Piedmont cuisine: a universal language


Piedmontese is a language most Australians are probably unfamiliar with: the Italian region of Piedmont is probably better known for its French and Swiss influenced food and fine wine.

The name Piedmont is derived from Medieval Latin, and means “at the foot of the mountains.”In winter, snow covered Alps envelope the region on all three sides and hover above its 4.4 million residents. The Piedmont countryside traverses rugged massif peaks, damp rice paddies, open plains, and has the largest glaciers in all of Italy.

In the region’s capital, Turin – also known as the Italian car manufacturing capital – you will find the two specialties, fondue and bagna cauda. These warm dips make use of the highly esteemed Alba white truffle and seasonal raw vegetables.

Lowland Piedmont is rich in agricultural and produces cereals, rice, maize, fruit and milk. More than half of the region’s 700 square kilometres are covered with vineyards responsible for producing some of the finest red wines in Italy: Barolo, Barbaresco, Gattinara, Ghemme, Nebbiolo, Freisa, Grignolino, Barbera, and Dolcetto.  

A glass of 2010 Dolcetto d’Alba – Prunotto is the perfect accompaniment for Bar Alto’s Piedmont regional lunch menu, offering beef short ribs braised in red wine with buckwheat polenta and mixed boiled meats in traditional sauce.

We think the new menu is cause for the expression, “Countach” – an exclamation of surprise and appreciation in the Piemontese dialect.