7 Reasons Why We Love Piccolos

Fun size and perfect for all occasions! Image Courtesy of La Marca Prosecco

When its come to sparkling wine the piccolo is definitely one of the great innovations. It’s changing how we approach these delicious treats, taking them out of the realm of celebrations into the realm of everyday luxury. So here are 7 reasons to love piccolos, just in time for Summer…


1. Zero Wastage

With sparkling wine, there is nothing more frustrating than a bottle that’s lost its fizz. This is easy to eliminate with this perfect single serve option. Gone are the days of sadly pouring that half bottle from last nights party down the sink as its gone flat…

2. Fridge Space and Cooling

In the modern apartment and home, fridges are getting smaller and thus putting a premium on space. This small format bottle slots into the little gaps in your fridge. Plus in an added bonus rapid chilling! Due to the smaller volume of the bottle, it chills far more rapidly than its full-size brothers. Just think, ice cold Prosecco in under 30 minutes.

3. Great for Cocktails

With the resurgence in cocktails, the Italian Aperitivo is definitely an easy home option. However, very rarely do these delicious treats call for more than a splash of the good stuff. One piccolo is the perfect for a pair of spritz’… For more cocktail ideas check out our guide to Prosecco drinks here.

4. Variety is the Spice of Life

La Marca Prosecco Piccolos – Image Courtesy of La Marca Prosecco

The piccolo can be looked at as the ultimate way to experience a diverse range of wines. With its small format it’s the perfect way to enjoy a super fresh bottle every time plus it means you’re not committed to 750ml of liquid. So change it up and experiment with something new in this small format!

5. Cute, Cute, Cute!

There’s nothing cuter than little things! So what’s cuter than a little bottle of vino? Not a lot – so wow your party guests with an ice cold piccolo. We suggest La Marca

6. Picnic Perfect

Slide a couple of these discrete treats into your next picnic spread… Their small scale makes them an easy option – plus you don’t need to remember glasses just grab some straws and enjoy some Prosecco in the summer sun!

7. Convenience Plus

Piccolos are perfect for the busy modern life! Pocket-sized, quick to chill, no wastage, easy open and who needs a glass? Slide one in your bag and head out there and Make Everyday Sparkle

 

Check out our pick of the Piccolos – La Marca Prosecco Here…

Make Everyday Sparkle – With Our Guide to Prosecco Cocktails

Cocktails have had a huge resurgence of late. Thanks to shows like Madmen, Sex in the City and many others, some of these classic cocktails have been pulled back to the forefront. Alongside these classic drinks, people are looking at a more classic way of drinking them – Apertivo isn’t just a flash way of saying happy hour, it’s a way of life. It directly translates to an aperitif, a little something to whet the appetite before a meal. However, this has grown to be so much more.

With the massive international growth in Prosecco internationally, the drinks associated with this pre-dinner phenomenon are everywhere from the Bellini, Mimosa and Spritz to obscure beasts like the Airmail and French 75.

So in conjunction with La Marca Prosecco here are our favourite tipples from the happiest hour of the day.


1. La Marca Spritz

What is more quintessentially Italian than Aperitivo? No drink sums this up more than the La Marca Spritz. Combining La Marca Prosecco with Aperol, freshly sliced orange and a touch of soda – a winning combination. This truly classic cocktail dates back to 1950’s but has been given a new modern twist thanks to this ultra-premium Prosecco.

Click here for the recipe.

 

2. La Marca Bellini

Invented at Harry’s New York Bar in Venice this two ingredient wunderkinder has set the tone for a lot of the sparkling wine drinks we take for granted. There would be no mimosa if it wasn’t for this beast. Think puréed white peach topped with crisp Prosecco… Simply peach to taste and top with Prosecco. (Substitute peach for orange juice to make a Mimosa).

 

Image Courtesy of Lara Feroni Imbibe Magazine

3. Negroni Sbagliato

This modern classic is a riff on the infamous Negroni. Switching out gin for Prosecco softens this bittersweet classic. There’s nothing more perfect than this to sip while enjoying the Dolce Vita. Equal parts Campari, Vermouth di Torino (Red/Rosso Vermouth) topped with the same amount of Prosecco and garnished with a slice of orange. Quick, easy and the perfect way to add a little class to your evening drinks.

 

Here’s one of our own: The Venetian Love Letter

A homage to a drink almost as classically stylish as La Marca itself – the Airmail. Riffing on this Caribbean twist on the French 75, this brings Italy to the forefront. Blending Lime, Amaro Montenegro, Rum, honey and most importantly La Marca Prosecco into a frothy blend sure to enrapture the senses and send you straight to a taverna on the edge of the canals.

Click here for the recipe.

So get creating with this small slice of Apertivo and remember Picollos are perfect for cocktails!

Christmas Roast Duck with Ponnelle Fleurie

Try something new this Christmas, and serve this moist and flavoursome duck with a lightly chilled glass of Fleurie. The Christmas spices in the recipe are perfectly complimented by the mocha, cherry and roasted coffee notes of the Fleurie – try the wine slightly chilled for a refreshing compliment to this meal. Recipe from JaimeOliver.com – serves 10.

 

Ingredients

  • a few sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • ½ nutmeg , grated
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 oranges or blood oranges , zested and halved
  • 2 x 2 kg whole ducks , necks and giblets reserved and roughly chopped
  • 8 cloves garlic , unpeeled
  • 3 red onions , peeled and quartered
  • a few stalks celery , trimmed and chopped into chunks
  • 3 carrots , scrubbed and chopped into chunks
  • ½ stick cinnamon
  • 1 thumb-sized piece fresh ginger , peeled and roughly chopped
  • a few bay leaves
  • 2 kg Maris Piper potatoes , peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1 litre water or organic chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 200 ml Ferreira Ruby port

Method

Pick the leaves off one of the rosemary sprigs and place on a board with the nutmeg, orange zest, thyme and one tablespoon of sea salt. Chop everything together and rub the mixture all over the ducks, inside and out. Cover and leave in the fridge for a few hours or overnight to let the flavours penetrate.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4 and place the shelves on the middle and bottom levels. Stuff the ducks with the remaining rosemary sprigs and orange halves, and the garlic cloves, then place them breast-side up, straight on to the bars of the middle shelf. Scatter the onion, celery and carrot in the bottom of a large, deep-sided roasting tray with the cinnamon, ginger, bay leaves, and chopped duck neck and giblets. Place on the bottom shelf beneath the ducks so it will catch all the lovely fat that drips out of them.

Meanwhile, place the potatoes in a pan. Cover with cold, salted water, bring to a simmer and parboil for 5 to 10 minutes, then tip into a colander and chuff them up a little.

After the duck has roasted for an hour, take the bottom tray out of the oven, replacing it immediately with an empty tray. Spoon the fat from the veggie tray into a bowl. Put all the veg, duck bits and juices into a large saucepan, then add a little boiling water to the tray to get all the sticky brown bits off the bottom – this is what you’re going to make your gravy with. Tip the water and brown bits into the pan with the veg, top up with 1 litre of water or chicken stock and place on a medium heat, skimming off any of the fat that rises to the top.

Put your parboiled potatoes into the empty tray in the oven. Add a few more tablespoons of duck fat from the bowl, season, and place back underneath the ducks to cook for an hour.

Meanwhile, heat a saucepan and add 2 tablespoons of duck fat. When it’s hot and melted, add the flour and stir with a wooden spoon until you have a paste. Stir in the contents of the saucepan and the port. Bring the gravy to the boil and simmer gently for half an hour, stirring occasionally. By now the ducks will have had 2 hours in the oven and will be done. Lift them on to a plate, cover loosely with tin foil and leave to rest for about 15 minutes.

Pour the gravy through a sieve into a clean saucepan, pressing down on all the veg and other bits to extract as many flavours and juices as you can. Keep the gravy warm in the saucepan, again skimming off any fat on the surface.

Don’t carve the ducks – the best thing to do is to pull the meat away from the bones with a pair of tongs or with your fingers wearing clean kitchen gloves, then let everyone fight over the delicious skin! Serve with your potatoes and port gravy.

Read more at JaimeOliver.com

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