Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Cheeses to try before you die

Over in the Market we now have over 40 different gourmet cheeses, all available to be tasted in store! To help narrow it down, we've put together a list of our favorites. These must-try cheeses are sure to please novices and experts alike, as each showcases how good cheese can really be in their own unique ways.

Kunik Triple Cream
Nettle Meadow Farm (New York)

A mold-ripened mixed-milk wheel triple crème cheese that combines goat milk’s tang with the richness of Jersey-cow cream, Kunik is buttery, nutty, with a unique goaty flavor. Would shine atop a nut bread or salad, but is brightest eaten alone. Pair with a crisp, sparkling white like Bele Casel Prosecco.

Truffle Tremor 
Cypress Grove Chevre (California)
This tangy, cakey-textured paste is filled with fungal earthiness, which it gets from the black truffles in the cheese. Pair with a glass of dry rose like Charles and Charles Rose.

Dunbarton Blue
Roelli Cheese (Wisconsin)

This cheese is off the charts. So unusual and intriguing. Cheesemaker Chris Roelli essentially makes a classic English-style Cheddar—a process that includes pressing the curds. But he also injects the raw cow’s milk with Penicillium roqueforti, the substance that gives blue cheese its blue-green veins. Traditional blues are never pressed as it restricts the airways for the veins to thrive, but this three-month-aged cheese is pressed making it earthy and Cheddarlike, with just a hint of delicious blue mold. Pair with a bold, strong beer like Cape May Brewery Sawyers Swap Barley Wine ale.

Gouda Ewephoria 
The Netherlands 
 Made from a small producer, the farmer's wife posits that the 'sheep eat better than her children' on lush pasture surrounded by a nature preserve. With notes of hazelnut and butterscotch, this mild, crunchy, slightly sweet cheese makes a delightful snack and is delicious melted on pies or dessert breads. Pair with a full-bodied Malbec like Renacer Punto Final.

Pleasant Ridge Reserve
Uplands Cheese Company (Wisconsin)
America's Most-Awarded cheese. Nutty, sweet, and deep, with a vibrant finish of wood, meat, and brown sugar. If you love Gruyere, then you must try this one this instant. Pair with full bodied, earthy red like Sticky Beak Cabernet Sauvignon.

Any of your favorites not on the list? Let us know!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dry Rose Season!

"Pink Wines?!? Not for me, they're all sweet like White Zinfandel, right?" Whoa, stop the train and back it up a bit. Here's the real story.
Pink wines or Roses as they are usually referred to, are not all sweet and syrupy. In fact most rose wines are bone dry and loved by red wine enthusiasts. Think of them like the light refreshing version of your favorite red wines. They are the perfect Spring time sipping wines because they have the flavors and complexity of a red wine with the light easy drinking body of a white wine. The best of both worlds!
Rose wines are really interesting wines. First off, they are made the same way that red wines are. The only difference is that the skins of the grapes are pulled off early. This is usually after a few days (the longer they are left on the darker the color of the wine) . This results in a lighter color (pink instead of red) and less drying, bitter tannins. In Europe, people drink dry rose wines all year long, but here in the US we tend to only drink them in Spring and Summer if at all.

Tip: Drink your roses fresh, meaning current vintage, and the current vintage is 2012.  Most roses will start arriving beginning of March thru April. 
A snapshot of Great Rose Wine Regions  from around the World:
French- These tend to be light, strawberry inflected easy drinking wines made for warm weather and light foods.
Spanish-  These tend to be darker, dryer rose wines that can stand up to nice summer BBQ fare without losing a beat.
Italian- Mostly made from heavier grapes like Nebbiolo, these wines like their Spanish neighbors are richer and hold up to heavier, meatier foods.
Portuguese-  These tend to be very light silky wines that are very refreshing.
American-  These tend to be medium weight wines that go great by themselves, but have enough weight to stand up to lighter  summer meals.

Check Out Some of Our Favorite Dry Roses for the Spring/Summer Season:
Olivares, Rose (Spain) $9.99
Charles and Charles, Rose (California) $10.99
Mas de Gourgonier, Rose (France) $13.99
Crios, Rose of Malbec (Argentina) $11.99
Whispering Angel, Rose (France) $19.99
Goats do Roam, Rose (South Africa) $8.99
Miraval, Rose (France) $22.99
Domaine de Fontsainte, Rose (France) $15.99
Moulin de Gassac, Rose (France) $9.99

Friday, April 18, 2014

Cape May Brewing Company, Sawyers Swap

With a baker’s dozen or so of different beers to choose from, Cape May Brewing Company has found a recipe that stands apart from the rest of the herd in color, taste, richness, and appeal. They have leapfrogged themselves over the juvenile brewing stage to within pole position of other major craft brewers. I’m impressed with what they bring to the table in terms of aroma, color, and malt to hop ratio to create this off-type, not quite as popular, barley wine beer. Awesome idea, courageous style choice, and perfectly executed. A well-rounded session beer, very strong, but well disguised by its multiple layers.
A complex, masterfully crafted beer with a ton of elements to pick out and try to separate. On a side note, I love the old school, 1800’s, Civil War soldier label for this bottle! Very classy with a simple, yet almost commanding look and absolutely appropriate for this style of beer. It reminds me of an old style beer from that time period, so the correlation between label and taste is precise.
Overall, I would give this an 83%. I loved the different aspects of their creation. Not hoppy, very malt forward, and notes of barley and caramel. I didn’t pick up on the toffee as much as other people have proclaimed, but it is certainly a very intense, barely style ale comprised of grains and molasses. Medium bodied, non-lingering finish, but a very delicious brown ale that is absolutely worth a try to expand your horizons and get away from the millions of IPA’s out there. The one thing I appreciate more than anything about this beer is the fact that they tried something different. Every craft brewery has an IPA, due to its popularity and demanding appeal, so it’s a breath of fresh air to try a beer that hasn’t jumped on the “IPA bandwagon” and went a different direction with a barley wine ale. Well done Cape May….and thank you for bringing back a vintage way of producing such a good variation of a typical ale!
ABV 9.6%
Personal Rating: 8.3/10
Style Rating: 9.6/10

Wanna try it now? Order it online at:

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Finch's Beer Company, Secret Stash Stout

From a local craft brewery out of Chicago, IL comes Finch’s Beer Co. with their Secret Stache Stout. The chocolate malts used to brew this beer are quite prominent, whereas the vanilla bean wasn't as detectable. Indeed, this is a very robust stout, dark in color with a cherry, reddish hue to its black, chocolate appearance. It does not provide a creamy, thick head like I expected, but an aggressive pour will provide a head like it would out of a keg. Either way, it made no difference in my overall opinion and/or evaluation of this delicious stout.

American stouts differ from English and Irish stouts in that some are highly hopped or complemented with coffee or chocolate to add to the roasted flavors often associated with this style of beer. This addition is certainly a significantly noticeable method used in Finch’s Beer Company’s method of brewing this flavorful stout.

Finch’s Secret Stache Stout would send Sir Arthur Guinness running for the hills in hopes of reinventing the wheel! A US Beer Open Championship Gold Medal Winner and also a Gold Medal Winner at the 2013 World Expo of Beer and the 2013 United States Open Beer Championship, this stout confidently and proudly lives up to its world renown reputation.

For the stout lovers out there (myself included), this one is a home run! Their stout is a very easy drinking, medium-bodied stout with chocolate and coffee notes followed by a smooth, rounded out finish. 
Yes I would purchase this beer again and I would absolutely recommend this to anyone looking for a new stout to try. It was definitely a great session beer and thoroughly enjoyed. Cheers!

5.3% ABV

Personal Rating: 9.8/10

Wanna try it now? Order it online at:

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Top Ten Beers

Here's our Top 10 Beers That We Are Loving Right Now!

10. Dogfish Head, Aprihop (Delaware) 7.0% ABV                                                 4 Pack       $9.99
A seasonal favorite around here that combines the best of an IPA (bitterness and high abv) with a nice light sweetness from the Apricots. This is a great porch pounder for grilling!

9. Yards, Brawler (Pennsylvania) 4.2% ABV                                                         6 Pack       $9.99
A local brewery out of Philadelphia that produces this english session ale that is super easy drinking. This one is nice because it allows you to drink great craft beer without getting knocked out too early!

8. Brewers Art, Ozzy Pale Ale (Maryland) 7.3% ABV                                          6 Pack       $9.99
A fairly recent brewery to hit New Jersey but one that has a huge cult following. This is a pale ale that packs a punch in flavor and abv. A nice nod to Ozzy Osbourne!

7. Left Hand, Nitro Milk Stout (Colorado) 6.0% ABV                                           6 Pack     $10.99
Wow! This is the best version of Adult Chocolate milk that I've ever had. Rich chocolate, dark coffee and creamy milk notes are enhanced by the nitrogen finish that pours like a Guinness.

6. Southern Tier, 2x One (New York) 8.1% ABV                                                  6 Pack     $10.99
The latest and greatest in the Southern Tier 2X Series. This IPA uses only One Hop (Mosaic) and One Malt (Special Pale). This highlights the best traits of the Mosaic hop which are tropical fruit and light herbal bitterness. A killer beer for any IPA lovers!

5. DuClaw, Sweet Baby Jesus (Maryland) 6.5% ABV                                           6 Pack       $9.99
Reese's Peanut Butter Cup...... Need I say more? This is a chocolate peanut butter porter that will take the place of dessert. Don't share this with friends or they might drink it all!

4. Victory, Hop Ranch (Pennsylvania) 9.0% ABV                                                 4 Pack       $8.99
A seasonal treat from Victory Brewing that uses the two newest hops: Mosaic and Azacca! A killer hopped up double IPA that is made with Pilsner malt to make it smooth as silk. This is one that we are hoping will soon become a regular in Victory's year round line up.

3. Uinta, Cockeyed Cooper (Utah) 11.1% ABV                                                       750ml     $12.99
If you are a Bourbon fan then this is the beer for you! A rich caramel, vanilla and spice filled Barleywine that is aged in Bourbon barrels for an extended period to give it a boozy punch. This one definitely has to be served in a cognac glass due to its kicked up ABV.

2. Sauconey Creek, Hop Suplex (Pennsylvania) 10.0% ABV                               4 Pack       $9.99
This brewery was rated as the best new brewery in Pennsylvannia and I would strongly agree with that assessment. This is the BEST Double IPA I have ever had, sticky, resiny and intensely bitter. A true roller coaster for your taste buds. ONLY for true Hop Heads!

1. Cape May Brewing, Devil's Reach (New Jersey) 8.4% ABV                             6 Pack      $9.99
This is a Special Honor for our newest favorite that is also very local. Brewed in Cape May, this brewery is kicking out some AMAZING beers! This belgian golden ale is incredibly complex and delicious with a light malt base that makes it super easy drinking!

Top Ten White Wines

Here's our Top 10 White Wines That We Are Loving Right Now!

10. Nieport Docil, Vinho Verde (Portugal)                                                                              $12.99
A perfect everyday white wine. Light and refreshing but with flavor that lingers. If your looking for something impressive in whites under $15, this is your new go to.

9. Berger, Gruner Veltliner (Austria)                                                                                      $12.99
A very unique grape that is native to Austria. Similar to Pinot Grigio but with a great  minerality that will win you over instantly. Comes in a 1L bottle (more bang for your buck!).

8. Chateau de Bonhoste, White Bordeaux (France)                                                               $10.99
This mostly Sauvignon Blanc based white wine is delicious! It has clean lime zest and grapefruit flavors that are perfect for Summer. Try this one with fresh seafood such as mussels or clams with garlic butter and parsley for a real treat.

7. Calea, Fiano (Italy)                                                                                                                  $9.99
Not your boring old Pinot Grigio! This Italian white is made from the Fiano grape. Flavors of apricot, melon and an almond nuttiness that compliments the crisp citrus notes perfectly! 

6. Chateau Ste Michelle HHH, Sauvignon Blanc (Washington)                                            $14.49
A top 100 Wine Spectator Winner! Intense flavors of citrus and tropical fruits with a bracing lime acidity that will wake up your taste buds. See why everyone is talking about Washington wines!

5. Pepi, Chenin Blanc/Viognier (California)                                                                              $6.99
This is our new house favorite! Don't let the crazy price fool you. This is an amazing blend of Chenin Blanc which is crisp and refreshing with Viognier to give it rich floral and tropical notes! I almost passed this one up before I tried it, but I was glad I gave it a shot.

4. Chateau L Oiseliniere, Muscadet (France)                                                                         $13.99
The perfect shellfish wine. This Muscadet comes from the Loire Valley where they eat alot of mussels, clams and lobster. A light salinity and melon flavors go great with clams casino!

3. Morgante, Bianco de Morgante (Italy)                                                                                $16.99
A white wine made from the red grape Nero d'Avola! Another great wine from Sicily in Italy. Complex flavors come from the red grape but it still has a refreshing finish. Very cool!

2. Bench, Chardonnay (California)                                                                                            $19.99
Your classic Russian River Valley Chardonnay but with a restrained, balanced finish. Up front you get the familiar butter, vanilla and toasty oak but it never overpowers the palate.

1. Richter Zepplin, Riesling (Germany)                                                                                   $12.99
A hard won victory for the Number 1 Spot. This wine is just amazing every time I try it. This is not a sweet Riesling, but neither is it dry. Filled with rich flavors of peach, apple and apricot flavors followed by a citrusy acidity that cleans you palate on the finish. Awesome!