The height of summer brings perfect cloudless days, gardens and markets overflowing with nature's bounty, extended twilit evenings, and a relaxation unique to the season. But if you're sending a child back to college soon-even if that college is across town-there is also a bittersweet sense that this time is finite. If the college is across the country, even more so. With my daughter's imminent return to Los Angeles firmly in mind, we stole a beach day last Friday and headed to Block Island.
Notes From All Over
Countless people have asked if my last name was 'Richard'. Variations: 'Who's Richard?' 'Where's Richard?' and 'Is your husband Richard?' Ladies and gentlemen, there is no Richard. We named the store for Ben Franklin's Poor Richard's Almanack, then doubled down on the clever with 'Pour' instead of 'Poor'.
Groucho Marx famously said that he wouldn't want to belong to any club that would have him as a member. No offense, Groucho, but we disagree. In fact, we disagree so strongly that we're adding two brand-new Beer Clubs to our Pour Richard's Wine Club*.
We're offering two different options: MixSix and IPA-only MixSix. Either way, you'll pick up six delicious beers on the 15th of every month, but the regular MixSix will incorporate a range of styles while the IPA MixSix is tailor-made for the hopheads in your life.
A visit to the Farmer's Market in high summer is an exercise in flat-out hedonism. Mmm... fresh basil, that's smells amazing! The local tomatoes are starting to come in-I need some of those. Corn. I definitely need corn. Peaches! Do I have time to make peach cobbler? Or I could just bite into one right now....Blueberries! Can't forget those. Cucumbers. Snap peas. Fresh salad greens. Local cheese. I really should have brought more shopping bags.
Every week, we order beer, put away beer, talk about beer, and sell beer, thus giving us a pretty decent overview of what's happening in the world of beer. Lots of what's happening is absolutely awesome: flavorful, bold, anything-but-boring brew. Some other things are just...weird.
You cannot actually find everything on the Internet. I know this because for the last several days, I've been searching for a children's song that we had on an LP when I was 5 or 6. Part of an album celebrating American history, the song describes the process of the thirteen colonies voting to approve the Declaration of Independence. Since I can't find it anywhere, I'll take a stab at it from memory:
School's out. Graduations are over and done. Mother's Day-check. Father's Day-ditto. And this week, even the weather gods got the memo: cue the sunshine and warmth. It's summertime; put your feet up and enjoy!
At the height of summer, you won't catch me tackling complicated, multi-step recipes. There's no need; when the farmer's markets are loaded with fresh produce, a locally-sourced salad and grilled fish or chicken are as good as it gets. Corn on the cob, garden-ripe tomatoes, and minimal intervention are the law of the land.
The New Yorker's Shouts & Murmurs* column is one of my favorite distractions. Because for me, funny + well written = weekly appointment humor. But this week's version, titled 'We're Sorry', really knocked it out of the ballpark.
'Is it enough to say we're sorry? We don't think so. Because we want to make things right. And that starts with admitting to what we did-owning it-even if it wasn't entirely our fault, because nothing really happened.' And so on, referencing everyone from 'victims' of the #MeToo movement to Facebook, Wells Fargo, and Amazon's Alexa.
At Pour Richard's, we love local. Our 'house' rum is Privateer, from Massachusetts. We are also proud to carry spirits from Mad River, in Vermont's Mad River Valley, Medfield's Astraluna Distillery, Berkshire Mountain Distillery, and many others.
Why?The better question is 'Why NOT?'. Because local companies employ local residents. More of the revenue stays in the immediate area. Money you were going to spend anyway also benefits your town and region.
Up until just a few years ago, I never envisioned I'd be selling wine in cans. Because honestly, who thought that would become a big trend?
We're not averse to alternative packaging; in fact, we're huge fans of good quality boxed wine. Cost-effective, environmentally friendly, AND it keeps the wine fresh for weeks? Sign us up!
The problem is that 'good quality' bit. Because for every excellent boxed wine that we're happy to carry, there are 30 more that are just horrible. I think I have tasted them all at this point. And that goes double for cans.