La Bottega presents their 15th annual ‘Truffle Wonderland’ menu
truffles have been called “the diamond of the kitchen,” and with just one taste it’s easy to understand why. La Bottega chef-owner Steve Virion trained in Italy as a chef (among other places in the world), and when he worked in Tuscany he saw the buzz around winter truffle season. Years later, he continues to maintain an annual tradition at La Bottega in Vail: a special menu showcasing black and white Italian winter truffles from mid-December through the first few days of the new year.
“These are such a seasonal product,” explains Virion. “And like caviar, Italian winter truffles are something truly unique and something that you can’t find every day.”
If you’ve never tried a truffle, expect a very earthy and often pungent taste. The fruiting body of a subterranean fungus are considered culinary delicacies, and Virion has included them in a range of special dishes on the Truffle Wonderland menu each year. There are always new additions, and this season some signature items include the wagyu (Kobe beef) cheesesteak with foie gras mousse, buffalo mozzarella and Italian black winter truffles, as well as the Mountain Macaroni and Cheese with four cheeses and Italian black and white truffles.
So it’s not just about the truffles, but also the culinary possibilities that can be inspired from them.
“Every year, I try to build flavors and textures that please our guests and give them something to tell their friends about,” Virion said. “Whether they like delicate, gourmet combinations or something that rewards them for a vigorous day on the mountain with a more substantial meal. Either way, it’s a lot fun.”
La Bottega guests can also add Italian alba white truffles and Italian black winter truffles to any dish on the menu while they are available this season.
And leave it to Elisabetta Virion, La Bottega co-owner and wine director, to offer some wines that are perfect with the Truffle Wonderland menu. She recommends a red, such as the Barolo she has on her extensive by-the-glass menu, or a flute of Franciacorta rose brut.
“Both of those wines are from Piedmont and that is where the truffles come from,” Elisabetta said. “It’s always best to combine the food and the wine from the same region — it just goes together better.”
Learn more at http://www.labottega vail.com or call 970-476-0280.