Articolo disponibile anche in: Italian

POPUP_MatiaWe are going to speak about grapes today, but we aren’t going to make wine.

We don’t often think about the fact that our hills are covered with a wild vine which has been domesticated only over the last few centuries.

The “vitis” has attracted men for thousands of years, which is easy to understand. It produces an incredible fruit of an extraordinary sweetness. Once fermented, it gives us a wonderful form of alcohol.

Around us there is a variety which is most diffused in the world for cultivation: 11% of total growth. It is the mythical Sangiovese variety.

This abundant grape, resistent and sweet, grows and adapts itself perfectly in Chianti, where it gives us a diverse variety of products:Chianti, Brunello, Montepulciano, all Sangiovese, all original.

But you can’t plant it whereever you want. When I was in California for an event at a winery in Napa Valley, the owner gave me a precious bottle of Sangiovese grown there. I kept it safe until there was an unexpected snowstorm. I locked myself in the house and decided to taste it… .

Sometime afterwards the owner came to visit Chianti and brought a bottle to the Marchese Antinori as a gift.

When I heard about it, I asked him: “Marchese what do you think of American Sangiovese?”. He replied: “I asked the woman how much she produced and she said very little. I thought to myself: it’s a good thing!” I agree with the Marchese.

Let’s let Sangiovese live in its native land.  I eat the San Giovese grape in this manner: I take a bunch of about one pound, Peel it and wash the grapes carefully.

Then I put them on an over pan covered with oven paper. I combine two eggs with 250 g of sugar and slowly add I30 gm of flour and I50 gm of milk, and half an envelope of baking powder.

I put the mixture on the grapes and bake in a 170° oven for half an hour. When it is ready, I let it cool and turn it over. I take off the oven paper and here is my version of “torta con l’uva Sangiovese”.

Try it! You’ll like it!

Matia Barciulli, chef, Technical coordinator Antinori’s restaurants… and father of Brando