Italy at Your Table meets the MET!

Italy at Your Table meets the MET!by Filippo BartolottaLuciano Zazzeri has gone back home. I feel a little sad. The event at the Metropolitan Museum has been an huge success.Seriously, saying the event was a "big success" is somehow a clich for what we have done over there.Not only was the evening enjoyed by everyone at the table, but also behind the scene it was love, love, love!Luciano, the chef of the MET Fred Sabo, chef Gabrielle and pastry chef Gary have been cooking together for three days in a row.When the big night arrived 40 special guests enjoyed the result of this extraordinary cooking melting pot with a wine tasting menu featuring our selection of 12 Italian Fine Wines, the special chocolate from Modica and the Balsamic vinegar from Modena.While the chefs were finishing off the last preparations The Metropolitan Sommelier, Thierry Pradines and were double decanting most of the Reds and Luciano was paying a visit to enjoy ans shared with me some of these great Italian wines.Most young red like to get some quite aggressive an oxygen splash to get back to life after four of five years of bottle general when I have to prepare important Reds for a major tasting I like to open the bottle at least four hours in advance, then I decant them, making sure they are in good conditions and according to how they respond to oxygen , I then decide whether or not keeping the wine in the decanter to enjoy a lot of air or to put everything back in the bottle re-corking them.This gives me a lot of flexibility to make sure the wines are served showing the best they can, making sure that the temperature never goes over 64,4 F -max 68 for older Reds-.As for the Sparkling, I like them to be served quite chilled as they get heated quickly so around 43 F is perfect. Whites can also get to the table around 43 F as they'll heat up during dinner. Occasionally some older and bigger Whites can be served between 46 and 50 but always with a chiller near by to pop the bottle back in if the wine gets too cold.While waiting for the guests to turn up Luciano, Fred Thierry and I had to train the stuff for the "Irresistible Italy" month event.The Italy at Your Table gala dinner went SOLD OUT in 48 hours, hence for one month the MET members will have the chance to try an Italy at Your Table dinner.There will be three week ends dedicated to 3 different towns: Florence, Rome, Naples.Luciano Zazzeri and myself came up with a menu and a matching food and wine proposal, which Fred and Thierry welcome with enthusiasm.and while...Luciano was still cooking we were getting the menus ready. During the same gala dinner event we had over 100 guest in the trustee dining room. Many of them went for the Italian Menu!
Florence:Insalata di Soprassata - Pr Soave Classico 2009nido di Pasta croccante e fagioli - Isole e Olena Chianti Classico 2008 andPropriet Sperino Uvaggio 2008Seppie inzimino - PetraTortino di mele - Fattoria delle Ripalte, Aleatico dell'Elba 2007Rome:Puntarelle con colatura di alici e animelle -Bellavista Franciacorta Cuve Brut
Spaghetti alla Amatriciana - Castello Romitorio Rosso di Montalcino 2008Trippa alla romana - Sandrone Luciano, Valmaggiore Nebbiolo 2007Zuppa inglese alla romanaNapoli:Involtini di melanzane con baccal e lardo - Feudi di San Gregorio, Grecodi Tufo 2009Paccheri di gragnano polpo novello e capperi - Arnaldo Caprai MontefalcoRosso 2008Pesce all'acquapazza - Romano Dal Forno Valpolicella 2004 and Fontodi Flaccianello 2007Bab al Rum
So Luciano had to cook with with the MET Chefs during the week showing his personal cut on the various regional dinner.Guest arrived at around 1830 and the fabulous Metropolitan team was ready to go.What a great night that was. Some of the guests had already being to Italy, some only many years ago. Quite a few of them were very knowledgeable about Italian Food and Wine, but they all joined in for a wonderful journey. This couldn't happen without the trust, proactive help and make it happen actitude of Ast York -Head of the Restaurant Associate-; Liz Upshur - Marketing Manager; Thierry Pradines -Sommelier- and Fred Sabo.And finally here is the Menu:Welcome Reception and CanapesBellavista Franciacorta Cuve BrutWelcome Wine TastingArnaldo Caprai, Sagrantino di Montefalco Riserva 25 Anni, 2004Castello di Romitorio, Brunello di Montalcino 2004Luciano Sandrone Barolo Le Vigne 2005Fontodi Chianti Classico Vigna del Sorbo 2007Amuse-BoucheSorbet of Extra Virgin Olive OilMarinated Mackerel, Creamed Ricotta, Caramelized Traditional Modena GiustiBalsamic VinegarGraziano Pr Soave Classico Monte Grande 2009, VenetoAntipastoCalamaro ripieno al cartoccio -Baked Stuffed SquidFeudi di San Gregorio Fiano di Avellino DOCG 2009, CampaniaFirst CourseStraccetti di Pasta Fresca con le TriglieFresh House-Made Straccetti with Red Mullet Sauce Propriet Sperino Lessona DOC 2006 Piemonte andIsole e Olena Cepparello2007, TuscanyMain CourseCacciucco della Pineta in Oliocottura e Zafferano -Seafood Chowder with SaffronRomano Dal Forno Amarone della Valpolicella2003 Veneto andPetra IgtToscana Rosso 2006DessertMeringa Bruciata con Frutti di Bosco, Chantilly e Cacao BonajutoBaked Meringue, Mixed Red Berries, Chantilly and Bonajuto CocoaFattoria delle Ripalte Aleatico dell'Elba 2007, TuscanyWritten on the Bus from New York to Washington.Ready for another challenge: the Martha's Table Charity event.More will be told here about NEW YORK soon,f
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