Calabria, located at the toe of Italy, is one of the poorest and smallest wine producing regions of the country. The Greeks first began vine cultivation here but today a very small portion of the land is given over to viticultural use. Nevertheless, some exciting wines are being made in Calabria. Reds from Gaglioppo and whites from Greco Bianco are particularly prized. Calabrian cuisine is known for hearty vegetable and pasta dishes and filling soups. Many of these meals feature eggplants, peppers and tomatoes. Ciambotta, for example, is made with stewed eggplant, tomatoes and potatoes seasoned with onion and peppers, is eaten either hot or cold. Pasta is ubiquitous but comes in unusual shapes. Làgane (flat, long noodles), ricci di donna (lady’s curls), and capieddi ’e prieviti (priest’s hairs) are special Calabrian recipes. These pastas are often served with meat or vegetable sauces that are highly spiced with peperoncino.

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