Regional Italian Food And Wine Pairings - Red Wine And Abruzzi Dishes

     Abruzzi is located in central eastern Italy on the coast of the Adriatic Sea. The area is 2/3 mountains and 1/3 hills. If I remember correctly, the first time that I heard of this region was decades ago, when I learned that according to Craig Claiborne, at the time Food Editor of the New York Times, Italy's best food was found in Abruzzi. I don't know if this ambitious statement still holds but Abruzzi tables hold their own.

Lasagne Abruzzesi (Lasagne Abruzzi style) makes a good starter or a brunch dish. Among the major ingredients are ground beef, minced veal, eggs, dry white wine, flour (if you make the pasta yourself as the locals do), peeled tomatoes, grated Pecorino cheese, prosciutto fat, and ideally smoked local cheese. This recipe is fairly complicated but makes a delicious dish whose recommended wine pairing is a local Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC. It seems to me that after going to all this work to prepare the lasagna, whether or not you made the noodles from scratch, you should up the ante and go for a local Montepulciano d"Abruzzo Colline Teramane DOCG.

Another pasta dish is Macceroni alla Chitarra (Maccaroni made on a Chitarra) in which the word Chitarra signifies the guitar shaped instrument employed to make the pasta. This pasta is often served with a ragout of lamb stewed in wine and olive oil accompanied by tomatoes, garlic, and other goodies according to each cook's traditional recipe. The classic wine pairing is Aglianico del Vulture DOC, which comes from Basilicata.

Agnello alla Scannese (Lamb Scannese style) is a fairly easy to make lamb dish with dry white wine, olive oil, rosemary, garlic, and salt and pepper. There are many suggested wine pairings including Chianti DOCG and Brunello di Montalcino DOCG from Tuscany, Barbera d'Asti DOC and Barbera d'Alba DOC from Piedmont, or, if you want to go all out, try a Barolo DOCG, also from the Piedmont. However, Barolo modestly known as the king of wines and the wine of kings is sometimes disappointing. I remember the day that I finally tasted this wine. The first Barolo was pedestrian at best. The second Barolo really made up for the first one. For a change of pace try an Octopus dish. The locals enjoy Polpi in Purgatorio (Baby Octopus in Purgatory) cooked in tomato, garlic, parsley, and diavolicchio, local hot chilies. As you go from the mountains to the coast, the dishes, including this one, get hotter and hotter. Don't miss out on the chilies but please don't go overboard. If you are a fan of octopus and chilies, you'll enjoy this dish with an Italian Pinot Nero.

Article Source :

Levi Reiss authored or co-authored ten computer and Internet books, but prefers drinking fine wine. He teaches computers at an Ontario French-language community college. His global wine website features a weekly review of $10 wines and a whole lot more. Visit his wine, nutrition, and health website .

Posted on 2013-12-15, By: *

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