Monthly Archives: February 2013

Dining With A Full Deck: The Arrival of Beer & Wine at AP

We’ve been working extra hard at the shop lately.

Sure, the politics, paperwork and our recent remodeling weren’t exactly a walk around Castle Island—but those aren’t the struggles I refer to.

See, if we were going to fight for our right to bring you guys, our beloved & loyal food family, something harder than ginger ale, the stuff had to be good. For two years now, we’ve put our every effort into stocking the most local, hand-crafted foodstuffs, so we knew that when the time came to start checking IDs, not just any old hootch would do. There was research to be done, books to read, wines to sip. Hell, beer buyer Mike had the whole diaspora of IPAs to sort through.

We dare you not to pick up one of the Dale's Pale Ale extra-tall boys we've got in stock--we're still trying to find a time not to drink one of these Boulder, Colorado brews.

We dare you not to pick up one of the Dale’s Pale Ale extra-tall boys we’ve got in stock–we’re still trying to find a time not to drink one of these Boulder, Colorado brews.

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Let’s Raise the Roof Southie!

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Brooklyn-based folk band Kings warms up the crowd

There’s nothing that draws a crowd like live music and the promise of good food. It was just that which drew me to the Raise the Roof Benefit for Higher Ground Farm. While the bands were kickin’, the food would have to wait until harvest since the benefit was to raise funds to build the second-largest rooftop farm in North America right here in South Boston. Continue reading

AP & The Chocolate Factory, Part 2: Taza Chocolate

The blizzard is behind us, and with it all worries about stockpiling our pantries or digging a car out of the snow before the plows get to it.

But in case you were too busy filling your basket with bread & eggs to notice the chocolate display at every store, fret not—we’re here to remind you of that looming day in February, hopefully before your lady friend does.

As part of our local sweets exploration this month, we stopped by the Taza Chocolate factory in Somerville to stock up on a February’s worth of Mexican chocolate discs & chocolate-drenched nuts, and also to see just how they make their stuff so deliciously grainy and unconventionally addictive.

Cacao nibs ready to be ground into chocolate (Taza sells the shell left behind to farmers for use in mulch and to tea companies, like Brighton-based Mem tea, for use in cocoa-flavored teas)

Cacao nibs ready to be ground into chocolate (Taza sells the shell left behind to farmers for use in mulch and to tea companies, like Brighton-based Mem tea, for use in cocoa-flavored teas)

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AP & The Chocolate Factory, Part 1: EH Chocolatier

After weeks of playoff football that culminated in a sodium explosion of Super Bowl proportions, all of us at the shop are kind of anxious for the sweetness that is Valentine’s Day.

pecan clusters

To really sink our molars into this saccharine holiday, we decided to spend the weeks before Cupid’s arrival visiting our two closest chocolate-making neighbors, Somerville-based EH Chocolatier & Taza Chocolate.

Though the confectioners operate out of the same building (situated right between Inman & Union Squares), our first visit was to EH, the two-year-old love child of Elaine Hsieh & Catharine Sweeney. These two met when a mutual friend commissioned them to craft her wedding cake and deliver it to Cape Cod in the late 90s—before anyone had made this madcap plot into the reality TV cash cow it is now. Continue reading