It is the most magical night of the year: behind the time that has already passed, ahead, in a whirlwind of new possibilities, there are the future days, a page yet to be written. This is why New Year's Eve is an anniversary loved by many people, the meeting point between the old and the new year, a moment to celebrate with good resolutions, bubbles and, of course, the inevitable dinner. A special occasion that Fattoria del Cerro celebrates with a gourmet dinner and live lounge music by a duo composed of sax and voice: an evening of conviviality hosted by Villa Grazianella.
To welcome 2023 in style, chef Stefano Azzi has already created a menu that combines Tuscan gastronomy with the mood and flavors of festive evenings: let's find out, on a journey through taste, course after course.
Between elegance and tradition: the menu of chef Stefano Azzi
It tells the story of the territory and does so in the name of rural traditions: the New Year's menu by chef Stefano Azzi focuses on authenticity and 0 km, elements that characterize the gastronomic offer of Villa Grazianella throughout the year and, if it is true that "A good start is half done", starting 2023 with taste is the best wish you can give yourself. “Whoever tastes my cuisine - underlines the chef - must feel good, regardless of the occasion". Here then is that the usual raw materials dress up and are transformed into a joy for the palate and for the heart: from the entrée to the dessert, Tuscan cuisine is revealed with timeless flavors and fragrances which, when combined, bring to the table the atmosphere of special days. Now is the time to discover the New Year's Eve 2022 menu.
Guests are welcomed by a great classic of the Tuscan tradition: a crouton of Verna bread accompanied by chicken liver sauce with dried figs in Vin Santo and a balsamic vinegar vinaigrette. This small entrèe is characterized by the liver sauce which, Stefano Azzi explains: “It is cooked with Vin Santo, just as it was used in the noble families of the province of Siena between 1500 and 1600. It is a symbol of the territory also the crouton, which is based on Verna wheat, a native flour of the province of Arezzo".
The gastronomic journey of chef Stefano Azzi continues with an appetizer of great chromatic impact that was born from a particular idea: "Since we had a very positive year for mushrooms - the chef specified - I thought of using them in combination with a flan of yellow pumpkin accompanied by a fondue of fresh pecorino cheese from Pienza.
To get to the heart of the New Year's dinner Stefano Azzi has chosen two great classics: "Tortellini in capon broth - he explains - are inevitable during the holidays: this year for the fresh pasta I thought of a classic Italian filling with Chianina , veal, herbs, mortadella, parmesan and eggs".
The risotto recipe, however, refers to the Chiantigiana tradition: "Carnaroli rice from Maremma - underlines the chef - in this case is combined with savoy cabbage and a fresh sausage from wild pigs reared in the Val di Chiana area. The soul of the dish, then, is a Sangiovese Poggio Miniera from the Monterufoli estate which replaces the Chianti traditionally used for this dish".
On New Year's Eve, tradition imposes it and Chef Stefano Azzi's menu also enhances it: we are talking about cotechino, in this case strictly from the Val di Chiana, stewed in the traditional way and served with stewed lentils. This cult New Year's Eve dinner dish is paired with a second specialty: "The second course, the most important - continues the chef - is a Chianina beef fillet accompanied with a very special seasoning, obtained by prolonged cooking of the veal bones with herbs and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano wine. The result of this long process is a sauce that enhances all the flavors and aromas of the wine".
The proposal for desserts brings everyone together and the holiday specials, such as pandoro and panettone, are combined with a selection of traditional Sienese desserts: in chef Azzi's proposal, ricciarelli, cavallucci and panforte are offered in a special reinterpretation that bears his signature. This is how the ricciarello becomes the characterizing element of a mousse, paired with a Vin Santo jelly. In the same way, the panpepato is worked so as to become the filling of a tart with orange custard: "A light and fragrant sauce - specifies the chef - that goes well with the spices and chocolate of the panpepato".
The third dessert in Stefano Azzi's palette is a walnut semifreddo with a double soul, garnished, in fact, with chestnut honey and a mango sauce: "A taste - specifies Azzi - which combines local flavors with a more exotic inspiration".
The specialty of Fattoria del Cerro: the wines
Naturally, the most special element of New Year's Eve at Relais Villa Grazianella is the wine: for the occasion we start with a Cerrus Brut classic method and continue with a Rosso di Montepulciano vintage 2021 and a Vino Nobile Silìneo from 2019 - awarded the Tre Bicchieri di Gambero Rosso - to conclude with a Ribolla Gialla from the Villa Russiz winery.
All in the name of a path designed to intertwine and enhance the flavors and aromas of special days. In summary, here is the refined menu:
Croutons of Verna bread, chicken liver sauce and dried figs in Vin Santo, balsamic vinegar vinaigrette
Pumpkin and mushroom flan with fresh Pienza pecorino cheese fondue
Tortellini in Capon Broth
Savoy cabbage and sausage risotto with Sangiovese Poggio Miniera
Cotechino from Val di Chiana and lentils
Chianina fillet with Vino Nobile di Montepulciano Fattoria del Cerro with baked potatoes
The palette of our desserts
Ricciarello di Siena mousse and Vin Santo Jelly
Panpepato tart and orange cream
Semifreddo with walnuts, mango sauce and chestnut honey
Celebrate New Year's Eve at Fattoria del Cerro
The dinner with live music at Villa Grazianella is part of the proposal that Fattoria del Cerro has developed for New Year's Eve 2022 and is open not only to customers who have chosen to stay on the Estate, but also to external customers, who can book their table by email or telephone contact.
All that remains is to let yourself be pampered by chef Stefano Azzi's dishes: don't you already want to toast?