Italian Legends - Wine & Spirits Magazine

Italian Legends

Here’s a short list of some great Italian reds you can taste at the 2019 Top 100. We asked A16’s wine director Shelley Lindgren which of them she would try with the dish chef Nicolette Manescalchi will offer at the event, her Double 8 Ricotta di Bufala and Mariquita Farm Delicata Squash with Rosemary Croccantini.

Shelley Lindgren
Wine Director A16 Shelley Lindgren
Wine Director A16
“Just as zucchini is bountiful from the flower to the vegetable, all summer long, in every corner of Italy, pumpkin is a great fall ingredient for many Italian classic dishes from antipasti, zuppa and pasta,” says Lindgren, who co-founded the restaurant with a breakthrough list focused on the best of Southern Italy. “It turns out that pumpkin and autumn squash have an extremely long growing season in California as well.  We are just starting on the season now but its naturally sweet, robust flavor and texture can pair with the range of wines represented here. Some of the very best of Italian wines will be at W&S Top 100 where we will be showcasing how a few ingredients can pair with classic wines in different ways. 
Here are some thoughts…

With Fratelli Alessandria’s Barolo Monvigliero, the acid and tannins in the wine will highlight the rosemary and delicate flavors of the fresh ricotta.

Nicolette Manescalchi
Executive Chef A16 Nicolette Manescalchi
Executive Chef A16

Poggio di Sotto’s Brunello di Montalcino balances the aromatics and earth with this long finish that parallels the texture of fresh ricotta, roasted pumpkin and a small crunch.

The depth and full fruit of Masi’s Amarone della Valpolicella Campolongo di Torbe Classico will balance the sweetness of the pumpkin and the ricotta will soften the wine’s tannins.

And, as for Donnafugata’s Passito di Pantelleria Ben Rye, it’s a chicken & egg situation, with the traditions of passito going back through the ages and often enjoyed with savory bites, especially with ricotta involved.”

“At A16, we love using peak season ingredients and working with local farmers,” chef Manescalchi says. “For our Double 8 Ricotta and Mariquita Farm Delicata Squash with Rosemary Croccantini, we’ve teamed up with Andrew Zlot from Double 8 Dairy in Petaluma. The ricotta is made twice a week from Andrew’s small heard of water buffalo and results in an extremely fresh, sweet and rich ricotta. We’re pairing it with Mariquita Farm delicata squash and a rosemary croccantini
for a satisfying crunch with the creamy ricotta.”

These are just a few of the legendary Italian wines you won’t want to miss at the Top 100:

Fratelli Alessandria 2013 Barolo Monvigliero
Elvio Cogno 2013 Barolo Ravera Bricco Pernice
Rocca di Montegrossi 2013 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Vigneto San Marcellino
Poggio di Sotto 2013 Brunello di Montalcino
Petrolo 2016 Valdarno di Sopra Galatrona
Masi Agricola 2011 Amarone della Valpolicella Campolongo di Torbe Classico
Donnafugata 2016 Passito di Pantelleria Ben Rye

This is a W&S web exclusive feature.

Joshua Greene is the editor and publisher of Wine & Spirits magazine.

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