Discover Piedmont’s Real Roero in Chicago June 12th!

Nestled in the northwest corner of Piedmont, Roero is a rising star and hidden gem. Join us for a taste of the region’s elegant Nebbiolo’s and refreshing Roero Arneis. The area’s sandy soils create a mineral character truly unique to the area, different from its famous counterparts. 

During the hour-long seminar presented by Carlo Deltetto of Deltetto Winery and Aldo Zaninotto of Osteria Langhe we will have a taste of Roero Arneis Spumante, Roero Arneis, Roero, and Roero Riserva (including older vintages.) A true value for any wine list, be one of the first to discover this delicious region. Following the seminar, we will have a wine bar of additional wines to taste (including some seeking representation.)

Please RSVP directly to cchamberlain@wineandcollc.com or via this link: https://discoverpiedmontsrealroerochi.splashthat.com/ 

We look forward to welcoming you on Monday,  June 12 to Sepia!

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Along the Wine Trail: Pocapaglia & Priocca

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This month we’re focusing on Pocapaglia & Priocca! Two areas of Roero that are quite opposite, but produce delicious styles of the Roero Arneis.

Pocapaglia

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Pocapaglia is located on the inner portion of the Rocce, though its hills are not significantly high compared to some others in the region.

Located in the southwestern portion, Pocapaglia’s soils are dominated by sand with silica and are generally loose & arid with evidence of marine fossils so it comes as no surprise the entire area under vine of the DOCG denomination (11.02ha) is of Roero Arneis. The area produces a fresh and elegant style of Roero Arneis .

Winemakers

  • Cantina Tibaldi
  • Cascina Palazzo Rosso

Winegrowers

  • Carignano Andrea
  • Dacomo of Dacomo Teresa
  • Libra Margherita
  • Monchiero Mario
  • Panero Stefano
  • Tibaldi of Rosso Maria Teresa

Priocca

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Opposite the Pocapaglia, in the northeastern portion of Roero, Priocca is known for steal hills and Pliocene soils imposed with gypsum, limestone, rock, sulphur and other components. There are 36.95ha of the Arneis and 6.98ha of Nebbiolo in the DOCG here and it is known for producing powerful, bold, and full-bodied wines with high alcohol content.

The most famous and important vineyard location is Val del Prete. Other locations worth noting are Madonna delle Grazie and Montaforche.

Winemakers

  • Cascina Val del Prete
  • Roagna Giuseppe

Winegrowers

  • Bonino Remo
  • Hilberg-Pasquero di Hilberg Annette

Along the Roero Wine Trail: Canale

canaleCanale is one of the best known sub-regions of Roero and with good reason considering it is often referred to as the “unofficial wine capital” of the region. Canale is home to 23% of Roero’s entire DOCG classified grapes in Roero.

Over 240 hectares of vines belong to the DOCG , 175.62 of Arneis and 63.10 of Nebbiolo and an additional 130 of other varieties such as Barbera and Favorita.

Soils in Canale are mostly sandy, as is what Roero is famed for, with grayish-blue loam and clay. It is the ideal land for complex Roero wines, with great structure and suitable for aging, but with a known elegance. Towards Priocca, the soils contain 3-10% calcareaous content as well as traces of gypsum/sulfur. On the other side, towards Santo Stefano, the soil content is sandier.

The landscape is made up of many hills and although the rolling hills of Canale are moderate within the region they create a breathtaking view from atop.

The result is a range of wines from those that are full-bodied and rich in aromas with a good level of alcohol to those that process a more mineral character.

#WinePW Sparkling Wines: Roero Arneis Spumante DOCG

We are pleased to be involved in another Wine Pairing Weekend! Or #WinePW to the trendy Twitter crowd.

This month’s theme:

“For the December Wine Pairing Weekend event, we’d like to expand our wine pairing horizons with a bit of bubbly and a creative recipe. Our theme for the month is “Sparkling Wine and Festive Holiday Dishes” and we invite any blogger interested in the topic to share a post. The goal is to try a favorite or new-to-you sparkling wine and pair it with a festive recipe that will be perfect for holiday entertaining or cozy nights in front of the fireplace. Choose a bottle of Cava, Cremant d’Alsace, Prosecco, Moscato, Lambrusco, Sekt, or Champagne (and more) and let your creative juices flow with a delectable recipe that will complement those bubbles.”

Well, count us in!

First a few facts.

Roero Arneis Spumante is a DOCG wine found only in the region of Roero, Piedmont. The wine must be 100% made from Arneis and although many are made using the traditional method, this is not required. However, each wine must possess the following characteristics:

  • Foam: fine and persistent;
  • Color: more or less intense straw-yellow;
  • Odor: delicate, fruity, fresh, with overtones reminiscent of yeast, bread crust and vanilla;
  • Taste: of brut nature to sweet; elegant and harmonious;
  • Minimum total quantity of alcohol: 11.50 % vol;
  • Minimum total acidity: 5 g/l;
  • Minimum non-reducing extract: 15 g/l

So now that we have that covered…. on to the food!

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Roero Arneis Spumante is unique is that it is not a wine used for sparkling wine anywhere else in the world. The Arneis grape, in general, is delicate and fresh with medium acidity and notes of salinity, citrus, and stone fruits. Make that into bubbly form and it is certainly a crowd pleaser!

Because of its unique nature, we thought it was best to stick with something also unique, but that would celebrate the nature of the grape. And so we chose this recipe for Lobster Risotto Arancini by Giada De Laurentiis, which is to say we also spent many hours in the kitchen… but for a holiday celebration, it’s the perfect treat!

The recipe is as follows:

Ingredients: 
Risotto:
2 tablespoons butter
1 large shallot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1 1/2 cups arborio rice
1 cup white wine, such as pinot grigio
3 cups chicken broth or lobster stock, at room temperature
2/3 cup grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon freshly chopped parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Nonstick cooking spray

Lobster Arancini:
2 cups panko
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan
2 eggs, beaten
8 ounces lobster tail meat, chopped into 1/2-inch cubes
Vegetable oil, for frying

Directions

For the risotto:

  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Add the shallot and cook until they are softened, about 3 minutes.
  3. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.
  4. Add the rice and stir with a wooden spoon to combine the onion mixture with the rice.
  5. Add the wine and simmer until the liquid is evaporated.
  6. Add 1/2 cup of the stock and stir until almost completely absorbed, about 2 minutes.
  7. Continue adding the stock, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring constantly and allowing each addition of stock to absorb before adding the next. You may need to add an additional cup of water.
  8. Cook until the rice is tender but still firm, about 20 minutes.
  9. Remove from the heat.
  10. Stir in the Parmesan, lemon juice, parsley, salt and pepper.
  11. Spray a baking sheet with the nonstick cooking spray and spread the risotto out on the sheet to cool to room temperature, about 15 minutes.

For the arancini:

  1. In a large bowl combine the risotto, 1/2 cup of the panko, the Parmesan and the eggs.
  2. With damp hands, use about 2 tablespoons of the risotto mixture to form 1 3/4-inch diameter balls.
  3. Make an indentation in the center of each ball and insert a cube of lobster.
  4. Cover up the hole to completely enclose the lobster and roll the balls in the remaining 1 1/2 cups panko to coat.
  5. In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, pour in enough oil to so that it is 3-inches deep. Heat over medium heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reaches 350 degrees F. (If you don’t have a thermometer, a cube of bread will brown in about 2 minutes.
  6. In batches, fry the rice balls, turning occasionally, until golden, about 4 to 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels and serve.

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What we found was a perfect recipe pairing! The lobster in the arancini provided a touch of savoriness to the dish and the saltiness of the fried crust paired perfect with the salinity in the wine. The bubbles helped to wash away the oil and refresh our palates for the next bite and the creaminess of the risotta matched that of the texture of the wine.

We are pleased to be a part of the #WinePW again this month and hope that you find this pairing a success this year!

Note: Due to the nature of the Roero Consorzio, we speak generically and cannot mention brand names with regard to wines sampled.