It is raining in Brooklyn today. I am sipping my St. Raphael from my tiny liquor glass and staring at the rain outside my back yard door. The door is open and chilly breeze is filling my kitchen. Today for some reason everything is bringing me back memories from Strasbourg... Rain, gray clouds, gentle wind and St. Raphael Ambre. Last summer when I was visiting Strasbourg all alone I found the amazing place called L'Epicerie totally by chance when I was walking on the streets and trying to find a place to eat and drink after hours. It is a beautiful cafe on Rue du Vieux Seigle serving very tasty tartines and outstanding Alsatian wine, filled with young hipsters and ran by amazingly nice people. After that night this place has been my favorite joint in Strasbourg and St. Raphael the bartender suggested at the end of the night my favorite dessert wine.
Actually it is not a simple fortified wine. It has a secret recipe created by a gentleman named Doctor Juppet dating back to 1830. The recipe contains a fine blend of wines, quinine, cocoa, bitter oranges, vanilla and calumba. When I visited Strasbourg again in Fall I bought a bottle and brought it back to NY. Because it is pretty hard to find in States I am trying to consume it as slow as possible. If you spot the bottle somewhere don't even think about it, it is an amazing drink and also very cheap.