Saturday, November 8, 2014

Walnurt Tart with Sparkling Brachetto d'Acqui

We're in one of my favorite times of year. I love the holidays! Lots of things to celebrate including my own birthday and anniversary. I love a good reason to celebrate with family and more better reasons to open special bottles of wine and preparing traditional family dishes.  We're in our 6th month of our Wine Pairing Weekend event and this month's focus is the Creative Thanksgiving food and wine event. 
2013 Giorgio Carnevale Brachetto d'Acqui
I'm putting an Italian spin on the Thanksgiving meal in the US. Even though the Italians don't celebrate Thanksgiving doesn't mean you can't prepare some dishes that are outside the box of the yearly Thanksgiving pumpkin pie and apple pie (although they are so good). A blogger, Elisa Cerruti from Milk Honey & Rum, shared with me some dishes of the region where she lives in Piedmont and I based my selection off of what went well with our theme. I chose a walnut tart, “crostata di noci”, since we just recently were passing National Nut Day on October 23rd when we first were planning for this event. A perfect pairing with this dish and the walnuts in particular is Brachetto d'Acqui.

Brachetto d'Acqui is a sparkling red wine that originates out of the Piedmont region. The production of Brachetto d'Acqui is limited to mostly the Alessandria area and some parts of the Asti area in Piedmont. It became a DOC in 1969 and later a DOCG classification in 1996. Brachetto is the actual grape of this wine. This wine can be either sparkling or sweet, but many folks are most familiar with it producing the sparkling frizzante version that I'm sharing with you.  The map below includes the 26 comunes where the grape Brachetto d'Acqui DOCG is produced.
Brachetto d'Acqui DOCG
Map compliments of Consorzio Tutela Brachetto d'Acqui DOCG
I'm fortunate enough that my part time job selling wine just imported a bunch of new wines from Italy last week with a big presence in Piedmont and one of the bottles was a brachetto d'acqui. The Brachetto I'm sharing with you today is a 2013 Giorgio Carnevale Brachetto d'Acqui DOCG. It had a perfumed bouquet nose of rose, raspberries some peach and candied orange. On the palate it was lively with ripe raspberries and strawberries along with frothy bubbles.  

Recipe for Piedmont walnuts tart 
(crostata piemontese di noci)
Dough for crostata

crostata doughcrostata dough
Preparing a walnut tart
Heating the butter, walnuts & honey

Crostata Piemontese di Noci
Crostata di Noci

Crostata piemontese di noci
You can also try pairing brachetto d'acqui with a more simpler dessert like chocolate covered strawberries. It's a beautiful pairing with chocolate and the strawberry notes in the wine make for a perfect pairing. Enjoy your Thanksgiving everyone and I hope your inspired with some of the recipes you read today!

Creative Thanksgiving-Inspired Dishes and Wine Pairings

Turkey, Tempranillo and Sweet Potatoes by Cooking Chat Thanksgiving from the Veneto: Turkey, Pomegranate Sauce & Valpolicella by foodwineclick 
Norwegian Meatballs by Confessions of a Culinary Diva Shepherds Pie Casserole with Barnard Griffin Syrah Port by Wild 4 Washington Wine 
Butternut Squash and Cheddar Bread Pudding and Donkey & Goat Stone Crusher by ENOFYLZ Wine Blog  

Purple Sweet Potato Soup with Roasted Lobster + Bonny Doon Vin Gris de Cigare by Culinary Adventures with Camilla Arugula Pear Salad paired with Torrontes from Argentina by A Day in the Life on the Farm 
Sweet Potato and Cranberry Bake with Cranberry Blush by Curious Cuisiniere

Can we skip to dessert? by Pull That Cork  

Don't Forget Leftovers! 
Day After Turkey and Seafood Gumbo by It's Ok To Eat The Cupcake 
Turkey Pot Pie and Boedecker Cellars Chardonnay by Tasting Pour 

Don't forget to our Twitter chat today, November 8th at 11 a.m. Eastern Time! We'll be talking about our tips and tricks for the best Thanksgiving wine pairings. We'd love to have you join us! And, be sure to mark your calendars for December's Wine Pairing Weekend, hosted by Jeff of foodwineclick. Just in time for Holiday parties, we'll be sharing sparkling wine and hors d'oeuvre pairings. Join in the #WinePW 7 conversation on Saturday Dec. 13!