Wine Pairings for Linguine con Gamberi Rossi Pistacchi di Bronte e Maggiorana
This Sunday Pasta combines the best of surf (with its nuts and herbs) and turf (with its prawns). The combination feels like an impact of sea and land breezes on a late, hot summer afternoon on the Italian peninsula. The trick to the wine pairing is to find wines that are equally effusive aromatically while remaining fairly delicate on the palate.
The wines for this dish must exude a similar effusiveness and lightness. No oak – much less heavy oak, minimal tannin and maximum, youthful aromatics are the important qualities to keep in mind. Italy has no shortage of these wines, though they may come from less familiar grapes and regions.
The sweetness of the prawns and the green lift of the marjoram suggest Friuli’s native Friulano would be a nice match. Indeed, it works. Friulano (formerly known as Tocai Friulano) tends to be lightly viscous and medium-bodied; that’s the right match for almost any seafood-inspired pasta without cheese or cream. Two equally delicious possibilities are the Bastianich Friulano Adriatico and the Vignai da Duline Friulano.
Of course, there will be daredevils who prefer to venture into red wine territory. I warn they proceed with caution, deferring to lighter reds with medium to high acid and little tannin…and no obvious oak whatsoever. Moving down the Adriatic coast from Friuli to Marche, it’s not too hard to find a few fine matches. Start with Moroder’s Aion Rosso Conero, a blend of Montepulciano (the grape, not the town!) and Sangiovese. When it comes to that moment in the night when you are ready for thought-provoking wine, bring out the Fattoria Laila Rosso Conero. Structure-wise, it may seem as easy as the Moroder Aion. However, intensity-of-flavor-wise, it shows full-blown character while remaining massively aromatic and sippable at the same time.
If you can’t find these specific Friulanos or Rosso Coneros, ask your local stockist for something in the category that is medium-bodied and easy-going. You’ll be sure to find a fit!
p.s. Check out our recipe for Linguine con Gamberi Rossi Pistacchi di Bronte e Maggiorana.
Christy Canterbury, Master of Wine (MW)