Authentic Calabrian Salami: SMAF Ltd selection

07.02.2021

We proudly present our line of Authentic Calabrian Cold Cuts: SMAF Ltd selection.

TRADITION AND QUALITY

SMAF LTD deals with all the sausages and salami labelled in Calabrian DOPs. However, among the sausages, stand out the Calabrian “soppressata”, seasoned salami (capocollo and hard sausage) and the famous “Nduja” (sophisticated spicy and spreadable salami).

The first item, SOPPRESSATA is an Italian dry salami. Soppressata is sometimes prepared using ham, but it never happens in Calabria.

Even if there are many variations, two principal types are made: a cured dry sausage typical of Basilicata, Apulia, and Calabria, and a very different uncured salame, made in Tuscany and Liguria.

In Calabria, and generally in the south of Italy, this salami is part of southern Italian cultural heritage, much more than in the north.

“Soppressata di Calabria” enjoys Protected designation of origin status, as in esample that one produced in Acri and Decollatura, highly renowned.

Secondly, CAPOCOLLO is a traditional Calabrian and, generally, Italian pork cold cut, made from the dry-cured muscle running from the neck to the 4th or 5th rib of the pork shoulder or neck, sometimes smoked or conserved in olive oil or flavored with cooked wine.

Given that it is a whole muscle salume, its preparation seems similar to the more widely known cured ham or prosciutto. Both are pork-derived cold-cuts and typically sliced very thin.

We can count, in Italy, two particular varieties, Coppa Piacentina and Capocollo di Calabria. We deal with the second, which has Protected Designation of Origin (P.D.O.) status, under the Common Agricultural Policy of European Union law, which ensures that only products genuinely originating in those regions are allowed in commerce as such.

Other versions, not covered by mentioned PDO status, are simply designated as “Prodotto agroalimentare tradizionale” (P.A.T.) by the Italian Ministry of Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies. It is the case of Capocollo del Lazio, Capocollo tipico senese (called finocchiata or finocchiona), Capocollo della Basilicata and Capocollo dell’Umbria.

In any case, our well known product is ‘NDUJA.

Generally, outside Calabria, is a special, spicy, spreadable pork salumi, made with shoulder and belly, ripe, roasted peppers and a mixture of spices. Our Calabrian variation derives from French andouille and is made using meat from the head, trimmings, fatback, and roasted hot red peppers.

The fiery taste of ‘Nduja is typical of the small town of Spilinga, where it was developed in the actual taste.

It is served with slices of bread or with ripe cheese and has a unique taste, suitable for a variety of dishes. Bright red in colour with a fiery taste, our ‘Nduja is delicious on a pizza or alongside medium seasoned cheeses. It also gives an incredible flavor, when you add it to lightly fried onions celery and carrot, as the basis of a tomato sauce for pasta, or just on its own with the addition of a little of the pasta water.

OTOH, we have a wide variety of other CALABRESE SALAMI. All our regional coarsely ground pork salamis are mildly hot, due to a generous addition of red pepper flakes– perfect for sandwiches and antipasto.

They are pressed into a flat shape during curing. This pressing not only gives Calabrese its characteristic shape, it also gives it a wonderfully firm texture. This coursely ground meat is perfect for sandwiches or in an antipasto. Serve with crackers for a game day appetizer as well.

Other example of calabrese Salami is “Cervellata Calabrese”, a Pork Salami or Sausage flavored with white wine and hot peppers. Another is “Pancetta di Calabria DOP”, a Pork Salami, part of many Italian recipes and widely used in the preparation of fried. It can also be consumed raw or barely heated, sliced thin, more or less, along with salt bread, baked in a wood, a typical local tradition. Another one “Salsiccia di Calabria DOP”, a Pork Salami, which, according to an ancient recipe, is made with giblets and fatty parts of pork mixed with hot peppers, bagged, then smoked at first and then cured.

All these salami from Calabria dates to the period of Greek colonization of the Ionian coast and the cultural glories of Ancient Greece. Historical records describe processing of pork from the seventeenth century.

OUR ROLE

SMAF Associates LTD operates in Calabrian’s original salami sector as a broker – national and international “Broker”. Our activity towards the original Calabrian sausages starts from a long experience in the agricultural products market, in the activities of buying, selling, import-export, logistics, sea-to-land transport, insurance and customs issues.

Our brokerage deals with import-export to USA, Canada, Europe and Eastern countries, from Calabria, Italy, for quality fruit and vegetables of the best brands. We give the right importance to the original Calabrian quality sausages by taking care of their transport directly from the manufacturer. We guarantee our business partners the utmost seriousness and we have clients of great international prestige. Among the other brokerage countries: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Chile, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, Hungary, USA and Vietnam.

Our company is leader in the distribution of Calabrian original salami.

The presence of liaison offices in Calabria ensures us a strategic position for the supply and distribution of goods. We are the privileged interlocutor for the Commercial and Collective Catering World and all the business forms that need a high level of service as well as a constant and customized quality standard.

Bivongi Wine: a protected denomination (DOC)

15.1.2021

If you hear of a delicious white, red or “Rosè” wine, coming from the town of Bivongi, you are talking about  a rare Bivongi “Bianco” (an Italian word meaning “white wine”), an authentic Mediterranean and Calabrian wine rated DOC (a so called protected denomination, acronym of “Denominazione di Origine Controllata”).

The white version of this wine is relatively rare. The red and rosè wines represent the majority of production (Bivongi “Rosso” is two years old before commercial release, of course after six months in barrel). The latter are made from grapes of Gaglioppo, Greco Nero, Nocera and Calabrese (Nero d’Avola). The white comes from Greco Bianco, Malvasia Bianca and Ansonica grapes.

The Bivongi wine is Sparkling when white, intense when red or rosè, and it is rated DOC since 1996. Bivongi DOC was formed in that year (1996) to represent the small amount of hectares planted way down on the east coast of Calabria’s toe shaped peninsula, while the more famous Ciro is on the north of the same coast and the Greco di Bianco DOC is just on the south.

Here main features of Bivongi DOC (the white wine, the best):

  • Alcool 10.5%,
  • Color: straw yellow,
  • Flavour: winey, pleasant,
  • Taste: dry, harmonic, fruity. It should be served at 45º – 49º Fahrenheit, 8º – 10º Celsius (perfect for Seafood in general).

According the official regulations, Bivongi white wine can be produced with varying blends of Greco, Montonico Bianco, Ansonica and Malvasia. Red wine is made with Gaglioppo and / or Greco Nero, while some Castiglione, Nero d’Avola and Nocera are also permitted.

THE LAND OF THE WINE

The white wine, the red and rosè versions are all produced inside the small cluster of hills on south of Catanzaro.

Further Bivongi DOC wine is produced in an area that includes 11 municipalities between the province of Reggio Calabria and the one of Catanzaro. The area has a high potential in wine production since the ancient Magna Graecia, creating a great impact on the local economy. Precisely, the production zone of Bivongi DOC includes the villages of Bivongi, Camini, Caulonia, Monasterace, Pazzano, Placanica, Riace, Stignano and Stilo in the Province of Reggio Calabria, and the village of Guardavalle in Province of Catanzaro.

No surprise that Bivongi wine has remained relatively unknown in the wine world outside Italy, given that introduction of the DOC title is only 1996. Further, another reason for being ignored is that the wine is made from vineyards in the municipalities of Bivongi, Caulonia, Monasterace, Riace and Stilo, and all of these are cut off, inside the Reggio Calabria province, from the main national wine trade; explaining why the wine is normally for local use.

Now, the area, where geographically the vineyards, are planted is the zone forming the ball of Italy’s ‘foot’, an area signed by coastal hills, the “Serre” mountain chain and the rivers, which flow towards the Ionian Sea. Therefore, due to the mountains nearby, the vineyards of Bivongi wines are located on the eastern side of the hills (in an area with a more temperate climate), mostly among the lower slopes and within a few miles of the sea. The proximity of the Mediterranean Sea is important to the terroir, but, at the same time, the producers are far from main communication routes. Therefore, this delicious and authentic Mediterranean wine is a real hidden treasure.

The mesoclimate of the area helps the high quality of the grapes. Namely, the sea helps to moderate the intense heat of the south Italian summer, and the alternation of cooling and heating generates during the day morning and afternoon breezes, which minimize the risk of fungal vine diseases. The special mesoclimatic area is large and covers Guardavalle, a municipality in the colder north of Catanzaro province.

The climatic conditions at Bivongi are magnificent, while inside the DOC Zone the other nine municipalities in the provinces of Reggio Calabria and Catanzaro, have refined, according to temperatures a little bit colder, the winemaking on the basis of traditional methods, obtaining a Bivongi wine based also on local grape varieties (such as the white Greco Bianco, Guardavalle and Montonico, and the red Gaglioppo, Greco Nero and Calabrese).

BRIEF NOTES ON BIVONGI TOWN

Bivongi is a charming little town in the north of the province of Reggio Calabria, only 8 miles from the Ionian Sea. In the past, Bivongi was better known for the woodcarving skills of its inhabitants, for its iron, silver and molybdenum mines, and for its thermal baths. Afterwards, its fame increased due to its mulberry trees, the production of wool, and its silkworm farms (called “vomvix” in Greek and believed to be at the origin of Bivongi’s name).

After this fascinating past, the village is nowadays situated on the slopes of Mount Consolino, where Bivongi dominates a valley rich with vineyards and olive groves, and crossed by the River Stilaro.