If you’re someone who drinks wine with dinner, whether it’s Saturday night dinner or Monday night dinner, you’re probably always looking for new wines to pair with your meals. Arnaldo Caprai sent me a bottle of their 2011 Grecante Grechetto, an Italian wine made from 100 percent grechetto grapes.
They had a good suggestion for the wine - pair it on Meatless Monday with a dish that contains asparagus pesto made with roasted garlic and toasted pine nuts. Turning the asparagus into a pesto with nuts is a perfect way to get both the amazing nutrition from the asparagus and needed protein from the nuts.
The roasted garlic and pine nuts pair well with the crisp Grecante Grechetto. The wine itself is a bit citrusy (less so than a Sauvignon Blanc which is the usual asparagus pairing), a little green apple-y, and has a bit of earthiness to it, which is a nice complement to asparagus.
I really enjoyed this wine, and I’m glad to be introduced to a new grape varietal, grechetto. The wine maker, Marco Caprai, is committed to sustainability, not just for his winery but also for the region of Umbria in Italy where his wine is made.
“Caprai's goal,” his PR person told me, “is to produce a sustainable viticulture protocol, specific to his region and his indigenous grapes, which can be used as a model for others. The protocol focuses on farming techniques, including biodynamic and organic methods. Caprai is also an active member of Symbola-the Foundation for Italian Quality, an important group of entrepreneurs dedicated to promoting Italian excellence.”
When pairing this wine with asparagus pesto, one of the easiest dishes to make is pasta. Epicurious has a recipe for Pasta with Asparagus Pesto that I chose. It doesn’t call for garlic that’s been roasted, but I would advise roasting the garlic first.
I’ve also found a few other recipes that make use of asparagus pesto in case you want to get a little more involved with your Meatless Monday meal.
- Grilled Flatbread with Asparagus Pesto and Fontina
- Shiitake Panini with Roasted Asparagus Pesto
- Asparagus-Pesto Lasagna
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