The remarkable canals of Venice, historic Palladian villas of Vicenza, and medieval beauty of Verona all help to make Veneto one of the most spectacular and alluring regions in Italy. And perhaps just as alluring is the region’s centuries-old culinary and wine-growing traditions, which have given us beloved Italian dishes like risotto, polenta and risi e bisi as well as incredible wines like merlot and prosecco.
Risotto is a quintessential Italian dish that has its roots in Lombarde, Italy and is now one of the most common ways to prepare rice in Italy. Risotto’s creamy consistency sets it apart from other rice dishes and its versatility means it can be served in a number of different varieties like risotto alla milanese, risotto alla zucca, and risotto al nero di seppia.
Risi e bisi is a creamy rice dish cooked with rice and peas that has a more soup-like consistency than traditional risotto dishes. It’s often prepared throughout Veneto in celebration of Saint Mark’s feast day and is mainly enjoyed in the springtime. The soup is so thick that it appears to be a risotto, but is in fact meant to be served and eaten with a spoon.
Polenta is another widely popular dish from Veneto which holds a rich history in Italy and is still enjoyed by countless people today. This boiled cornmeal dish is simple in terms of ingredients, but takes a long time to cook and requires constant stirring. Different forms of grain mush, similar to polenta, have been eaten in Italy since Roman times and the dish was often eaten by members of the lower class as cornmeal was often all they could afford. Polenta can be enjoyed as a porridge or can be left to solidify as a loaf, and in the Venetian tradition it is prepared with cuttle fish and tomato broth.
And let’s not forget about tiramisu. Although the exact origin of this delicious coffee-flavoured dessert is often disputed, most people believe that it has its roots in Treviso, Italy in the Veneto region. Tiramisu is made by dipping lady’s fingers biscuits into coffee and layering them with a mascarpone cheese mixture and cocoa, and is enjoyed in many different ways by people all over the world.
In addition to incredible food and dessert dishes, Veneto is a very significant wine-growing region and is recognized for producing some of the best wines in the world. It is perhaps best known for producing Merlot and Prosecco, although a number of other popular wines are also produced throughout the region.
Merlot is one of the most popular varieties of red wine and the dark grape was first found in Italy near Venice around 1855. Prosecco on the other hand, is a famous Italian white wine that can be either sparkling or still. Some people may know Prosecco as the main ingredient in Bellini cocktails, while others may know it as a great alternative to champagne.
The Culinary Tour of Veneto with Massimo Capra will bring all of the very best food and wine from Veneto into the Rainbow Room’s incredible Fallsview dining room. This special evening is taking place on November 18, 2016 and both hotel stay packages and dinner-only tickets can be reserved at www.fallsavenueresort.com/culinary.