Before cooking the locally raised Berkshire pork they sell, butcher-shop owners Jessica and Joshua Applestone like to brine it for a few hours in a mixture of juniper berries, orange zest and peppercorns to help season the meat and keep it juicy. Then Jessica Applestone recommends cooking it simply with a sprig of rosemary. "Salt, pepper and flame is all you need. Why lose the beauty of the meat by adding more?" she says. The brine works well for a number of pork cuts, including rib chops, loin chops (bone-in or boneless), tenderloin and ribs. Plus: More Pork Recipes
These meaty chops deserve an equally substantial red wine as a partner. Merlot has been out of favor in recent years, but it's one of the world's great wine grapes, as bottlings from Washington state often prove.