unnamed-6Oh, let’s not be coy. Merry Christmas! Christmas eating is some of our favorite, since it’s usually not about fancy, but emphasizes drawing closer to family and friends around home tables. The week after that, for New Year’s, you may go a bit bigger and more involved. For both celebrations, we at Rosemont are here to help make all your meals and entertaining delicious and soul-warming.

This year, our cooks and bakers have devised Rosemont’s most extensive, exciting menu of special items ever. Please remember, this Saturday, December 19, is the deadline for all special orders of pies, cakes and quiches. We will continue to take bread orders until Wednesday, December 23. Place your orders at the deli counter at any of our stores.

Allow us to draw your attention to a few items in particular. Our Basque Cake is the pure, sublime essence of cake: deep pound cake, with a pastry cream center. Tourtierre combines two of the world’s best things to eat: pork and pie; no carnivore should go without.

Scott Anderson in the Rosemont Bakery
Also, Rosemont’s chief baker (and co-owner) Scott Anderson only makes Stollen at this time of year. It is just incredible, with brioche surrounding a frangipane core and festooned with currants and candied citron, the whole thing buttered and dusted liberally with confectioners’ sugar. Scott will be baking Stollen from Friday through Wednesday. [Last newsletter, we said it costs $199. That wasn’t a typo, just a joking attempt to say that at any price this stollen is a bargain! In truth, our Stollen costs $16.99.]

Beyond those marquee items, look for loads of special seasonal dips and spreads for your holiday parties: brandied apricot butter, caramelized onion dip, corn queso fundido, roasted cauliflower and sesame spread, and apple walnut chutney! Our stores abound in plenty of other goodies: vegetarian dishes, meat and meatless stocks, gravy, and yeah, extra bags of cookies!

The other department to get out ahead on is Rosemont Custom Cuts. Our butchers have been hard at work sourcing all-natural, locally raised animals for special items to grace your Christmas and New Year’s tables.

Remember, meat comes from creatures. Therefore, each animal can only provide the cuts it’s born with! Lambs have four legs, cows have a certain number of ribs. So, be sure to call our butchers ASAP to special-order what you want. We’ll have standing rib roasts, beef tenderloin, strip loins, smoked hams, lamb legs both bone-in and boneless, and racks of lamb (these not, alas, local). For poultry, we’ll have turkeys, a very small number of fresh geese, and plenty of frozen geese.

Tropical Fruit for the Holidays
We usually look forward to mangoes in early spring, but the most amazing thing has happened: We’ve found our favorite mango ever, in December! The Nam Doc Mai mango originated in Thailand, but is now cultivated in several warm regions of the world. Ours come from Ecuador, and they’re amazing! This is everything you want in a mango: tanginess, pure creamy texture, perfectly ripe and sweet. Don’t miss your chance!

In other tropical fruit news, we’re relieved to announce that we will only be selling Fair-Trade-certified bananas from here on out. There are lots of food sectors with unsavory labor practices, but the banana industry is notoriously bad, and we’re glad to now be supporting only those companies that are decent toward their workers and transparent about it.

Wine Tastings
This Friday, December 18, we’ll hold two separate free in-store wine tastings, at our Yarmouth and Brighton Avenue stores. Pay attention to the hours of the tastings, because they’re not the same! Yarmouth’s tasting will be 4-6pm. Dan will be joined by Scot Hudson, of Leonardo Locascio Selections. Scot will be pouring great Italian wines for the holidays.

At our Brighton Avenue store, we’ll be tasting from 4:30-6:30pm. Along with guest artists from the Rosemont Artists Guild, we’ll be joined by Justin Wardwell of Wicked Wines. Justin will pour an exciting selection of wines from France, Italy and California – some everyday-great, some somewhat special since, y’know, ’tis the…etc.

Now is the time! We love drinking sparkling wine any time we possibly can, 12.5 months a year, but most folks look to the bubbles a lot more over the next two weeks than at any other time of year. (Maine is something like 47th in the nation for sparkling-wine consumption!) You owe it to yourself to drink excellent effervescence. At Rosemont, we’ve got a very broad selection, from familiar classics like Prosecco, Cava and Champagne made by the growers, to less well-known but no less scintillating crémants, lambrusci, Franciacorta and singular domestic wines. Please let us know if you’d like help finding the perfect pressurized bottles!

Closing Early
All Rosemont stores will be open regular hours, except for the Eves and the Days. Christmas Eve, we will close at 4pm; Christmas Day, we’ll be closed. New Year’s Eve will be regular hours, not closing early, but we’ll be closed on January 1. Enjoy your holidays with safety and joy!