Blogs

Letter from Europe: Talking vino and Parmigiano with Italy's maestro modernist chef

Photo Per-Anders Jorgensen

If there were a Nobel Prize for Parmigiano cheese, Massimo Bottura would certainly be its first laureate.

For more than 20 years, Bottura, Italy's most acclaimed modern chef, has worked to perfect a signature dish founded on the belief that this famous aged cheese made near his native Modena wasn't getting the respect it deserved.

"Why did we only use this incredible cheese—this symbol of our land—just to grate on pasta?" The 50-year-old Bottura, clad in chef's jacket and jeans, is nearly shouting.

That's a good question, and his Five Ages of Parmigiano-Reggiano in Different Textures and Temperatures is an even better response....Read more at the Wine Spectator. 

 

Letter From Europe: Après-Yquem: Not Down for the Count

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Ten years ago, when the board of Château d'Yquem fired him, president and former owner Count Alexandre de Lur Saluces was expected to fade into the Sauternes sunset.

Instead, Lur Saluces picked himself up off the mat. The 80-year-old aristocrat continues making great Sauternes a few miles away at his Château de Fargues. Here, since 2005, he has produced seven wines in the outstanding range or better by Wine Spectator. The most recently released,2009 (97 points), sold for $170.

Not bad for a man who doesn't even consider himself a winemaker.

"Here, we are farmer-poets," said Lur Saluces, flashing a boyish, gap-toothed smile as he greeted visitors in a tweed jacket and tie.

...Read more at the Wine Spectator...

Letter From Europe: The Son Rises at Biondi-Santi

The 2013 vintage was tough for all of Montalcino, Tuscany's premier wine region. But for Jacopo Biondi Santi, it was a moment of truth.

It was the first harvest at his family's legendary estate following the death of his father, Franco Biondi Santi, this past spring at the age of 91.

"I have been harvesting here since I was eight years old, first with grandfather, then with my father," Jacopo, 63, said in his office over the winery. "This was the first time I did it alone."  ...Read more at the Wine Spectator. 

Letter from Europe: My new blog for the Wine Spectator

This week my new twice-monthly blog called Letter from Europe made its debut at the Wine Spectator. My first post called "The Human Face of Wine" begins:

"There are lots of reasons to love wine, but for me the most important reason is people..."

if you are familiar with my books and work you know this is who I am. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to roam the continent (mostly Italy and France) and relate the human stories from the wine world. There will be some great ones coming up very soon, so stay tuned. I hope you'll join the conversation. 

You can read the first blog on the Wine Spectator site here

Robert Camuto

Palmento tour ends in Dallas and on Dallas Public Radio

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The Palmento US tour ended in Dallas Monday with a fantastic Palmento Sicilian wine dinner at Jimmy's Food Store in Dallas-- an old-timey Italian grocery with a beautiful dining room (in what had once been a beauty salon) tucked in back. Visiting Chef Sharon Hage (beloved in Dallas for her former restaurant York St.) and Matt Balkeproduced a five course Sicilian-inspired meal to pair with a variety of wines. Biggest surprise was a cheese course of  gorgonzola stuffed cannoli with carmelized honey and pistachios paired with Arancio Hekate Passito. Owner Paul DiCarlo made it all come together and the event sold out in a day. LIsten to Robert on KERA Dallas's Think program (1 hr. broadcast)

Listen to Robert on KGO San Francisco's Dining Around program 1/2 hr. broadcast after news. (Mp3 format).

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