Litchfield Hills Wine Market
   
 July 23, 2020
 
 ** WE CURRENTLY OFFER CURBSIDE SERVICE ONLY **
We realize some of you are frustrated that we have not reopened to the public and that you cannot browse labels.  You can't go to baseball games either. But there are good reasons to remain curbside for now.
 
It's for your health and safety and the health and safety of our staff and families.
We are a small shop so social distancing is nearly impossible.
We have roughly 10,000 bottles in the store.  It's an impossible task to wipe them down and sterilize them constantly.
 
We work many extra hours to deliver a great service and product while maintaining a spotless work environment.  Doing our jobs through this pandemic has been stressful for all of us.  Please be patient.  Please be kind.  We're all in this together. I owe my staff a debt of gratitude I cannot begin to describe. 
 
Thank you for your understanding and continued support.
 
Michael Higgins,
Owner and Protector 
 
 
We are happy to take orders over the phone and have the wine brought out to your car when you arrive.  It's really easy! Just call 860-361-6700 to order and to let us know you're here!
 
     * Hours of operation are Monday-Saturday 9-6 and Sunday 11-5
      
 Visit us online at: 
You can view our inventory, meet the staff, and view archives of recent newsletters.
 
  Be like Soybean - wear a mask! 
       
Download PDFs of our Wine & Spirit and Beer Inventory
We'll continue to add new items as they become available.   
 


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What to Drink Tonight
See what Soybean has to say below, but, YES, GRÜNER!
 
Grüner Veltliner is a dry white wine that grows almost only in Austria. With flavors of green pepper and lime, Grüner Veltliner is an exotic alternative to Sauvignon Blanc. The name translates to "Green Wine of Veltlin". Veltlin was an area in the lower Alps during the 1600's that is now part of Valtellina, Italy.
 
In 2003, Asimov wrote in the NYT: "Austrian winemakers have been turning up in the wine capitals of the world and whispering in the ear of anyone who would listen: 'Austrian wines are the wine world's best-kept secret.' Well, they are a secret no longer. The Austrians have let their oenological cat out of the bag, and the wine world is a better place for it."

 
Berger, Gobelsburger, Diwald, Brundlmayer are all in good supply.


Recipe of the Week
Basil Roasted Eggplant with Heirloom Tomatoes

Basil roasted eggplant topped with fresh heirloom tomatoes and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. It's a vegan, low-carb and gluten-free summer recipe!


Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes

Eggplant Ingredients
   2 medium eggplants
    1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    3 medium heirloom tomatoes, thinly sliced
    5-10 basil leaves, julienned
    1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
    flake salt (optional garnish)

Basil Sauce Ingredients
    1/4 cup olive oil
    1 tablespoon lemon juice
    1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
    1/4 teaspoon black pepper
    1 packed cup basil leaves
    1 garlic clove


Instructions:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Wash and dry the eggplant, cut the ends off and slice lengthwise. Sprinkle the cut side of the eggplant with the salt and rest for 10 minutes.

Pat the eggplant dry and remove any remaining visible salt. Place the eggplant cut side down on the baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes.

While the eggplant is roasting make the basil sauce. Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, basil and garlic in a blender and process until completely smooth.

Take the eggplant out of the oven and flip over. Brush the basil sauce liberally over cut side of the eggplant and return it to the oven. Roast for 20 minutes or until cooked throughout.

Remove it from the oven and rest undisturbed for 5 minutes.

Transfer the eggplant to a cutting board and top it with the tomatoes, julienned basil leaves, balsamic vinegar and flake salt if desired.

Slice and serve as is, or chill and serve cold.
WINE OF THE WEEK
Domaine du Terme - Anne-Marie Gaudin's 2019 Rosé

Located in the foothills of the Montmirail Mountains, Domaine du Terme is managed by Anne-MarieGaudin and her father Rolland, who purchased their first vines in Sablet some forty years ago. Anne-Marie began making the wines in 1987 after earning her oenology degree in Macon. He father Rolland, who is also the mayor of Gigondas for over a decade, still consults in the vinification and viticulture process. Anne-Marie believes one must be "flexible, pragmatic, and intuitive" to make quality wine, and have a good connection to the earth.

Terme now spans twelve hectares under vine in Sablet, eleven in Gigondas and three in Vacqueyras. She purchased the Vacqueyras herself, believing in the importance of adding more land with each generation. Only two of the hectares are used for AOC Sablet: a large plot of old vine Grenache in limestone called "Les Briguières" as well as two other plots in sandier soils. The rest goes into her Côtes du Rhone. All harvest is performed manually. Gaudin does not use any pesticides or herbicides as a matter of course, but not because she wants to be identified with the 'organic movement.' She simply believes that the best grapes come from the best management of grapes. As a result her wines are rich, textured, and exceptionally pure.  
 
Her rosé is second to none.  Beautifully floral while substantial and bold, this wine is a food lover's dream come true.  Pair with fowl, seafood or cheeses.  A steal at $25.99!

Cocktail of the Week
Classic Mojito


Ingredients
    ice
    1 1/2 ounces white rum (about 3 tablespoons)
    2 tablespoons lime juice (about 1 lime)
    2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    8 fresh mint leaves
    club soda

Directions
Fill a 12-ounce highball glass with ice and set aside.
In a cocktail shaker, add the rum, lime juice, sugar and mint leaves.
Using a cocktail muddler or the back of a spoon, lightly press on the mint leaves to release some of the oils until fragrant. Be careful not to overmuddle and completely tear the leaves to little pieces - just keep pressing on them with the muddler until the drink is super fragrant.
Cover and shake to combine. Pour into the prepared glass and top it off with a splash of club soda.
Garnish with fresh lime slices and a sprig of mint.


Terroir Spotlight
Sardinia

Sardinia is one of the best deals Europe has to offer. It has white sandy beaches, turquoise clear waters and rugged, quintessential island landscape.
Vermentino grapes benefit from sun reflections from the sea and, because of this, are often planted facing north to provide cooling balance to the region's hot weather. The windy climate and temperature differences through the night maximize the wine's acidity and flavor compounds. Vermentino is typically found as still wine, although sparkling versions are not uncommon and pair well with local seafood dishes and regional specialties such as seafood pasta and carasau bread (a wafer-thin flat bread).

No overview of Sardinia would be complete without mentioning Cannonau (a.k.a. French Grenache, Spanish Garnacha) the most planted variety by far (30% of total) and concentrated in the center of the island. It gives its best on warm, gravely/pebbly soils that limit its natural productivity. The wines are generally high in alcohol and lower in acidity providing for nice round flavors. The intense scents of dark red berries, plum and tobacco are reflected in the taste where notes of chocolate and coffee from oak casks make their appearance.


Soybean the Sommelier
What's in your summer dog house?

I'm often asked what would I serve with...? That happens to be my favorite question when considering a wine.  I'm sort of a meat and potatoes dog, but lately my friend Mike has me branching out with seafood (scallops, yum!) and vegetarian cuisine.  I know, you're probably thinking, pit bulls don't eat tofu or spinach, but you're wrong, And you know, asparagus might make my pee smell kind of terrible, but they're delicious.  Finding a wine to go with asparagus or seared tofu or veggie sausages is tricky.  But the Austrians gave us more than just Arnold Swarzennegger... they blessed us with Gruner Veltliner, a snappy and joyous white wine that seems to pair with almost everything.  This should be your summer go to!  There are even a few rosés kicking around.  Berger, Gobelsburg, Brundlmyer, Diwald... they're all fantastic with all sorts of food.  Stop by and I'll put the right wine in your paws!  Call ahead!
   
              - Soybean


About Us
 Litchfield Hills Wine Market opened in September, 2010. 
Our wonderful staff is here to serve you seven days a week:
Monday - Saturday 9 am - 6 pm, Sunday 11 am - 5 pm. 

When Mike isn't around (or even if he is),  Sara Martin is the capable, outstanding person in command.
Pierre, Anastasia, Manuela, and Dante are also at your service.
 
(We'll go back to extended hours when Covid-19 goes away.)

We carry nearly a thousand different wines, Dozens of beers and large selection of spirits.
We're also happy to place special orders if you need something we don't have in stock! 
 
Litchfield Hills Wine Market
8 Village Green Drive, Litchfield, Conn. 06759     860.361.6700