Mardi Gras Pairing: Muffuletta sandwich & 2012 Reserve Pinot Noir

Hailing from the French Quarter of New Orleans, the Muffuletta sandwich was born in 1906 at the famous Central Grocery on Decatur St., which catered to the Italian population surrounding the Quarter. Owner Salvatore Lupo aimed to make his regulars lunchtime fare consisting of salamis, bread, cheese and olives a little easier to eat-so he combined all of the ingredients into a sandwich. And thus, the Muffuletta was now a staple in the New Orleans community. With Mardi Gras right around the corner, we have our own quick and easy recipe for this ‘little muffin’ sandwich, which pairs perfectly with our newly released Reserve Pinot Noir. The 2012 Laetitia Reserve du Domaine Pinot Noir is rich in dark fruit, complexity and spice as a result of being made from the most concentrated fruit on the estate. The thick bouquet of  intense candied cherry, leather, white pepper and true Cuban-cigar box aromas continues on to the palate with complex layers of black fruits, rich mocha and baking spice lingering to the finish. We hope you enjoy this simple (and easily packable) Muffuletta sandwich recipe, perfect for any Mardi Gras celebration:

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Ingredients:

• 20 ounces tapenade (such as Trader Joe’s Green Olive Tapenade)
• 1 round peasant bread (about 7 inches in diameter, 5 inches high), halved crosswise, insides pulled out
• 4 ounces each thinly sliced Genoa salami and mortadella (found in the deli section)
• 4 ounces thinly sliced provolone cheese

Directions:

Hollow out the bread to make room for sandwich filling. Spread half of tapenade on the bottom half of the bread. Layer with salami, provolone and mortadella, then top with the remaining tapenade. Cover with the top of the bread, press down and let stand for 10 to 15 minutes. Wrap the sandwich in plastic wrap and let stand for 1 hour before serving.

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