Match of the week | Gnocchi with fresh tomato sauce and Barbera d'Asti

Match of the week

Gnocchi with fresh tomato sauce and Barbera d'Asti

A surprisingly good pairing I came across in a local Italian restaurant on Saturday night. The (admirably light) home-made gnocchi were dressed with a fresh tomato sauce with basil which I would have thought would have been overwhelmed by the firm, well-structured 13.5% Barbera the boys had ordered with it - a Ca’ del Matt 2002. (For preference I’d have drunk a dry Italian white such as a Soave.) But it was spot on - even better than it was with my main course of slow roast pork belly.

It could be that the primary fruit flavours, which had faded, were lifted by the acidity of the tomatoes. Or it could be yet another demonstration of just how food-friendly Italian wines are. Or rather New Zealand ones. On digging a bit further I discovered that the winemaker, Matt Thompson was a Kiwi! Suppose the name was a giveaway . . .

Image © Igor Dutina -

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