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BY ANTONIO GALLONI | JUNE 24, 2017
Scampi and pigeon: toast of scampi and smoked pigeon,
artichoke salad, suggestions of dill, citrus mayonnaise
Gnocchi; potato and lemon gnocchi, lentil purée, scallops,
Cold Spaghetti at 4,925km
Pork in two courses – roasted with sauerkraut purée,
anise sauce, horseradish, pak choi; Smoked pancetta, green apple and almond
Bronte pistachio soufflé, green tea, green apple smoothie,
ginger and celery
2009 Domaine Raveneau Chablis Chapelot 1er Cru
2004 Comm. G.B. Burlotto Barolo
A playground for adults and kids alike, Alto Adige offers
world-class skiing, superb cuisine and fabulous wines, all set against the striking
natural backdrop of Italy’s Dolomites. The Ciasa Salares hotel and its flagship
restaurant La Siriola are must-stops for readers seeking the very best in Alto Atesino hospitality.
The charming interior
of La Siriola
The Wieser family has run Ciasa Salares for several
generations. Inquisitive food lovers will find several restaurants ranging the
gamut from simple to elegant, a meat curing room, a cheese aging cellar, a
chocolate room, and, of course, an extensive selection of wines.
La Siriola’s selection
of homemade breads
Ciasa Salares and its restaurants stand apart from current
thinking in food in that both the menu and wine list are decidedly
international in spirit. A rich fabric of stylistic influences comes together
at La Siriola, where Chef Matteo Metullio’s daring cuisine attracts visitors
from around the world. A native of Trieste, Metullio honed his craft at a
number of top restaurants, including the nearby St. Hubertus, one of the most
famous restaurants in Italy. In 2013, at 24 years of age, Metullio became the
youngest Italian chef to hold a Michelin star. Today he still has a level of
child-like enthusiasm that is contagious.
Scampi and pigeon:
toast of scampi and smoked pigeon, artichoke salad, suggestions of dill, citrus
This recent dinner at La Siriola was truly exceptional.
Although I hate to make comparisons across countries and regions, I found this
meal much more satisfying than a dinner I had a three-star Michelin restaurant
in the US the week prior. Metullio
offers five thematic four-course tasting menus, along with a more comprehensive
eight-course menu as well as à la carte
dining. We opted for the ‘Larice’ menu, which is designed to as a marriage of
elements from the sea and land, and added the signature Spaghetti Freddo a 4,925km (Cold Spaghetti at 4,925km) as an extra
course at the suggestion of proprietor Stefan Wieser.
Gnocchi; potato and
lemon gnocchi, lentil purée,
The scampi and pigeon toast is a marriage of the pure (the
scampi) and more comfort food elements (the smoked pigeon toast). Both
components of the dish work amazingly well together, although the artichoke
salad, while tasty,
does not really add anything. Metullio’s gnocchi are off the charts. Soft and
incredibly delicious, the
gnocchi are sublime.
Cold Spaghetti at
La Siriola’s Cold Spaghetti at 4,925km is a work of culinary
brilliance that also embodies the spirit of Metullio’s cooking. The dish gets
its name from the total number of kilometers of distance between the La Siriola
and the places where the ingredients are sourced. Served cold, the spaghetti is
nevertheless full of beautifully delineated flavors.
Roasted pork with
sauerkraut purée, anise sauce, horseradish, pak
Pork served in two courses follows. The first preparation
consists of roasted pork with sauerkraut purée, anise sauce, horseradish, pak
choi. A morsel of smoked pork belly with green apple and almond follows.
La Siriola’s winelist is unusual in its focus on
international wines. We spent most of our week at La Siriola drinking German
and Austrian Riesling. On this night, I could not resist Raveneau’s 2009 Chablis Chapelot, a selection from Montée
de Tonerre that the domaine only bottles in some vintages. Silky, radiant and
wonderfully open-knit, the Chapelot is a gorgeous wine to follow during the
course of the evening. I don’t see it developing into a mythical bottle of
Chablis, but it is absolutely delicious on this night. Burlotto’s 2004 Barolo is a pure joy to taste and drink, as it is
just beginning to show the first signs of aromatic nuance. The 2004 is also a
poignant reminder of just how far the estate has come in recent years. Perfumed
and silky, as the 2004s are, Burlotto’s Barolo is satisfying without being
truly epic. It doesn’t matter. A more important wine might have dominated over
the food. On this night, the wines play more of a supporting role rather than the
lead, but it all works beautifully.
soufflé, green tea, green apple smoothie, ginger and celery
At this point, Metullio summons guests into the chocolate
room for a pre-dessert of freshly prepared mint ice cream on a stick covered
with chocolate, which makes for a wonderful palate cleaner. The Bronte
pistachio soufflé with green tea, green apple smoothie, ginger and celery is
eccentric and also a satisfying conclusion to this sublime dinner.
I have been visiting Alto Adige at least annually for close
to twenty years. I never tire of the breathtaking scenery, world-class food and
wine, and warm hospitality. Readers who want to discover the best Italy has to offer should be sure
to spend some time in this bucolic, fairy tale region in northern Italy steeped
in history and culture. La Siriola is a great place to explore the more ambitious side of Alto Adige. I
can’t recommend La Siriola and Ciasa Salares highly enough.