Salmone al Forno con Daphne: Meatless Monday in Texas

Fox News Austin featured Francesco di Fillipis of Tenuta Cosimo Maria Masini in Tuscany and Daniela Marcone of  Andiamo Ristorante in Austin earlier this month ahead of the pairing dinner they co-hosted.

Biodynamic farming at Cosimo Maria Masini in Tuscany

Francesco preparing the 500.

In this clip, Daniela prepares a clean and easy oven roasted salmon while Francesco gives an overview of the biodynamic estate. They chose to pair the dish with Daphne, an idea I like as it matches the black olive puree at the base of the salmon with the saline nature of the skin fermented Daphne.

Notice at the end of the clip Daniela underlines how important it is for her restaurant to know the people who grow their wines.  She goes a step further on the restaurant’s website, singling out not only the estate, but also Paolo Bernardi of VinUS, one of our most important partners.  I’ve never been to Austin, but I can guarantee when I go I will pay Daniela and the team a visit.


Earlier this spring, just before Francesco came to the US and hosted this dinner, I had the chance to visit him at the estate. At this time of year, they are focused on preparing the soil for the long growing season ahead. The days are spent plowing between the vines for weed control and to turn in the “green manure” they have grown over the winter.  This is where the vintage starts, with careful attention to the soil early and always.

Biodynamic weed control and green manure at Cosimo Maria Masini

Francesco, on a tractor among the vines, is a happy farmer.

Once plowed, Francesco and the team will apply the 500 preparation that begins with the manure that has been curing over winter.  While the seasons come and go, Francesco’s attention to detail and care for the soils never ceases.

Biodynamic soil amendments at Cosimo Maria Masini

Compost of cow manure: the base of the 500 preparation

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