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Italian Pinks, Sardinian Native Grapes, and Gamberi all'Aglio #ItalianFWT

Lauren of The Swirling Dervish is hosting the Italian Food Wine Travel bloggers for August. She's asked us to look at Rosato wines. You can read her invitation here - where she details some Italian pinks from the Northeast, Northwest, Central, and Southern.

If you are reading this early enough, feel free to join us for a live Twitter chat on Saturday, August 1st. Follow the hashtag #ItalianFWT and be sure to add that to any tweets you post so that we can see it, too. All of these posts will be live between Friday, July 31st and early morning on August 1st.

Italian Pinks

This has definitely been the summer of pink wine for me. And I love any excuse to try a bottle from Italy. Anywhere in Italy. So, I poured and paired Italian pinks: Mastroberardino Lacrimarosa Rosato 2018, from Campania, and Cantele Negroamaro Rosato 2018, from Apulia. Tasting notes and pairings coming soon on these. Stay tuned.

But first just a few thoughts about Rosato. Whether it's Rosé, Rosado (in Spain), Rosato (in Italy) - these terms all refer to pink wine. And they are all made in the same way. All pink wines are made from red grape varietals with the shade of pink determined by a number of factors, including how long the grapes are macerated in their skins and the coloring capabilities of the varietal. 

Though these wines are made all around the country, Italian pinks may not be specifically labeled Rosato. For example a typical pink wine from Lombardy or the Veneto might be labeled Chiaretto. 

The #ItalianFWT bloggers explored Chiaretto in July 2018 when I posted Chiaretto Poured with Local Catches

Earlier this year, in May 2020, the #WinePW bloggers focused on skin-fermented wines. For that event, I poured a Ramato which is a typical pink from Friuli Venezia Giulia. 

Finally another typical Rosato is the Cerasuolo of Abruzzo or Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo. Four years ago, in August 2016, the #ItalianFWT looked at Rosato also. I paired Pizza con Patate {Gluten-free} + Cantina Zaccagnini Cerasuolo d'Abruzzo Rosé.

Sardinian Native Grapes

Today, I'm sharing a bottle of Argiolas Serra Lori Rosato 2017 from Sardinia. I wrote about my birthday adventure to Sardinia in a post from May 2018: From Sardinia to the Land Down Under. That was from my twenty-fourth birthday and I'm pushing fifty. So, you can tell how long ago that trip was. But it was cemented in my memory as one of the most relaxing places I've ever been. And if  I can't be on an Italian island vacation - especially with us entering our twentieth week of being sheltered in place from the coronavirus pandemic - I can at least drink some wine from one of my favorite islands, right?!

One of the things I loved learning about Argiolas is that they focus on using native grape varietals.  Antonio Argiolas, who passed away in 2009 at the age of 102, had inherited fewer than ten acres of vines from his father in 1938. Now the estate has grown to over 600 acres with vines located  in the Trexenta hills just north of Cagliari, Sardinia's capital city. In the 1980s, Antonio's sons Franco and Giuseppe replanted the vineyards to focus exclusively on Sardinia's native grapes, primarily Nuragus, Monica, and Cannonau.

The name 'Isola dei Nuraghi' refers to the conical stone towers that dot the Sardinian coastline, standing stalwart in strategic locations around the island for defense. Constructed between 1900 BC and 730 BC, the Nuraghi are so representative of this period that it has come to be known as the Nuragic Age. However, few non-Italians are familiar with the term. In fact, I loved hiking around Torre di Longonsardo in Santa Teresa di Gallura and had no idea what that structure was called!

Serra Lori is a dry rosato blended from Cannonau, Monica, Carignano, and Bovale Sardo grown in the Guamaggiore and S'elegas vineyards. The grapes are macerated on their skins for three to four hours before being vinified completely in stainless steel tanks; the resulting color is a deep, vibrant salmon shade. So beautiful.

Gamberi all'Aglio

When I was deciding on a pairing, I was fixated on that seafood pink color. And I happened to have some shrimp from the market. Gamberi all'Aglio it was. It's quick, simple, and bursting with flavor. I mentioned it was simple, right? That's a must for summer dinner al fresco.

Ingredients serves 4 to 6

  • 1 to 1-1/2 pounds large shrimp, deveined but still with the peel on
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 to 10 large cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons wine (I used some of the Rosato)
  • freshly ground salt, as needed
  • freshly ground pepper, as needed


Remove the dark intestinal vein from the shrimp, but leave the peel on as much as possible.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add in the garlic. Sauté gently until the garlic softens but is not browned, approximately 2 minutes. Stir in the shrimp and cook until just opaque, approximately 1 to 2 minutes per side. Pour in the wine and simmer to let the alcohol evaporate.

Stir the shrimp to coat completely with the sauce. Serve immediately. 

I served the shrimp over rice with various bruschette - one with traditional pesto and fresh mozzarella, one with a fresh tomato-basil salad, and one with an artichoke pesto and a dollop of mascarpone.

That's a wrap for our Rosato event. Next month Katarina of Grapevine Adventures is hosting and the #ItalianFWT will be looking at sustainability and climate change. Stay tuned for her invitation post. Soon. Cin cin!


  1. I seriously need to try this wine...I actually didn't even know that Argiolas made a rosato! I currently sell their vermentino and Cannonau but had no idea about this...I may have to cross a few borders to find it though! ;) Your shrimp looks equally as amazing!

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting! Definitely track it down if you have a chance.

  2. Looks like Rosato is a recurring theme that the bloggers love. Also this Serra Lori Rosato seems very intereting as a blend of Cannonau, Monica, Carignano, and Bovale Sardo. So far until now, this is the only Rosato with multiple grapes.

  3. Love the way you've connected this Serra Lori Rosato to your Sardinian adventure decades ago. Sounds like a return trip is in order - if and when all this madness ends. Sigh.

  4. That looks delicious. It's funny you said he was 102 as I read once that the residents of Sardinia have a higher average age than most. Must be something in the water or wine!

    1. Yes, there are certain villages in Sardinia that are part of the Blue Zone, where an inordinate number of people live to be over 100! I just bought a cookbook from the five blue zones around the world and it's fascinating.

  5. Your lead photo is magazine worthy with all the shades and textures of pink! What jumps out at me (besides that photo and your shrimp dish) is just how much I don't know about Italian wine and the places grapes are grown in Italy. The Sardinian Nuraghi must be a sight.

  6. There is so much great pink wine out there! I definitely need to find some from Sardinia. You trip sounds like it was amazing and look! The memories created a virtual getaway for you and all your readers!

  7. I'm stealing your recipe for my next batch of shrimp! So easy and delicious. And I can't wait to read about your pairing for the Cantele Negroamaro: I tried that wine too, and am sure your dish will do it justice.

  8. I love the idea of matching up the color of the wine with the color of the shrimp and it looks like such a wonderful combo!

  9. Delicious food and recipes as always Cam...I need to get a hold of that rosé wine from Sardinia...sounds fab. :-)

  10. With a few of our fellow #ItalianFWT bloggers writing about the Cantele Negroamaro Rosato, I'm intrigued by that wine. Your shrimp dish looks aaaamazing!

  11. I know very little about Sardinian wine so will definitely check out your other post as well. And love that mentioned the Cantele rosato. Love their wines and Paolo Cantele is just an awesome guy so love the support for him and his family.


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