Sunday, January 10, 2010

Another Great Angelino Pasta – Orecchiette con Salsiccia e Broccolini

In my last post regarding Angelino Restaurant in Sausalito I mentioned my addiction to their Linguine alla Pescatore, a condition that results in no small part from their perfect preparation of the pasta. Happily I have now found a second of their pastas which provides a perfect counterpart – the above-pictured orecchiette with mildly spicy Italian sausage and broccolini. The first dish is a medley of seafood in a tomato sauce with long noodles, while the second presents a pork and vegetable combination over the “little ears” disc-shaped pasta from the region of Puglia.

In Puglia the most traditional dish using orecchiette is probably Orecchiette Baresi – a simple preparation using rapine, a relatively bitter green. Pasquale has chosen to substitute the milder broccolini and to add the coarsely ground pork sausage that they prepare there at Angelino. It is a great combination, enhanced further by the fact that they make their orecchiette by hand at Angelino, and, as with the Linguine alla Pescatore, know how to cook them so they arrive at the table al dente.

Towards the end of my lunch at Angelino today I got into a discussion with Pasquale about grappa. I told him that I had tried grappa a couple of times in the past, but did not really care for it (a common reaction I note that my friend Vanessa has written about in her Italy in SF blog). With Pasquale’s urging I ended up trying Angelino’s “house brand” of grappa from Carpenè Malvolti, one of Italy’s largest prosecco producers.

It was certainly not bad, but was not enough to change my mind about grappa. Then Pasquale had me try a second grappa - the Po' di Poli Moscato Grappa produced by Jacopo Poli from Moscato grape pomace.

According to a wine review I subsequently read:

"The bouquet offers smells of tropical fruits and baking spice. Entry is minerally, pleasantly ripe, viscous in texture; the midpalate point is earthy, floral, stony and off dry. Finishes gracefully, minerally and drier than the midpalate.”
I am not sure I got all of that, but I think I now at least begin to see what the fuss is all about regarding better quality grappa. Yet another area to explore!


Vanessa said...

Michael, I'd be glad to introduce you to my grappa collection and show you what good grappa is supposed to taste like! Just tell me when!

gastronomichael said...

Thanks Vanessa. That sounds like a true siren song! I did also note your very interesting post about Grappa Bar 888 here in SF -