What to Pair with Asti Spumante + Mini Fruit Tart Recipe

This post was sponsored by the Italian Trade Agency as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own. Message for readers 21 and older.

Throughout life, I have been so inspired by my Italian heritage. I enjoy wine, food, and art, all of which are very close to my heart. My grandfather’s parents moved to the United States from Italy around 1910, and since I was so close to his side of my family, I always felt such a connection to that culture. Living La Dolce Vita, meaning living the sweet life, is a great phrase for the way I feel about what you will find in this post. Learn how to pair this sweet sparkling Italian wine called Asti Spumante with something sweet and easy to make.

 In this post, I wanted to share a bright, refreshing glass of Asti Spumante with you (from one of 20 wine regions in Italy), and provide an easy yet elegant recipe for mini fruit tarts, which pair very well with this sparkling Italian wine.

Asti Spumante is a sparkling wine that is produced from Moscato Bianco grapes in the southeastern part of the Piedmont region of Italy, concentrated around the cities of Asti and Alessandria, but also near Cuneo. 

Though Piedmont accounts for only 7% of Italy’s wine production, it is celebrated for producing wines of extremely high quality. Piedmont stands proud as the region with the most DOC/DOCG zones (58) and the largest percentage of officially classified wines (86%). Piedmont is Italy’s northwesternmost region, sharing a border with Switzerland and France, and surrounded by the Alps to the north and west and the last peaks of the Apennine Mountains to the south.

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(Image Source: Extraordinary Italian Wine

Below, you will notice a regional map of Italy, and the Piedmont region is shown in red.

The region is surrounded on three sides by the Alps. The name Piedmont comes from Latin meaning, ‘at the foot of the mountains,’ which makes for a very rocky soil and terrain in some areas. It’s an agricultural region, where more than half its 170,000 acres of vineyards are registered with DOC designations.

Italy produces the largest volume of wine in the world. The country may have more than 3,000 varieties of grapes, of which 590 are officially recorded with hundreds left to be catalogued. The wines are often referred to as “passionate wines,” extremely expressive wines that convey many emotions.

I often go for white wines when possible, and enjoy Chardonnay a LOT. This variety of wine has notes of light citrus fruit flavors (apple and pear mostly,) and a few hints of vanilla. Foods that pair well with Chardonnay include semi-soft cheeses such as goat cheese, herb-crusted halibut or scallops, chicken breast, and more.

My grandfather was one of my favorite people ever, and it’s really an honor to be able to celebrate him and the positive impact he had on me. My last name is Accettura, which is actually a city in the Southern Italian region of Basilicata. It has always been my dream to one day visit, and hopefully I will.

Since my grandfather loved cooking for me and treating us to delicious meals at restaurants in the Chicago area and on our vacations to Florida, I learned to love good food. He would be so proud of me for following my dreams of working for myself as a food and lifestyle photographer.

Many sites I researched concluded that fresh fruit are a great pairing for Asti Spumante. A few sites even mentioned fruit tarts, which I knew would be gorgeous to pair with this wine.

HOW TO MAKE MINI FRUIT TARTS:

Ingredients:

 1-2 packages of ready to use flaky shells (freezer section near the puff pastry and pie crusts)

Fresh fruit topping:

1 kiwi, cut into small pieces

1 package of blueberries

3 strawberries, cut into slices then into slices, like a pizza

Fresh whipped cream:

1 pint heavy whipping cream

¼ cup (or more) granulated sugar

2 tsp Vanilla bean paste or regular vanilla

1/3 C. powdered sugar, sifted

Optional – frosting bag and larger star-shaped piping tip

Instructions:

1.) Make whipped cream. In a stand mixer, whip together cream, granulated and powdered sugars, and vanilla. Beat until stiff peaks form, put into fridge to cool. After 15-20 minutes or less, transfer into prepared frosting bag.

2.) Lay all shells out onto work surface, and use your frosting bag to full shells. I used a swirling motion to get a nice shape. See below.

3.) Cut up fruits, and add one fruit at a time to all cups. First put one blueberry on each cup. Then, put one piece of kiwi on each, then one piece of strawberry. Serve with Asti Spumante and enjoy!

Experiment with Italian wines in creative, unexpected settings: Italian whites at the beach, Italian Rosato with BBQ, Italian whites with sushi, Nero d’Avola with Korean BBQ, Montepulciano d’Abruzzo with burgers, Valpolicella with ribs, Lambrusco with Mac n’ Cheese, Pairing Italian wines with cheese and meats.

I am SO honored to have had this chance to work with the Italian Wine Trade Agency on this incredible project. What an incredible learning experience. Cheers to amazing opportunities. 

As I mentioned before, my grandfather was 50% Italian; his parents relocated to the United States from Italy in the early 1900s. Since I was so close to my grandparents on my dad’s side, I was raised learning all about the Italian foods that my grandfather grew up enjoying, then cooking for me. I also learned later in life that my dad inherited several vintage bottles of Italian wines that my grandpa, Vito, had been keeping in the basement for many years. We still keep that wine as a memento of him, which makes this post even more special to me.

Asti Spumante’s characteristics are a persistent froth, a color from pale yellow to pale gold, the perlage is fine and persistent; its fragrance is soft and characteristic and, finally, its taste is aromatic, distinctive, sweet and balanced in structure. That’s why Asti is a wine with a strong and aristocratic personality. The bubbles add SO much to the experience.

Fresh Strawberries

Since strawberries are looking so great in stores right now, they were perfect to feature in this recipe, and to pair their sweet taste with the sparkling wine.

Made from the Moscato Bianco grape, Asti Spumante is sweet and low in alcohol. In fact, it is the perfect wine of the sweet occasions and to toast after a meal. It accompanies desserts and is very suitable with fruit, as it has hints of acacia flowers, wisteria, peach and apricot.

Use any variety of fruits you would like to make these adorable mini fruit tarts. I would recommend incorporating at least 3-4 colors of different fruits for the best effect.

Thank you so much for joining me to learn more about Italian wine and what pairs best with Asti Spumante. Have you ever tried this wine before?

Recipe For The Perfect Mother's Day #SpreadTheLove #ButterChardonnay 

Thank you JaM Cellars for sponsoring this post. Looking for Butter Chardonnay near you? Check out their easy-to-use Store Locator! Just pop in your zip code and the Butter will be waiting! This wine melts in your mouth, is creamy-licious, and everything is certainly Better with Butter! 

I am so inspired by the warmer weather that is finally here, gracing us with sunshine and more reasons to celebrate the ones we love. One sip of Butter Chardonnay will transport you to a more relaxing and uplifted place! This Chardonnay is easy drinking wine that has light, crisp flavors that will surely please moms everywhere!

I have lots of mother figures in my life and I am extremely grateful for each and every one of them! My mom, my step mom, Bobby's mom, and my friend who just became a mom for the first time. I don't have any grandmother figures in my life anymore, but they are always in my heart! There are a few ways to treat any mother figure to something special for Mother's Day Weekend, so here are a few ideas to treat them well.

sugar cookie bars

I also thought that making sugar cookie bars would be perfect, because they travel well and are such a versatile treat for Mom. 

It's fun how wine can also accompany some great times. It's seriously so fun to sip a glass of wine with my mom and sister and do some baking. We do tend to love doing projects together, so this whole post was just such an incredible inspiration for me!

I will also be heading to Louisville, KY this weekend to see my sister graduate college AND to celebrate Mother's Day with a brunch to end the weekend. I will definitely be bringing one of these bottles of wine to that celebration as well. I am SO excited!!! 

Butter Chardonnay melts in your mouth just like smooth, rich butter!

This wine is made from California grown grapes, is cold fermented, and is aged in oak. 

 If you sip this delicious Butter Chardonnay, you might even taste hints of stone fruit or baked lemon with a vanilla finish.

This wine is best served chilled and has such a nice, complex flavor without being too sweet. This is the perfect choice for summer and beyond!

Keep reading to get the full recipe for these amazing Sugar Cookie Bars with Edible Flowers!

Jump to the bottom of this post to grab the recipe for these sugar cookie bars. A couple of other fun ideas for making Mother's Day great would be some thoughtful gift ideas. Check out my ideas, below!

Cute Gift Ideas for Mother's Day

Why not give mom a gift basket with all of these items inside?! That would make her smile for sure. 

SUGAR COOKIE BAR WITH EDIBLE FLOWERS RECIPE

{Adapted from a recipe, found here}

Ingredients:

  • Dough:
  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened to room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 5 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder

Frosting:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • dash of salt
  • Food coloring (optional)
  • 2-3 tsp milk if needed
  • 8-10 edible flower heads, I used violas, but marigolds, violets, and others would work too.

TIPS ON FINDING EDIBLE FLOWERS:

To find the best edible flowers, look no further than your local hardware store or garden center. I found Violas on sale for about $2 per container. Look for the package with the most blooms on it. Cut the flowers off to garnish your sugar cookie bars or any other treat for Mom, even cocktails. The great thing about buying flowers this way, is that you can then plant them in a sunny spot in your yard and they will keep growing throughout the year, just as love for Mom grows all the time.

Alternately, I have seen a cute package of edible flowers at our local Co-Op, packaged similarly to the refrigerated herbs.

Instructions:

  1. Cookie bars: Cream butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the eggs, vanilla, and almond extract. Beat till well blended. Whisk together the flour, salt, and baking powder in a small bowl. Add to the wet ingredients and stir till well combined.
  2. Press into a 17" x 12" rimmed baking sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick spray. Bake at 350° for 15-20 minutes or until barely light brown. Cool completely, then get ready to frost. See frosting instructions in next step.
  3. To Make Frosting: Beat softened cream cheese and butter in a large bowl until smooth. Add powdered sugar, extracts, salt, and food coloring. Beat till smooth and creamy, adding milk as needed. 

4. Carefully cut edges of sugar cookie bars with a large, sharp knife so the edges are straightened up, as shown below. 

5. To evenly cut sugar cookie bars, cut down the middle both ways, then cut each of those sections in half again. To ensure a cleaner cut, always wipe off the excess cake and icing between each slice. After slicing, add edible flowers and serve! These stay good a few days left out at room temp or in the fridge. Enjoy!

Aren't these just so beautiful?! 

I hope you enjoy theButter Chardonnay and these sugar cookie bars as much as my mom and I will! Have a wonderful Mother's Day, friends!

Make sure to check out more from JaM Cellars Butter Chardonnay here!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

PIN IT FOR LATER...

Summer On-The-Go & Entertaining With Black Box Wines! - Plus 2 DIY Wine Party Tutorials

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias The following content is intended for readers who are 21 or older.

I would like to share some adorable DIY party ideas for a cute summer party on-the-go with you today! Black Box Wines are the perfect summer party pal, because they are extremely portable. Black Box Wines are amazing for a camping party, that is a little bit more upscale. Why not add a little wine-tasting to your camp out!

Be sure to visit the Simple Entertaining Social Hub for more details about ways to entertain this summer.

These wines are eco-friendly, because the bag and box are recyclable! Black Box Wines taste good, and they are about half the price of bottled wines. Also, they can stay fresh up to 6 weeks, and contain 750 ml - the equivalent of 4 bottles. Imagine trying to carry 4 bottles of wine, which is way more to juggle than this one awesome box of tasty goodness! 50 gold Metals for quality can't be wrong!

A SUMMER PARTY RECIPE - WINE & CHEESE PAIRING SKEWERS

I love the idea of a wine and cheese party, but if guests can carry the appetizers around, it prevents anyone from being left out, or everyone having to hover over one plate of food. Instead, offer guests skewers, and a plentiful plate of meats and cheeses, and let them decide what they want! I also like the idea of having grapes and as many fresh fruits and veggies as possible. I liked using these cardboard food containers I got at a craft store. They hold so much, and are coated to avoid any messes. 

Cut up salami, summer sausage, and various cheeses and let guests use skewers to create their own Wine & Cheese Pairing Skewers!! 

Cut up salami, summer sausage, and various cheeses and let guests use skewers to create their own Wine & Cheese Pairing Skewers!! 

Let your guests choose their own adventure, and add whatever type of meats and cheeses they want! Less food will be wasted with this method, which saves money.

Let your guests choose their own adventure, and add whatever type of meats and cheeses they want! Less food will be wasted with this method, which saves money.

 photo SOCIAL HUB graphic.png Be sure to visit the Simple Entertaining Social Hub for more details about ways to entertain this summer.

FABRIC WINE GLASS MARKERS

DIY Fabric Wine Glass Markers #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)

INSTRUCTIONS:

1.) These are super simple and can be made for FREE! Just cut your fabric strips that are 12" long x 1" wide. I just freehanded these, but a rotary cutter could always be used.

2.) Now, to get the rough edges on the fabric pieces, pull them and stretch them as much as possible. Keep pulling from both ends until you get a more frayed look. 

3.) Tie the distressed fabric strips around the top of the wine glass stem, and double knot. 

4.) I found that cutting about 1" off of each of the long ends at a diagonal was best. That's it! 

DIY Fabric Wine Glass Markers #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)

WINE PARTY TIP! 

To ensure guests can reach the boxes of wine, elevate them onto something like a glass vase or metal box. This also adds visual interest to your party table. 

Cute Summer Party Ideas! #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)

DIY WINE SIGN TUTORIAL

Cute Summer Party Ideas! #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)

This little project came together so well! It was one of the easiest party decor projects ever. 

WHAT YOU NEED:

All you need is a few materials and about 15 minutes, and you can make this cute DIY Wine Sign! Perfect for summer parties On-The-Go!

All you need is a few materials and about 15 minutes, and you can make this cute DIY Wine Sign! Perfect for summer parties On-The-Go!

4 Galvanized letters - found at a fabric store, Birch Round (or Rectangle) - found at that same fabric store, and a hot glue gun with glue. Super Glue / Krazy glue did NOT work at all, just a warning :) 

1.) Plug in your glue gun, and begin to do a sample placement of your letters onto the birch round. This birch round actually has a twine hanger attached, but you can cut it off. 

2.) I found that the best way to securely attach the letters was to mark where each letter went with a dot of pencil, then apply hot glue and quickly re-attach your letters. 

3.) Glue all letters in place and you are DONE! This project only took about 15 minutes!

DIY Wine Sign! #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)
For a wonderful Summer On-The-Go party, consider providing your guests with Black Box Wines! Enjoy!
Cute Summer Party Ideas! #BlackBoxSummer #CollectiveBias (Msg4 21+)