July 21, 2015
We’re delighted to announce the next chapter in our quest for superior flavor – Winfield Farm Mangalitsa salami barolo – the fruits of a unique partnership between three connoisseurs of good taste: Winfield Farm, Alle Pia and Palmina Winery.
This story begins with a chance meeting with Antonio Varia, Chef and owner of Buona Tavola restaurants in Paso Robles and SLO, and his nephew, Alex Pellini. Both Antonio and Alex also create fine-cured meats at Alle Pia Handcrafted Italian Salumi. “It was our tradition in Italy to make salami each winter with our entire family,” Antonio says. He named his artisanal salumi-curing venture Alle-Pia in honor of his mother, Maria Pia Allesina. Their philosophy: “Alle-Pia Salami is made with the finest ingredients using traditional old world family recipes. Handcrafted and created with love under careful supervision in our USDA inspected state-of-the-art facility.”
Mangalitsa pork is renown for charcuterie, ranked among the best in the world for prosciutto, lomo, pancetta and the like. But what about salami? We posed the question to Chef Antonio and Alex. They had not worked with Mangalitsa before, but they were willing to try. We added another challenge: Alle- Pia’s traditional salami barolo recipe uses Italian wine — nebbiolo. But a local Santa Ynez Valley winery, Palmina, makes world-class nebbiolo also. What about producing a totally local product, utilizing Winfield Farm Mangalitsa pork and Palmina nebbiolo?
We approached Steve and Chrystal Clifton at Palmina and both were enthusiastic. Palmina is all about relationships. “Relationships that bring people back to the table to sustain themselves with good wine and food, conversation and a small respite from the hustle and bustle of today’s world.” According to the Palmina Wines website, “Palmina crafts wines that are a key part of that equation; wines that can be enjoyed everyday, and that complement and enhance a wide range of food styles.” Palmina produces wines from Italian varietals grown in Santa Barbara County, after Steve and Chrystal found that the climate and soil types here are similar to their favorite regions of Northern Italy.
Antonio and Alex also liked the local approach. So the experiment began. After close to two months of curing in Alle-Pia’s temperature-humidity-controlled room, we met to sample the results. Spectacular! Amazing! Creamy! Delicious! Actually, indescribably good!
So the partnership is cemented! Alle-Pia wants more Mangalitsa to cure (also eager to make lardo from Mangalitsa backfat and serve Manga loins in their Buona Tavola restaurants). Palmina Winery is planning to showcase Winfield salami Barolo at their 20th anniversary celebration in August, and will promote it in their tasting room. And we also will offer Winfield Farm Mangalitsa salami Barolo as a new product on our online Mangalitsa Market store.
Alle-Pia also makes a killer Tuscan salami with sangiovese – and Palmina also produces a sublime sangiovese…
A hand-written sign on the door to the curing rooms at Alle-Pia says, prophetically, “This is the beginning of something good.” Indeed! This partnership is just beginning… Stay tuned.
Alex Pellini and Antonio Varia