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It is a competition within the competition.

“A tavola con il Nobile” is a wine&food challege created in 2003 by Bruno Gambacorta (italian TG2 reporter) with the Consorzio del Vino Nobile di Montepulciano that precedes the historical local competition called “Bravìo delle Botti”: a race with barrels along the old town of Montepulciano in Tuscany (see the video here), a challenge among the 8 districts of the town which takes place the last week end of August.

Bravio delle botti

A tavola con il Nobile takes place the week end before the Bravìo delle Botti and so, this year, has been held on the 19th and 20th of August when each district has prepared a recipe based on this edition theme: the pecorino cheese.

I have partecipated this year for the first time and it has been an exciting experience especially considering the cohesion and the successful communication that involves the entire territory thanks to the combination of special wine and food products, traditions and history.

20 among critics and journalists have been grouped in smaller teams coordinated by a President and lead by a memner of the consorzio and have tasted the all dishes between Saturday at dinner and Sunday at lunch time. One variation: one of the team has made its tour by bike (thanks to Urban Bikery), supported by the cheer of the tourists! Here we are!

From the left – (da sinistra): Giovanni Berera, Claudio Zeni – President, Elvia Gregorace, Alessandro Maurilli – consorzio vino nobile di montepulciano, me


The winner has been proclaimed basing on the total score got from the sum of each judge collected in a sheet including different criteria such as the taste, connection with the territory, the proper match with Vino Nobile di

Cappello del pastore

Montepulciano, fine wine of the area and one of the most prestigious italian reds.

The winner has been Contrada di Voltaia (Voltaia district) with its “Cappello del Pastore” (see pic: pasta stuffed with pecorrino and pears on a sauce of fave beans, courgette flowers, a crisp sort of bacon and crunchy pecorino cheese on the top) made of well harmonized ingredients  which have contributed to make the recipe structured and so suitable enough to be paired to Vino Nobile a bodied and complex wine which required quite strong recipes.


Table at San Donato district
(La tavola della Contrada San Donato)

I am happy to underline the good level of quality of the most of the districts considering that they are not composed by professional chef. Yet, I have really appreciated the presentation of the table and of the location of many of them.


Those recipes are available in each district till the Bravìo delle Botti: another reason to visit Montepulciano and discover more about its culture, its history and above all its tastes and flavours.