Tasting Wine · World Tour of Wine

Lombardy, Inferno and Risotto Milanese

Moving along my virtual wine tour through Italy, my next stop is the Lombardy region. Lombardy is the home of Milan, Marscipone cheese and Ossobuco (a fancy dish consisting of veal shanks and bone marrow). More importantly, it is the home to a good handful of wine regions, the three most well known include the Franciacorta, the Oltrepo Pavese and the Valtellina.

Risotto MilleneseI decided to go with a light lunch/wine combination this time around. Risotto and other rice dishes are a staple in Lombardy, leading me to chose Risotto Milanese. Risotto Milanese uses saffron to give it a bright gold color and is typically paired with Ossobuco. I opted for Mario Batali’s recipe and my dear husband took one for the team and stood at the stove for a good hour plus, stirring, stirring and stirring. I knew I would never be able to make Osso Bocco, so I paired the rice with a salad.

For the wine, I chose Pietro Nera Inferno, a Nebbiolo from the Valtellina region. The region is located up north, close to the Alps.  The wine is called Inferno because the land itself is so treacherous – the wine is grown on steep slopes and the weather can be quite hot.

The wine was garnet in color with a fruity nose. There were hints of cherries and plums, reminding me of a fruit compote, along with a very slight leather smell. The wine had a light palette, fruity with hints of cinnamon and spice. All in all, it was a lovely wine.

The Risotto Milanese turned out to be richer than I had envisioned, but it was still delicious. The rice came out a bright yellow and creamy. I could see how a rich meat, such as veal, would pair nicely with the risotto. The light wine was a welcome pairing to the rich meal.

All in all, it was a lovely and filling lunch.

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