Category Archives: Falanghina

Lunch in Rome with Daniele Cernilli (Doctor Wine)

It is always a pleasure to see Daniele Cernilli (Doctor Wine) and his wife Marina Thompson in Rome. We have been friends for a long time.

IMG_6288 I always look forward to discussing wine with Daniele while enjoying a delicious meal.

IMG_6256This time, Daniele brought me  a copy of his book The Essential Guide to Italian Wine 2022.  It will be my go-to reference book for Italian wines since, as Daniele said, “All the wines worth drinking are in the pages of this guide.”

IMG_6260Daniele also brought me a copy of his new travel guide book, Mangiare e Dormire tra i Vigneti, Eating and Sleeping in the Vineyards, which should be essential for anyone traveling Italy’s wine roads.  This is one in a series of books on travel and wine. IMG_6258

Daniele suggested we have lunch at La Ciambella Wine Bar with Kitchen.  This stunning restaurant is built on the ruins of Agrippa’s baths.  It is painted white with very high ceilings and our table was under a very large skylight so you could see the sky.   The restaurant served some traditional Italian dishes but for the most part they went off in many different direction adding little twists of their own. All the wines were selected by Daniele

The food and Wine

IMG_6262Little choux pastry puffs filled with ricotta, tomatoes and basil

IMG_6266 2Animelle–sweetbreads with wild chicory and brie cheese sauce

IMG_6264Sauteed Lamb Offal (Coratella) & Roman artichoke

IMG_6268“Coda in Carrozza”– fried sandwiches with braised oxtail

IMG_6265 3“Porchetta” pork roast wraps with marinated cherry tomatoes and yogurt sauce

IMG_6271Spaghettone carbonara — the classic Roman pasta

IMG_6269 2Falanghina 2018 Campi Flegrei  DOC “Cruna de Lago  La Sibilla made from 100% Falanghina. The soil is sandy and volcanic and the training system is guyot. The exposure is south-west and the vineyards are over 60 years old. Fermentation is in steel vats. For six months the wine remains on the lees and remains in the bottle for 6 months before release. Daniele said the wine has hints of yellow citrus,  chamomile, saffron, pepper a touch of smoke, good acidity and a long finish. I found the color of the wine to be almost grey but it went very well with the Offal.

IMG_6277Cheese – We finished the wines with a variety of cheese, chestnut honey and fig jam.

IMG_6273 2Fiorano Vino Rosso 2013 Alessandrojacopo Boncompagni Ludovisi. Made from 65% Cabernet Sauvignon and 35% Merlot. The vineyard is at 130 meters and the soil is of volcanic origin. Exposure is north west-south west. There are 3,700 vines per hectare. The training system is espalier, spurred cordon pruning and the vines are 19 years old. Harvest is the third week of September.  Whole grapes are destemmed and are gently pressed, maceration takes place for at least fifteen days in oak vats with manual punching down. The wine is then drawn off and immediately put into 1,000-liter Slavonian oak barrels, in which the wine rests for maturation for at least 30 months. This is followed by two years of refinement in glass before being marketed. The wine has hints of red berries, sweet spice, a touch of balsamic herbs and a note of coffee.

IMG_6275 2Barolo 2010 “Sarmassa” Marchesi di Barolo made from 100% Nebbiolo. The vineyard exposure is south-east and the soil is clay and limestone with many stones. There are 4,000 vines per hectare and they are trained on a vertical trellised guyot system. Harvest is manual.  The grapes are destemmed and softly pressed. Fermentation at a controlled temperature in thermo condition tanks. Maceration lasts for 10 days. The wine is regularly recycled during this time. Racking takes place when the natural sugars are totally converted to alcohol. The wine is then racked into cement tanks, lined with fiber glass and insulated with cork. Malolactic fermentation is spontaneous and lasts for two months. The wine is aged in Slavonian oak barrels of 30 0r 36 HL and in medium toasted French barriques of 225 liters. The wine is the blended into traditional big oak barrels and remains in bottle before release. This is a full bodied wine with hints of licorice, spice, tobacco, pine resin and a touch of vanilla. It is a wine that will age.

IMG_6279 2Dessert — Dark and white chocolate mousse

IMG_6280Crostata of Ricotta and Visciole Cherry Jam

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Colli Piacentini Vin Santo di Vigleno 2010 Colli Piacentini DOC  Az. Agr. Lusignani made from Beverdino, Santa Maria, Melara, Trebbiano and Ortrugo grapes. The vineyard is at 300 meters. Only the very best bunches of grapes are picked and are laid on a trellis in “fruttai” a specially built aerated drying room to assist in the maturation of the grapes for 3 months. After the pressing of the grapes (which takes place from December to February), the wine must matures for 6 years in small oak caratelli and barriques each time in smaller barrels (like the traditional balsamic method).  Daniele described the wine as having extraordinary complexity with aromas of dried dates, coffee liquor, antique wood, and eucalyptus and he compared it to a Madeira. This is truly a remarkable dessert wine. Daniele said only 1,000 375 ml size bottles were made.

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Filed under Barolo, Daniele Cernilli, Falanghina, Fiorano Rosso 2013, La Ciambella, La Sibilla, Lusignani Vin Santo, Marchese di Barolo. Sarmassa, Vin Santo

A Wine Tasting in Florence

It is always a pleasure to see Riccardo Gabriele of Pr-vino  in NYC or Italy. A little over a week ago, when I was in Florence, Riccardo managed to take the time to meet me there so I could taste some of the wines he represents. The tasting was held at da Burde a very traditional Florentine restaurant about a 20 minute drive from the center. Also at the tasting was Ciro Beligni owner of Le Volpi e l’Uva, the best wine bar in Florence.

The White Wines


IMG_6020Falanghina del Sannio DOP
 2018 made from 100% Falanghina Fontana Vecchia.  The vineyard is at 350 meters and the soil is argillaceous with lime rich marlstone outcrops. The training system is guyot and harvest is the third week of September. Vinification with direct pressing of the grapes at a controlled temperature. Fermentation lasts for 7 days. The wine is aged in steel before it is bottled. It has hints of citrus fruit, lemon, lime with a touch of green apple. I visited this winery a few years ago on a press trip with Campania Stories and I am a big fan of Falanghina.

IMG_6022Bianco Toscana IGT 2019 made from 100% Colombiana Bianca Fattoria Fibbiano. The grapes undergo cold maceration at 10 degrees celsius in steel tanks for ten days. Then the grapes are pressed to ferment the must at 12 degrees celsius. This is done with the aid of selected yeasts which preserves the character of the grapes. The wine then remains in concrete tanks for 4 months before being bottled. The wine has hints of rich fruit, pineapple, papaya and notes of pressed flowers with good acidity. Note The Cantone family of Fattoria Fibbiano found this rare white Colombiana grape among the rows in their vineyards. It is identical to the grape grown in Lombardy with the name Verdea. It is named after a wandering Irish Monk Colombiano.

IMG_6027Friuli Colli Orientali Sauvignon Blanc 2018 “Genesis” Butussi  made from 100% Sauvignon Blanc grapes from a single 40 year old vineyard with a southwest exposure. The soil is of alluvial and colluvial origin, composed of marls deep down and calcareous stones on the surface. During manual harvest  the grapes are picked at optimum ripeness  at the break of dawn. The grapes are destemmed and undergo cold maceration for 24 hours. Only the free run juice is used. Stabilization lasts for 3 days. The first two days the must is kept moving and on the third day it undergoes static clarification. The juice in then racked and fermented at a controlled temperature. !5% of the wine is fermented in traditional oak, the rest in stainless steel. The wine is usually bottled during the week after Easter according to the lunar calendar. It  has hints if citrus fruit, herbs, sage, grass and a hint of white peaches.

IMG_6024GiovinRe Toscana IGT 2018 Michele Satta made from 100% Viognier. Harvest is the first week of September. The grapes are harvested at full maturation and whole bunches are placed in the  press. The must is decanted for 3 days at 5 degrees and racked. Following the yeast inoculation during the early fermentation, the wine is poured half in old barriques, previously cleaned and polished, half in cement.  Here the alcoholic fermentation takes place and the wine is kept until January without malolactic fermentation taking place. The frequency and number of batonnage are determined by tastings. Once assembled the wine remains in stainless steel tanks for 2 months until the bottling. Then it ages one year in bottle before being released.  This is a white wine that will age.

IMG_6026Friuli Colli Orientali Bianco “At Oasi” 2017 Aquila Del Torre. Made from 100% Picolit grown on hillside terraces. The soil is flysch, interbedded clayey-textured marl and sandstone. The vineyard is at 175/ 300, the training system is guyot simple and there are 5,000 vines per hectare. The wines are 14 years old on average and the exposure is south/southwest. Spontaneous fermentation with native yeasts in French oak barrels. The wine remains on the lees for 12 months. This is a dry white wine with hints of citrus, floral notes and a touch of balsam.

IMG_6050Cuveé Brut Metodo Classico (Champenoise) Tenuta Montauto made from 100% Sangiovese from a 15 year old vineyard at 200 meters on the coast south of Grosseto in the Maremma. The soil is clay and skeleton rich. There are 4,000 vines per hectare and the training system is spurred cordon. The grapes are picked at full maturity by hand and harvest takes place after first week of September. The grapes are gently pressed to obtain a yield of 50%. Fermentation takes place using the cold techniques to enhance the aromas. Sugar 4.5 g/l  This is a crisp  fresh fruity wine with hints of citrus, flint, a touch of passion fruit and a note of brioche. This was the first time I tasted a sparkling wine from Sangiovese made by the Champenoise method and I was impressed. 

Another time the Red wines

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Filed under At, Butussi, Fabbiano Colombana, Falanghina, Fontana vecchia, Michele Satta -GiovinRE, Sparkling wine, Tenuta Montauto

Sunday Lunch in Florence

While we were in Florence, our friend Carmela Batacchi, the owner of wine store Vino al Vino, suggested that for something different Michele and I try an all fish restaurant called Burro & Acciughe.  Not only did it sound delicious, but it happened to be just around the corner from where we were staying, so we went for Sunday lunch.

IMG_5990Burro & Acciughe

IMG_5994Burro e acciughe del Cantabrico con pane caldo — For our first course we chose the eponymous butter and anchovies, served with toasted dark bread.

The anchovies are caught in the Cantabrian Sea in the north of Spain and are especially prized for their flavor and meatiness.  The contrast of the salty anchovies, cool sweet butter and toasty bread was incomparable .

IMG_6002Next we had more anchovies.  Spaghetti con acciughe, pinoli, briciole di pane nero tostato.  Thick spaghetti, anchovies, pinenuts, and crunchy toasted breadcrumbs.  Another great dish for anchovy lovers.

IMG_6005Our next course was Baccalà in tre cotture (mantecato, fritto, arrosto) — Codfish three ways:  whipped with capers and olive oil, fried in batter and roasted.  It was served with vegetables fried in a tempura-like batter.  Another excellent dish.

This meal called for a crisp white wine.

IMG_5999Falanghina IGP Campania 2020 San Salvatore from 100% Falanghina planted in 2008 with a south-southwest exposure.  Grapes for this wine are carefully selected by hand in the Cannito vineyard. Soft pressing and fermentation is in stainless steel tanks. The wine remains in stainless steel tanks on the less for 6 months before release.  The wine has hints of citrus, mint, sage, lemon and green apples.  Falanghina is often my choice to accompany full flavored fish and worked perfectly with this meal.

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Filed under Falanghina, Florence

Enjoying the Weekend at Home

We are having our apartment painted and will not be eating home for the next two weeks so this weekend, Michele decided to make some things that she wanted to use up.

IMG_5565We started with a salad made with arugula, avocado, tomatoes, tuna, hard cooked eggs and anchovies.

IMG_5572 2Then we had sardines Beccafico, a Sicilian recipe meaning “figpecker style,” named for a bird.  I am not sure why it has that name, but the rolled up sardines were stuffed with breadcrumbs, pine nuts, currants, parsley, lemon and mint and baked.   

IMG_5527With this we had the Beneventano Falanghina 2018 IGT Donnachiara made from 100% Falanghina. The vineyard is the Torre Cuso, the best location for Falanghina. The soil is volcanic, chalky clay, the vines are 16 years old, the training system is guyot and there are 2,500 vines per hectare. The grapes are not destemmed or crushed before pressing. Cold fermentation is in stainless steel and there is extended maceration. This is a crisp white wine with citrus fruit aromas and flavors, nice acidity and good minerality and a pleasure to drink.

IMG_5567 2Roasted Eggplant and Peppers

IMG_5569Rosemary Focaccia

IMG_5570On the plate

IMG_5537 2

Since it was hot we had a red wine the could take a slight chill and this one was perfect. Vernatsch Schiava Alto Adige DOC 2019 Peter Zemmer made from a blend of various varieties of Schiava grown on the pergola, the traditional trellis system, on loamy soil on the slopes around Cortaccia. The stems are immediately removed and the grapes are fermented for 8 days at a controlled temperature. The must is kept in regular contact with the skins through circulation pumping and gentle pressure from below with the ideal results for coloring from the skins and emphasizing fruitiness. This is a fresh, light fruity wine with hints of red raspberry, peaches  and light note of bitter almond on the finish.

IMG_5563We finished with Michele’s homemade blueberry and cantaloupe ices

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Filed under Donna Chiara Winery, Falanghina, Schiava

Dreaming Of Napoli

Over the last few years every time we were in Naples Michele wanted to have lunch at Mimi alla Ferrovia, a well known restaurant. On our last day in Naples in February of 2020, we finally got there.

The waiter recited the specials and I heard pasta with ricci di mare (sea urchins), I knew what I wanted.  It was excellent.

Recently we visited the friend that was with us on that trip and he suggested that we make pasta with ricci di mare.  We decided to make a lunch that was a tribute to Procida, the tiny island off Naples that Michele’s family comes from, which recently named Italy’s Capitol of Culture for the next year.

IMG_4578We started with crostini covered with homemade roasted red peppers and anchovies.

IMG_4576Champagne Empreintes 2012 Extra Brut Laherte Frere made from 50% Chardonnay from vines in Les Chemins d’Epernay which were planted in 1957 and 50% Pinot Noir from vines in Les Rouges  Maisons planted in 1983. Multiple parcels with varied exposure. Les Chemins d’Epernay has clay soil with a silt stratum in surface and a chalky subsoil. Rouges Maisons has a deep clay topsoil with flint, schist and a chalk subsoil. The vineyards are farmed organically, sometime by horse. Hand harvesting takes place when grapes are fully ripe. Traditional pressing. Natural alcoholic fermentation in barrels from Burgundy aged for a minimum of 10 years. There is no malolactic fermentation. Six months of barrel aging with regular stirring of the lees. Disgorged by hand 01/2018 with a 3 gr/l dosage. It has hints of yellow plums, citrus fruit, peaches, good minerality, a touch of pepper and a note of spice.

IMG_4581Here are the sea urchins, which we were able to purchase removed from their shells.

IMG_4585Spaghetti with sea urchin, garlic, tomatoes and parsley Procida-style. Ready to be served

IMG_4591The spaghetti on the plate, topped with more sea urchin.

IMG_4605Beneventano Falanghina 2018 Donnachiara made from 100% Falanghina. The vineyard is the Torre Cuso, the best location for Falanghina. The soil is volcanic, chalky clay, the vines are 16 years old, the training system is guyot and there are 2,500 vines per hectare. The grapes are not destemmed or crushed before pressing. Cold fermentation is in stainless steel and there is extended maceration. This is a crisp white wine with citrus fruit aromas and flavors, nice acidity and good minerality. It is one of my favorite white wines and my friend, who enjoys it too, always has some chilled and ready to drink. It was a perfect combination with the ricci di mare.

IMG_4562Broccoli rape on the stove

IMG_4598For our main course, we had Rabbit alla Cacciatore, Procida-style.  The tomato sauce was flavored with rosemary and garlic.

IMG_4600We ate the broccoli rabe with the rabbit.

IMG_4573Bramaterra Riserva 1996 Tenuta Monolo. Bramaterra is in the Alto Piemonte well north of Barolo. Made from 60% Nebbiolo, 20% Croatina, 20% Vesoplin10% and 10% Uva Rara. The vines were planted in 1970. There are 0.75 hectares of vineyards and the farming was organic. Exposure is northeast/southeast; there are 3,200 vines/hectare at 290 meters. The training system is guyot. The soil is deep and light, copper sands, with a high level of acidity with potassium, iron and manganese. Harvest is manual. Fermentation was in large wooden barrels (botti) with native yeast The wine is aged in botti for two years. The wine is classic Bramaterra. The wine has hints of cherry, spice, cinnamon, a touch of dried fruit and a note of nutmeg. The last vintage was in 2004. The wines can still be found on line going back to 1982

IMG_4601For dessert, we ventured to Sicily for some Cannoli from a nearby bakery.

IMG_4604Dessert wine Zibibbo Sicilia IGT Vino Liquoroso made from the Zibibbo grape Carlo Pellegrino. This bottle was given to my friend a number of years ago. I believe they still make the wine but the label is different and I am not sure it is now vinified in the same way.  The  wine was golden in color with subtle hints of citrus fruits, orange blossoms, peaches, a touch of honey and brioche. It was a pleasure to drink and a great way to end a wonderful lunch.

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Filed under Bramaterra, Champagne, Falanghina, Laherte Freres Champagne 2012

On a Cold Winter’s Day

We went to a friends house for the weekend.  He had been planning to roast a leg of lamb, but due to a mix-up, the lamb did not arrive.  Luckily, he was able to get lamb shanks, which Michele offered to cook.  

Outside it was cold and snowy.

IMG_4148

Dinner began with two kinds of crostini:  one with warm mozzarella and anchovies and the other with Michele’s fig and olive tapenade.

IMG_4158Beneventano Falanghina IGT 2017 Donnachiara made from 100% Falanghina. The vineyard is the Torre Cuso, the best location for Falanghina. The soil is volcanic, chalky clay, the vines are 16 years old, the training system is guyot and there are 2,500 vines per hectare. The grapes are not destemmed or crushed before pressing. Cold fermentation is in stainless steel and there is extended maceration. This is a crisp white wine with citrus fruit aromas and flavors, nice acidity and good minerality. It is one of my favorite white wines  and my friend always has some chilled and ready to drink

IMG_4145Braising the lamb shanks

IMG_4154Mashed potatoes

IMG_4163On the plate, braised lamb shanks with mashed potatoes and sauteed escarole.

IMG_4165Here’s another picture because it looked so good and tasted so delicious.

IMG_4171Brunello di Montalcino 1999 Lisini made from 100% Sangiovese. The are 3,300 plants per hectare in the old vineyard and 5, 400 plants in the newer vineyard at 300 to 350 meters. The grapes are hand harvested and a selection takes place. Fermentation and maceration is in stainless steel with skin contact for 20 t0 26 days. Aging is in large Slavonian oak barrels of 20 to 50 ha for 42 months. The wine is aged another 6 to 8 months in bottle before release. This is a traditional Brunello with hints of red and black fruit, blueberries and rasperries and a touch of violet. It was drinking extremely well.

IMG_4159Taurasi “Radici” 1996 Mastroberardino made from 100% Aglianico.  The vineyards for Taurasi “Radici” are located on two hills, Mirabella vineyard at 500 meters and the Montemarano vineyard at 550 meters. Because of its position on the hill and its altitude, the temperature at the Montemarano vineyard was much colder and the grapes are picked a little later. Harvest is from the end of October into the beginning of November. The vinification is the classic one for red wine, long maceration with skin contact at controlled temperatures. The wine is aged for 24 months in French barriques and Slovenian oak barrels and remains in the bottle for 24 months before release. The barriques were second and third passage. This is a wine with hints of black cherry, plum, spice and a touch of leather.

For Dessert, we ate a selection of cookies with ice cream.

IMG_4147We finished the dinner with Single Malt Scotch Whiskey from Ardmore Distillery to keep us warm.

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Filed under Brunello, Donna Chiara Winery, Falanghina, Lisini, Mastroberardino, Taurasi

Christmas Eve 2020

We celebrated Christmas Eve this year with close friends who live a few blocks away. There were four of us.

IMG_3992 copyWe started with Champagne Alfred Gratien Brut Rosè NV made from 45% Chardonnay, 40% Pinot Meunier and 15%. The Pinot Noir is added as a still wine. After 6 months of cellaring in 228 liter oak casks, the must is transformed into wine. Malolactic fermentation does not take place. The cuvee is bottled with sugar and yeast to allow for a secondary fermentation in the bottle and it remains in the cellar for 36 months. Then the disgorging takes place where the lees and sediment are removed from the bottle.  It is topped up with more wine and some sugar and left to rest for a few more months in the cellar.  It has good red fruit with hints of raspberry and strawberries and touch of roses.

It went very well with the shrimp pate on toast which I forgot to get a picture of.  IMG_3989

At the table, I opened a bottle of:

Beneventano Falaghina ‘”Resilienza “2017 Donna Chiara made from 100% Falanghina.  The soil is chalky and the training system is guyot. Harvest is the first two weeks of October. There is a soft pressing of the grapes and then they are cooled  50 degrees F for 4 to 5 hours. This is followed with static decantations.  Fermentation is at 57 to 60 degrees F in steel tanks for 15 days. Malolactic fermentation does not take place. The wine has floral notes with hints of citrus fruit, pear and apricot with good acidity and a long finish. The Falaghina from Donna Chiara always impresses me.

IMG_3981To accompany the wine, we had Octopus and Potato Salad.  It’s a favorite of ours that we always enjoy in Rome.

IMG_3979Sourdough Bread was a good accompaniment.

IMG_3974For our main course, Michele roasted two large branzini with artichokes.

IMG_3984With the roasted fish and artichokes, we had polenta with Parmigiano Reggiano.

IMG_3989Greco di Tufo “ Nova Serra” 2013 Mastroberadino made from 100% Greco di Tufo from the 33 acre Novaserra vineyard at 1,815 feet. The soil is clay and calcareous along the profile volcanic presence. There are 1,600 vines per hectare and the training system is guyot Espalier. The vineyard was replanted in 1999 and the exposure is southwest. The harvest is in October. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks for 15 days. The wine remains on the lees for 5 months before it is bottled and in bottle for 3 months before release. This is a wine with rich ripe fruit and hints of pear, peach, apricot and a touch of citrus and sage.

IMG_3988Dessert was a Chocolate Ginger Cake with Confit Citrus and whipped Creme Fraiche brought by our friends.  The cake turned out kind of messy, but absolutely delicious.  I could have gotten a better picture, but was in too much of a hurry to dig in.  Not wanting the crumbles to go to waste, I nibbled away at more than my share with a small grappa after the meal.

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Filed under Alfred Gratien, Donna Chiara Winery, Falanghina, Greco di Tufo, Mastroberardino

The Start of a Celebration

To celebrate the start of my birthday week,  Michele made some of my favorite foods.


We had homemade blueberry muffins with cappuccino

It was such a beautiful morning, we had breakfast on the terrace, which we are able to use after 22 months of construction.

For lunch we had two of my favorite Roman foods.

Fried zucchini flowers stuffed with anchovies and mozzarella.

Zucchini flowers deep fries and ready to eat- we ate them all

Pasta  alla  Checca  —  Ditalini  pasta  with  fresh  tomatoes,  mozzarella  and  basil.

 

With our meal we drank a falanghina, a wine that we often enjoy in Rome.

 

Falanghina del Sarnnio DOP 2018 made from 1oo% Falanghina Fontana Vecchia The vineyard is at 350 meters and the soil is argillaceous with lime rich marlstone outcrops. The training system is guyot and harvest is the third part of September. There is a direct pressing of the grapes at a controlled temperature. Fermentation lasts for 7 days. The wine is aged in steel before it is bottled. It has hints of citrus fruit, lemon, lime with a touch of green apple.

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A Summer Lunch

 

It was a very hot day in August and we were at a friend house for a late lunch.  I brought a sparkling wine from the Veneto that my friend had never tasted made from the Durello grape to go with the appetizers.

Durello 36 Riserva Extra Brut Metodo Classico DOC made from 85% Lessini Durello and 15% Pinot Noir Sandro Bruno. The soil is volcanic with basaltic rocks. The vineyard is 4 hectares with a southern exposure at 500 meters. The vines are 35 years old. The vineyards are cultivated without the use of pesticides. Manual harvest takes place the 3rd week of September. There is a selection of grapes followed by a soft pressing in a nitrogen saturation at a low temperature. Fermentation is in steel tanks for both grapes. After fermentation the lees are preserved by performing weekly batonnage for 8 months. Sugars 1g/l  The wine remains on its own yeast for 36 months. It ages in bottle for 6 more months before release. This is an intense wine with mineral aromas. The wine has hints of white flowers, pear, almonds and a note of lemon.

Michele had made some roasted red peppers and we ate them on crostini topped with anchovies.

 

Another starter was sauteed eggplant with cherry tomatoes on crostini topped with thin slices of Tuscan pecorino.

Our pasta was a summery version of pasta alla puttanesca.  Michele tossed the hot, cooked mezze maniche pasta with room temperature chopped tomatoes, capers, olives, anchovies , parsley and mozzarella.  The warmth of the pasta brought out all the flavors in the cool sauce.  Perfect on a hot day.

Pasta in the dish

I had brought a red wine that can be served chilled to go with the pasta but to our disappointment the wine was not good. I asked our host what he had chilled and he said he had one of his favorite with wines.  It was the best Falanghina he ever had and It was the perfect choice.

Beneventano Falanghina IGT Donnachiara made from 100% Falanghina. The vineyard is the Torre Cuso, the best location for Falanghina. The soil is volcanic, chalky clay, the vines are 16 years old, the training system is guyot and there are 2,500 vines per hectare. The grapes are not destemmed or crushed before pressing. Cold fermentation is in stainless steel and there is extended maceration. This is a crisp white wine with citrus fruit aromas and flavors, nice acidity and good minerality.

 

 

Dessert  was  an  improvised  one.  Sponge  cake  shells  topped  with  Grand Marnier and  orange marmalade marinated  strawberries and freshly whipped cream.

 

With fresh summer produce and good wines, an improvised lunch turned into a feast.

 

 

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Filed under Donna Chiara Winery, Durello, Falanghina, Sparkling wine, Sparkling wine- Druello, Spumante

Falanghina and Calamari – Burgundy and Quail

Several years ago in Napoli, Michele had a pasta with a calamari sauce served with calamari shaped pasta.  It’s not an easy pasta shape to come by, so when she saw a bag in an Italian market, she bought it.  This weekend she made her version of the dish.

Calamari  in  Cherry  Tomato  Sauce

It’s a very simple recipe.  Oil, garlic, parsley, a little peperoncino then a can of cherry tomatoes and a little water.  Simmer until thickened. 

Calamari  shaped  pasta  was  nice  and  chewy.  We  ate  the  pasta  with  a Falanghina.

 

Falanghina del Sarnnio DOP 2018 made from 1oo% Falanghina Fontana Vecchia The vineyard is at 350 meters and the soil is argillaceous with lime rich marlstone outcrops. The training system is guyot and harvest is the third part of September. There is a direct pressing of the grapes at a controlled temperature. Fermentation lasts for 7 days. The wine is aged in steel before it is bottled. The wine has hints of citrus fruit, lemon, lime with a touch of green apple.

A friend came by for dinner on Sunday.  Michele made a favorite summer salad, Green Beans with Potatoes, Red Onion Oregano and Capers. 

With the salad we had Grilled Quail  Marinated  with  Lemon  and  Herbs.

Quail

Chambolle Musigny 2005 Nicolas Petel made from 100% Pinot Noir . There is a selection of grapes to eliminate unwanted grapes and to evaluate precisely the quality of the harvest. They taste the cuvees twice or three times a day to follow their aromatic evolution. The grapes are softly pressed in a vertical wine press and the liquid is allowed to settle before going in to the barrels. With a minimum of interference the must is left to settle for 12 to 16 months on the lees without racking and a minimum of SO2. There is a late malolactic fermentation. The wine is drawn off just before racking and blended in vats so it will have the same uniformity in the barrel. Old fashion racking where the wine is drawn off by the Broquereau where the opening is at the end of the barrel by a funnel. The wine “moves” without the aid of a pumps.  The wine is separated from the lees and this is important for the non filtration. They follow the biodynamic calendar. The wine has hints of cherry and raspberry with a touch of violets and a note of licorice.

Dessert was a platter of watermelon and cherries, refreshing on a hot summer day.

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Filed under Burgundy, Falanghina