March 6, 2007

Another Wineaux Hangout!

Many of us (okay, me) spend a lot of time of Henderson even though we don’t live there. A recent evening at Settabella’s Pizza with friends had us meandering over to Valley Cheese & Wine shortly after a dinner of Salad and Neapolitan pizza.

Valley Cheese & Wine is located at 1770 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway, Ste. 110 near Valle Verde and is a brand new store with great stuff! (Okay, so that’s not the most eloquent description …)

Bob and Kristin have opened up a neat little store with lots of wine, mostly European. I found a wonderful Nero d’Avola (Sicily) that I’d only had at Annabella’s and fell in love with it while dining there. VC&W wines are primarily French, followed by Italian, some German, Spain, California, and Australia/New Zealand. They actually have several selections from Halter Ranch, a great little boutique winery from Paso Robles!

While their wine selection is wonderful and fairly priced, it’s their selection of gourmet foods that has me drooling. They have a world-class cheese selection that outdoes Whole Foods in quality, hands down. I am a real aficionado of raw milk cheese, and they have the biggest, best selection of raw milk cheeses I’ve ever seen. The prices are, of course, going to be much higher than your regular selection of Velveeta or Kraft singles, but these are real cheeses.

Just as you may prefer well-aged Bordeaux for the layers of complexity, you may find your palate dancing at these cheeses which offer the same pleasure. It has been my experience that raw milk cheeses, especially from grass-fed, humanely and sustainably raised cows, is second to none. And I was not disappointed at VC&W’s offerings. They also have goat and sheep’s milk cheeses that are to die for.

Along their gourmet wall is a bunch (another official descriptor) of hard-to-find food items. They have - and I kid you not - squid ink pasta! They also have genuine, well-aged balsamic vinegars, unfiltered Extra Virgin Olive Oils (known as EVOO to us foodies), teas, coffees, and jarred mystery items. A food-lover’s dream!

I need to warn you about the owners. Bob is a very nice, laid back young man and knows his wines. Kristin, on the other hand, will slyly seduce you into wrecking your budget as she offers small samples of the glorious cheeses. Just a word to the wise .

VC&W offers wine classes and free wine tastings. Their classes range from $20 to $50 and require advance registration and payment. The three remaining classes for the Winter schedule are as follows:

Intro to France
Thursday, March 8
$25.00 per person

Intro to Wine
Thursday, March 15
$25.00 per person

Australian Wines
Thursday, March 22
$25.00 per person

Classes start at 6:30 and are priced per evening. Seating is limited and reservations and full prepayment are required. No refunds! Their newly-published Spring schedule is also available at the store. Hint – they have classes upcoming on Best Buys Under $15, Intro to California wines, and Wine and Cheese pairings.

Their free wine tastings are Fridays, 4-7 p.m. and Saturdays, noon to 7 p.m.

Stop by and say “Howdy” to Bob and Kristin and tell them that Irene sent you over. I’ll probably be seeing you there!

Valley Cheese & Wine
1770 Horizon Ridge Parkway, Ste. 110

, NV 89012

(702) 341-8191

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