There’s lots of Italy in Shanghai/2

The dinner at Carla Sozzani’s restaurant in China ends with a culinary-artistic pièce

14-12-2013
Corrado Michelazzo ends the dinner in his restaura

Corrado Michelazzo ends the dinner in his restaurant,10 Corso Como, with an artistic performance: fruit-based colours, fruits of the forest used for garnishing, brushes of custard cream, smudges of chocolate, drawings made with compotes

We matched the first group of starters with a classic 2010 Lugana Zenato, while the second, more complex group, was paired with a 2010 Lugana Riserva “Sergio Zenato”, a selection of 100% Trebbiano di Lugana variety that comes from 25 year-old vineyards and gathers its strength from the clayey fields of Sant'Ambrogio della Valpollicella. The bouquet of flowers, lemons and exotic fruits of this profound, balanced and persistent Lugana Riserva makes it the perfect match for starters and seafood such as those served at Corso Como 10.

After that, chef Corrado Michelazzo played his most important aces, again based more on substance than on frills. First there was Riso Aquerello with saffron from L’Aquila, paired with a good 2010 Valpollicella Superiore. Then three dishes especially created by Corrado for Nadia Zenato’s famous Amarone, the “best Amarone in the world” according to Wine Spectator, and, as Mrs Zenato proudly adds “the first winery to participate in the first congress of Identità Golose in Milan, almost 10 years ago”. The Egg chitarrine pasta with white truffle and the Cubotto di Milanese (an Australian veal cutlet fried with clarified butter) with lime and salt were created for the 2008 Amarone.

Slow cooked pig with purè and broccoli

Slow cooked pig with purè and broccoli

The roasted piglet, instead, is a beautiful match for Amarone Riserva “Sergio Zenato” which bestowed emotions worth lingering on: the piglet was vacuum cooked for 26 hours at 62°C and then braised in the pan, so as to make it very tender on the inside and crispy on the outside. Following the style of food of Michelazzo it was presented on a very classical bed of mashed potatoes and broccoli: the most important element is the intense flavour of the dish, soaking in its gravy, and not its side dish.

The Amarone Riserva, instead, was produced from selected vineyards of corvina, rondinella and oseleta called “Costalunga”, the eldest (20 year-old) vineyards of the property, with drumlin and calcareous soil, in Sant’Ambrogio di Valpolicella. The grapes are left to dry for 3-4 months. The wine is pressed in January and then ages in oak barrels for 48 months and is later refined in bottle for a year. The result is an exceptionally intense wine, with an aroma recalling vanilla and fruit, and a sumptuous flavour that lasts in the mouth like a film by Bertolucci… its persistence seems never to abandon you. It is excellent as a match for strong dishes such as chef Corrado’s piglet or various roasts, game meat, mature cheese.

Le bottiglie della serata: Zenato protagonista

Le bottiglie della serata: Zenato protagonista

The dinner, however, could not end without a coup de théâtre. Indeed chef Corrado presented us the dessert as a painting; or an installation; or a dish/installation, whatever you prefer. Standing by one of the tables next to us, armed with a trolley full of ingredients, the chef began to paint using colours made of fruit, garnishing with fruits of the forest, adding brushes of custard cream, smudges of chocolate, drawing with compotes as colours… all this, directly on the table. The result was a hypnotic Mirò-style edible artwork.

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China Grill

Tasty reports from China and the Far East from our collaborator Claudio Grillenzoni