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Marché Richmond

Since opening its doors next to its namesake restaurant Le Richmond , le Marché Italien has garnered all sorts of praise and, quite natura...

Since opening its doors next to its namesake restaurant Le Richmond, le Marché Italien has garnered all sorts of praise and, quite naturalmente, comparisons to New York City's Italian foodie emporium Eataly. It's easy to see why - an easy, free-flowing, multi-purpose layout of 6000 square feet that invites several activities at once: browsing the upscale market, hanging out at the bar with a glass of vino and some antipasti, or enjoying a sit-down meal at the bistro while taking in the sharp, mod industrial space and deciding on a few prepared items to take out from their catering service later.


Counting more than 2000 carefully-considered products, either local or imported from Italy, that were handpicked after more than 6 months of research, study, and tastings, shopping here is like having an exclusive 'peek inside the pantry' of Italy's renowned Michelin-starred restaurants, not to mention some of the very same items you may have swooned over at the adjoining restaurant. Lucky for us, we caught up with the Richmond Group's Marketing and PR Manager and all-around hostess with the mostess, Ibti Saadi, to take us through the treasure trove and let us in on her own list of 5 favourite items she could live without, but would rather not try:


1. Giuseppe Giusti Gran Deposito Aceto Balsamico Dal 1605. $56
'This balsamic has been the Duke of Modena's family vinegar since the early 1600s, and so we're thrilled to be able to stock it. It's a 5-year old with a higher viscosity that the norm, so use sparingly but with pleasure to season salads or grilled veggies, or to give a meat marinade a shot of concentrated flavour. The best, and most surprising use we've tried is to pour a small ribbon of the vinegar over plain vanilla ice cream to transform it into a luxe dessert.' 


2. Novello Olio Extra Vergine Di Oliva. Raccolto 2014-2015. Bott 1647 di 5000. $31
You know you're into serious olive oil when the bottle is marked with the year of harvest and numbered as one from a limited production run.  Says Ibti 'I chose this one because you don't often see EVOO in North America with this level of provenance. Despite it being a premium brand, I surprised as how versatile the flavour is.  We like it to 'christen' a hot pasta dish just before it's served, or use as the basis of a salad dressing to pour atop bitter greens.


3. Tchaba Tea Master. $11
'We've been having a love affair with this tea since the president of the company came to introduce the line to us. I just love the spirit behind the production, and the originality and quality of the ingredients. We have more than 10 different flavours and I still can’t decide which one is my favourite. The packages are slick, the colours are awesome and the smell is divine!'


4. Tentazioni Black Truffles Whole in Brine. $73
'Black truffles are such an integral part of the Italian kitchen, but are very seasonal, and so it's great that we found this preserved alternative for people to enjoy year-round. It comes in a small glass bottle which makes it an amazing gift.'


5. Acquarello il Riso, Rough Rice Aged for at least 1 year. 500g. $14
'This aged rice is the one we use at the Restaurant since the opening, and now people can bring home a taste of Richmond. Making risotto is technical but not at all difficult, so if you follow the instructions it results in the perfect toothsome texture, perfect in a rich seafood risotto or a simple saffron arancini.'


Tutti a tavola a mangiare!


D.G.




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