Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Getting ready for New Year's Eve!

Caviar, capers, creme fraiche & crackers; Champagne, Cava, Cuvee & more; Cold Brews, Chocolates, Cheese...Cheers!

We are open New Year's Eve until 9pm in Melrose - 11pm in Boston  -- and we are also open New Year's Day, for normal business hours.

However you celebrate the New Year -- enjoy and be safe!
Best wishes for a Happy 2010!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

What's cooking..?

Just a reminder - if you need tenderloin, ribeye or any cut of beef for your Christmas dinner - we custom order from Dom's Sausage! You still have time....

We also have coming in over the next few days: Hand dipped Ricotta (if you've never used it before, check out this helpful link! ), Marscapone cheese, Bufala Mozzarella, Squid Ink pasta, Wild Boar, Foie Gras, Duck Breast, Meringue covered mixed nuts, Peppermint Funky Chunky, Buffalo Rib Eye, lots of appetizers and so much more.

If you we don't have a premade appetizers that suits your fancy, you can always buy our Smoked Salmon, Creme Fraiche and capers...perfect for a pre-dinner snack. Or bruschetta toasts, fresh roasted tomatoes and some truffle oil drizzled on top.

Of course, we always have the perfect wine for your glass.
(Speaking of glasses, don't forget our handpainted wine glasses make excellent gifts!)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Have you made your list - and checked it twice?

If you're as busy as many are these days - you may still not be done with your Christmas shopping. We can help make it easier on you!

We have everything from painted glasses, Vinturi aerators, artisan foods & fun baking gifts such as Molten Lava cake sets and Creme Brulee kits (with the torch!) - as well as gift certificates, and of course beer and wine. Best of all - we gift wrap as well. It's that simple.

Let us help take the stress out of your gift giving this season. And be sure to try some before you buy with our last tasting of the season on Saturday.

Need food for your dinner table? Then join us Thursday for a tasting with The Bread & Butter Co., and place your order for dinner rolls, biscuits, sweet breads and butters. We also have appetizers, fresh cheese, olives, souffles and so much more to help make your Christmas meal special.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

'Tis the season....

We've had Black Friday, Cyber Monday - how about plain old fashioned shopping?

We have some tastings coming up to help you make the perfect selections for all the favorite people in your life.

12/3 - Kick off "Home for the Holidays" in downtown Melrose and Celebrate with Chandon! Sample all three sparkling varieties: Brut, Blanc de Noir & Rose. 5-8 p.m.

12/4 - Celebrate "Home for the Holidays" with live music and wine samplings. Wine TBD, 3-5p.m.

12/11 - Holiday Gift Giving, Part 1: Wines TBD, check back. 3-6 p.m.

12/18 - Holiday Gift Giving, Part 2: Wines TBD, check back. 4-8 p.m.

We have Vinturi aerators and gift sets...sake gift sets, beautiful glasses, gift ware, charms, cork screws and so much more for your gift giving needs. Come to downtown Melrose, shop and support your small businesses!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Are you ready for Thanksgiving....?

Just a reminder that no liquor stores are open on Thanksgiving Day - so be sure to stock up tomorrow on all your last minute holiday drinking & dining needs! Both locations are open early, and will be closing later than usual posted hours.

In addition to wine & beer - Melrose has plenty of fresh cheese, appetizers, ready containers of pepperoni, peppers, kalamata & gorgonzola olives, cookies, candies, pates, and so much more!

From all of us at the Beacon Hill Wine & Spirits - and Beacon Hill Wine & Gourmet family -
we wish you and your family a happy, healthy and safe holiday.

As always - please drink responsibly.


Friday, November 12, 2010

Holiday Tasting Schedule and more...

We've got a full month of tastings to help you plan your holiday dinner table!

Fri, Nov 12th: 5:30 - 8:00, La Crema Chardonnay & Pinot Noir
Nov 13th: 2-5pm Wines TBD
Nov 14th: See us at the Showcase Melrose - buy your tickets via the Melrose Chamber of Commerce
Nov 16th: Sake Class, $20/pp - sign up for space limited class with Richard Auffrey, certified Sake Master, 8-10p.
Nov 18th: The Bread & Butter Co., will be sampling fresh dinner rolls, home made butters, biscuits and sweet breads for your holiday table! 5:30 - 8:00
Nov 20th: Pre-Thanksgiving Wine Sampler, Part 1 - Wines TBD, 5-8pm check back for specifics
Nov 23rd: Pre-Thanksgiving Wine Sampler, Part 2 - Wines TBD, 5-8pm check back for specifics

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Space Limited Sake Class!

Email or call to sign up for our first seminar - a Sake sampler class.
Learn from certified Sake Professional Richard Auffrey and expose your palate to a whole new world.

From sparkling to sweet, unfiltered to dry - Sake is more than what our experiences have probably shown us at local restaurants. Not only is it a fantastic accompaniment to a variety of's also a wonderful pairing for cheese, making it an interesting and unique way to enjoy a small gathering with friends, when wanting to depart from traditional choices.

Space is limited...and there are only 7 seats left -- so call or email to sign up.

$20.00/pp for a 2 hour class, where you will not only sample - but truly learn an education from someone who is exceptionally passionate (no pun intended!) about this exciting wine - and you can enjoy a variety of cheeses and foods that will pair wonderfully as well.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Pre-Thanksgiving Sampler

It's almost here - the first big holiday dinner that kicks off all things winter: Thanksgiving.

Join us Thursday, from 5-8 as we sample out the following:

Oyster Bay Sauvignon Blanc
Oyster Bay Merlot
Michael Pozzan Cabernet
Casa Lapostale Carmenere

Hope to see you there!

Monday, October 25, 2010

It's a Yellow-Ween....

Have plans for Halloween day?
Come to our Melrose store from 2-4 p.m. and sample Veuve Cliquot champagne!

It's a Spook-tacular event...who doesn't love a little bubbly in the glass?

Monday, October 11, 2010

One Year Celebration for Melrose: An update!

Have you marked your calendars for Thursday, Oct 21st?

Henriot Champagne, Classic Wine, Harpoon Beer, The Bread & Butter Co., Emmiez Croutons, To Die For Dips are confirmed - others confirming by the week's end.

We'll also be sampling out cheese from our artisan cheese case!
This is one tasting event you won't want to miss...

Thursday, October 07, 2010

It's never too soon for holiday gift planning....

If you're looking to buy a gift for the wine lover who has everything.... I have the latest Opus One vintage arriving late October.

If you are interested in a pre-sell and would like me to hold one aside - special pricing may be available.

Email if you are interested - and welcome to the beginning of the holiday season!
(Okay, maybe it's a little early - but it is almost Halloween - and that is the official kickoff, right?)

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

What's going on..?

What are your plans for Saturday?
Why not come to an Afternoon Sampler, from 2-5 in our Melrose location.

Wines tentatively scheduled to be tasted are as follows:
Trentadue Chocolate Port, Hyatt Riesling, Bell Cabernet and one more that is escaping me at the moment. I'll have to update this tomorrow a.m. with the last wine, because truthfully - I'm exhausted and just can't remember what it would be.

As a reminder - every Friday, we have fresh bread.
And we are always happy and ready to make the perfect recommendation for you, whether it's a cheese to cook with - a wine to drink, or a gift to give to a friend.

We're also happy to make a fun beer recommendation for you as well. Which reminds me, we have some new product in coming tomorrow - and the one that I remember the most right now is Southern Tier's 2XIPA.

I'll tweet the updates for the beer cooler in the afternoon. Be sure to follow!

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Hard to believe -- one year is here!

It has been one interesting year.
We have our one year anniversary coming on 19 October -- with a "thank you" celebration being planned for the 21st.

Henriot Champagne, a flight of wine, artisan chocolates & port, cheese displays, food vendors and more - stay tuned for details and be sure to check the blog,, Twitter and Facebook for details as I confirm them.

This is one event you will not want to miss!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

We're going to be on television, bread is back - and fine wine...

In case you missed us the first time this episode aired -- Chronicle is replaying the show from April where they profiled us during their "Toasting New England" edition -- Friday, September 17th at 7:30 pm. A completely apropos day (thank you, Anonymous!) since it's my birthday!

The past week has given me the opportunity to have some fantastic wine producers call on me; since most of the distributors have their portfolio showcases these next few weeks - that means some outstanding producers are in town. Unfortunately I'm not able to attend most shows, but fortunately my reps bring some of the best to call on me and taste their new vintages. As a result we've got some excellent and new wine from Marietta, Saint Come, Fisher Vineyards and some other higher end producers coming to the shelves over the next week.

On the food front....Funky Chunky Chip-Zel-Pop is coming in. Check out the link - because my description won't do it nearly the right justice it deserves. We also have Emmiez Croutons instock, new this week. More like a biscotti than a true crouton, I promise you can't eat just one! Coming soon also bread dipping seasonings, creme brulee sets with torches, soups and more. Best of all....the bread is back on Friday! A loaf of bread, a jug of wine...and the rest is up to you!

There's so much more....but I think that's good for today!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

September 11th, a time to remember....

Budweiser, though going through a variety of struggles at the moment with new ownership - has always been the quintessential American product.

Their commercials have always been creative, and often nostalgic and sentimental.
The following is a commercial they put it post 9/11 that only aired once. I thought it appropo to share with everyone today.

September 11th will always be a difficult day for Americans; but hopefully we can turn tragedy into triumph as only the American spirit can do.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

09' Bordeaux...They weren't exaggerating.

Okay, so everyone knows that I am personally not a huge enthusiast regarding hype from magazines on "how great" a wine may or may not be. With the recent press on the '09 vintage, I won't lie and will admit how skeptical I was. Mostly because, well - I always wonder how they can determine from so early in the barrell how well a wine will stand up to the test of time. It's not as if we all haven't encountered a wine that had promise right out of the gate - but fell apart after 30 minutes in the glass. It happens; so you can't help but wonder how they can be so sure of one vintage being so much better than another. I suppose that's why "they" get the big bucks, right?

Yesterday, I sampled 5 '09 Bordeauxs (Petite Chateau, non classified) that were less than impressive. I thought to myself "seriously, is this what all the hype is about"? These were not necessarily inexpensive either. I passed on bringing them in.

Today, I tasted 5 '09 (again, Petite Chateau) and they were fantastic and inexpensive. I'm talking ranging from $10.99- $14.99 on the shelf. Complete overproducers for the price range which made me step back and say "so this is what all the hype is about!".

They will be on the shelf tomorrow, and one -- is ORGANIC. Certified and on the label, so if you're looking for certification in a Bordeaux, I've got one for you - and it's delicious.

One can only imagine what the future will hold with the later releases.....

Monday, August 30, 2010

Back from vacation - fabulous feedback....and ch-ch-changes!

Like most of you, I am returning from a brief summer vacation. As we're approaching our first year in Melrose, I was able to take a few days to unwind and relax (well, as relaxing as a family vacation to Hershey Park can be!). As sad as I am for it to be over - I'm so glad to be back.

To make the return even better, this morning I read this great article which really made me so very happy; this encapsulates what our business model is, and why we want the small wine boutique shop to be an experience - not just an errand. (

Labor Day is approaching - and that means Harvest is upon us. This is probably my favorite time of year; and to celebrate - some changes are coming to the Melrose store in the next month....window displays featuring Henriot Champagne is a big switch; if you are an enthusiast of the bubbles and have not yet tried this line - I insist that you try. Speaking of windows, a plan is in the works to pretty up the windows and give us a very classic and unique outside appearance. I'd been hoping to unveil it for Labor Day, but the schedule seems to be slipping on that one..

Hours are changing as well! We are now officially open until 9pm on Thursdays - and look for Sundays to stay open until 7. We know how halftime during football season is always the time that everyone needs to run out and refresh the coolers; or maybe you've got a Sunday dinner plan and forgot that bottle of wine to bring. No worries - we're here for you.

And of course...the inventory. Not sure if you've noticed, but the last three weeks I started stocking Harvest/Pumpkin/Octoberfest beer! Dogfish, Victory, Ipswich, Sam Adams, Shipyard - just to name a few. Who doesn't love a good pumpkin ale, right? We also have Fall Ciders from Woodchuck & Harpoon for those of you looking for something other than traditional beer or wine.

In the wine department - I'm cutting down on some of the lighter Spanish white wines, and re-engaging my South African section. South Africa has some delicious and exciting wines at fabulous prices. The "bigger" wines and higher end (but still not over the top in price) are bulking up as well. It's never too early to think about holiday gift giving!

And then, there's food.... Bread is coming back on Fridays in the next two weeks! I know some of you have really missed that, so I'm happy to announce the return. I've got some great food lines that I found over the summer coming in over the next month - and best of all - they're all LOCAL. Small, artisan food producers are so much fun to find for me - -and you can feel good knowing you're part of supporting our local economy. Buy local, buy fresh -- it's not just a tagline; it's a principle and business model I work hard to follow.

My batteries are recharged - and hopefully, you will enjoy the subtle changes that are going to be happening. My wine shop is your wine shop - and it is a constantly evolving, living thing. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome, and as always - thank you for your support.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Tax Free Weekend Event!

This weekend - save 6.25% on all of your purchases!

And with our regular discount of 10% off 6 bottles -15% off 12 (mix and match) -- that's a great incentive to think about stocking up, or holiday gift giving ideas!

Today, we'll have two bottles open after 11 - we're still choosing which ones they'll be.

Tomorrow, join us for an "Old Time Summertime Sunday" as we sample out a selection of 4-6 wines - and enjoy music from members of local band "That Old Feeling" performing live! Specializing in music from the 20's, 30's and 40's, you'll be sure to feel like you've stepped into an era gone by.

And remember - this year's election will feature the ballot question to permanently remove the tax on alcoholic beverages. Your vote counts.... we didn't get the choice previously - and now we do. So be sure to rock the vote!

Friday, August 13, 2010

'Tis never too early for Pumpkin...

Yes, I'm a big fan of Pumpkin Ale.
Who am I kidding - I'm a big fan of all things pumpkin.

So, I couldn't wait until August to start ordering the harvest seasoned beer.
The following are in stock in Melrose -though truthfully, not sure how long they'll last on the shelves.
(And yes - Dogfish Pumpkin will be in stock next week; I've already pre-ordered!)

Monday, August 09, 2010

Beachbound, Visiting or Gift Giving...

We're happy to announce that we're now carrying beautiful handmade Beverage Bags & Cozies by local artist Liz Noonan.

A resident of Melrose, Liz uses classic patterns and styles for her product line -- and exceptionally good quality fabric. You have to see them for yourself to see, touch and feel.

Classic patterns such as English Toile, Striping and coordinating florals make these bags fabulous timeless gifts for yourself - or someone else! The bags perfectly fit a six pack of beer for those backyard barbecues that might be more casual -- and the cozies are perfect for dressing up your bottles.
They're actually perfect casual handbags for just about any use!

And as always - it's never too early to start thinking about holiday gift giving.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Holy Smokes - it's a special Pinot!

If you're a Pinot Noir enthusiast - then you're in for a treat.

We've recently acquired the Sea Smoke Southing -- and supplies are very limited.

Call/email for pricing.

It's never to early to start thinking of holiday gift giving!
And it's never the wrong time to think of a gift for yourself...

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Sake Sampler...and a Sake Class!

So, this morning I had quite the education in Sake. Having a very limited understanding of this deliciously mysterious wine - I was quite interested in the portfolio I was tasting. I was not disappointed.

Good Morning Sunshine....

Interestingly enough, I've discovered that I enjoy a cloudy Sake - this one, a pearl. It tastes unfiltered, and has a delicious coconut like tropical flavor. There also was a fabulous Asian Pear flavored one that was spectacular - as well as some other ones that I'll post more information about shortly. I think my personal favorite was one that was incredibly crisp and dry - but not flat, as some I've tasted can be. When I say flat, think heavy minerality with little other flavor.

I'm writing this off the top of my head (as I drink La Nerthe Chateauneuf Du Pape Blanc, no less...) so I certainly don't want to misinform with writing the wrong names or styles of what I sampled. I'll post the correct information in a future post this week.

Needless to say, I'm quite excited about ramping up the variety in Melrose - and look for a Sake Class to come this fall.

Questions? Feel free!

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Love this advertisement..!

Sorry for the poor quality, but this has got to be the best advertisement in this collection of brilliant commercials. Enjoy!

(And for the record, yes - I sell it.)

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Lagar De Besada Albarino, Saturday AM Sampler....

Good Morning!
And a gorgeous morning it is.... as you're walking around the downtown Melrose area today, be sure to stop in and sample some Albarino. It's the perfect choice for a hot summer day - and even better if you're going to be having raw bar or seafood today!

Never had Albarino before? Then you're in for a treat! If you're a Portugese wine drinker, then you may already be familiar with Alvarinho - their name of the grape. If not, then you can expect a deliciously light, crisp, slightly minerally and relatively fragrant wine. There's typically a slight hint of brine which is what practically makes it scream for oysters. It's also fantastic with Asian fare - but if you just want to enjoy it alone in the glass, it's perfect for relaxing on the patio in the summer sun.

Staycation Spain today... check out our Manchego cheese, Tapas seasoning mix, and Las Tapitas Flatbreads -- as well as Olive Oil & Sugar Tortas.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Organic, Green, Sustainable....

Of course, in today's age - we're all more environmentally aware. We try to be more conscious of what we eat, what we purchase, and of course - this includes how the wines we consume are produced.

Join us Thursday as we taste out some delicious organic wine from Chile. Produced by Cono Sur Winery, they are incredibly environmentally conscious. Organic wine is basically a wine made from organically grown grapes -- meaning they were farmed and harvested entirely without the use of man-made chemicals, whether in the form of fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, insecticides or fungicides.

Thursday, July 22
5:30 - 8pm
Cono Sur Chilean Wines, specific varietals TBD

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Working for the weekend....

Plans for the weekend?
Whether you're staying home, or visiting friends - we've got everything you need.

Friday evening, 5-8pm join us as we taste out the following:
Cline Viogner, E Guigal Cote Du Rhone Rose, and two red wines that are to be determined. (I will update this page once they are finalized, so check back!)

Back by popular demand in the beer cooler: Clown Shoes Brown Angel & Clementine.

We've also increased our Greek inventory to 4 white wines, and 2 reds. Tomorrow's post will include the varietals because I am at home, and don't recall them off the top of my head.

Ford Farm Five Layer is available in the cheese case after what feels a far too long hiatus; there are few things that can irritate a retailer more than the words "back order".

We've also added a rather novelty and fun chocolate: Chocolate "Buffalo" Wings. They're peanut butter stuffed chocolates shaped in to chicken wings, complete with whipped marshmellow for Bleu Cheese. They're sinfully delicious.

And that's my mid-week wrap up.
Did you take advantage of our Wednesday Pasta Night?
If not....maybe next week,

Monday, July 12, 2010

Baseball and Wine...

In honor of the All Star Game, join us tomorrow from 4-8pm as we sample out some baseball themed wine, and of course... fresh roasted peanuts!

Come on by and sample something fun and delicious to enjoy the game with.

(Of course, we also have great beer as well to go on the baseball theme...)

Friday, July 09, 2010

Those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer...

Ah, the dog days of summer are here.
So what can you do to stay cool?
Keep your glass filled!

Let's think out of the box a bit, shall we?

Try some different whites - Pardina (Spain), Malvesia/Grechetto/Trebbiano Blend (Umbria, IT) Gruner Vetliner (Austria), Asyrtiko (Greece), Sylvaner (Germany), Tokaji Furmint (Hungary). All delicious and perfect for summer enjoyment.

And for some interesting reds -- Cab/Syrah/Merlot (South Africa), Cabernet (Greece), Nero D'Avola (Italy), Grenache/Syrah blends (France)

We're lining up some tastings for the next few weeks to help you get through the summer months. Be sure to subscribe to our blog via RSS - or keep checking back.

We're also on Twitter (@beaconhillwine) and on Facebook as well.

Stay cool - and cheers!

Friday, July 02, 2010


Looking for a quick and easy Sangria recipe?? Use a bottle of red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Rioja reds, Zinfandel, Shiraz any inexpensive one will do.under $12. Think Yellowtail - they're perfect!) Add lemon & orange wedges, some sugar, couple shots of brandy and some ginger ale or soda water...You can also ...add sliced strawberries, peaches, or a handful of fresh blueberries...

(Okay, now I want some....)


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Pre-4th of July Tasting...

Are you getting ready for the big holiday weekend?
Well we are... lots and lots of ice cold beer, delicious wine - and of course, lots of great food.

To kick off the long weekend, we're having a Black Dog Friday....
As part of our "Staycation Summer", we're sampling out a taste of our very own Martha's Vineyard - figuratively speaking of course!
Join us Thursday evening from 5-8 pm as we taste out the Cabernet and the Chardonnay.
Simple and unpretentious - these wines are easy drinking and great for your weekend fun, especially if they include a little BBQ.

Friday, June 25, 2010


Today, a customer suggested I try a Live Chat here on the blog - sort of a weekly wine Q&A; some weeks there may be a topic, other weeks it may be more of a "ask anything you want to know" kind of forum.

I've got the software now, so it's just a matter of picking a day to give it a try.
Got a topic you'd like to discuss? Post it here, and maybe it will be the debut!


Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Thursday tasting - and other tidbits!

Join us tomorrow night in Melrose for a tasting of the following wines:
Isabel Estate Sauvignon Blanc & Pinot Noir, and Jean Luc Columbo Rose.
5-7:30 p.m.

We've got a few new things foodwise to share as well!
Bucheron is new to the artisan case; in the fridge, we've got Wild Salmon, and Herring in Wine Sauce. These items are fabulous if you're having a brunch, or just feel like indulging in a little something different.

If you're entertaining and are looking for menu suggestions, please don't hesitate to ask!

New to the wine racks this week will be some new Sicilian wines, as well as some new Spanish wines as well. More details to follow - but remember, it's a "staycation vacation" summer - so get out of your comfort zone of the "same old same old" varietals and taste the adventure in some new regional grapes and styles that you may not have heard of before!

Hope to see you tomorrow...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Mambo Italiano....

So keeping in theme with our Staycation Summer -- I'm trying to get everyone interested and excited about trying varietals that might be out of their comfort zone of familiarity.

One of the red wines that I am really enjoying the reactions when people try it, is Salice Salentino. A blend of Negro Amaro & two different types Malvesia: Nera di Brindisi & Nera di Lecce. It's a delicious and light wine that is similar to Pinot Noir - but rather than being light and bright with a ripe cherry flavor - it's got that nice light body, and bright fruit - but more of a tart cherry flavor. The acidity makes it a perfect complement for food - though, unlike one of it's other Italian counterparts, Chianti -- it is just as enjoyable alone in the glass.

(This is not to say that Chianti is not enjoyable without food...however, in my personal opinion it's better served with a meal or antipasti than alone.)

Why not try Salice Salentino this week if you're looking to try a new red - or give a gift to someone who enjoys lighter bodied wine? I promise, you won't be disappointed!

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Feeling hot, hot, hot...and delicious!

I'm always a little skeptical when a celebrity endorses a product; they often tend to be mediocre items that are relying on the celebrity to sell the brand.

Not this time.

Calling all hot sauce enthusiasts.... Big Papi En Fuego Hot Sauces are smokin' good.

Right now, we're carrying his original in the large size, the smaller sampler pack - and the jars of Mango Pineapple Salsa that is out of this world. Everything tastes fresh, the quality of the product is exceptionally high - but the price is perfect for your budget. Each of the four sauces is using different peppers so they all taste different -- and they're marketed as "lifestyle" sauces. You can cook with them, or use them as accents to cheese or however you so enjoy spice.

I'm starting a New England section of wine; right now I've got in Turtle Creek which is a vineyard out of Lincoln MA; tomorrow I've got the Black Dog Tavern wines coming in, as well as Sailor's Dream from Nantucket. And next week I should have another collection of at least two varietals from Fall River. Buy local.

We've kicked off our Staycation International summer! Check out the signs around the store to give you ideas on wines to sample, foods to pair - and how to turn your home into different international travel destinations on a shoestring budget.

And this Friday, 5:30 - 7:30 join us for a Saranack Summer Sampler!
There's always something delicious going on.... always!

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Can't Vacation? Travel the World on a Staycation...

We all know the economy can be difficult, especially when planning for vacations. So if you can't get away this summer....why not get away in the luxury of your own home? You can travel the world - and even our own state - right from your own dining room table.

You can be sitting on a veranda in Italy or Spain....lounging in the hot springs of Portugal....enjoying Paris at night. And I'm ready to show you how!

Can't get to the Vineyard?
Help yourself to a bottle of Black Dog Vineyards Chardonnay or Cabernet!

Have a night in Spain with some of our very own Tapas Mix and a fantastic bottle of Albarino or Moscabel. Perfect for hot balmy nights with a bit of spice!

Bring the flavors of France to you with Sancerre, White Burgundy, Vouvray and maybe a bit of Brie or Camembert with Carmelized Onion Chutney.

Tour California wine country by sampling Chardonnay from Napa, Sonoma, Carneros, Ynez and more. Try different varietals as well..... Viogner is one of my personal favorites!

All this is just a sampling of how you can tour the world from your home.
Come to the store and see how we're calling out wine for your very own international experience!

Monday, May 24, 2010's not what you think!

Interested in learning more about Sake? Did you know that you can pair Sake with many foods - especially cheese? It's not the hot Sake you remember -- Sake comes in many finishes from dry, to sweet, to sparkling -- to all of the above!

Join us for a Sake class, taught by the well known and Sake afficianado Richard Auffrey - otherwise known as the Passionate Foodie.

Class is limited to 12 people, and sign up is required.
$20.00/pp for a 2 hour concentrated class that not only opens your world to the lovely Sake -- but pairs her with a variety of delicious cheese from our artisan case. It's guaranteed to be a delicious and educational night for all.

Thursdsay, June 10th
8-10 p.m.

Email to sign up - or come by the Melrose store!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Wine Tastings, New items and more!

Join us in the Melrose store this Thursday as we taste out wine from Qupe Winery some spectacularly delicious wine! California Marsanne from St. Ynez Valley, Bien Nacido Cuvee which is a Viognier blende (one of my personal favorite grapes!) and their Syrah. It starts at 5 pm, so come on by!

The Beacon Hill store has a tasting as well, on Friday at 5:30. We're scheduling to sample Rosenblum Zinfandel, Bargmore Rose, Estancia Cabernet, and Drylands Sauvignon Blanc. You won't want to miss it.....

We've also just pre-ordered and scheduled to arrive in time for Father's Day gift giving are the Beckett Chardonnay, and the Ellsbury Zinfandel. These wines should not disappoint as they are produced by the Clos La Chance wine makers -- and best of all, each purchase benefits the player's respective charities.

New food items in Melrose that you might want to check out are Duck Confit sausages and Chicken with Black Truffle sausages. We added Coffee to our Chilly Cow inventory, and coming this Friday we'll have local honey from Crystal Apiaries in Billerica. Delicious, chunky, organic --and best of all, local -- honey. With tea, on toast, on a spoon - or cook with it -- honey never disappoints!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Don't forget Mom....

This Saturday, from 2-5 join us for a Mother's Day Sampler as we taste out the following:

Bell Cabernet
Hyatt Riesling (Washinton State)
Hyatt Merlot (Washington State)
Trentadue Chocolate Port

We've got all sorts of new food items this week!
Pam's Black Bean Salsa -- a delicious and fresh black bean salsa; DennyMike's Rub Blends in Pixie Dust & Cow Bell Hell; and Cormier's Saute Sauces in Garlic & Jalapeno, Garlic & Ginger, and Orange Burst. Best of all -- they're all LOCAL products! Pam's Black Bean is based out of Marblehead, DennyMike is from York Maine, and Cormier's Saute Sauces are created out of neighboring Stoneham.

As always, I try very hard to have unique and delicious food items that are local because buying local means buying fresh. And -- it also helps surge our local economy -- and every little bit helps!

We also have a new cheese for the case -- Landaff cheese which is brought to us by Jasper Hill Farms in VT. It's a deliciously tangy and nutty cheese, but incredibly creamy and mild. Think along the lines of a Land o'Lakes White Cheese with a tang to it. It's amazing for a cheese plate - and I'd say fabulous for a fun twist on grilled cheese. Ask us for a sample - we'd love to have you try it!

New in the beer cooler is a local beer from Canton: Blue Hills IPA & Imperial Red. Good, good stuff.

Don't forget to check out our blackboard for staff favorite selections and upcoming tastings!
Hope to see you soon!

Friday, April 09, 2010

A lovely radio spot - and other tidbits!

Special thanks to Intermezzo Magazine's Roseann Tully for giving the Melrose store a fantastic "kudos" today on WBZ Radio: Look for Intermezzo Magazine to grace our store, hopefully soon!

We're having a "Take me out to the Ballgame" tasting on Friday, April 23rd from 5-7 pm.
Get ready for the Sox to take on Baltimore as we sample out Wachusett "Green Monster" Beer, and Boston Beer Works "Fenway Ale" -- as well as delicious Dom's Sausages, Double Chin fried onion & pepper relish, Chilly Cow Vanilla Frozen Custard and American Nut Roasted Peanuts. It's truly a tasting you don't want to miss! All items are local products --so shop fresh, shop local!

New items coming soon: the most insanely delicious and truly unique cookies from a producer in Essex, yet another local food product! Also, again a North Shore baby -- Didi Salt collections. A fantastically delicious collection of gourmet sea salts, pink himalyan salts, and gourmet sugars. And of course -- there's always new cheeses and "To Die For" dips on the shelves.

We've got some great new wines on the rack -- Raw Power Shiraz is a fun and surprisingly refined Shiraz despite the label; Home Grown Red is a delicious Barbera blend from California; Lelia Garnacha is a surprisingly delicious Grenache that has good weight for an incredibly inexpensive price. We've got some new Spanish whites: Mesta, an incredibly light and crisp blend, as well as a white Rioja who's name is escaping me at the moment. We also have a delicious Argentinian Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc called Luna Benegas that is just lovely.

Come by this weekend and pick up something special for your wine glass, or dinner table!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Holiday Sampler, Part 1

Please join us tomorrow, from 4:30 - 7:00 pm as we taste out the following wine that would be perfect for your holiday dinner table this weekend. We like to pick things that allow you to think "out of the box" a bit for each holiday, so be sure to stop by and try what we've got!

Domaine Pellehaut Rose
La Caplana Gavi di Gavi
Bell Cabernet
Annamaria Abbona Dolcetto

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Holiday Week....

It's a big holiday week for everyone....and both stores have selections that are perfect for both the Easter & Passover Holidays.

Both stores are offering wines that are Kosher for Passover, including Tishibi Cabernet/Petit Syrah, Tishibi Emerald Riesling, Golan Chardonnay & Cabernet -- and of course, Manischewitz.

Our Melrose location has three tastings this week - and more specific information regarding what we'll be sampling will follow shortly, so keep checking back.

Thursday: Holiday Dinner Sampler, Pt. 1
Friday: Go Green Organic Sampling
Saturday: Holiday Dinner Sampler, Pt.2

We've got chocolates, candies, (even jellybeans!), oversized chocolate peanut butter cups and more for all your Easter gift basket stuffing.

The cheese case will have a fantastic selection, as well as a nice selection of fresh pasta that is available to add to your dinner table.

There's always something new going on in the Melrose shop.... and we're always changing our wine inventory in both locations, so come on by and pick out something that will be just perfect for your holiday table -- or just a quiet evening at home.

Friday, March 26, 2010

What's happening over the next few days...

Okay, so there's a lot going on so my wine recommendations have fallen to the wayside temporarily.

Sunday, we're having a fundraiser for Dana Farber Cancer Institute. In conjunction with Melrose Boot Camp, we're sponsoring a shopping day where 10% of our sales from the Melrose store from Sunday will be donated to DFCI via Joy Fay - who is running the Marathon and raising money for this fantastic facility. Unfortunately, in this day and age there is virtually no one that isn't affected by Cancer in some way and in some capacity -- so this is a great way to help contribute to the fight against the disease. So come by on Sunday and know that your contribution will help!

Monday, we will be part of the special that Chronicle is running on wine! So you dont' want to miss out on that...
We've got lots of tastings coming up in the next week for the holidays. I'll post more on that Tuesday.

In the meantime, here's a snapshot of our freezer and cheese case (at least how it looked as of this morning!) -- just in case you'd like to pop in at some point and indulge. Remember, we carry Dom's Sausages, Steak Tips & Ribs!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Radio Interview 1: Fairness Doctrine

Here's a link to the recent radio interview I did with the Fairness Doctrine from two weeks ago.
This link is for the whole show -- but we're the first segment, so you don't need to fast forward --right after the intro, it's showtime.

(I had a cold at the time, so I apologize if I'm a little difficult to hear.)

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Happy Springtime.....

This week has certainly felt like Spring....and hopefully the fever will last!

Today in the Melrose store, you can come by and sample Silvaner; it's a lesser known varietal than Riesling and it's perfect for warm weather - and also a great wine to go with holiday fare.

At 3pm, we're going to be opening up some Black Raspberry Chilly Cow Frozen Custard, as well as Chocolate. You've got to give this incredibly decadent ice cream a try....and, here's a thought: drizzle Trentadue Chocolate Port over Vanilla custard. Oh yeah.....

Upcoming tastings to note: Thursdsay 4/1 and Saturday 4/3 we'll be sampling wines that go great for the holiday table! Keep checking back for specific details.

We'd hoped to do an Opening Day celebration but since the Fenway opener is Easter Sunday, we may have to just have a "Take me out to the Ballpark" day another time in April. Look for that to feature Fenway Park & Green Monster Beer, Dom's Sausages, and maybe some peanuts & ice cream!

Next post - I'll share some of my personal favorite bottles that we added to the inventory over the past few weeks.

Monday, March 08, 2010

What's going on this week...

Today I was interviewed on air with WDIS AM -- where I'm one of their wine sponsors for the show "Fairness Doctrine". I got a great 5 minute interview and if they post it online, I'll gladly share the link here. If you enjoy political banter, then you really should check their show out. Left meets Right - and everything in between.

This week, we've got new wine as always -- and some new products including dark chocolate covered espresso beans -- as well as savory chutneys, such as carmelized onion chutney which is amazing on tenderloin or any kind of oven roast.

Chilly Cow Black Raspberry is gracing our freezer chest....probably the most decadent tasting black raspberry I've ever had.

And Friday, we are sampling out delicious steak tips and country ribs from Dom's Sausage -- and pairing it with Plymouth's own Mayflower Beer. It's a shop fresh, shop local tasting that you will not want to miss!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Beacon Hill Wine & Gourmet on Chronicle!

Today, the Melrose store was recorded for an upcoming episode of Chronicle that will be featuring wine and wine shops!

It was exciting, and a lot of fun - though truthfully, I'm a little nervous to see myself on television. Who really likes the way they look or the sound of their voice? But hopefully, the shop will look beautiful and I will have represented our corner of the world in Melrose fabulously.

One of the things I talked about is a feature that I hope will pick up -- did you know we offer a rack registry? Whether you're getting married, moving into a new home - or celebrating a golden anniversary, registering your wine rack is a great way to start your own private wine collection! You can schedule a private consultation to pick out your preferences -- we set you up with a web page that only you and your guests can access -- and they can shop for you. The best thing is -- duplicates are a welcome thing! Email or call for more details if you or someone you know is interested.

In the meantime, keep checking back to find out when the episode will air!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Domo Arigato.... and more!

This Saturday (tomorrow....) we're having a Sake sampler. Join us from 5-7 as we sample the following varieties:

Moon Rabbit Sparkling
Murai Tanrei
Chikurin Fukamari Junmai
Hakushika Junmai Ginjo
Ozeki Osakaya Chobei Dai Ginjo
Murai Nigori Genshu

If you have always thought sake was only for chinese food -- or meant to be digested warm, you're in for an interesting and pleasant treat!

We've brought new cheese in this week: Three Cream Gouda, Duchess Sara Gouda as well as delicious Applewood Smoked Cream Cheese and Pesto Butter.

Did you know we carry Dom's Sausage Steak Tips & Turkey Tips - as well as Country Style Ribs? They're delicious, and we charge the same amount as Dom's does so you aren't being charged any differently and you don't have to travel to Dom's direct if you don't want to! We also can order custom cuts of meat for you from Dom's, with only three days notice!

Speaking of Dom's as you can see from the photo on our new chalkboard -- we're sampling out Dom's Sausage meats AND having a beer tasting the same evening. You won't want to miss it!

Lots of new wine this week on the racks -- and in all regions! So come on by and indulge a little bit. You deserve it, don't you?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Even though today feels like Spring, there's still time for a big Red...

Chateau D‘aydie “Les Sarments" Vin de Pays

Of humble origin in terms of the large growing area in southwestern France from which it comes, this offers loads of flavor and enjoyment - the ultimate over-achiever! A blend of Tannat, Cabernet Franc, and Cabernet Sauvignon, this exhibits ripe black fruits with some spiciness that lends more complexity than expected. Great with beef and all dishes with some heartiness to them. 

This wine is an example of a bottle which improves with aeration -- it loves to "breathe".

I personally love this wine; it reminds a bit of a good Pinotage. It's got a gaminess to it, and an earthiness that is very rustic and old world style. I think it just screams to be enjoyed with lamb -- but I had it with a sausage dish and enjoyed it just the same. Check it out and let me know what you think -- it's inexpensive, and worth the chance!

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

That's amore.....

So many things to do during the week & weekend of love......

Thursday-- it's bubbles, bubbles and bubbles in both stores as Beacon Hill & Melrose are both tasting out Rose, Blanc de Noir and Brut Chandon.

Friday -- Melrose is having a fantastic wine tasting with some new Bordeaux and a fantastic chocolate dessert wine, as well as a delicious White Burgundy.

Saturday --Melrose will be pairing Ruby & Tawny ports with Milk, Dark & Peanut Butter filled chocolate.

You won't want to miss these so be sure to stop on in!

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

New Things, Tastings & More...

Friday night, 5pm - 7pm in Melrose - it's a Beer Tasting! Sample Sam Adams Noble Pils & Cherry Wheat, Ithaca Cascazilla & Flower Power. Complete with some cheese -- it's a great way to start your weekend!

Saturday night, 4-7pm in Melrose - it's a Chandon Sparkling Wine Tasting! Demi Sec, Blanc de Noir &'s a great way to prep for Valentine's Day and enjoy a Saturday night before dinner.

New items this week are.... Foie Gras, Italian Cookies (coming Thursdsay!), Deano's FRESH Pasta (lobster agnilotti, canneloni florentine & four cheese shells -- delicious!), Food Should Taste Good Olive chips, Chocolate Covered Almonds, Jelly Belly Jelly Beans, & Gummi Bears! Ricotta Salatte as well as Feta should be in by Thursday as well...

And of course, as always -- we're bringing in new and exciting wine for you to enjoy and try! Don't hesitate to ask for recommendations and suggestions -- we're happy to help!

Cheers & Bon Appetit!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

What's new - and what we're tasting!

So, this week - we added some more fun things!
Now available -- Dom's Sausage delicious Steak & Turkey Tips! Available in both Original and Zesty Teriyaki -- and Caesar & Honey Mustard for the turkey. And trust me when I tell you that I've priced them right.....

Also new in the cheese case is Danish Fontina, and Fol-Epi - as well as Mimolette Jeune (young) and Veille (aged). I'm hungry just thinking about it....

Dijon mustard has found it's way to the cheese case....and I'm trying really, really hard to find a good local honey! If anyone knows a resource please share - because it's been quite difficult to find someone who will return my phone call. Who doesn't love a little honey with their cheese?

Tomorrow night, 5-7pm we'll be tasting out some truly delicious wine: Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc, Vouvray & a Chinon. We'll also be sampling an Argentinan Malbec -- so if you're in the neighborhood.....come on in!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Bring back "Wednesday is Spaghetti Day"....

Tomorrow in Melrose - we're running a special for dinner.

Your choice of a bottle of red wine or white, a bag of artisanal pasta, a jar of imported spaghetti sauce, a wedge of parmigian reggiano and a box of pizelles -- all for under $30.

What take out, when you can take in?

While supplies last!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Tasting information & more!

Tomorrow, look for three new cheeses in the case at the Melrose shop:

Fol-Epi, Chimay Beer, and Danish Fontina.
How's that for delicious?

We're also bringing in Multigrain Chips & Jalapeno Chips by Food Should Taste Good.
Chocolates and more coming this week as well.

On Friday, we're tasting out wines from Provence -- and they're outstanding. I'll have some tasting notes and more information posted here as we get closer. The tasting is from 5-7, and you won't want to miss it.

Also coming soon -- Feb. 13th, mark your calendars for a Port & Chocolate tasting, perfect for Valentine's Day!

Friday, January 22, 2010

It's a Crazy Camel Dessert Hummus Tasting!

Saturday, 1/23 at 10:30 a.m., Crazy Camel Hummus is doing an instore tasting in Melrose.

Delicious for snacking, awesome for cooking - and pairs fabulously with wine! Come on by and check out the varieties -- lower in fat than traditional hummus - and even better, you can buy it frozen and thaw in minutes!

Chocolate Mousse, Peanut Butter, Pumpkin Pie, Toasted Almond & Maple Walnut.

Check them out at

See you there!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A little 'tage...a little chenin....a little Chutney... a little nougat....a little Biltong!

Mark your calendars for a South African soiree...
Join us Saturday, January 16th from 2p - 6p as we taste some of the delicious and new food items I brought in from Capetown Traders - South African specialty importers.

They'll be at the store at 2 -- and then at 4, we'll be pairing the food with some fantastic South African wines: Nederberg Pinotage (which by the way, is the official wine of the World Cup for all you soccer enthusiasts!), Cederberg Chenin Blanc, and Goats in Villages Shiraz/Pinotage.

We hope you can join us!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Speaking of out with the old.....

Well, it's not old - but not exactly seasonal!
All holiday candy -- including Holiday Gourmet Chocolate Pizzas -- are 50% off in the Melrose shop! Funky Chunky, oversized holiday peanut butter cups, pizza slices -- get them while they last for half the price!

Nothing like a little chocolate to make the day seem a little brighter.
As well as wine....

Speaking of chocolate - coming this week, Rosenblum Desiree Chocolate Zinfandel dessert wine!

Monday, January 04, 2010

Out with the old and in with the new....

Happy New to all....

So, in addition to always having different wine to choose from - we also try to mix things up in the food department. Starting this week, we'll be featuring some delicious products from South Africa -- and mark your calendars for a food & wine tasting, January 16th. We'll be sampling delicious food items such as cookies, chutneys and more - along with some delicious South African wine varietals such as Pinotage, Cabernet & Chenin Blanc. You won't want to miss it!

Sure, the winter holidays are over - but right around the corner is Valentine's Day. Champagne, sparkling wine, wine -- and of course chocolates and gifts -- are the perfect thing for that special person in your life. Just a little something to think about....

Another new something is delivery. Already available in Boston -- now Melrose residents can have orders delivered as well. Hours may be limited, so be sure to call ahead to schedule.

Until next time....