There’s a booming appreciation for fine wines in Manila, a growing hunger among Manileños to know more about wines from the winemakers themselves. In the case of Menhir Salento, they introduced their Italian wines via a 4 hands wine pairing dinner with Chef Jessie Sincioco and Chef Musaro Rocco Roberto.
Vini Menhir Salento S.r.l., founded by Gaetano Marangelli in 2005, showcases the terroir of the Southern part of the Puglia Region in the extreme southeastern tip of Italy, specifically the Minervino di Lecce-Maglie-Otranto area.
Chef Roberto transports us to Puglia with a taste of Origano Osteria restaurant, owned by the Menhir Salento winery, in Minervino di Lecce.
Italian wines are designed for food pairing. Menhir Salento makes it both interesting and delightful to savor the authentic flavors of the Italian region where a particular wine was produced.
The Special Dinner by Chef Musaro Rocco Roberto & Chef Jessie Sincioco was held on 12th June at Chef Jessie Rockwell Club.
Dinner started with Chef Jessie’s Ciabatta Bread, Rolls, Butter & Special Dip.
Calamaro, Coulis di Pomodoro, Polvere di Capperi e Alghe by Chef Roberto
The squid was cooked medium with seaweeds and light tomato sauce.
Negroamaro Rosato “Novementi” IGP Salento Menhir Salento
The Calamaro is nicely paired with this light, fruity rosé wine with a dry finish that does not overpower the flavor of the squid.
Tubettino, Fagioli, Cozze, Gamberi e Pecorino by Chef Roberto
Love this small tube pasta with beans, mussels and shrimp in a light soup.
Fiano “Pass-O” Bio IGP Puglia Menhir Salento (vegan)
I love organic wines like this, brimming with earthy character but still very drinkable. It also pairs nicely with seafood.
This is my favorite wine of the night.
Filetto di Spigola in Zuppa Mediterranea by Chef Roberto
I like my seabass cooked just right—easy to slice, still juicy inside. The tomato Mediterranean soup is a nice complement.
Negroamaro “N.0” IGP Salento Menhir Salento
Numero Zero is 100% Negroamaro grape varietal with soft tannins and sweet notes. Very drinkable, it pairs well with seafood despite its being red.
Dalandan-Mint Sorbet by Chef Jessie
A classic palate cleanser to prepare you for the main meal Chef Jessie-style.
Grilled U.S. Black Angus Fillet Mignon in Morel Sauce served with a timbale of wild & brown rice vegetable risotto and steamed asparagus spears by Chef Jessie
The Fillet Mignon is wrapped in bacon and served with a sauce made from our favorite mushroom—Morel—served with a side of wild and brown rice mixed with vegetables.
Primitivo “Quota 29” IGP Salento Menhir Salento
The Quota 29 is medium bodied with 100% Primitivo grape varietal. I still prefer to pair steak with a bolder Cab Sav.
We actually love the entire dinner, from perfectly cooked seafood and pasta with the right wine pairing to the beautiful steak main dish.
Mango Panna Cotta by Chef Jessie
It’s one of the best panna cotta we’ve tasted and we like that it is not too sweet but still so creamily good you can’t help but go back for more.
Aleatico “D’Alesio” Passito IGP Puglia Menhir Salento
A good dessert wine but a bit too sweet for me.
Congratulations to Chef Jessie, Chef Roberto and Miriam Daniele, owner (with her husband) and brand ambassador of MenhirSalento for an awesome collaboration dinner and bringing the flavors of Southeastern Italy to Manila’s wine crowd!
For the whole month of June, Chef Jessie Rockwell Club will only serve the wines of Iphor, the exclusive distributor of MenhirSalento wines.
I highly recommend the Pass-O and the No. Zero wines for your next wine dinner.
Chef Jessie Rockwell Club
Ground Level, Amorsolo Square, 23 Amorsolo Drive, Rockwell Center
Live an Awesome Life,
Disclosure: Our meal was courtesy of Chef Jessie. I wrote this article with my biases, opinions, and insights.
P.S. Did you know that the Pope raves about the No. Zero wine according to Chef Jessie who got a chance to serve him on his last visit to Manila?