May 24, 2018
Tea Party 2.0
High tea is a wonderful idea!
Delicious finger foods and a spot of tea in the late afternoon…exactly when you are needing a little something. They serve afternoon Kaffee (coffee) in Germany, matcha (tea ceremony) in Japan, Touareg (mint tea) in Morocco, and Zavarka (with cake) in Russia. But, the idea of high tea has decidedly British roots, and for many feels fussy or at least too complicated to pull off with ease.

We want to bring back the tea party, but with a relaxed personality. We can serve it on Grandmother's bone china, handmade pottery, mis-matched, thrift store finds, or even pretty, disposable plates. Simply arrange your treats artfully and add some fresh flowers to the table.

We can pull from flavors around the globe, serve up a fresh fruit plate, or some of our favorite appetizers. And for the tea, it can be hot, iced, or maybe some spiked lemonade instead.

So, invite a few of your favorite people (yes, guys too) for an afternoon cuppa. It's an easy, informal way to celebrate friendship.
Let's begin with the tea.
We have a pretty impressive tea selection at Piedmont Grocery, and some of our favorites are Harney & Sons English Breakfast, Earl Grey Supreme, Dragon Pearl Jasmine, and Citron Green. 

To lighten your tea the plant-based way we recommend Califa Farms Almond Milk Creamer. They also make an almond Milk half-and-half in three flavors. All are dairy-free and delicious. 

To sweeten your tea try Donoxti Honey in Mesquite Blossom, Avocado Blossom and Multiflora Blossom.
Piedmont Grocery 's own label has a wonderful selection of mini-cakes that are perfect when you want to taste a few flavors. Tiramisu Layer Cake, Lemon Biscotti Cheesecake Jewel, White Chocolate Raspberry Cheesecake, Turtle Cheesecake Jewel, Marionberry Cheesecake, Dulce de Leche Cheesecake Jewel and Pineapple Upside-down Cake.
Spread are very important, and so is what holds them. It can be as simple as thinly-slicing a fresh Semifreddi's baguette or picking up your favorite cracker like Raincoast Crisps . We love Athens phyllo dough Mini Fillo Shells are perfect for holding a variety of both savory and sweet flavors. 
Now for the spreads and fillings…
Marin French Cheese Company 's Petite Breakfast, or one of Laura Chenel's deliciously flavored goat cheeses. McEvoy Ranch makes some lovely spreads like their Mediterranean Bruschetta, Artichoke Lemon Bruschetta, and Artichoke & Almond Tapenade.
Petit Pot de Crème makes a wonderful rice pudding or French pudding in a variety of flavors. Fill a shell and top it with a berry and…voila!
And if you are thinking of jam, try Maison de Monaco Preserves . They pair each fruit with a flower blossom.
For something out of the ordinary, we have a selection of Mahjoon Moroccan Condiments. They are made from a delicious blend of fruit, nuts, honey, and spices: Traditional,
Apricot & Fig, and Strawberry & Fig.
From our blog, The Cocktail Post

This refreshing, springtime cocktail is perfect sipped at a brunch or outdoors on the deck. It is bubbly and refreshing with a splash of citrus. Consider buying mom a bottle of St. Germain Elderflower Liquor for Mother’s Day and giving her this recipe handwritten in a card.

This gorgeous Blueberry Lavender Lemonade Cocktail is perfect as we shift towards warmer weather. The blueberries add a fantastic color and the lavender creates floral overtones. Perfect for sipping outside in the sunshine. Or, pack a thermos full for your next picnic.

Blueberry Lavender Lemonade Cocktail
Yields 8 Cocktails
We like to make the lemonade by the pitcher, and then add a shot of vodka to each glass. That way you can adjust the amount of vodka for the individual, and leave some lemonade for your designated driver (or the kids). But, you can always just stir in a cup of vodka to the pitcher before serving. 

Memorial Day Holiday Hours
Piedmont Grocery will be closed for Memorial Day on Monday, May 28th, so that our employees can spend the day with families and friends.

So, please make certain to get everything you need for your celebration by 7 PM Sunday. We will resume our regular hours Tuesday morning at 9 AM.

Enjoy the long weekend!
A Cookbook Recommendation

By Sabrina Fauda-Role 
There is nothing more satisfying than a single slice of fresh bread stacked high with a flavorsome topping. In Toast, Sabrina Fauda-Rôle takes toast to new heights as she shares all the delectable things you can do with a hunk of bread, a delicious spread, and an array of mouth-watering fillings.

From simple toasts, to delectable tartines, and overflowing open sandwiches, this is simple but elegant food, perfect for a filling snack, a comforting supper for one, or even to serve as nibbles when entertaining.

With a stylish design and chapters covering Cheesy, Meat, Fish, Veggie and Spreads, Sabrina shares fresh, fun, and easy recipes, from the classic mozzarella and tomato to interesting flavor combinations such as turkey, apple and curry. From hot toasts, dripping with melted Brie, to smoked salmon, Greek yoghurt and capers open sandwich and an impressive smoked duck and creamed corn tartine, 

Toast shows that using wholesome, quality ingredients in unexpected and exciting combinations delivers results that are sure to satisfy.

We are always looking for interesting goings-on around the Bay, and this festival always proves to be cutting-edge.

The 2018 San Francisco International Arts Festival runs from May 24th through June 3rd at the Fort Mason Center for Arts & Culture. It features over 100 brilliant live performances by artists from around the world and the Bay Area.

It is a gathering that celebrates diversity, multiculturalism, curiosity and the value of otherness—a commitment that advocates for experiencing the cultural expressions of different societies and civilizations as a way to help understand and embrace them.

Artist Disciplines include Dance, Music, Theater, Performing Arts, Events & Activities.

The festival establishes San Francisco as a model for integration of the arts into the fabric of the community in a meaningful, productive and mutually beneficial fashion.
Their headline concert honors the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassination. The world premiere of the work Down by the Riverside: Requiem for a King is a composition by Anthony Brown with spoken word by Angela Davis. It will be performed by the Asian American Orchestra and the ensemble Voices of a Dream on Saturday, May 26th in the Cowell Theater.

This staff-favorite pie is an explosion of berry flavor.
Beckmann’s Boysenberry Pies are made fresh daily and come brimming with delectably sweet and tangy boysenberries. The filing is just right, not too tart and not too sweet. With a rich, flaky and buttery crust Beckmann’s Boysenberry Pies have a charmingly rustic flavor.

Boysenberries look like blackberries but are actually a cross between blackberries, loganberries, and raspberries. They fruit earlier in the season than blackberries, and they are more delicate in touch and taste.

The list of ingredients is so simple. Filling: Boysenberry, marionberries, food starch, and sugar. Crust: Pastry flour, butter, sugar, eggs, and sea salt. What could be better!

News & Events

It's time to reserve your summer seats for some great theater under the stars. The California Shakespeare Theater's 2018 season begins in June. If you have never experienced this unique blend of food, community, and theater…now's your chance!

Quixote Nuevo
by Octavio Solis 
June 13 through July 1

by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins 
July 18 through August 5

The War of the Roses
from William Shakespeare's  Henry VI and Richard III
August 23 through September 9

Black Odyssey
by Marcus Gardley
September 25 through October 7

All performances are at the Bruns Amphitheater, just on the other side of the hills from Oakland at 100 California Shakespeare Theater Way in Orinda.

From our recipe blog, The Kitchen Table

For the past few weeks, I have been getting rather dire predictions from my produce manager about the state of this year’s stone fruit crop. The short version is this: small crop, big prices. (Thank you Mother Nature). I look forward to stone fruit season every year. Even my kids have been asking if it is time for nectarines yet but the outlook hasn’t been great.

Imagine my surprise when, the other day, I was walking through our produce department and saw a lovely stack of peaches from California. It made me stop in my tracks and stare for a while because if anything is a beacon of Summer and warmer weather, it is the arrival of the peaches.

I have to admit I have been losing hope of there ever being summer weather. Last Saturday I sat in the bleachers at a baseball tournament freezing to death. (It was Cinco de Mayo!It should be warm enough already to melt your margarita not cold enough for Kahlua and coffee!) This weekend looks to be a bit better and Sunday is Mother’s Day—the perfect opportunity to make something I want…‘cause it’s all about me!

So I‘m gonna make these Peach Scones. They are a perfect tasty treat for Mother’s Day brunch, or just because. And, the peaches are there to remind you that summer is not too far away. One thing to be aware of, early peaches aren’t necessarily sweet peaches, You might need to toss ‘em in some sugar before you use them…or go with frozen.

Tea Party Recipes from our Archives

There are so many recipes for tea party food, and here are a few of our favorites!

One of these special salads would make a lovely addition to a tea party table. Just serve them up on small plates.

Some savory tarts

Sandwichy things

Wonderful things to spread on toast

Thinking about baking your own bread? Here are a few delicious suggestions.

Cakes can be served with slices arranged artfully on a platter, or you can always make mini versions for individual servings. Just remember to adjust the cooking tim for smaller pans. 

And other sweet things fresh from the oven

Tarts and pies
Tarts and pies are thing of beauty. We have also included a recipe for dumplings and one for hand pies. You could consider these mini-pies. 

Some favorite cookies

And home-made candies
From our blog, The Butcher's Block

There is probably no more versatile cut of meat than the pork shoulder. There almost isn’t anything you couldn’t do with it. You can grill it, slow cook it, smoke it, make it into sausage, cut it in to steaks as a substitute for pork chops…the list goes on. And because of its higher fat content, the flavor is usually better than other cuts of pork and is less likely to dry out during cooking.

Pork shoulder is known and sold by many names including, Boston butt, pork butt, picnic shoulder, and pork blade shoulder. The confusing thing is that there is a bit of difference between a pork shoulder and a pork butt. Cuts that are labeled pork shoulder are generally from the triangle-shaped end of the shoulder. And, the butt is from the thicker, more marbled, top-end of the shoulder. For that reason, the pork shoulder is better for cooking and slicing while the butt is better for recipes where the meat is meant to fall apart such as pulled pork. Both are great cut up and used in stews and chilis.

Slow roasting or smoking a pork shoulder is probably the most popular way to cook it. You can never go wrong with pulled pork. And, you can sauté it in a pan for some really great tacos. The best part about a pork shoulder is that it makes it easy to feed a crowd…which is why it is a popular choice for your Memorial Day BBQs and other get togethers.

Spicy Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork
There are several different versions of this recipe out there. This one is my favorite. Add your favorite coleslaw to the roll and you have an outstanding sandwich.

A Staff Favorite

Thick, creamy and oh-so-delicious
Judging by the reaction of our customers, this might just be the perfect yoghurt. Smooth and creamy, with a balance of tangy and sweet, we can’t keep Noosa on our shelves. Noosa is made with whole milk, three active cultures, a touch of honey, and lots of fresh fruit.

Noosa is made in Colorado from an Australian recipe and meets all the quality standards we hold dear. Their local cows graze in open pasture, and their healthy lifestyle is free from pesticides, rGBH, and preservatives. Noosa is flavored with local honey and fresh fruit.

Noosa is some of the creamiest yoghurt we have ever tasted. We recommend trying a few flavors…you'll be hooked!

From our recipe blog, The Kitchen Table

Corn Fed
Can someone tell me where the month of May went? Yesterday I blinked and now all of a sudden we are staring Memorial day in the face. The fact that Memorial Day weekend is upon us is a good thing in my opinion, if only because it is the herald of summer weather, fun, and a slower pace.

For me, and a lot of other people, Memorial Day marks the beginning of BBQ season as well as the arrival of the summer produce. I’ve noticed the peaches and nectarines have started to appear as well as the English peas and the “good “strawberries. What makes me happiest though is when the local corn starts coming in.

I LOVE fresh corn on the cob and when it’s at it’s peak, sometimes I don’t even bother to steam it. Corn the cob can be a pain in a BBQ setting ‘cause you aren’t always able to sit and eat. And, managing it one handed can lead to either serious butter stains or corn in the dirt. So, it’s nice to do something with corn that is more paper plate friendly.

Per usual, I will be spending Memorial Day enjoying America’s pastime from the bleachers in Brentwood. But, there will still be time to throw some steaks on the grill and celebrate. So, I am crossing my fingers there will be some corn on the way to the baseball fields ‘cause there is still one more family birthday to celebrate and I’m in charge of sides.

I found this take on cheesy corn casserole in one of my magazines and I can’t wait to give it a try this weekend. The original recipe called for green onions. But, since I am a rebel, I am going to swap those out for diced green chilies. Feel free to try the onions for less of a kick.
Happy Memorial Day!
Vendor of the Month

We love Rustic Bakery’s homestyle elegance. And, their baked goods fly off the shelves—which means our customers love them too.

Rustic Bakery prides itself on baking with as many organic ingredients as possible to produce truly delicious and natural products. From their bakery in Marin County, just over the Bridge, they produce artisan crackers and sourdough cookies to complement equally excellent food. They bake everything by hand, creating recipes that are low in fat and full of nutrients. Naturally, they're delicious!

Rustic Bakery Flatbreads
Flatbreads are traditionally hand-made in wood-fired oven kilns and served with an assortment of dips and vegetables. Hand-made with fresh quality ingredients, their distinctive flavor is best appreciated with your favorite dips, pates, cheeses, and antipasto treats.

Flavors: Olive Oil & Sel Gris Sourdough,Rosemary & Olive Oil, Sweet Onion & Creme Fraiche, Multigrain, Kalamata Olive 

Rustic Bakery Shortbread Cookies 
Their shortbread cookies melt in your mouth. They have an elegance and present beautifully while maintaining their rustic aesthetic.

Flavors: Meyer Lemon Shortbread, Chocolate Cacao Nib Shortbread, Vanilla Bean Shortbread, Pecan Shortbread, Chocolate Chip

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Seven Days a Week

Monday through 
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4038 Piedmont Ave.
Oakland, CA 94611

(510) 653-8181

Visit our recipe blog to learn what Amy, our VP and resident foodie, is cooking up in her home kitchen.