Wine pairings for Fettuccine Integrale con Cavolini di Bruxelles e Salsiccia
While Italian sausage usually prompts thoughts of red wine, Brussels sprouts prefer whites and light reds. Most reds’ tannins emphasize their light bitterness. Besides, in late summer, refreshment is as important as flavor in wine. A red light enough to chill is just how light the red should be.
Brussels sprouts have earthy and nutty qualities that pair well with many Italian whites, which tend to be minerally and subdued in their fruit. They are also inherently “green” in flavor, which matches nicely with cooler climate wines like Lugana blends, typically composed primarily of Trebbiano di Lugana. Trebbiano – in its many different local clones – is mild on fruit flavors, often leaning toward yellow apples. Look for medium-bodied examples with at least 13% abv so that there is enough body to match the sausage and whole wheat pasta.
Rosso Piceno from the Marche is composed of 30-50% Sangiovese. Sangiovese has light red cherry flavors and frequently has a pleasantly leafy tinge that will meld with the Brussels sprouts. The rest of the blend in better examples will be the gulpable Montepulciano. Montepulciano adds mid-palate oomph, keeping the blend from feeling too lean and acidic when served lightly cooled. Rosso Piceno’s brisk acidity will freshen the palate after a bite of meat and cheese.
Check out the recipe for Fettuccine Integrale con Cavolini di Bruxelles e Salsiccia.
Christy Canterbury, Master of Wine (MW)