Drunken Pasta Sangiovese

by Cooks&Books&Recipes

Drunken Pasta Sangiovese shown with Alcantara Sangiovese

Drunken Pasta Sangiovese shown with Alcantara Sangiovese

When we recently received a bottle of Alcantara Vineyards 2006 Sangiovese from friends as a gift, I immediately knew what I wanted to do with it.


Well, other than uncork the bottle and pour a glass to drink? That was definitely going to happen. But first, I wanted to cook with it. Yes, you read that right: I wanted to use this excellent wine in a meal, as well as with a meal.

If you've never tried making Drunken Pasta (Spaghetti All'Ubriaco), you owe it to yourself to try it. The pasta cooks in Chianti, absorbing a bit of the wine's taste, bouquet, and color. And since Chianti is required to be produced with at least 80% Sangiovese grapes, I like to finish off the dish with an excellent bottle of Sangiovese such as this one from Alcantara Vineyards. And then I pour a glass to enjoy with the meal.

Drunken Pasta Sangiovese
Servings: 4-6

1 pound thick spaghetti
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves (=1 teaspoon) minced garlic
1 teaspoon (or to taste) red pepper flakes
1 bottle inexpensive (but good & drinkable) red wine, like Chianti Classico
1 pour (6 oz.) quality Sangiovese
Pine nuts, toasted*
Sage leaves, pan-fried*

1. Add a dash of salt and a splash of olive oil to a large pot of water; bring the water to a boil. When the water boils, add the pasta; cook for 5 minutes (or approximately halfway through the required cooking time), stirring occasionally.

2. In the meantime, melt 1 tbsp butter and ½ cup olive oil in a deep skillet. Add garlic and red pepper, turn heat under skillet to high. When the garlic begins to brown, add the full bottle of chianti; bring to a boil and cook until reduced somewhat.

3. Drain pasta and add it to the wine mixture. Cook on high, stirring occasionally, until the wine is absorbed.

4. Add 1 tbsp butter, 6 oz. Sangiovese, and toss. When the wine/butter mixture has glazed the pasta, serve into individual bowls. Top with toasted pine nuts and pan-fried sage leaves.

* For the pine nuts and sage leaves, pour olive oil into a small skillet, add a handful of pine nuts, and sauté until brown. Remove from pan. Add more olive oil to one inch and heat. Add the sage leaves and cook quickly, about 15 seconds. They should not turn brown. Remove with a slotted spoon. The sage leaves will turn crispy when they cool.

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