Treasure Valley Food and Wine Blog

Food, Craft Beer, Nano Breweries, Wine, Idaho Wineries, Winery Bistros, Restaurants and Events, Boise Foodies in the Treasure Valley Idaho. Come see what we are up to and the variety of our eating and wine and craft beer experiences. Look where we and our friends like to eat and have a great glass of wine or craft beer. And if you are in Boise, let us know. We'll meet you for a bite to eat and/or a glass of craft beer or wine. What is your favorite cuisine? I bet we can find you a restaurant to satisfy your epicurian urge. Cheers!


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Spanish Wine at “The Buzz”


A very interesting night of some fantastic foods and wines from Spain. Once again, Cristi, Tommy and Peggy came up with great service, adequate amounts of wine, super service and great smiles! For me, I liked the Cristi’s Choice, a 2015 Chateau De La Roche Sauvignon Blanc stole the show! It pulled [19] from me! The next closest was a NV Vivanco Rioja, [17].
The food. Two items stood out – Salmorjo Cordobes. According to Cristi and her sources, “It’s like gazpacho, only thicker. It is more a dip than a soup and in Cordoba is generally eaten by dipping bread or dry bread sticks in it.”
The other real treat was the dessert – Torrijas with Vanilla Ice Cream. “In the convents torrijas were often made with leftover bread – the perfect sweetmeat to lighten Lent. Since then they have been prepared in a number of variants, such as soaked in milk, syrup, honey or wine, sprinkled with sugar or cinnamon, etc. Sometimes they are made using orange juice which gives them a fruity taste and makes them suitable for those with a lactose intolerance.” [Spanish-Food] Here re some photos of the event. Enjoy and hope to see you at the next Buzz Wine Dinner. Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.

Cristi’s Choice wines.

Croquettes and Albondigas
2013 Picos Garnacha
14% alc.
[15]

Salmorjo Cordobes
(One superb cold soup!)
2012 Ugarte Crianza
14% alc. definitely needs food [15]

Greens with Bean Salad
NV Vivanco Rioja
12% alc. Good pairing with the salad. [17]

Pork ala Madrid
Tortilla Espanola
2011 Faustino
Rioja
13.5% alc good with the pork and well balanced with the potato [17]

Torrijas with Vanilla Ice Cream
(Awesome!)
NV Anna Codorinu
12% alc. perfect balance with the dessert [17]

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Basque Country Wines at The Buzz


The "Orchard House", December EventsSuch a good treat at The Buzz last night.A visit to the Basque country through food and wine.Some interesting facts about the Basque in Idaho. Idaho has the highest population of Basque outside of the Basque country oof northern Spain. The Basque people are an ancient culture pre-dating the Roman Empire. Their language is Euskera and there is no common thread to languages still spoken. Their food focusses on fresh, local products that are in season.(The photo here of the sign is the Basque Market in downtown Boise.) These are some interesting facts that Cristi presented last night. We want tot thank Peggy, Joseph, Tommy and Austin for their help last night in presenting and preparing this program. Thank-You! Enjoy these photos of the night. Cheers!

Croquetas Small, lightly breaded and fried kind of fritter.  They are smooth and creamy inside. NV Anna Codorniu 12% alc. light and not much else. lacks body [15] $16.00

Croquetas
Small, lightly breaded and fried kind of fritter. They are smooth and creamy inside.
NV Anna Codorniu
12% alc. light and not much else. lacks body [15] $16.00

Paella It is made in every region of Spain and uses just about any kind of ingredient - seafood, chorizo, vegetables and rise as the main ingredient. The use of Saffron turns the rice a golden color and is an essential ingredient. 2012 Don Ranier one of the better wines of the night. went well with the paella. [18] $13.00

Paella
Paella is made in every region of Spain and uses just about any kind of ingredient – chicken, seafood, chorizo (Basque sausage), vegetables and rice is the main ingredient. The use of Saffron turns the rice a golden color and is an essential ingredient.
2012 Don Ranier
one of the better wines of the night. went well with the paella. [18] $13.00

Basque Salad Wonderful dressing! 2012 Fernandez Gomez  a14% alc. a very good wine that really pare well with the salad [18] $15.00

Basque Salad
Wonderful dressing!
2012 Fernandez Gomez
14% alc. a very good wine that really pared well with the salad [18] $15.00

Spicy Basque Style Chicken Beans Sheepherder's Bread 2012 Faustino 13% alc  superb match with the dinner. best wine of the night. [19] $15.00

Spicy Basque Style Chicken
Beans
Sheepherder’s Bread
Baked in large loaves to decrease the number of times to cook. Placed in a hole in the ground by a fire pit. Only 7 ingredients to decrease the amount of supplies to carry.
2012 Faustino
13% alc. superb match with the dinner. best wine of the night. [19] $15.00

Pantxineta A tart of puff-pastry and custard cream. May have been derived from the French dessert, Frangipane tart. 2008 Lan Rioja 13.5% alc. an OK wine, but not much more. did pair, though, with the tart.  light and not much body. [16] $17.00

Pantxineta
A tart of puff-pastry and custard cream. Yummy! May have been derived from the French dessert, Frangipane tart.
2008 Lan Rioja
13.5% alc. an OK wine, but not much more. did pair, though, with the tart. light and not much body. [16] $17.00

Robin and I have eaten at some pretty diverse and good Basque restaurants. Basque Market and the Basque Hotel here in Boise. Basque Hotel in San Francisco. Basque Hotel and the Basque Restaurant in Winnemucca, OR. Basque Restaurant in Jordan Valley, OR. Cristi did a good job of preparing these dishes, which some of them are not easy to do. If you visit a Basque restaurant in your area, be prepared for family style serving, huge portions and a huge variety of food. It is a super experience!


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Wines of the World At “The Buzz”


08July2014_2a_The-Buzz-Remodeled_New-Growler-Beer-Wine-AreaThe wines tonight came from around the world with stops in Italy, Spain, New Zealand, Tuscany and France. The food came from different cruise lines and indeed was Cruise Food. And if you have ever been on a cruise and have eaten onboard, you know what a dedicated support team the kitchen Exec Chef has.
When Cristi prepares these tastings, she also has a dedicated support team and it is about time that I recognize them and tell them publically how much we appreciate their time and effort.
Tommy, Cristi’s husband, keeps the dinner plates moving and remembers that I like bread with my meals.
Austin and Bailey, Cristi’s children, help by serving, bussing the tables and setting the tables up.
Peggy Hand-Behrens researches the menu, sits down with Cristi and pairs the wines with the food, and then prepares some of the entrées. She also helps to pour the wine and prepare the dishes. She is one busy Lady!
Joseph Geist, when he is available, helps to pour the wines.
To all of these folks a BIG Thank-You! Your efforts are really appreciated and without your support, the program may not exist. So if you participate and enjoy these dinners, please let these folks know how much you appreciate them and the service they give.

Beef Carpaccio ()Celebrity Lines), Italy 2011 Zonin Valpolicella 14% alc a good wine with this salad [16]

Beef Carpaccio (Celebrity Lines), Italy
2011 Zonin Valpolicella
14% alc a good wine with this salad [16]

Chilled Peach Soup (Royal Caribbean) Spain 2011 Tierras Guindas 13.5% alc. a super good wine with this super good soup [17]

Chilled Peach Soup (Royal Caribbean) Spain
2011 Tierras Guindas
13.5% alc. a super good wine with this super good soup [17]

BBQ Sweet Potato Salad (Carnival) New Zealand 2013 Wild South Sauvignon Blanc 1.5% alc really6 a super good wine particularly with this entree. [18]

BBQ Sweet Potato Salad (Carnival) New Zealand
2013 Wild South Sauvignon Blanc
12.5% alc really a super good wine particularly with this entrée. [18]

Jamaican Jerk Chicken (Princess) Spanish 2001 LAN Rioja 13.5% alc. another superb wine paired well with the spiciness of the chicken. [18] (notice the bread?)

Jamaican Jerk Chicken (Princess) Spanish
2001 LAN Rioja

13.5% alc. another superb wine paired well with the spiciness of the chicken. [18]
(notice the bread?)

Cream Brule (Royal Caribbean) France 2013 Bila-Haut 13.5% alc. a good match with the Cream Brule [18]

Crème Brûlée (Royal Caribbean) France
2013 Bila-Haut

13.5% alc. a good match with the Crème Brûlée [18]


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Happy Birthday Cristi!


Wine Club Dinner at The BuzzShe says she is 11 1/2. Being born on February 29th in Texas. Wow! Happy Birthday Cristi!!! Cristi and Tommy own The Buzz. Great party last night at The Buzz. Thanks so much for including us. The music was great! The dinner of roast beef was great! The wine(s) were awesome. The company was super. The entire evening was really awesome. Enjoy these photos of the evening. If you want to see them enlarged, just Left-Click on any of the photos. Cheers!

Cristi had a bottle of Champagne, but I really enjoyed this wine.

Cristi had a bottle of Champagne, but I really enjoyed this wine.

Party ambiance.

Party ambiance.

Crab Dip - East Coast Style that Robin and I took to share. There was none left!

Crab Dip – East Coast Style

Robin and I took this to share. There was none left! Some of the people were asking for the recipe. Here It Is.

Roast Beef Steamed Asparagus Potatoes Bread

Roast Beef
Shrimp Skewers
Steamed Asparagus
Potatoes
Bread
Birthday Cupcakes

(Not pictured, but still good.)

Tommy and Cristi – even on her Birthday – made another good dinner. Loved those asparagus. Done just right.

Great music all night long!

Great music all night long!

Bama! Go Tide! Hi Peggy.

Bama! Go Tide! Hi Peggy.

Some of the folks who were there were totally involved in the music. Such concentration!

Some of the folks who were there were totally involved in the music. Such concentration!

Cristi serves wine and talks about it.

Cristi serves wine and talks about it.

Lyle and his daughters.

Lyle and his daughters.

Oscar Night Party! Robin and I are making brisket. Here is the recipe for

Oscar Night Party! Robin and I are making brisket. Here is the Texas Style Smoked Brisket Recipe.

Icebox LoxRobin’s Icebox Lox Recipe. We are also bringing some of this lox. It is awesome!

This is really shaping up to be a great and fun, food and wine filled weekend. Yippee! See you Monday, I hope. Cheers!


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Boise Foodie Meet-Up at Bodovino


28Dec2013_1_Foodie-MeetUp-Bonovino_Card-FrontOn December 28, the Boise Foodie Meet-Up group – check out the hot link – visited Bodovino Wine Bar (an excellent website!) and the experience was a good one. Good food, really good service and a unique venue. You purchase a “card” with some dollar amount, and then you can visit up to 144 different wines (see photos below) and get whatever wine you desire and whatever amount you wish, 1oz, 3oz or 5oz. Each wine and each amount has a different price and they range from $1.00 to $12.00 (the highest I found).
The tapas that we had was very good. A nice selection of cheese, pasta (pizza) and antipasti. They have a full selection of menu items, including salads and sliders, and all seem to be reasonably priced. Overall – a good experience. I will rate them 4-Stars out of 5-Stars. The room that we were in, there are several, was very noisy and loud. Otherwise, good. We will probably return. Please enjoy these photos. You will get some idea of the ambiance and of the tapas. Cheers!!

"Still Life"

“Still Life”

Wine Bar overview.

Wine Bar overview.

Some of the 144 available wines. A unique idea for dispensing the wine.

Some of the 144 available wines. A unique idea for dispensing the wine.

French Cheese Selection

French Cheese Flight

Charcuterie Plate

Charcuterie Plate

"Baguette and Cheese"

“Baguette and Cheese”

Northend Pizza

North End Flatbread


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Worldwide Celebrations at “The Buzz”


12Nov2013_1_The-Buzz-Wine-Club-Celebrations_Bottle

Just in time for the holiday season quickly approaching. Celebrations of the World was the theme of the November Wine Club Dinner at the Buzz. We had dishes with a Spanish, German, Basque, African, Italian and the Netherlands influence. It was an exciting evening, full of information and tradition. Great job, Cristi! My only criticism of the dinner is the Swedish Meatballs could have had a little more of the sauce on it. The meat was a little dry, although the flavor was still there. A little more sauce – An easy fix. Here are some photos from the evening. The wine rating is [20] maximum points. Cheers! and see you at the next event. Thank you Paul Colwell for the wines, Peggy and Austin for being our Servers and Tommy for your support “behind the scenes”. An 800 calorie meal.

Spanish Fritatta I enjoyed this appetizer. 2010 Faustino Crianza Tempranello 13% alc. a light wine and went well with the appetizer. lowest score of the night. [17] $14

Spanish Fritatta

I enjoyed this appetizer. Great flavors.
2010 Faustino Crianza Tempranello
13% alc. a light wine and went well with the appetizer. lowest score of the night. [17] $14

Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup If I don't like pumpkin and I liked this soup, you will also!! It was good. 2010 Durigutti Malbec Reserva 14% alc.  a wonderful wine with this soup. well balanced and fruitty. best score of the night [20] $22

Pumpkin and Black Bean Soup

If I don’t like pumpkin and I liked this soup, you will also!! It was good.
2010 Durigutti Malbec Reserva
14% alc. a wonderful wine with this soup. well balanced and fruitty. best score of the night [20] $22

Holiday Salad 2011 Anselmi 12.7% alc. a good white wine that went well with the acidity of the salad. good paring. try the wine before you eat the apple in the salad - things will change. [18] $15

Holiday Salad

2011 Anselmi
12.7% alc. a good white wine that went well with the acidity of the salad. good paring. try the wine before you eat the apple in the salad – things will change. [18] $15

Swedish Meatballs Cabbage Steaks Noodles Just a little dry as I noted above, but the flavors were still there. 2011 Luna Cabernet Sauvignon 14.1% alc. good, full bodied wine that paired well with the entree. [18] $18

Swedish Meatballs
Cabbage Steaks
Green Peas
Noodles

Just a little dry as I noted above, but the flavors were still there.
2011 Luna Cabernet Sauvignon
14.1% alc. good, full bodied wine that paired well with the entree. [18] $18

Gingerbread A good ending to this meal. It really tasted good. 2010 Renwood Old Vine Zinfandel 14.5% alc. so good with the gingerbread. [19] $22

Gingerbread

A good ending to this meal. It really tasted good.
2010 Renwood Old Vine Zinfandel
14.5% alc. so good with the gingerbread. [19] $22

Cristi always opens the evening with usually two wines that she labels “Cristi’s Choice”. These were two really good wines.
2012 Zolo Torrentes from Mendoza, Argentina. A really nice white wine and well worth the $15 price. [18]
2011 Arenal Vina Paralillo Cabernet Sauvignon from Chile. Again, well worth the $14 price. [18]


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Spanish Wine Dinner


April Schedule at the Buzz

 

 

Another exciting and great wine dinner at The Buzz on Tuesday evening, April 9! (The same wines and dinner will also be presented Wednesday, April 10.) Cristi and crew did another good job. Robin wanted to expose some of her Nurse friends to The Buzz and the program that Cristi presents for wine dinners. She invited 22; 18 came. It was a great time and Cristi and Tommy placed us altogether. There are some photos of the nurses below. But first ….. Let’s eat! Wine scores are listed as [20]. Please cast your Vote above!

 

 

Robin brought a Rollingstone Chevre for everyone to try.

Robin brought a Rollingstone Chevre for everyone to try.

Sopa de Pastor Manchego

Albondigas and Sherried Mushroom Empanada
2009 Mercedes Eguren
14% alc. great food paring with the appetizers. little citrus on the finish. [17] $14.00

Sopa de Pastor Manchego

Sopa de Pastor Manchego
(Such a good soup!)
2010 Layer Cake Garnacha
14.5% alc. this was the best wine of the night, in my opinion. light chocolate on the nose and a long finish. [19] $18.00

Ensalada Sevillana

Ensalada Sevillana
2011 Raimat Albarnio
12.5% alc. a hint of pear on the nose. fruity. did not pair well with the salad dressing. [18] $14.00

Paella

Paella
(If you have never had paella, you really should try it. It’s like a stew – there are many, many variations. But most have seafood and rice with some type of meat.)
2007 Lan Rioja
13.5% alc. good paring with the spiciness of the paella. black cherry on the nose. [18] $22.00

Torrijas and Flan

Torrijas and Flan
NV Cava Coderniu
11.5% alc. I’m just not a fan of sparkling wines or Champagnes. this one was OK but not much more. [15] $13.00

And here are some photos of the St. Luke’s folks that Robin invited. I did not get photos of everyone. Enjoy!

Barb Herrick and Sherry Grabowski

Barb Herrick and Sherry Grabowski

Diane Ross, Carol Fountain

Diane Ross, Roli Martin Parker, Carol Fountain, Leslie Thomason, Kathy Kimmel

Sherry Grabowski, Connie Merrill, , Diane Ross, Susan Van Houten

Sherry Grabowski, Connie Merrill, Di McDonough, Diane Ross, Susan Van Houten

Those not pictured: Marti Downey, Pat Hutchison, Sue Montgomery, Joe Levitch, Marti Monk, Joe Murray, Gayle Ogle Weatherby, Wendy Weatherby Johnson and Ron Dunagan. Thank-You one and all for a great evening. Hope to see you again at The Buzz! Cheers.