Most people can say they have a favorite place to eat. To the chagrin of my waistline, I must acknowledge that I have a few. Carmella’s Italian Bistro in Appleton, Wisconsin ranks high on my list of places to enjoy amazing food and I have promised myself to do a Platter Talk post dedicated solely to this wonderful, authentic Italian restaurant. First though comes their winemakers dinner with Anna Abbona of Marchesi di Barolo. About a month ago Carmella’s placed a notice on their facebook page, announcing a winemakers dinner. The event was limited to 25 attendees and before you could say Montepulciano I was on the phone with Simon of Carmella’s and he promised two seats, assuring me we were in for an amazing night. Once again, Carmella’s delivered in a big way as the evening was filled with sumptuous fare and exquisite wines from the Piedmont region of Italy
The evening was hosted by Anna Abbona who was accompanied by her daughter, 5th and 6th generation Italian winemakers. The Abbona clan has been making wine for over 80 years in the cellars of Marchesi di Barolo which have been producing wine for over 150 years. Having this mother and daughter team present to articulate the rich history of their family and the wine they have produced for generations made for an unforgettable night, replete of all things Italian. Carmella’s made the food, the Abbona family made the wine, and the two mixed together made for a gastronomical odyssey that was nothing short of magical.
Anna Abbona, second from left and daughter, second from right, with some of the winemaker dinner guests.