After Vinitaly…

So we have covered Vinitaly, which was days spent sacrificing ourselves tasting wine accompanied by Taralli, Italian biscuits, or Salami or anything else to absorb the wine (you are supposed to spit the wine out… but let’s say that I didn’t want to risk getting my shirt dirty!)

Living in Puglia, about as far South as it is possible to go in Italy, it was best to make the most of our trip to Vinitaly in Verona. So what do you do? A short dive to Venice before facing the 9 hour drive back the following day to Sunny Puglia. Fortunately we had great weather and were able to wonder the streets, those that there are, of Venice…

A handy tip for anybody traveling by car to Venice, you can park at the airport for just 5.50 euros a day and take the water taxi in. It takes about 40 minutes but you see practically the whole whole city and can step of at Piazza San Marco.

Water taxi from airport to Venice

Water taxi from airport to Venice

Saint Mark's Square from Water TaxiIf you are feeling rich, or at least want to seize the moment, sit outside and watch the world go by…

A few photos to whet (no pun intended) your appetite…



If you have ever been to Puglia, or Italy in general, then you will know that a typical meal is made up of a first course, a main course and prior to either an Antipasto. The Antipasto is generally a selection of local produce use as a started and is the perfect way to capture the flavour of the region you are in. Puglia has historically been a poor region, however this has led to the an incredible level of adaptability… People would make the most of what they had and vegetables were grown and were an essential source of nurishment, and were turned into a delicacy. A typical Antipasto in Puglia will feature a variety of vegetables including; peppers, tomatoes, aubergines, artichokes and many more.

Asparagi della Nonna – Grandmother’s Asparagus

The asparagus is picked and within 48 hours they are put into a mix of hot water, white wine vinegar, garlic and natural flavour aromas. This mix not only provides an added taste to the fresh asparagus but with the sesame seed oil allows the asparagus to be stored for long periods. After opening, the jar should be kept in the fridge and add sesame seed oil to maintain the level above the asparagus.

Involtini di Melanzane – Aubergine Wrap

These carefully selected aubergines are a delicious Antipasta, which will keep you coming back for more. The aubergines are wrapped around a filling of tuna, dried tomatoes and capers and stored within a mix of sunflower oil, white wine vinegar and natural flavourings.

Corciofi con Gambo – Whole Artichokes with Stem

This truly is a speciality and the artichokes have been carefully selected, as only the artichokes from the first harvest can be prepared and served with the stem. The taste and visual effect of having the whole artichoke with the stem is what makes this line of antipasta unique. As the harvest continues the stem becomes firmer and is not suitable for serving in this way. The artichokes are prepared in a mixture of natural aromas, white wine vinegar and sunflower oil. The Corciofi con Gambo make an instant impact as an Antipasta or as a side dish to your main meal.

Carciofi alla brace – Grilled Artichokes

Artichokes are one of Puglia’s most successfully produced vegetables. The artichokes are picked and carefully inspected, with particular attention being paid to the fruit and the leaves. They are then grilled, placed in a mixture of natural flavourings, sunflower oil and white wine vinegar.  The mix is then placed into the jar, all within 12 hours of being harvested. The finer details of the exact mix and process are kept a closely guarded secret to protect the unique flavour of the product.

Paté di Carciofi – Artichoke paté

This cream paté is made from fresh artichokes and is stored with a mix of sunflower oil, a touch of salt and white wine vinegar. The paté is perfect to be served on bread or toast as a starter or with seasoned cheeses. Once opened it should be stored in the fridge with the level of paté always covered in oil.

Peperoncino ripieno con tonno – Chili Baby Peppers Stuffed with Tuna

These chili peppers have been carefully selected, hollowed and filled with a mix of tuna, capers and stored within a mix of sunflower oil and white wine vinegar. The end result is a delicious product, perfect for a starter, which exemplifies the unique flavours of the sea and the earth.

Olive Schiacciate Piccanti – Spicy Crushed Olives

Traditional “La Bella di Cerignola” olives are slightly crushed in order to open them up and allow them to take on the flavours into which they are submersed.
The taste is given to the olives by adding spicy chili peppers and then placing them in a mix of sunflower oil and white wine vinegar. The spicy combination of the chili and the meaty taste of the olives make this a perfect antipasta.

Involtini di Pomodori Secchi – Sun Dried Tomato Wrap

Fresh tomatoes are one of Puglia’s main fruits and are put to a wide variety of uses. In this dish the tomatoes have been dried and then placed in water and white wine vinegar to make them sweeter. The tomatoes are then spiced and are wrapped around a filling of tuna, capers and are then stored within a mix of sunflower oil, white wine vinegar and natural flavourings. The Involtini di pomodori make the perfect addition to any antipasta.

Peperonata a Filetti – Fresh Sliced Peppers

These peppers are harvested and are sealed in their jars within 24 hours of being harvested The peppers are carefully selected to ensure that the sweetest and highest quality peppers go forward to the next stage. The peppery are cleaned, sliced and mixed with fresh local flavours as well as sunflower oil and white wine vinegar. The peppers are ideally suited to serve within an antipasta as well as a side dish to steak or other such meats.

If you have read to this point and would wish to purchase any of the above products, insert the coupon code BLOGANTIPASTI to receive a 5% disount – thanks for reading!

Vinitaly – Verona 2013

This was our first visit to Vinitaly in Verona and what must be one of, if not the, biggest wine exhibitions in the world! It was long and hard work… Our mission was to meet new suppliers of quality wine and obviously this did involve tasting the range of wines they had on offer…

Vinitaly is truely a huge show with wines from all over Italy and also abroad. We were mainly focused on wines from Puglia and were able to see some of our existing suppliers including Cantine Due Palme, Botrugno and Colli della Murgia. We are also happy to announce that we met new suppliers from different parts of Puglia including Tenuta Giustini from Pulsano and Centovitigni from San Michele di Bari.

However, it is not all just wine… we went to pay a visit to our supplier of pasta and had the fortune to meet a family run company from Cerignola who produce truely delicious antipasti. These vary from artichokes, to sun dried tomatoes to peppers filled with tuna. This was one of the finds of the show and thier gift packs represent a great treat!

Blog Launch!!!

Welcome to Puglia Shop Online‘s Blog…

The aim of this Blog is to give everybody some more information on Puglia and Italy in general. Living and working in Puglia we are spoilt and tend to take many things for granted. This includes everything from the weather to being just a short drive from the sea to having fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables. We would like to share with you the small things in life that makes Puglia a unique region in Italy and allows us to offer many high quality traditional products, which we hope you will enjoy…and buy!! 😉

We would love to here from you with any suggestions for new products or topics to discuss.