Born to be Together: Grana PadanovDOP and Oltrepò Pavese DOC e DOCG wines enchant German wine Lovers  in Frankfurt, Köln, Munich and Düsseldorf

Apr 12 2024, 14:47
The European project "Born to be together" unites two top products of European taste: the Grana Padano PDO and the wines of Lombardy, united under the aegis of Ascovilo. An essential component is the quality: the Protected Designation of Origin and Protected Geographical Indication products belong to the top in Europe

German wine lovers had four fantastic occasions between the end of 2023 and the first few months of 2024 to deepen their expertise on European quality wines, and of those from Oltrepò Pavese in particular. The European Program Born to Be Together hosted a series of very successful dinners presenting the quality wines from this denomination paired to fine menus based on Grana Padano cheese proposed by award winning Italian restaurants. Ascovilo is the Association of Consortia for the Protection of Lombardy D.O.C.G., D.O.C and I.G.T wines. And to explain the rich and complex wine scene from Oltrepò and the thousand- year history of Grana Padano, Carlo Veronese, director of Consorzio Vini of Oltrepò Pavese and Marco Sabellico, longtime journalist from Gambero Rosso and senior editor of Vini d’Italia Guide were chosen. They hosted all the events and were happy to share their life-long knowledge of products and terroirs with the guests.

'Born to be Together' in Frankfurt

Great food and great wines from Italy in Frankfurt, on November the 28th. The “Born to be Together” campaign had a fantastic evening in the largest Hesse city. The restaurant Roadshow organized by Gambero Rosso on account of the Grana Padano cheese Consortium and Ascovilo, had a bright night in one of the best Italian restaurants in town, L’Unico. A delicious dinner enlightened by the wines of Oltrepò Pavese was created by the chef of this classic modern Mediterranean restaurant offering the authentic flavors of Southern Italy. A tunafish tartare with mango was paired to the classic method sparkling Oltrepò Pavese Pinot Nero, fresh, mineral and vibrant; then a fantastic Safran Risotto with Grana Padano, a fragrant Dorade Fillet with Grana Padano and Herb Crust, and a succulent Beef Tagliata with Arugula and Grana Padano were all paired with Oltrepò Pavese Bonarda, a fresh and fruity - lightly fizzy according to the tradition - red wine. A perfect match, as was the Panna Cotta with Berry Sauce paired with the sweet and luscious Sangue di Giuda from Oltrepò. A match made in heaven. The guests were enthusiastic, thanks also to the introduction and comments made by Veronese and Sabellico, who hosted the evening. Each premiere evening was led by the editors of the Top Italian Restaurants guide and wine experts from Gambero Rosso in order to offer not only a taste-related experience, but also an enrichment on the heritage.

'Born to be Together' in Köln

Fabulous Italian dinner also on November the 29th in Köln. Again Gambero Rosso, Grana Padano Consortium and Ascovilo created a perfect Italian experience for a selected number of guests at Da Damiano restaurant. Not far from the Cathedral Damiano Pizzichetti and his wife Maria, originally from Oria, Apulia, created a fascinating Italian atmosphere offering the best of “Bel Paese” flavors inspired by the seasons and the fresh vegetables bought every day at the market. The dinner was centered on Grana Padano cheese and Oltrepò Pavese wines from Lombardy. Damiano’s menu was excellent, and started with a brilliant Quail Breast Filets on Sweet Potato Puree in a basket with Grana Padano, paired with a fresh and lively sparkler: classic method Pinot Nero from Oltrepò Pavese. Carlo and Marco provided a lot of information on Oltrepò wines and Grana Padano during the dinner, but this didn’t distract the guests from the delicious courses served: a fantastic Eggplant Flan on Grana Padano Cream Sauce, and then an appetizing fresh Orecchiette Pasta with Sausage Ragout and Grana Padano Flakes. And these were a perfect match with the refined fragrances of the classy Oltrepò Pavese Pinot Nero. Damiano created a great cheese based dessert, Carpaccio of Grana Padano and Pear with Chestnut Mostarda that ravished the guests, thanks also to the perfect match with the sweet Sangue di Giuda, intense, fruity and lightly sparkling. A great Italian night enlightening Oltrepò Pavese wines and the celebrated Italian Grana Padano cheese.

'Born to be Together' in Munich

On February the 6th the tour touched in Munich. Luca and Elena Martinelli started with an Artichocke Variations on Grana Padano Mousse, paired with Oltrepò Pavese Classic Method Pinot Nero sparkler, followed by a gourmand egg yolk and Grana Padano filled Raviolo on a Cotechino Carpaccio with Spinach Sauce, which went perfectly along with the fresh and bubbly Oltrepò Pavese Bonarda. Sabellico illustrated the long history of Grana Padano and its territory, production process and how the different types of ageing can be accompanied to different wines, alongside with Veronese who offered a precious insight of the terroir and the wines. The evening faded elegantly with a delicious Grana Padano mousse with strawberries and Aceto Balsamico sauce. A love marriage for the sweet Sangue di Giuda dell’Oltrepò Pavese!

'Born to be Together' in Düsseldorf

Two days later a similar play was replicated on the banks of Rhine River. The stage on February the 8th was Piazza Saitta, a classic of Italian fine dining in Düsseldorf. And again, a competent parterre of food and wine writers, bloggers and professionals, alongside with lifestyle journalists. There a tempting Beef tartare with Grana Padano Flakes (Oltrepò Pavese Pinot Nero Spumante), a superb Risotto al Grana Padano (Pinot Nero dell’Oltrepò Pavese) and as Gran Finale three different ageing of Grana with grapes and a delicious fruit chutney inevitably married to the red, fragrant and sweet Sangue di Giuda. As always Marco and Carlo guided the happy guest through a fascinating gastro-cultural itinerary in Oltrepò Pavese.

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