As convenient as Whole Foods, Shaws and Stop&Shop are, they always make me wonder–what ever happened to leisurely doing your groceries and actually enjoying the pastime of food shopping by getting to know the mom & pop at the shop, or learning a thing or two from the fishmonger or butcher or pâtissier? Nowadays it’s get in, get out. The more efficient you can be, the better. The more things you can cram in from a one-stop shop, the better. What gives?
As the saying goes, sometimes it really is the simple things in life that make you happy. For me, this is fresh produce and quality goods. After dinner with friends and before seeing The Soloist, we stopped by BiNA Osteria for dessert. It’s located just around the corner from the AMC Loews Boston Common theatre. Opened by a brother and sister duo, BiNA is a chic, modern italian restaurant dishing out contemporary italian food. Too full [from my first dinner] to sit and dine, I opted for the alimentari (Italian for ‘traditional Italian specialty food shop) next door, where I found a plethora of imported wine, chocolate, espresso, etc. There was also a gelato bar and house-made dessert area. Just what Boston [and Tracy] needs. These little specialty shops (other faves include Formaggio Kitchen) are great and I could explore them for hours, chatting it up with the shop gal, learning about wines, etc. The eclairs and macarons reminded me of Fauchon, which I’d explored many a time in Beijing.
View from the Bar
Naturally, I turned to the gelato, sampling the hazelnut and chocolate. They were good, but not as richly chocolatey as I’d been craving. Then, I sampled the passionfruit and ZING! The first spoonful of tart, revitalizing ecastasy took me back to the bungalows of Phuket. Easy decision there.
Chocolate and Vanilla Eclairs, Passion Fruit Sorbet
Marty got the eclairs. Oh, and I also got a 2007 Danubio Grüner Veltliner. An avid fan and drinker of Viogniers, Rieslings and Gewürztraminers, my friend Alex recommended that I try the similarly fruity, floral, tannic, dry white wine from Austria. The shop gal/general manager Rachel recommended Danubio from their selection, as it is the least sweet and most popular. I finally tried it last night and I must say, good recommendation, Alex and Rachel!