

Saturday Raul Perez Tasting; Rare Madeira, Sherry & Port

Saturday Wine Tasting
On Saturday, March 12 from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m., stop in at The Spanish Table to taste a legendary Albariño made by Raul Perez, one of Spain’s top winemakers.   Some trade veterans believe that Raul is among the handful of best winemakers in the world.   He hand makes hundreds of artisanal wines in infinitesimal quantities, so the opportunity to taste one of them is rare.  We’ll be pouring a sample of2014 Leirana Finca Genoveva Albariño, Rias Baixas ($49.00) which is 100% Albariño made from vines planted in 1862.   Aged 12 months in 4 year old foudre of 2500 liter.   The 2014 vintage has not yet been reviewed by the wine press, but the 2013 vintage scored 93 points from Stephen Tanzer/Vinous.
Rare Sherry, Port and Madeira Arrive
Lustau Emperatriz Eugenia Very Rare Oloroso, Jerez ($22.99/500 ml)  A stunning Oloroso which has not been available in our market for several years.   From a solera established in 1921 when Eugenia de Montijo (born in Granada) was the last empress of France, visited Jerez.    This Oloroso is the only bottling in the Gran Reserva series from Bodegas Lustau and it has become one of their flagship wines, with an average age of 20 years.
  Displays heady aromas of sandalwood, orange zest and smoke.  Notes of toffee, fig and nougat are viscous with a velvety texture on the palate.   Concentrated notes of dried fruit, molasses, caramelized almonds and toffee are nuanced and seamless with a hint of sweetness.  Hazelnut flavors, baking spice notes and citrus have gentle herbal notes.  The finish is dry with a briny element which adds more depth and complexity.     92 points Wine Advocate  

NV Niepoort 10 year Tawny Port, Portugal ($54.00) We’re so excited to have this revered tawny onto our shelf!   “Amazing aromas of orange and lemon peel, with hints of toffee, caramel and honey. Full-bodied and luscious, with lots of sweet fruit and a long, subtle finish that goes on and on. A benchmark for 10-year-old tawnies.”  95 points Wine Spectator
1968 D’Oliveiras Bual Madeira ($236.00)  “Balanced and plush, with concentrated buttercream, hazelnut, dried apricot and tropical fruit flavors that are still fresh and lively. Citrus zest and sea salt notes show midpalate. The finish lingers with cream, dried tarragon and Asian spice details. Drink now through 2035. 40 cases imported. ” 96 points Wine Spectator

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Filed under Albariño, Events, Madeira, Port, Portugal, Sherry, Spain, Wine

Spanish Pantry Essentials

Not a fan of slogging through pounding rain to the grocery store?   Or don’t have time?   By keeping a few essential Spanish ingredients on hand, it’s easy to pull together a nutritious, tasty meal in a flash and save a run to the store.
Conservas are a must.  In Spain, vegetables are picked at their peak of flavor, roasted or simmered and then packed in jars or cans.   Equally delicious are a wide range of fish and shellfish, many packed in olive oil.  The oil can and should be used in recipes.
Rice is a versatile staple to have in the pantry.    Rice simmered with chorizo and jarred, roasted red peppers is delicious and quick to prepare.   If there is chicken in the frig, make a fast and toothsome rice soup with Aneto chicken broth, Spanish garbanzo beans and a sprinkling of dried lime.   Or, make a complete paella in 30 minutes with an Aneto Paella broth.   Choose from Seafood, Squid Ink or Valencian Paella; comes in easy to store tetra paks with a one year shelf life.     
In Spain, pasta called fideo is used to make a dish called fideau.   Fideo, simmered with broth in a paella pan, can be prepared in minutes by adding jarred ingredients.   For example, toss olive-oil packed Spanish tuna with strips of piquillo pepper, the oil from tuna, capers, water and pasta.
Or use Aneto Squid Ink Paella with fideo and revel in this different take on a traditional Spanish dish.   If Mac n’ Cheese is a favorite, upscale it.  Combine chicken stock with pasta and saffron; simmer until the pasta is done, then drain and stir in Manchego cheese to melt.
Gluten intolerant?    A jar of lentils, cooked with spicy chorizo makes a hearty and simple meal.   Canned mackerel or anchovies are fantastic tossed with lentils or white beans.
Got a freezer?  Store packages of Bilbao Chorizo, Chistorra or Morcilla for the right moment.  Scramble choistorra with eggs.  Grill chorizo and serve with de la Estancia organic polenta from Argentina which cooks in 3 minutes.  Just add grated Mahon cheese.
NEW!  Hernán products from Mexico, made by artisan producers.    Just arrived are Mole Poblano andMole Pipián sauces.   Mole Poblano is a blend of chiles and spices, tempered by an infusion of nuts, chocolate and other ingredients. Typically served on chicken or pork.   Mole Pipián contains roasted pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and peanuts with spicy chiles and epazote and is excellent on fish.
  Hernán Mexican hot chocolate with cinnamon is now available, in powder and squares.
Brush up on Spanish with Spanish Circle on Wednesday evenings.  Held at the Seattle Public Library, 1000 Fourth Ave., Level 4, Room 1.  Jan 13-March 16 at 6 p.m.   Free!   For more information call 206.684.0849.

2013 Narupa Alala Albarino, Rias Baixas   ($26.99)   First vintage!  Sustainably produced from a 30 year old, family-owned vineyard planted by the winemaker’s Grandfather.  The grapes are pressed by foot and fermented with native yeast.  Raised in stainless steel with no malolactic fermentation, it has extended aging of one year to develop complexity.   Fresh aromatics with a hint of tropical fruit have notes of citrus and dust.   Mineral-laden with great mouthfeel and a pleasurable weight, this is a terrific expression of Albariño.   Limited availability – only 3 cases came to the state of Washinton, and we have 6 bottles.

2012 Carramimbre Roble, Ribera del Duero   

SALE!  Regular price $14.99, now $10.99  

We rediscovered this tasty gem last weekend, accompanied by a tapas assortment.  Versatile and nuanced, and it’s now 25% off!   (6 cases available).  90% Tempranillo, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon, aged four months in oak.  Offers up aromas of ripe blackberry, hints of earth and road tar, reminiscent of an old-school California Zinfandel.  Very smooth and full-bodied, it displays lifted notes of white pepper, tobacco leaf and mushroom.  Black fruit and mineral notes on the lengthy finish.   Decant for 20 minutes to fully release aromas and depth of flavors.

2012 Lagar de Robla Premium, Castilla y Leon ($10.99) 100% Mencia, aged about 18 months in oak.    Plush, with soft tannins and a hint of earth.   Round and smooth, Lagar de Robla is mineral-laden, with well-integrated notes of oak.   This is really good!   “This firm red is reserved, but shows depth and integration, with mulled plum, licorice, mineral and smoke flavors that mingle over well-integrated tannins, giving way to the juicy finish.”  91 points Wine Spectator

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Filed under Albariño, Catalan, Cheese, Chile, Fish, Food, Meat, Mencia, Paella, Recipes, Red Wine, Spain, Tempranillo, Uncategorized

Pimientos de Padrón

Padron peppers

Padrón peppers from Happy Quail Farms in California

The long awaited moment has arrived, green and gorgeous Padrón peppers make their seasonal debut at The Spanish Table this Friday, June 14th!

Padrón peppers are named for the little town of Padrón in the region of Galicia. Here, the pepper is so beloved it has its own festival. On the first Sunday in August  residents and visitors alike gather the carballeira of Herbón’s Franciscan convent, in commemoration of the Franciscan monks who brought the first pepper seeds to Galicia from Mexico in the 16th century.  There is a mass in honor of the pepper, followed by massive consumption of Padróns washed down with crisp Galician whites.

Pimientos de Padrón are traditionally eaten as for tapas, sauteed in a olive oil and sprinkled with coarse sea salt. Accompanied by a glass of Albariño they are utter perfection–sweet and earthy with a murmur of spice. While most Padróns are mild,this dish is sometimes referred to as ‘Russian roulette’ since one in every dozen or so peppers is quite spicy.

Buy fresh Padrón peppers at The Spanish Table or head to Harvest Vine to taste them for tapas!    – Rachel Adams


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Spanish Table Seattle & Paris Grocery Newsletter

December 17, 2009

Sharon is SO BUSY stocking wine, beer, cava and French champagne that she asked me to write the newsletter today so here goes….

Christmas week is a time to enjoy great food and wine. We give diets a rest to enjoy rich seasonal foods and indulge our sweet tooth. Whether friends drop in, families come by, or you just snuggle up by the fire, there is time to pay attention to flavors. The deli cases at both The Spanish Table and Paris Grocery are brimming with specialty cheeses and cured meats. Our wine departments are overflowing with the best from Spain, Portugal, Argentina, Greece, France and even Morocco.

Short on time? Shop on line on our new and improved websites!

The Spanish Table wine website is now launched! We’ve got amazing wine values which are arranged by staff pick, by score, by price, and by country. This virtual wine store has everything that you’re looking for from Spain, Portugal, Madeira, or South America. Click The Spanish Table wine to visit the site.

For all food and cookware products, click on The Spanish Table to check out our original and now revamped, website. It’s much easier to navigate and has a plethora of additional items. Now you can shop at home for Spanish food and wine!


Paella Kit: with paellera that serves eight plus ingredients already packed in a gift box.

Meanwhile, we have oodles of little jars of delicious spreads in both our stores here on Western Ave that can be used to stuff a stocking or fill a gift basket.


pecial price on THE SPANISH TABLE cookbook: regularly $30.00 specially priced for the holidays at $24.00.

For those who love Greek food, we just received the How to Roast a Lamb cookbook ($35.00) by Michael Psilakis. Called the “Greek-American Mario Batali” by The New Yorker and best new chef by Food and Wine magazine, this is a must-have Greek cookbook.

Madeira gift boxes: A bottle in a wooden box with two Madeira glasses, $19.99.

By the way, did you catch the column on pairing a Sercial Madeira with charred skirt steak in the New York Times food section this week? Click the hyperlink to read the article, in case you missed it.

Undecided on what to give someone? We have good old fashioned gift certificates available in any amount of your choice.

Just arrived today is a huge assortment of dulces de Navidad: Handmade turrón from Pablo Garrigos. Turrón sin Azúcar if you have dietary restrictions. Pan de Cadiz. Chocolate turrón, mazapanes con chocolate and speaking of chocolate, La Casa pralines are here with filling of Catalan Creme, Pine Nuts & Raisins, Orange, Baked Apple, Tocinillo de Cielo & Lemon Sorbet.

Did I hear you ask what Sharon and I are drinking with Christmas Eve and Christmas Day dinners at our house?

On Christmas Eve Sharon loves our tradition of dining on fresh Dungeness Crab accompanied with steamed artichokes, crunchy baguette and lemon mayonnaise. That calls for either dry La Gitana Manzanilla Sherry ($15.99), cold and crisp Santiago Ruiz Albariño ($19.99) or bone-dry, Torre Oria Brut Nature Cava ($16.99).

Then on Christmas day I will insist on pouring vintage Riojas with a menu chosen to match the wines. We all have our priorities. I am thinking of starting with a plate of French cheeses from our annex, Paris Grocery. Then we’ll move onto a frisée salad tossed with a goat’s milk blue cheese (just arrived this week at Paris Grocery) and a whole goose, since finding a suckling pig to roast might be a challenge. The dessert will be pears poached in Moscatel from The Spanish Table cookbook.

The wines: We will be starting with a 2004 Deobriga Rioja ($21.99) and moving onto a 2001 Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva Rioja ($57.00). These two vintages were rated excellent in Spain will bring tears of joy to the eyes of a lover of traditional wines. Then we’ll wrap it up with Samos Moscato wine from Greece ($17.99).

We have some of the greatest Rioja vintages ever right now, including, but not limited to:

Bordón Reserva 2004 $17.99

Muga Reserva 2005 $28.99

LAN 2001 Gran Reserva: $22.99

Beronia 2001 Gran Reserva $25.99

Viña Bosconia Reserva 2001 ($38.99) R. Lopez Heredia’s extended aging times actually qualify this as a Gran Reserva from any other winery. 93 points Stephen Tanzer


Our new shop features French cheeses and wine, and other foods with a French mood. It’s located 1/4 of a block south of Spanish Table at 1418 Western Avenue.

FRENCH CHAMPAGNES HAVE ARRIVED! Champagne Duval-Leroy Cuvee Paris NV ($35.00) One of the best values in Champagnes available right now, and it’s got a Leroy Neiman silk screen of a Paris street scene on the bottle. Pop this open over the holidays with your favorite Franco-phile!


The Champagne region in France is dominated by a handful of brand names.

These négoçiants and coopératives produce 80% of the total output in Champagne, yet they own only 12% of the vineyards. They bring to marked a mass produced commodity – a Champagne made in a “house style.” By contrast, “récoltant-manipulants” (or RMs) handcraft their limited quantities of Champage from individual villages and parcels where the inherent qualities of the vineyards imprint themselves into the wines. The following two RMs are outstanding, and represent great values in Champagne values as well.

Margaine Brut Cuvee Traditionelle NV ($45.00) “The NV Brut Cuvee Traditionelle is an exceptional wine at this level. Notes of ash, chalk and crushed rocks dominate this taut, focused Champagne. Medium in body, the wine reveals tons of clarity not to mention significant pedigree. The NV Brut is mostly 2005 juice, with the addition of 40% reserve wines from vintages 2004, 2003, 1999, 1996 and 1994, 90% Chardonnay and 10% Pinot Noir. The relatively high amount of reserve wines undoubtedly contributes to this Champagne’s complexity…Arnaud Margaine’s wines..are Champagnes of extraordinary purity and sheer elegance. Margaine farms 6.5 hectares, 90% planted to Chardonnay, the rest Pinot Noir.”

90 points Robert Parker

L. Aubry NV Brut Champagne ($40.00) Twin brothers Pierre and Philippe Aubry handcraft their Champagnes from 60 individual parcels that comprise 16.5 hectares in the heart of Petit Montagne de Reims. Made of 50% Meunier, 25% Chardonnay and 25% Pinot Noir, it is vigorous, crackery, and concentrated. “There’s a nice graininess to the texture, making this lively and defining its bread dough, apple and grapefruit flavors. Turns crisp, but stays balanced, with a dry, mouthwatering finish.”

90 points Wine Spectator

Drop down, drop in, ignore the construction!

Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table, 1426 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.2827

Hours: Monday- Saturday, 10 AM – 6:30 PM Sunday 10 AM – 6 PM

Paris Grocery, 1418 Western Avenue, Seattle WA 98101 phone# 206.682.0679

Hours: Monday- Saturday, 10 AM – 6 PM Sunday 11 AM – 5 PM

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Filed under Books, Cava, Cheese, Food, france, Meat, Red Wine, Sherry, Spain, Uncategorized

The Legendary Mariano Garcia

September 15, 2009

We didn’t have a map of tiny Tudelo de Duero on our trip to Spain trip last June. We didn’t need one since Bodegas Mauro’s website shows the winery is located smack dab in the center of the village. But after passing the white asparagus vendor for the third time and finally driving around the perimeter of town, we decided to park and search by foot. Workers from the bodega actually found us — in an alley, pointing at the fermentation tanks. It turns out that Mauro’s Export Manager had seen us drive by and had tried to flag us down. He ushered us into the historic 17th century manor house on the main street which indeed is the original winery, purchased by Mariano Garcia’s family in 1980.

Mariano Garcia has been a legend in the world of wine since his teens. Son of a vineyard worker, he happened to pass by the winemaker’s office one day when they needed another taster. With no knowledge of wines, he was the only one to pick out the two identical wines in a blind tasting of 20. He was put to work in the winery and trained at the School of Winemaking and Viticulture in Madrid. At the age of 24 he was made winemaker at the estate, which was Bodegas Vega Sicilia, the most prestigous winery in Spain.

Mariano Garcia has always pushed boundaries to produce unique and expressive wines with great finesse. In the mid-1980s, Mariano created the concept of Alion, a more contemporary and affordable style of wine for Vega Sicilia from a separate estate in Ribera del Duero. Early on, he recognized the potential of the Toro region and established Bodegas Pintia for Vega Sicilia. Now partnered with sons Alberto and Eduardo, the Garcias exemplify the tremendous potential of modern Spanish winemaking from diverse vineyards.

And if you visit Tudelo de Duero, there are two restaurants that should not be missed. Meson Zurita is famous for grilled lamb but it wasn’t open the day we were there. We chose Restaurant 239 which specializes in home-style cooking using local, seasonal products. The food is amazing, especially the thin sliced potatoes baked in the wood oven with onion, jamon serrano, cream and olive oil. I just wish we had remembered to take a picture of it before we polished it off! Restaurant 239 has no menu and they don’t speak English. It’s worth a long detour to eat here.


2004 Mas de Leda, Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y Leon ($19.99) Co-owned by Mariano Garcia, Bodegas Leda is a boutique winery that produces two red wines from 16 small plots around Castilla y Leon. Made from 100% old vine Tempranillo, the grapes are hand-harvested in small boxes, hand-sorted and vinified in the small gravity winemaking facility in Valladolid. The best grapes go into Leda, which sells for about $90.00 per bottle. The remaining fruit goes into Mas de Leda which is a full bodied red wine with silky tannins, bright red and black fruit flavors, balance and a persistent mineral finish. We recently tasted 2004 Mas de Leda again and it’s a beautiful wine, very concentrated, with great lift and smooth texture. Highly recommended!

2004 Condita, Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y Leon ($28.99) A boutique garagista wine made by Eduardo Garcia, it is produced from 100% old vine Tempranillo and made in Michelin-star chef Jesus Ramiro’s basement. Condita was created to serve at Ramiro’s Restaurant in Valladolid. Only 10 barrels are produced and very little is exported to the U.S. A blend of Tempranillo grapes from the regions of Ribera del Duero and Toro, Condita has brawny tannins, black currant and boysenberry fruit and an earthy spiciness. Showcase this unusual wine at your next Spanish wine tasting!

2007 Prima, Toro ($22.99) This is a tremendous wine for the price! With violet and dusty aromas, it is expansive and complex. Hints of anise with concentrated blackberry notes and mineral go through several changes on the palate as it swirls around. “Black raspberry, rose and licorice on the nose and palate. Supple, round, elegant and spicy, with a late note of candied flowers joined by a suggestion of rooty licorice.” Stephen Tanzer 89 points, Wine Advocate 90 points

2004 Bodegas Maurodos San Roman Toro ($57.00) “Alluring plum, blackberry, cola and spice cake flavors are rich and balanced in this expressive Spanish red. There’s plenty of structure, but it doesn’t get in the way of the flavors, and the spicy, floral finish is long and fresh. Best after 2009. ” 6,100 cases made. Wine Spectator 94 points. Spectator’s Top 100 wines 2008, Rank 36

2004 Mauro, Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y Leon ($48.00) When Bodegas Mauro was established in 1980, there were only 4 wineries in the region. In 1982 the D.O. Ribera del Duero was laid out and the boundaries stopped short of Tudelo de Duero, allowing Bodegas Mauro the freedom to produce wines without restrictions and to use other grapes in their blends. Mauro is made of 90% Tempranillo and 10% Syrah and is characterized by expressive black fruit, structure and finesse. “Explosive scents of cherry, strawberry liqueur, spice cake, molasses and mocha. Round, juicy and deep, with exotic oak spices adding complexity to the red and dark fruit flavors. The finish offers terrific energy and clarity, especially for the impressive concentration of flavor here. This very long wine shows wonderful balance, which bodes well for cellaring.” Stephen Tanzer 92 points, Wine Advocate 92 points

2001 Mauro Terreus Pago de Cueva Baja, Vino de la Tierra de Castilla ($133.00) A modern-style wine produced from 100 year old vines from a single plot, it spends 32 months in French oak and has powerful depth. We drank this wine with our lunch at Restaurant 239 and its almost limitless complexity truly impressed us. Only 8000 bottles produced. “Blackberry, bitter chocolate and a sweet whiff of pastry on the nose. Superconcentrated, sweet and creamy, with penetrating dark berry, violet and bitter chocolate flavors framed and intensified by strong, harmonious acidity. A wonderfully viscous yet high-pitched wine with fruit of steel. Finishes with outstanding length, a suggestion of graphite, and broad, fine tannins that coat the front teeth. A superb 2001.” Stephen Tanzer 93 points

“It is a potential legend in the making.” Wine Advocate 96 points

2002 Mauro VS, Vino de la Tierra de Castilla y Leon ($100.00) ” Sexy nose combines oak spices, blackberry, cassis, cured tobacco and smoky meat aromas, plus a hint of iron. Lush and powerful, with a chewy, dense texture, good weight and powerful, open-knit dark berry flavors framed by smooth, pliant tannins. The sweet dark fruit flavors linger impressively on the finish. Really pretty, elegant wine, and tasting very good right now.” Stephen Tanzer 91 points

The other night we tossed together an easy tapa for some friends and called it “Pig Meets Fig.”

One package dried figs

One 4 oz package jamon serrano

4 tablespoons sweet sherry

2 Tablespoons butter

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil


Wrap each fig in a slice of jamon and secure with a toothpaste. Pour the sherry on top and marinate for an hour. When ready to cook, heat the butter and olive oil in a saute pan. When oil is hot, add the wrapped figs and brown on each side. Let cool for a few minutes and then serve. “It’s like breakfast and dessert all in one” our friends exclaimed.



Barcelos Portuguese-style Linguica: Made in California, put one of these tasty sausages on an asador and roast it over the flames! Comes in hot, medium or mild. $7.99 per pound


The Barcelona Cookbook ($29.99) Written by the owners of The Barcelona Wine Bar and Restaurants in Connecticut, this book explores the world of Spanish-inspired tapas and beverages. A chapter on libations includes recipes for sangria along with cocktails, and a primer on Spanish wines. Recipes for hot and cold tapas, party dishes and desserts are accompanied by inspiring photos. 115 recipes in a hardback cover.



2007 Bodegas Paternina Banda Dorada Blanco Joven, Rioja ($9.99) This easy drinking white wine has legions of fans in Spain and America, and we finally have it in stock! Made of 100% Viura it is a fresh, unoaked white with bright apple notes and clean acidity. Great with ceviche!

2008 La Cana Albariño, Rias Baixas ($15.99) Nora Albariño was a best seller but was an unfortunate casulty of the economic crisis. Nora’s former winemaker has teamed up with Jorge Ordonez to produce this lean, flinty and balanced albariño. A great value, La Cana is 20% oaked which gives an elegance to its fresh citrus flavors. “…Their intention was to make a more austere style of Albarino. Light gold-colored, it reveals an attractive perfume of pear, lemon-lime, and pineapple. Vibrant on the palate with excellent natural acidity, this racy Albarino will drink well for another three years.” Wine Advocate 89 points


Are you feeling an itch to travel? You can join us on a trans-Atlantic cruise to some of our favorite destinations with Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic, from October 12-29, 2009. We have selected great Spanish and Portuguese wines to be served on board, and with a limit of 148 passengers, it will feel like being on your own ship. The trip begins in Lisbon and stops at the Canary Islands, Madeira and the Cabo Verde islands, then crosses the Atlantic Ocean to finish at Salvador, Brazil. For more information, follow this link:


Have a great week!


Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

Spanish Table


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Filed under Books, Red Wine, Spain

A New Twist on an Old Favorite

63August 21, 2001

Numerous years ago, before we discovered Spain, we took many a road trip to Northern California in the old Dodge van. We camped at Crater Lake, spent time in Mendocino, and loaded up the van with Zinfindels from Napa and Sonoma. So when we were invited to do a cookbook signing and paella demonstration at the Point Reyes Farmer’s Market last weekend, we couldn’t pass it up.  

62Point Reyes is located about an hour north of our Mill Valley shop. It’s a forty mile long peninsula jutting into the Pacific ocean and is populated with dairy farms whose placid bovines roam bucolic pastures and provide the raw material for the famous Point Reyes cheese.

The best part of making a paella at a farmer’s market, aside from the great breakfast choices like pork-tomatillo panini, is the array of incredible fresh ingredients.64

We brought Zoe Meats chorizo with us, and added fresh onions, garlic, squash, peppers, green and purple beans, piquillo peppers, Ferrer brand Sofrito sauce, saffron, rice and chicken stock and finished it with squash blossoms. It looked amazing and the flavor was sublime! It was the best kind of make-it-up-on-the-spot recipe but also may be tough to replicate.

And the next time you’re in Point Reyes, make sure to dine at Osteria Stellina. It was fantastic!


Being close to our Bay Area locations meant that we also cooked paellas at each store.

Our Amontillado and Chicken Paella with Chorizo is always a crowd pleaser and the ultimate in simplicity, perfect for a paella demo. Recipe from The Spanish Table cookbook: (serves 4)65


1/4 cup Spanish olive oil

4 chicken thighs

Approximately 16 strands of saffron

1 large onion, chopped

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 links Spanish chorizo

2 cups Spanish short-grain Valencian rice, preferably bomba

1 cup medium dry Amontillado sherry

3 cups chicken stock

Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch paella pan and brown the chicken. Stir in the onions, sautéing until wilted, and then add the garlic, cooking another minute or two. Add the chorizo and cook until the fat is released. Then stir in the rice to coat and add the sherry.

Bring to a boil. When the sherry is absorbed by the rice, add the stock and saffron, reduce the heat, and simmer until the rice is done, about 20-25 minutes.


66Jehan cleaned up the pan in front of our Berkeley store.




2008 Cabriz Encruzado, Dao ($13.99) A single vineyard wine, Cabriz is made from the Encruzado grape, and produced in limited quantities. Aged 6 months in oak using the battonage process, it has flavors of crisp pear and buttered toast . A creamy texture with a dry and lingering finish make this a wonderful accompaniment to seafood in cream sauce.

2008 Sete Cepas Albariño, Rias Baixas ($17.99)

Very much a family project, Sete Cepas refers to the wine making team of 7 brothers. Produced near the coast, each sip has the tang of sea air with aromas of white peach. Loaded with minerality and lemon zest flavors, Sete Cepas has lively acidity with notes of stone fruit, pear and great finesse. Excellent with shellfish!

Luis Pato Maria Gomez Bruto Vinho Espumante ($14.99) The Maria Gomez grape (called Fernáo Pires in other regions of Portugal) has extraordinary aromas and capacity to produce distinctive wines with strong character. Maria Gomez Bruto is a light and crisp sparkling wine showing the delicate floral and orange-lime citrus flavors characteristic of the grape. A persistent, dry finish with soft bubbles make this a terrific choice for pairing with rich cheeses or seafood.

Luis Pato Casta Baga Bruto Rosé Vinho Espumante ($14.99) Luis Pato is one of the most respected oenologists in Portugal and has earned the nickname “King of Baga”. The Baga grape is complex, with powerful tannins and ripe berry flavors and Casta Baga Bruto Rosé exemplifies Luis Pato’s mastery of this grape. A crisp and dry sparkling rosé wine, it shows minerality along with its full fruit flavors. The typical structured tannins are subdued into a silky finish in this delightful rosé. Absolutely divine with roast suckling pig, the signature dish of Pato’s region.


2007 Andeluna Malbec, Mendoza ($8.99) Hand crafted in collaboration with Michel Rolland, Andeluna Malbec has a touch of Merlot and Cabernet, and 7 months aging in French and American oak. Round and ripe flavors of plum, cherry and blackberry are rounded out by notes of chocolate. Lush black currant and coffee compliment the sweet tannins and produce an exceptional value. Serve it with grilled lamb burgers!

2005 Rondan Crianza (Rioja) $11.99 The new vintage of Rondan Crianza is one of our favorite value Riojas. Produced from 90% Tempranillo and 10% Garnacha, the grapes are hand picked and aged in American oak for 18 months. With intense depth of black cherry flavors and notes of pepper and musk, this is a traditional Rioja with clean fruit flavors. Ample but not overpowering tannins with balanced acidity make this a great food wine. Serve it with pork or rice dishes.

2001 Marques de Murrieta Castillo Ygay Gran Reserva Especial Rioja ($60.00) Just arrived! 2001 was a legendary vintage, and this wine was featured in last week’s New York Times Rioja article. “Impressively complex bouquet of dried red fruits, tobacco, cedar and potpourri. A spicy, subtly sweet midweight, offering lively redcurrant and bitter cherry flavors and very soft tannins. The smoky finish features a strong echo of cedary spice.” 92 points Stephen Tanzer

To read the New York Times article, follow this link: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/12/dining/12pour.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=rioja&st=cse

2006 Don Nicanor Blend, Mendoza ($17.99) A blend of equal parts Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Merlot, this Argentinean red is full-bodied with concentrated ripe berry and casssis notes. 12 months of aging in new French oak provide notes of vanilla and lush tannins. The pure finish has a touch of cherry skin and black tea. This is a complex wine, extremely well balanced and a fantastic match for grilled steak with blue cheese.


Zoe Meats Chorizo

New Sale Price $20.99

Our all time favorite chorizo is now on sale. These ‘food service’ size chorizos are over a pound and a half. They are the definitely the best value and the tastiest chorizo in our case. We recommend slicing and serving as a tapa or making Bocadillos.

Zamorano Cheese

Most of you are familiar with this artisanal Spanish cheese produced in Castilla Leon, in the Zamorano province. It is made with milk from the Churra Eve sheep which is high in fat and gives particularly high-quality milk. Complex, full bodied, moist and subtly tangy with lingering parmesan notes. Serve Zamorano with ham, melon, pears, tomatoes, crusty bead and a solid Spanish red wine.

Now available pre-cut in our deli grab-and-go case. Sale price: $17.99/lb.



The New Portuguese Table cookbook by David Leite ($32.50) Written by the American-born son of an immigrant Portuguese family, David Leite learned to cook hearty Portuguese dishes at his grandmother’s side. Traveling to Portugal, the author discovered the traditional ingredients reimagined in modern cuisine and was inspired to write this cookbook. Leite melds the classic and contemporary, introducing innovative modern dishes in over 100 recipes.

Dende Oil – Also called palm oil, it is an essential ingredient in moqueca, the sumptious Brazilian seafood stew

Homemade Plum Membrillo from Spain, made from quince and plum.

Valenciano crackers flavored with Rosemary

Reganas Andalucian tapas crackers made with Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Guarana Brazilian soft drinks, now including Diet!

Wild Lavender Honey from Murcia Spain – Excellent with goat cheese!



Join us at Taberna del Alabardero for a selected tasting of Jorge Ordonez wines, on Wednesday Sept. 2nd, 6 p.m. Special attendance by Sara Floyd, M.S. who will talk about the five wines, each paired with a separate course. $75.00 (tax and service charge not included). For reservations and information: 206.448.8884, for more details, click this link:




Saturday August 22nd Carmona Flamenco, featuring guest artist Ana Montes. 8:00 p.m., Solstice Cafe, 4116 University Way $20.00 information: 206.932.4067 http://www.fanw.org


Have a great week!




Sharon Baden and Steve Winston, Owners

The Spanish Table

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