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Missin’ you…

Hey fellow cheeselovers! It’s your favorite Bottle King cheesemonger, finally back in action!

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I guess I must start this post with a big ol’ I’m sorry for not posting for as long as I did–or didn’t, I guess… But! It has not been in vain. In fact, over the last month we’ve been working our big hearts and little hands straight to the bone to make a big change at our Bottle King location in Glen Rock.

In case you haven’t yet heard: we moved! Only to right across the street, but it’s a brandy new store, built from the bottom up, and so much bigger–especially the Vineyard Market department (I know that’s really the only part you were concerned about anyway (; ). The first couple of weeks were packed with some new and curious faces checking out our new digs, and the last two weekends were a big party for our Grand Opening. Let me fill you in a little in case you couldn’t make it.

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Weekend one we had a DJ playing some tunes right outside in the parking lot, alongside a row of super cool raffle items including a Corona canoe, a wooden Tito’s grill table, and a mini fridge shaped like the signature Coors mountains. We also had some friends from Oink and Moo BBQ come by in their food truck to feed our hungry customers with their delicious food. Not to mention the goings-on inside the store: a handmade cigar roller live in action, the owner of FunniBonz BBQ sauces sampling his products atop some pulled chicken, and a highend tasting of High West whiskeys.

Weekend two we were still going strong: the Polkadot Cupcake truck swinging through and doling out some mouthwatering cupcakes, more raffling of awesome items, a rep from Rao’s coming through and sampling their amaaaaaaaazing sauces (currently only $5.99 per 32oz. jar of Marinara!!! thru August, only at Glen Rock Bottle King), and a sampling of Hornitos tequila.

parm towerMy favorite part, however, might have been the very special demo by our very own Big Cheese, Joe, cracking open a gorgeous 90lb. wheel of real Parmigiano Reggiano! Of course, I filmed it–check it out and see how it’s done here.

It’s really been a crazy and fun experience and we’ve brought in a TON of new items to our once-little Vineyard Market here in Glen Rock, so keep checking in for updates! & if you haven’t stopped in already, we really hope to see you soon!

Vineyard Market Staff Goes to Beecher’s Creamery in NYC

On October 14th, a couple of members from our Vineyard Market staff were invited to take a tour of Beecher’s Creamery in Manhattan. Amber, the Lead in Livingston, shares her experience and Donna, our Cheese Queen, contributes a recipe using their Flagship Cheddar:

Beecher's Trip“A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of visiting Beecher’s Creamery in NYC. Being one of the newest additions to the Bottle King Vineyard Market team, I had never been to a creamery before, so of course I jumped at the opportunity to finally go. In a group with three other Vineyard Market members, we headed into the city on a gorgeous and sunny October day.

Located at 900 Broadway on the corner of 20th Street, the creamery was fairly easy to find. Upon arriving, the first thing that caught my eye was the refrigerated case filled with all different cheeses available for the public to purchase. Along with the cheeses, the creamery had a variety of gourmet chips, snacks, and jams to choose from—I almost couldn’t stop myself from buying a jar of some Habanero Strawberry & Basil preserves.

After our group got situated, we were offered a tour of the facility, specifically in the production area. Since there is cheese actively being made at all times, we had to cover up in lab coats, hair nets, gloves, and booties before we were allowed to go into the room. As soon as we entered, I was overwhelmed by the movements of the workers, the amount of milk and cheese that was being handled, and the smell! Now let me say I’ve dealt with a few stinky cheeses in my time, but the smell inside of a creamery is another one entirely!

Beecher's TripThe smell aside, seeing all of the work that gets put into the cheese is simply awesome! We were able to observe every step of the cheese making process. They showed us how the cheese begins its life as milk that is placed into giant vats where it is then cultured and tended to. Then we saw the aging room where wheels of cheese are left to mature until they are at their ideal age to be eaten.

When we finished the tour, our group was treated to lunch at “The Cellar”, which is a restaurant located just below the creamery. Beecher’s has converted their once dirt-floored basement into a great dining spot where you can also see some of their cheeses aging right in the walls as you eat your meal. And the food….my mouth is watering just thinking back on it! If you ever get the chance to go, be sure to try one of their Mac and Cheese dishes, I swear you won’t be disappointed.

All in all, the visit to Beecher’s Creamery was a great experience. For a cheese and food lover like me, it was definitely a fun trip that I hope to repeat again soon.”

Donna’s Almost Famous Cheddar, Broccoli, Chicken and Rice Casserole:

Ingredients:

1 cup uncooked rice (white, long-grain)

1 cup milk

2 10.75 cans condensed cream of chicken (or mushroom) soup

¾ tsp. salt

3 large (or 4 small) boneless, skinless chicken breasts

8oz Beecher’s Flagship cheddar cheese, grated

Salt, pepper and garlic powder

1 12oz bag frozen broccoli florets (or about 3 cups fresh)

Cooking spray or butter

Directions:

Spray the bottom and sides of a 13×9 baking dish with cooking spray (or rub with butter); set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together milk, soup and ¾ tsp. salt until smooth. Set aside 1 cup of the soup mixture and 2 oz. of the shredded cheddar cheese. To the remaining soup mixture, stir in uncooked rice and 6oz of the shredded cheddar. Then pour mixture into greased baking dish.

Cut chicken breasts into 1 ½ inch pieces then season with salt, pepper and garlic. Arrange chicken pieces on top of rice mixture.

Arrange broccoli florets on top of the chicken.

Pour reserved soup mixture evenly over broccoli. Sprinkle reserved shredded cheddar over top. Cover dish tightly with aluminum foil and bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour. Uncover and cook an additional 10 minutes.

Mainland Egmont and Goose Island Ale Soup

This recipe comes from Karen, the Morris Plains Bottle King’s Vineyard Market Lead.

So you have found yourself hooked on the Mainland Egmont, our October Cheese of the Month, but you need inspiration of how to take this cheese to the next level. Well, here is a recipe featuring the Egmont that will warm you up now that the chilly weather is approaching.

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Ingredients:

¼ cup Bacon, diced

1 Tablespoon Butter

1 cup Onions, diced

½ Tablespoon Garlic, minced

½  teaspoon Salt

½  teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

½  teaspoon Ground Mustard

½  teaspoon Ground Celery Seed

1½ -12 ounce bottles 312 Goose Island Ale (or any great ale will do)

1 quart Heavy Cream or Light Cream

4 cups shredded Mainland™ Egmont Cheese (about 1 pound)

2 cups shredded Cheddar Cheese (I suggest the Kerrygold Aged Cheddar)

 

Procedure:

In a large stock pot, over medium heat, cook bacon until crispy. Remove bacon and reserve for garnish. Add butter, onions, garlic, salt, pepper, ground celery and ground mustard. Cook until caramelized and fragrant, this should take approximately 10 minutes.

While continuously whisking, slowly add the ale.  Reduce beer by half. Add cream and bring to a light simmer. Add cheeses and whisk until melted. With an immersion blender, or standing blender, puree soup until smooth. Garnish with reserved bacon, serve with a hearty, crusty bread.

Chef’s Note: Soup can be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 72 hours. By making ahead of time it allows the flavors to fully develop.

Makes 8- 8 ounce servings

Stop by the Morris Plains Bottle King on Friday, October 24th between 4pm-6pm for a complimentary tasting. There will be a Goose Island Beer sampling too!

LIVE Parmigiano Reggiano Cutting

Have you ever seen a 90-lb. wheel of Parmigiano Reggiano cut open by hand?  No?  Well you’re in luck!  In the coming weeks, each full-service Vineyard Market will be hosting a Parmigiano Reggiano cutting event for your viewing (and tasting) pleasure!  See the info below for the details on each event!

Event info:

  • Morris Plains Bottle King – 11/2/13 – 12pm-2pm
  • Wayne Bottle King – 11/9/13 – 12pm-2pm
  • Ramsey Bottle King – 11/15/13 – 4pm-6pm
  • Glen Rock Bottle King – 11/16/13 – 12pm-2pm
  • Hillsborough Bottle King – 11/23/13 – 12pm-2pm

Get to Know Making Chocolate

With the upcoming high end wine and chocolate pairing event coming up at the Dumont Bottle King on Saturday, 10/26, we wanted to introduce you to Evelyn, the current owner of Making Chocolate, and let her share with you in her own words her love for Chocolate and the wonderful business that she continues to grow!

You often hear that people are lucky if they get paid to do the thing they love so much they’d actually do it for free.  Well, I actually did work at Making Chocolate for free.  And it was because I love what I do. Read More…

Dumont Event – Chocolate Demonstration by Making Chocolate

Making ChocolateOctober has been a fun month at Bottle King.  If you haven’t been in-stores lately, every Saturday of this month we have been doing complimentary tastings of top rated wines.  For the final weekend, on Saturday 10/26, Dumont Bottle King will also be pairing chocolates with their high-end wine tasting, provided by local Dumont business, Making Chocolate.

Making Chocolate is a family owned chocolate shop, and a staple to the Dumont community, providing everything from supplies to classes in chocolate and candy making.  They will be sampling various flavored dark, milk, and white chocolates alongside the wines while demonstrating how to make various chocolate goodies!

Event Details:

  • When: Saturday, October 26, 2013
  • Where: Dumont Bottle King
  • Time: 12 pm – 4 pm
  • Starting at 12:30 pm — melting & molding demonstration
  • Starting at 1:45 pm — chocolate dipping demonstration
  • Starting at 3:30 pm — chocolate bark making demonstration
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