Riva Leone Barbera DOCG wine and pizza pairing recipe

pizza-flatBuffalo Mozzarella & Fresh Porcini Pizza


•3 thin pizza crusts 12” each (pre-made)
• 1 1/4 pounds fresh porcini or baby bella mushrooms,sliced 1/4 inch thick
• 9 tablespoons olive oil, divided
• 5 – 8 ounce balls water-packed buffalo mozzarella cheese or fresh mozzarella cheese, drained, cut into 1/4 inch thick rounds
• 4 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
• fresh basil leaves (for garnish)


Preheat oven to 450 °F. Sprinkle 3 large rimless baking sheets with flour. Place 1 pizza crust on each prepared sheet (can be a pizza or baking stone).  Place porcini in bowl; sprinkle with 3 tablespoons oil, salt, and pepper; toss. Arrange 1/3 of cheese and 1/3 porcini on each pizza crust. Drizzle each with 2 tablespoons oil; sprinkle with thyme.

Bake pizzas until crusts are brown at edges and crisp on bottom, about 20 minutes. Transfer pizzas to work surface. Cut pizzas into wedges and serve. Yields three 12 inch pizzas.   Recipe adapted from Bon Appètit, October 2005.

Piemonte-Barbera-wine-bottleRiva Leone
Barbera DOCGFruity
Piedmont, Italy

DougFrost“The Barbera grape, once ubiquitous as a carafe wine in Milan’s cafes, has grown into one of the stars of the modern Italian wine scene.  Powerfully fruity, with rich cherry and raspberry notes, it finishes with a tangy, lip-smacking edge along with some herbs and mint. Really fun wine.” – Doug Frost, Master Sommelier and Master of Wine.

Winemaker: Giovanni Alessandria
Appellation: Piedmont, Italy
Varietal Blend:  100% Barbera
Analysis: 13.5% alc/vol

Pairing recipe with Riva Leone Cortese wine

salmon_toastSmoked Salmon, Fennel & Goat Cheese Toasts

• 8 oz soft fresh goat cheese
• 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, finely crushed
• 1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
• 1 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
• 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel
• 30 thin slices French-bread baguette
• 2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
• 12 oz thinly sliced smoked salmon
• Lemon peel strips (for garnish)
• Tarragon sprigs (for garnish)

Preheat oven to 350°F. Mix first 5 ingredients in small bowl to blend. Set aside.
Brush oil over both sides of bread. Arrange bread in single layer on large baking sheet. Bake until bread is just crisp, about 5 minutes per side. (Cheese mixture and toasts can be made 2 days ahead. Cover cheese mixture and chill. Cool toasts; store airtight at room temperature.)  Spread cheese mixture over toasts. Top with salmon, trimming to fit. Garnish with lemon peel strips and tarragon sprigs. Arrange on platter and serve. Recipe compliments of Bon Appétit, December 1999

RivaLeone_Gavi_wine_bottleRiva Leone
Cortese DOCGSilky_Sticker
Gavi, Italy

Today old vine growers of Piedmont still tell the story of the shrewd and tenacious fine-wine trader who operated in the hills around Alba in the 19th and 20th centuries. His name was Riva Leone and he was a pretty extravagant character. It is said that, whenever a wine pleased him during a tasting, he would call out in the way that was typical for that time: Marca Leone! Riva-Leone_winemaker-GiovanniThe Piedmont people’s enthusiasm for wine never faded over all these years and today it is still intact. And that is why Riva Leone today boasts a range of fine Piedmont wines. Cortese di Gavi or known simply as Gavi, derives it name from the town at the center of it’s production zone. Cortese, the local variety of the grape style, production dates back to 1876 and was awarded DOC status in 1974 and DOCG in 1998.

Winemaker: Giovanni Alessandria
Appellation: Gavi, Italy
Varietal Blend:  100% Gavi
Analysis: 12.5% alc/vol