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Blog posts of '2014' 'October'

Luigi presents Montepulciano d'Abruzzo

The region of Abruzzo is formed of two thirds mountains and a third hills, the natural land is a strong advantage for the vineyards. The winemakers prefer Montepulciano and Trebbiano as they are very productive vines. Despite the apparent simplicity of the region's DOC certified wines, a few details of the Abruzzan production deserves to be clarified. The local grape, Montepulciano, (not to be mistaken for the Tuscan city, which makes Vino Nobile) has a very convincing character and had many international admirers.

In some parts of Abruzzo, particularly in the north of the province of Teramo, Montepulciano wine becomes of irresistible character, full and robust, with a certain potential of ageing. Montepulciano, however, is a very flexible wine and is also well adapted as a young wine. The vines cultivated at high altitude tend to be lighter and they are intense pink in colour.

Trebbiano, on the other hand, is not as easy to find. Few wineries still work with the true Trebbiano d'Abruzzo, which becomes more complex after four-five years of ageing.

Montepulciano is one of the simple wines, which doesn't pretend to be what it isn't. I, however, always suggest  enthusiastically because it is one of those wines, which never lets you down and always adds pleasure to the meal.

Aldo takes us on a journey through the flavours of Italy.

I have always maintained that those who really want to know Italy must absolutely know its flavours. Every Italian region has a characteristic product that denotes that land and that tells part of its history. So welcome to my shop, I am Aldo and with me you may discover regional and unusual flavours. Many of you will think, "this is just a deli that wants to tell stories!" Well, follow me in this blog and together we will discover the corners of Italy that will leave you open-mouthed... through food we will take a special trip!

If I say, Emilia Romagna, do you not immediately associate it with Parma ham or Parmigiano Reggiano? Emiliana Tortellini come to mind immediately, Bolognese sauce... and if I say Tuscany? Well then we think of the Fiorentina steak and finocchiona, a very particular salami with an unusual taste. If we want to take a trip to the beauty that is the Lazio region, we can not forget spaghetti alla Amatriciana and its bacon or extra virgin olive oil of Sabina.

Every corner of our country will surprise you with special tastes and flavours, and each time that you return from your trip to Italy, you will have the desire to renew this experience through food and maybe share it with your friends... and then? What better opportunity to visit my online delicatessen at passioneitaliana.com, order high quality Italian specialties, have them at home in just two days and then use any in the kitchen. A plate of pasta, a good Italian wine, a plate of Italian meats along with the right company, and you have spent a wonderful evening still traveling through beautiful Italy!

Fabio's shop, perfect for finding that after dinner delight.

Welcome to my shop! I really like to be here for my customers who come back to tell me of their evenings. It's usually like this... you usually come into my shop because you're planning a dinner with friends, a special evening which takes planning, to get organized for a family dinner or to find a precious gift. The thing that fills me with joy is that every time a customer tells me what they are looking for, it is a happy moment. We chat about the menu, the dessert and what is being celebrated to make sure that my advice goes hand in hand with the evening plans. I finally fully understand my customers' tastes, from what people have already prepared from fresh or have chosen, and then we have fun together in making different combinations of ideas.

A drink together is always a happy moment of the day, the important thing is knowing how to choose a quality and fair product. In my store all products are of quality, I personally select the wineries, always choosing the best production.
Since we are in Autumn, I would say that if you are thinking of organising a dinner with friends or even a romantic evening, then I recommend you choose a good grappa to end the meal, grappas in my shop are all of excellent quality and it is up to you to choose the one that is right for you and your guests. I'll give you a tip: always serve grappa with a quality dark chocolate or a chocolate cake to bring out the flavour of the grappa.

Mario's Italian gold: Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Coming into my shop seems just like entering a boutique but then again I've always said that my shop is a real gem. I present only champion Italian products to my customers, things that are only ours and that make Italian excellence what it is. Sorry, I was forgetting! I'm Mario and in my shop you will find golden Italian products. I have that one ingredient that no dish could be without, and with which even a slice of bread becomes an absolute delicacy... you have probably figured out that I'm speaking of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Browse my shop and you will find a variety of prestigious extra virgin olive oils, all the bottles are produced from certified olive farms and are of the highest quality. For us in Italy, extra virgin olive oil is an integral part of our daily lives and not only is a key ingredient of the Mediterranean diet, the  absolute best dietary ailment.

The extra virgin olive oil that you find in my shop can be found flavored with various spices, I recommend using this type of oil on meat or in soups: a little flavoured olive oil gives a special taste to dishes. You can also find plain extra virgin olive oil and with this you can really cook anything, I'll let you in on a secret ... even a simple bruschetta or pasta with olive oil and parmesan exalts the true flavor of my extra virgin olive oil.

Luigi presents the treasure of the Castelli Romani

Here we are again, learning once again about the world of Italian wines, a boundless variation of excellence. Today I have decided to talk to you about the wines of Lazio, one of the regions where calibre wines are not usually found, but lovable wines most certainly are. Delicate and pleasant aromas give wines from Lazio something for everyone. 

The area of Rome is particularly attached to Lazio's white wines. When we think of Lazio, we  imagine wines of the Castelli Romani, Marino and Frascati. The simple and genuine flavour of these wines have made their mark on many an evening in the Fraschette's little folk taverns, which make for an evening to be enjoyed amongst friends, while eating and drinking in style.

In antiquity, even Orazio cites the wines of the Castelli, highlighting the whites but also talking about Lazio's reds wines , which are still of interest to connoisseurs today.

The hills of Lazio benefits from the sun and its volcanic land, which seem destined for the production of white wine. Lazio's white wines  from Frascati and Marino are semi-sweet, pleasant, light and great for an everyday choice.

Today, the utilisation of new vinification methods at low temperatures have transformed the personality of the Castelli Romani wines from simply lovable to dry and inclined to ageing, giving new horizons to the business. Lazio's white wines, with few exceptions, are pleasantly lively and fruity. They are wines that are easily adapted to a wide range of dishes. The red wines from Lazio are extremely popular and always present at a Roman dinner table.

Elena's shop and her sweets

Welcome, everyone, to my shop. I am Elena and I take care of the corner of delights, the sweetness and beauty... this is exactly how my customers see my shop, not simply a place to buy items but above all, my shop represents a moment to lose yourself in the aromas and flavours of another time.

Having a sweet is without a doubt the best part of the day, whether that be in the morning at breakfast, in the afternoon with tea or after dinner. The moment when sweets are brought to the table represents a time to relax, a break, a moment just for us and for the people that we hold dearest.

I am pleased to say that my shop only sells products of high quality and that all that can be bought is of excellent homemade quality from experts in the industry. Today, I would like to introduce you to typical Tuscan sweets, which are very well known and used as a dessert, Cantucci aka Biscuits from Prato. Best accompanied by a good Vin Santo del Chianti Classico.

After serving a tasty dinner, my advice is to end the evening by putting an elegant confection of Mattei Cantucci in the centre of the table with a bottle of Vin Santo Chianti Classico and... dipping the Cantucci in the wine before tasting them is the best way to enjoy. Another word of advice: Mattei Cantucci are also a great gift for relatives and friends. With the elegant blue confection, there is no need to even wrap them!