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Jean Brunet Duck Pâté with Ceps
An Earthy Delight
This pâté by Jean Brunet, long-time master of the artisanal craft, combines the richness of duck liver with the earthy musk of mushrooms. It is free from both coloring agents and preservatives to retain its natural taste.
TASTING NOTES FROM THE CURATOR
While pâtés can come from many different sources, there’s something decadent about biting into a duck liver one. Faintly gamey, it calls to mind the countryside with every mouthful, hours strolling in the grass or riding along winding roads and smelling the woodlands just out of sight. The rustic delight of Jean Brunet’s duck pâté — buttery in its richness, with a great mouthfeel because of the high fat content — gains an added country-style musk from the brown-capped mushrooms known in France as cèpes.
The traditional bread pairing for a good pâté is the French baguette, but equally good choices are the less sweet varieties of challah or brioche. For a little added texture to go with the mushrooms, toast up a slice of seed or grain bread. The acid bite of gherkins (cornichons) go well with duck pâté, but caramelized onions and chutneys also provide that contrasting flavor. A glass of Pinot Noir or a young Shiraz or Syrrah is a lovely accompaniment for this delight. A dry southern French rosé like our Lionel Osmin & Cie Villa la Vie en Rosé also works marvelously with this pâté’s gamey, meaty flavor.
Penny Picking Around Europe
We cannot say enough about the luxurious taste of duck liver pâté, but this variant’s lesser-known flavor note deserves its own bit of attention. Found all over Europe, the cèpes go by different names. The Italians call them porcini and the English call them Penny Buns, and in France they’re also lovingly nicknamed “bouchon” after their cork-like appearance. They produce their own powerful, liver-like flavor and are cooked to advantage in a simple mix of butter, garlic, and parsley.
Store in a cool dry place. Keep in fridge once opened.