On Friday November 12th Frank Carpentino walked us through a selection of Italian dishes using his philosophy of “no recipes”. Margot and I were given a rough idea of the ingredients that would be in the dishes and were challenged to recommend wines to pair with them. Our challenge included making recommendations that would be available from the local liquor store as well as several from our own collection.
We kept with the Italian theme and recommended the following wines available locally:
- Folonari Soave 2008 - very light body, subtle fruitiness, very dry & crisp
- Ruffino Chianti Classico Aziano 2007 - ripe fruit, earth, very complex for a lighter red
- Martini & Rossi Asti NV - sweet sparkler with great fruit flavors
- 2009 Pinot Grigio - medium bodied, dry, grilled pear/melon flavors
- 2008 Amarone - full bodied, red fruit and oak, unique aromas
- 2009 Riesling Ice Wine (we don’t have any homemade Italian dessert wine)
- The development and instruction of a Basic Cooking Program as part of the Derry Adult Education Program.
- The development & instruction of a basic cooking program for school age children
- Prior Head Cook for a Middle School with a population of over 1,000
- Cook for Passaconaway Country Club & Hidden Creek Country Club
The next dish was Frank’s North End Pasta, a tomato based sauce with sausage, onions, peppers and garlic over fettuccini. For this dish either of the red wines would work and which one exactly would be the best would depend on individual taste. The Amarone was the winner creating a nice bump for us coming from the homemade collection.
A shrimp scampi pasta dish came out next. My initial pairing advice was toward the white wines and the Soave primarily. It worked and people agreed. Score one more!
At this point everyone was feeling pretty full, but there was one last dish. Dessert. Cannoli to boot. Frank enlisted help from the audience to get these made and I prepared the ice wine and Asti for accompaniment. Both wines paired well with the lightly sweet dessert, but I think folks enjoyed the wines more on their own. Points for everyone.