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    Napa, California

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  1. Tulum in particular. When it's a punchline on comedies like Schitt's Creek for where tiresome hipsters go for fun, you know it's changed. Mexico City has changed but it still feels like Mexico, just evolved and appreciated.
  2. I can't put my finger on it but there's something sad about the whole thing and how the region has changed over the last 10 years. Places change and evolve, I know. This feels too fast and too much like others imposing their fantasies. I'm sure the dinner was wonderful, though.
  3. You can imagine how much fun it was meeting here in person at an eGullet potluck! I was kind of in shock. And just enamored with eG and the its community.
  4. Rancho Gordo in the NYT... again!!

    That's so sweet!
  5. Shipping Charges

    We get that sometimes. I'd love to have a lower price to ship one pound but we'd go broke with one pound orders.
  6. Shipping Charges

    No, it's been years the same. We started free shipping last year I think. The upside is we're available in a lot more retailers across the country. But then sometimes the markup is a little nuts.
  7. Rancho Gordo in the NYT... again!!

    Need to stress, this is Julia Moskin's recipe, not ours. Hopefully the beans are ours!
  8. Shipping Charges

    As a web retailer, it's a nightmare. We're constantly working it on it. We've met with Fedex and apparently we are about right with west coast shipments and losing a lot for back east. On the whole, we are losing. The hard part is someone comes and wants to order one pound of beans. the cost of processing the order, packing it and then shipping it makes it ridiculous. I understand wanting to just dip your toes in the water to see if you like the product but one pound means we suffer greatly. We have a flat rate for east and west coast and then free shipping over $75. I know a lot of people get a group order together and that's great. If you have suggestions, I'm all ears. The other problem is we'll process the order, get an estimate from the shipper and the final bill will have a "fuel surcharge" and it's way over what we've charged. It's a problem but it's still cheaper than a brick and mortar store.
  9. Rancho Gordo in the NYT... again!!

    You've all made me very happy! The NYTimes was amazing. I got a call from the very talented Julia Moskin. I play a little game where I get the newsletter and see what they're covering and I try and guess who wrote the article/recipe based on the title. I'm normally pretty right! There's a Bittman-type recipe, a Florence Fabricant old school NY type recipe, etc. The Tanis ones are very easy to spot. You get your kicks where you can! So anyway, it was fun talking to her and she asked about this or that and I thought I'd have a line in an article about Black Bean Soup. I couldn't believe how nice she was and how much ink she gave me! The recipe seems solid but it's not mine and everyone seems to think it is. I hope she doesn't mind. I don't! re salt, I salt when the pot starts smelling like beans. They aren't done in any sense but you know there's no turning back. I think you can salt earlier but I'm so cheap I don't want this to be the one time when it doesn't work. I like to salt as early as possible though because I don't like salty broth and bland beans and it takes awhile to season the beans. The comments section is a little depressing. They go on and on about the necessity of "degassing" the beans by soaking them for an hour in hot water and then pouring off the soaking water. Not one, but many people think this. I think all it does is give you purple beans as you strip away any color. The funny thing is, after 15 years, I'm starting to think, "This thing is working!" I still can't relax but I'm letting the staff buy bulk supplies these days as we're in it for the long run,
  10. I finally made this. It was very intimidating and in the end, totally easy. And totally worth the effort. I cheated a lot. I used chicken drumsticks instead of duck confit. I was lucky enough to have access to Toulouse sausages from Fatted Calf and smoked ham, too. I kept a pot of bean broth handy to baste. It was just terrific and I can't wait to make another one. My cassole was from Poterie Not in France. I like it.
  11. Let me know if this is too commercial and I'll delete it. Or you can with no offense taken. I interviewed Kate at Georgeanne Brennan's NorCal estate where they spent the day making cassoulet. I'd like to say I helped, but I didn't. I had a lot of technical problems with the film but Kate was so interesting, I felt like I had to carry on.
  12. You can't get a molcajete through as a carry on anymore. A comal is nice and you can find clay comales now and then. They aren't built to last but I love them. Clay bean pots are great. A have a flan mold that I bought there that I like a lot For me, it's chiles. Even with good ones we can get stateside, there's just nothing to compare.
  13. What a coincidence! I just got a memo from the retail staff who cook beans everyday for our stores to sample. this was their impression:: I cook beans often in my stovetop PC I do think they taste a little dead unless you let them simmer with the lid off. You still can have good cooked beans within an hour of thinking of them. 20 minutes cooking, about 10 slow release and then another 20-30 minutes simmering with the lid open. I believe in making life as difficult as possible so my preferred method is an unglazed clay pot.
  14. The Pleasures of Moka

    I find the newer ones don't taste so great. It takes about three weeks to break one in. I rinse daily. well, to be honest, i rinse the next day when i make a new pot. I rarely clean mine out the same day unless I'm having another pot. I am reading this trend about using hot water from a kettle and I just find it ridiculous. It's a huge extra step and the whole process is so fast, I can't imagine the coffee gets much time to get "hot" and cause bitterness. Life is hard enough. I do now brew with the lid open. I do think it makes a stronger brew.