Nathaniel Evans and Monserrat Oyanedel celebrate their third wedding anniversary at PärCht.
Originally published in Taos News
When Nicolette Casale and Kevin Hunter opened PärCht on April 15th they had a clear picture in mind—they knew exactly what they wanted to create in the cave-like space under The Gorge Bar and Grill, which had been empty for a long time.
With an extensive background in the wine and liquor distribution industry, the couple conceptualized the place from the ground up to offer both a bar experience and a full retail shop.
“We are small by design,” Hunter said. “We don’t want to be overwhelmingly big or sell exactly the same thing that you can find in the grocery store.”
“This is a boutique-style shop where clients can have charcuterie and cheese, spreads and jams, and a carefully selected variety of wine and beer,” said Casale. “People can also take home anything that is on our menu, from wines and beer to the Serrano ham to the different kinds of cheese we serve.”
They are affiliated with The Gorge Bar and Grill, which is their sister restaurant.
A happy couple celebrates at PärCht
The walls are decorated with work by New Mexican artists, some of them local like El Moises, and others from Albuquerque.
All the photographs are from Taos-based artists who exhibit in the gallery across the hall.
“Our goal is create an inviting, casual and comfortable atmosphere,” Casale said. “This is the kind of place where you can come with friends, chat and have a glass of wine or a beer, or spend a romantic evening with your partner.”
Which is exactly what Nathaniel Evans and Monsterrat Oyanedel were doing on Tuesday, July 7th.
The couple decided to celebrate their third wedding anniversary at PärCht.
“This is our favorite place to relax and have a good time,” Oyanedel said. “We have been PärCht regulars since day one. It has a great selection of good wines and awesome costumer service.”
“When we opened, at first we thought this would be mostly a tourist destination,” Hunter said. “But we were pleasantly surprised to see that locals love it too. Many of our patrons are from Taos and we are very grateful for that.”
The products: wine and beer
PärCht offers a global selection of wines (twenty different kinds by the glass) and five drafts of beer.
The wines include Vara “Silverhead” Cava from Spain, Gruet Blanc de Noir from New Mexico, Nicolas Feuillatte Brut and Chateu la Coustarelle Cahors from France, and Bisceglia “Gudarra” Aglianico from Italy, among others.
Featured beer drafts are Bosque “The Last Straw” Hefe, New Belgium “Rampant” Imperial IPA, Stone “Go To” IPA, Scrimshaw Pilsner, and Deschutes River Ale.
Bites, boards and more
PärCht’s menu consists of light fare such as “bites”—buratta cheese, heirloom tomato and basil, chilled Castelveltrano olives or a sweet and savory combination of chocolate, fruit and nuts.
The boards feature a selection of cheese and charcuterie that are served with crostini, Lusty Monk Mustard and those delightful miniature French pickles known as cornichons.
Spreads, jams and more pickles are other accompaniment options. The crushed chickpeas, lemon and garlic spread can be added to any board, and there is always seasonal fruit compote.
I asked Hunter for his personal pairing favorite.
“Our two Spanish cheeses, Campo de Moltalban and Manchego, served with classic Serrano ham, can be nicely paired with almost any wine that has a bit of dryness, like Malvira Barbera D’Alba or Ontañon Reserva Tempranillo,” he said.
Coffee, tea and more
Though primarily a wine and beer shop, PärCht is designed to offer a nice tapas experience to nondrinkers as well.
The nonalcoholic beverages include iced and hot teas (jasmine green, Early Grey, and others), San Pellegrino and Badoit Sparkling Water, and Fiji Still.
They also serve Iconik Pour Over Coffee.
“Iconik is a coffee roaster from Santa Fe,” said Hunter. “I like because it isn’t too strong: it’s mild and really nice. We also pour it to order, which means we don’t make a big pot of coffee in the morning and serve stale coffee all day long. No, we grind and make every cup of coffee individually.”
“So you can have coffee and tapas,” Casale said, “and add a bite of dark chocolate, nuts and fruit. Delicious.”
Hunter explains why they chose the phonetic spelling of the word “parched” as part of the shop’s name.
“When you are ‘parched,’ it means you are really dry and need to drink,” he said. “Here, we have already tasted many, many wines in order to offer what are, in our opinion, the best brands to quench your thirst so you are not ‘parched’ anymore.”
“We didn’t want anything generic,” Casale said. “And PärCht is definitely unique.”
Plans for the future
Casale and Hunter are planning to organize wine and beer tasting events.
“We are also going to add some dessert options later on, in August,” she said. “And maybe serve diners some nights. There is a lot we have in mind. Stay tuned, and come to visit us.”
PärCht is located at 103 East Plaza Taos, New Mexico
Phone: (575) 758-1994
Hours are Tuesdays through Saturdays 12 noon to 9 p.m.