DrGrayBeard !

Hello there !

This is my blog about Italian wines and Cuisine .

 I’m Daniele Matteo, Blogger/Wine Broker and this is my humble effort at blogging.  I am a kind of self proclaimed connoisseur of Italian wines. I am Bilingual: Italian/Spanish-English. I love ‘ la Cucina Mediterranea ‘ and Italian Wines. I love to cook, so a page has been dedicated to simple recipes of Italy. I enjoy the company of good old friends and I love The Beatles, Saturday-nite-fever, The Bee-Gees etc. Salute !

I love writing about Italian wines from different wine producing regions of Italy. In this blog, I will be writing about various kinds of Italian wines, grapes and  some methods used to make such great and fantastic wines.

I have been thinking about a website dedicated mainly to the great Italian Wines. So finally, I dreamed up this Website, in  which I will try to present my take, on various Italian Wines, my Wine tasting escapades , Wine producing  regions of Italy and the grapes, the processes etc., used for this.

Italy is one of the well known producers of premium Wines: Red, Whites, Spumante and Proseccos.

I really don’t have any specific favorite region to talk about. Each region, be it North-West, or North-East, Central, including Tuscany, and South: Campania, Puglia e Calabria, including  the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, has it’s own special wines and products.

I plan on blogging about each one of them, in due time.



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I’ve been Blogging about Italian Foods and Wines for about one year now, and some of you faithful readers, still wonder what some terms mean when designating a particular product.

 Here’s a brief explanation of what they mean. Italian Government and European Commission give certain Designations to some Products of a specific Region. For example Mozzarella di Bufala Campana, is given DOP: which means ‘Denominazione di Origine Protetta’. This means that it is protected from counterfeit  mozzarella from other zones in the world. Also Chianti wines DOC: Denominazione di Origine Controllata, means ‘wine made from at least 85% sangiovese grapes in the town of Chianti, Florence, Italy. Chianti California is NOT Chianti DOC !

Similarly Brunello di Montalcino is designated DOCG – Denominazione di Origine Controllata and Garantita. It is made with 100% sangiovese grapes, and applies only to the producers in the town of Montalcino, Italy. Also, Taurasi DOC, a red wine made in the Province of Avellino, Campania, with 100% Aglianico, grapes ! IGT, on the other hand, refers to many fine local wines da Tavola It means: Indicazione Geografica Tipica. Specific to that town! Vernaccia di San Gimignano was the first white wine to receive DOCG Denomination in 1966. Today thre are more than 350 Zones, designated as: DOC/DOCG, and IGT for wines and DOP: Denominazione di Origine Protetta for other foods and products!

 Although sometimes producers stray from the requirements and do incur penalties! Italy boasts thousands of vine varieties and producers like to plant Indigenous vines to make unique wines. These vines varietals are found only in Italy and nowhere else in the world! In Italy they are called Autoctone. Have you heard of Soave outside Italy? What about Trebbiano? Uva di Troia? Malvasia? Cerasuolo? Primitivo? Coda di Volpe?

 Italy also makes a great amount of white wines. They vary from light and fruity to Barrel-matured ones, which can last for years! Some Regions in the North are known for their bubbly wines. They can be lightly fizzy, fruity or the full Sparkling Spumante, known in France as Champagne! 

It is made in two ways:

By seal-tank Charmant Method or Bottle-Fermented: Metodo Classico Tradizionale! The consumers in America and other parts of the world may be overwhelmed with all these choices! This is where DrGraybeard.com comes in. I want to explain in plain English the nuances of the varieties of wines from each Region of Italy! The better informed you are the more you enjoy your selection!

Salute! Cheers! Cin-Cin!-(c) Daniele Matteo : Food and Wine Editor 2014.



With Joe Chirico, the owner of Marco Polo Ristorante in Carroll Gardens,  Brooklyn, N.Y.

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Wine/Cheese Pairings

Mild soft cheeses: Bel Paese, Stracchino, Mozzarella di Bufala, Ricotta:
Wines: Light to medium-bodied whites: such as Orvieto, Frascati, Soave, Lugana, Albana di Romagna. Alcamo Bianco, Ischia Bianco, Sauvignon,  Verdicchio. Light ripened or seasoned cheeses such as Fontina, Caciotta, Robiola, Provola, Burrata.
Roses or light reds. Such as Bardolino, Garda Chiaretto, Dolcetto di Dogliano, Grignolino,  Marzemino, Rosato di Salento.
Ripe or medium-aged cheeses: Grana Padano, Parmigiano Reggiano,   Pecorino Toscano, Pecorino Sardo, Santiago and Cacicavallo : Pairing with robust midium-aged reds: Such as Barbaresco,  Barolo, Barbera, Brunello di Montalcino, Taurasi, Aglianico del Vulture,  Lagrein, Teroldego Rotaliano.
For sharp and very ripe cheeses: Such as Bitto, Sharp Provolone,  Gorgonzola,  Pecorino Siciliano, Ragusano and Pecorino Romano : Pairing with a variety of dry full-bodied wines , such as Amarone della Valpolicella,  Sagrantino, Primitivo di Manduria, Marsala Vergine, Vernaccia di Oristano. Also sweet wines such as Recioto di Soave, Vin Santo, Aleatico or Picolit.  Salute! Cheers!
(C)- Daniele Matteo,  Food and Wine Editor- 2014.
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 Here’s a suggestion of some :    Food and Wine Pairing for Appetizers:
Asparagus with butter and parmigiano cheese  -: Collio Sauvignon wine.
Raw vegetables dipped into hot Olive oil,  garlic and anchovies  -:  Barbera d’Asti.
Bresaola – sliced dried beef of Valtellina’  -: Valtellina Rosso.
Carpaccio – sliced raw veal with shavings of mushrooms and Grana Padano cheese  -:  Colli Euganei Merlot
Crostini di Fegato – chicken liver pate’ on crisp bread  -: Chianti Colli Fiorentini.
Fiori di zucchini fritti – fried zucchini flowers  -:  Orvieto Classico.
Frutti di Mare – Seafood salad  -: Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi Classico.
Granseola Veneziana- spider crab minced with Olive oil, pepper, lemon and served on its shell  -:  Soave Classico Superiore.
Mozzarella in Carrozza – breaded and fried sandwich of Buffalo Mozzarella and anchovies  -:  Greco di Tufo.
Ostriche – raw oysters  -:  Gavi
Peperonata – stewed peppers  – :  Cerasuolo di Vittoria.
Prosciutto. San Daniele con fichi – San Daniele prosciutto with figs -: Colli Orientali del Friuli,  Friulano.
Next I’ll talk about pairing with Primi: First Course. Read on …….
Daniele Matteo,  Editor.  2015.
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Primi Piatti (First course), Wine pairing

Bucatini alla Mantriciana – Bucatini pasta with salt pork, chili peppers, tomatoes and grated
Romanocheese -:  Montepulciano d’Abruzzo.
Cassola – Spicy Sardinian fish soup with crustaceans and mollusks- : Vermentino di Gallura.
Crespelle con ricotta e spinaci – Crepes rolled and stuffed with ricotta and spinach -: Trentino Chardonnay
Fettuccine al Burro – egg noodles with butter,  cream and grated Parmesan cheese – : Frascati Superiore.
Gnocchi di Patate con ragu’ – potato gnocchi with meat sauce and grated cheese -: Valpolicella Classico Superiore.
Lasagne Al Forno – Lasagna with meat baked is the oven -: Rosso Piceno.
Orecchiette con cime di rape – Orecchiette with turnips,  garlic and chili peppers -: Castel del Monte Rosato.
Panissa – Piemontese risotto with red beans and pork – : Monferrato Barbera.
Pasta e fagioli – Bean soup and pasta -: Friuli Grave Merlot
Ribollita – Tuscan vegetable-bean soup with bread and extra virgin olive oil -: Morellino di Scansano.
Risotto alla Certosina – rice with crayfish,  frogs,  perch, vegetables and mushrooms -: Oltrepo’ Pavese Pinot Bianco.
Tortelli di Zucca – egg  pasta envelopes filled with pumpkin and topped with Grana Padanocheese-: Lugana Superiore.
Tortellini in Brodo – stuffed egg pasta rolls in Capon broth topped with parmesan cheese -: Albana di Romagna Secco.
Spaghetti alla Carbonara – spaghetti with salt pork, eggs, peppers and grated Romano cheese -: Velletri Rosso.
Spaghetti con Le vongole veracity – Spaghetti with baby clams sauteed with Olive oil, garlic and parsley -: Ischia Biancolella
This concludes my suggestion for Primi Piatti. First Course. Read next my suggestion for Secondi :  Main Course. 
BuonAppetito! Salute!
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Second I Piatti (Main Course), Wine Pairings.

Abbacchio alla Cacciatora – baby lamb cooked with rosemary, garlic and anchovies -: Cerveteri Rosso.
Arista di Maiale – pork loin roast with rosemary, garlic and wild fennel -:Vino Nobile di Montepulciano
Baccala’ alla Vicentina – dried cod cooked with milk, onions, anchovies and parmesan cheese  -: Colli Berici Friulano Rosso.
Brasato al Barolo – beef braised in Barolo wine – : Barolo.
Bollito Misto – beef, veal,  hen and sausage simmered and served with salsa verde: piquant green -: Colli Piacentini Gutturnio.
Branzino al Forno – Baked sea bass – : Collio Bianco Riserva.
Fritto Misto di Pesce – crisp fried shrimp  squid and other fresh fish -: Trentino Sauvignon
Melanzane alla Parmigiana – eggplant baked with tomatoes, Buffalo Mozzarella and parmesan -: Vesuvio Rosato.
Pollo alla Diavola – spicy charcoal chicken, grilled -: Rosso Conero.
Porceddu – suckling piglet roasted on a spit at an open hearth -: Cannonau di Sardegna Secco.
Scampi alla Griglia- charcoal grilled scampi with lemon and herbs -: Friuli Isonzo Sauvignon
Trota al Burro – Brook trout pan roasted with butter and herbs -: Alto Adige Muller Thurgau.
Vitello Tonnato – cold veal slices with creamy tuna sauce and capers -: Franciacorta Brut Millesimato.
This concludes my series on Wine/ Food pairings.
This is only a small list but hopefully you get the idea. Remember Italian foods are very simple and you are encouraged to experiment with different wines.
BuonAppetito! Salute!
(C) Daniele Matteo,  Food and Editor- 2015.
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Italian Wines – The story behind the success.

(C) Daniele Matteo,  Food and Editor- 2015.
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 Daniele Matteo, Long Island
Daniele Matteo at the vineyard in North Fork, Long Island, New York.

16 comments to DrGrayBeard !

  • daniele  says:

    Finalmente ecco DrGraybeard.com, soon I will start Blogging about the Great Wines of Italy! Your suggestions are Welcome! Thank you Sam – IT Mgr – for your hard Work! – Daniele Matteo – Blogger/ Wine Broker. Apr. 19, 2013

  • daniele  says:

    I have left a comment for Sam. Thank You! for your hard Work. –
    Daniele Matteo Blogger/Wine Broker. Apr. 19, 2013

  • Gaurav  says:

    Good work Sam ! !

  • Leo  says:

    Daniele finalmente ne hai azzeccata una buona. Ci voleva una Pagina che parla dei nostri vini Italiani che sono l’Occhio all’Occhiello del Made in Italy!
    Auguri! Che Dio ti benedica! Tuo caro amico Leo Isufi, Paramus , New Jersey, USA Apr. 27, 2013
    Congratz is in order for your endeavor to spread appreciation for Fine Italian Wines, in the world of cyberspace!

    Welcome to Internet!

  • Leo  says:

    Auguri! Congratulations Daniele on your New Endeavor! Best Wishes, Leo and Virginia Isufi.

  • gino  says:

    Hey danny ! like the layout of your website

    best wishes,
    your friend

  • gino  says:


  • Fernando Morro  says:

    Caro Daniele, the website looks absolutely great!
    Keep up the good work!
    All the best and tons of congratulations!

    best wishes,

  • Concetta matteo  says:

    Very impressive Website !!
    This is my recipe of Chicken Cacciatore.
    All my recipes are totally authentic and exclusive
    with lots of love, the main Ingredient!!
    Ciao for now !!!

  • Concetta Matteo  says:

    Ciao Cari Amici Miei!
    Hello my dear friends!
    I have added more delicious recipes..
    I am a woman that loves to cook…

  • google  says:

    Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. [[” ]

  • Marisa principato  says:

    Ha lo conni ti ho trovato finalmente baci

  • Ralph Contini  says:

    Congratulations on your excellent website and most importantly highlighting the best of Italian Wine and Cuisine.

  • Cipriano Michele  says:

    Forse pecco di campanilismo : ma,a mio avviso, i migliori vini sono quelli nostrani Irpini DOC, quali Taurasi, Fiano di Avellino, Greco di Tufo. Per quanto concerne la dieta, la migliore è quella MEDITERRANEA, che tutti gli americani dovrebbero conoscere ed apprezzare, perchè scoperta da un medico americano a Pioppi, nel Cilento, osservando la presenza di molti vecchi oltrecentenari : Essa poggia su cibi che la natura spontaneamente produce : il grano con i suoi derivati,il vino, l’olio di oliva, gli agrumi, ceci, fagioli, fave, lenticchie ed ogni specie di frutta e verdura che nasce dalla terra senza veleni nè concimi.

  • Daniele Matteo  says:

    I want to emphasize that the purpose of this website is mostly directed towards the younger generations the so-called (Millennial generation ). These intelligent and curious young people will hopefully be very much interested in learning more about Italian enogastronomia that is Italian wines and Foods. Your Comments are welcome. Buon Appetito! Cheers! Daniele Matteo, Editor of DrGraybeard.com

  • Concetta matteo  says:

    Congratulations, very informative and essential in educating people as to the different types of wine.
    Buona salute !

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