A Pear-Focused Pairing
Zuppa Toscana is the perfect starter to any dinner party for its gentle flavors, creamy texture, and inciting spice. It’s aromatic, it has a welcome warmth from the Italian sausage and red pepper, and it wakes up the palate just in time for the main course. But as the bowls of soup are passed around the table, don’t forget to uncork a bottle of Levendi’s 2021 Perspective Chardonnay. This wine pairs perfectly with Zuppa Toscana, sporting bold aromas of tropical fruit, kiwi, and tangerine that give way to layers of earthy pear on the palate. These bright notes mesh beautifully with the gentle flavors of the creamy soup, and it’s a combination that’s sure to wow the table.
1 lb hot Italian sausage
4 slices of bacon, cut into ½ inch pieces
1 large white onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 quarts chicken broth
4 medium Russet potatoes, cubed
1 cup heavy cream
1 bunch Tuscan or Lacinato kale, ribs removed, leaves sliced into ribbons
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Red pepper flakes, to taste
In a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, cook the Italian sausage until crumbling and no longer pink, about 15 minutes. Drain excess grease and set aside.
Reduce the heat to medium. Cook the bacon in the same Dutch oven until crisp, about 12 minutes. Drain, leaving only a tablespoon of leftover liquid at the bottom of the pan. Add the onions and garlic and cook until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes.
Pour the chicken broth into the Dutch oven with the bacon and onion mixture; bring to a boil over high heat. Add the potatoes and boil for 20 minutes, until they are fork-tender. Reduce the heat to medium and stir in the heavy cream and the cooked sausage, stirring to ensure the bottom doesn’t burn. Finish with the kale and nutmeg and cook until the kale is wilted, about 5 minutes. Let cool, serve, and enjoy with a glass of Levendi 2021 Perspective Chardonnay.