Centovini goes Japanese

May 12, 2009

Nicola Marzovilla’s SoHo restaurant reviewed on Peco Peco NY!


Peco Peco calls Centovini "a gallery style Italian restaurant with an enjoyable and skillfully designed interior."

No, Centovini isn’t about to replace its cavatelli with sashimi. However Nicola Marzovilla‘s SoHo restaurant and winebar is now featured on pecopecony.com, a New York-based Japanese-language food and restaurant website targeted at the city’s Japanese community. Peco Peco, which incidentally is what you say in Japan when you’re “very hungry”, describes Centovini as “a gallery style Italian restaurant with a delightful and skillfully designed interior.” We’re delighted to be featured on the website — check out the profiles of Centovini and I Trulli on Peco Peco now!

Japanese translation by Maui Kuwabara. Arigato, Maui!


Flour power

May 11, 2009

Learn the secrets of Italian bread-making with Chef Patti Jackson

Grissini (left) and taralli (right) are just two of the typical bread recipes from Southern Italy prepared daily by Patti Jackson at I Trulli.

Grissini (left) and taralli (right) are just two of the typical bread recipes from Southern Italy prepared daily by Chef Patti Jackson at I Trulli.

I Trulli is famed throughout New York for Chef Patti Jackson‘s faithful recreations of classic dishes from Puglia, the home region of restaurant owner Nicola Marzovilla. Yet not many people know Patti can also boast over 20 years professional baking experience, which she puts to use daily at I Trulli. Regular diners at the restaurant will have undoubtedly experienced her delicious bread products, which can be considered a rare treat outside Southern Italy. Now witness Patti’s extensive baking knowledge and prowess as she demonstrates the preparation behind some of I Trulli’s favorite breads.

Patti Jackson very smallAs anyone who has traveled extensively in Italy will confirm, Italian bread is as diverse as the country’s wines or cheeses. Patti will reveal some of the secrets to making foccaccia, schiacciata, grissini, taralli and more in this exciting new addition to our class schedule.

with Chef Patti Jackson

Saturday, May 16

For further information and reservations please call 212-725-6516 or email register@vinosite.com.

Meet winemaker Luca Ferraris

May 7, 2009

Vino welcomes everyone’s favorite Ruchè producer to New York

Luca Ferraris in the vineyard at Castagnole Monferrato, photographed by Jim Hutchinson, October 2008.

Luca Ferraris in the vineyard at Castagnole Monferrato, photographed by Jim Hutchinson, October 2008.

The journey wine takes on its way from vineyard to bottle to dinner table is long and winding: when we sit down to open a bottle it’s sometimes easy to forget about the men and women far away whose talent and hard work has somehow directly led to the delicious enhancement of your meal. So naturally, when the chance arises to meet our favorite winemakers it’s a huge thrill. This week, we’re delighted to welcome to the Big Apple one of our youngest and most popular producers, Luca Ferraris.


Vino's Jim Hutchinson in Luca's underground storage facility, also known as "Il Salotto del Ruché".

Since their introduction last year, Luca’s line of varietals have proven a massive success with all those in search of affordable wines from Piedmont made in a classic style. Ferraris specializes in local varieties indigenous to the piemontese province of Asti and its surroundings. As Vino customers have discovered, Luca’s Barbera d’Asti, Grignolino d’Asti and the emerging Ruchè, made from a grape grown solely in the hamlet of Castagnole Monferrato, offer some of our best values. This year we’re excited to introduce a new addition to the Ferraris range: Il Re is a rare blend of Ruchè and Syrah.


Luca Ferraris will be bringing with him the 2008 vintages of his wines, which he’ll be pouring at Vino next Wednesday, May 13th from 5:30pm. For more information call 212-725-6516 or email contact@vinosite.com.

A Barbera bargain

May 5, 2009

Barbera d’Asti aged up to six years in wood!

While the Langhe area is renowned the world over for its wine, such quality often comes at a price, which is why Piedmont may not be the first region that springs to mind when searching for affordable bottles. Yet this oft-celebrated winemaking zone offers many great values. Among these are the wines of Castello di Montegrosso, where winemaker Graziano Motta produces some of our favorite Barbera d’Asti wines of recent years.


Vintage Barbera gathering dust (and more!) beneath the Castello di Montegrosso in Montegrosso d'Asti.

Montegrosso’s Barbera d’Asti is named “Ruleja“, after the historic vineyard from which the fruit is sourced. This two hectare site has long been a provider for quality wines; Motta’s vines were planted over sixty years ago.


One of the 50 hectoliter fiberglass tanks at the Montegrosso winery.

Motta vinifies his cru Barbera d’Asti Superiore in fiberglass tanks. Like his father before him, he believes that fiberglass dissipates heat rapidly enough to allow fermentation without temperature control. He does however have an advantage where others do not. The thick walls of his cantina, the same that form the base of the 900-year-old Castello di Montegrosso, help maintain a cool and constant cellar temperature.


Barriques inside which Montegrosso's Barbera begins its aging process.

After fermentation and pressing, the wine is racked into barriques of various age where it will spend eight-to-twelve months. Graziano allows enough oxygen contact during this process to begin the stabilization so vital to his method of lengthy maturation in wood.


Graziano Motta samples his Barbera d'Asti in the cellars of the Castello di Montegrosso.

The photograph above was taken in October, 2008. You’ll notice that the chalkboard at left identifies the wine being aged in that cask as Barbera d’Asti 2001. It is a rare winemaker that would allow Barbera to age for six years in large Slavonian oak. It is a confident and talented winemaker that would arrive at the stunning results offered by Graziano Motta.

2-montegrosso-barberasTaste the 2003 and 2001 vintages of Graziano Motta’s Barbera d’Asti this Friday at Vino from 5:30pm!

Barbera d’Asti 2003 Castello di Montegrosso

Barbera d’Asti 2001 Castello di Montegrosso

For more information call 212-725-6516 or email contact@vinosite.com.

All photographs by Jim Hutchinson, October 2008.

Taste Wine & Cheese with Jim Hutchinson

May 1, 2009

Say “Formaggio!” as Vino’s wine classes continue

Taste some of Italy's favorite cheeses at Vino on Wednesday, May 6th.

Taste some of Italy's favorite cheeses at Vino on Wednesday, May 6th.

Much like the country’s wine, cheese is produced in every region of Italy, and for Italians invariably plays an integral part in their daily diet. While it is an essential ingredient in many regional dishes, it is also common in Italy to enjoy cheese by itself, or at the very most, paired with a glass of local wine.

On Wednesday, May 6, join Vino’s Italian wine aficionado and cheese whiz Jim Hutchinson, DWS (below), for a tasting of six diverse Italian cheeses from six of Italy’s greatest cheese-producing regions. Each cheese will be paired with a special wine selected by Jim’s expert hand.

jim_hutchinson-smallWINE & CHEESE
with Jim Hutchinson, DWS

Wednesday, May 6

For more information and reservations call 212-725-6516 or email register@vinosite.com.