An Al Fresco Italian Evening

This weekend, the weather cooled off in time for a meal in the garden full of fresh seasonal ingredients. Saturday night, I broke out the bocce set and prepared an Italian al fresco feast for friends. With the ripest of flavors at the market, simplicity was the only route to take. Tomatoes, crusty bread and flowers from the Greensboro Curb Market and a quick trip to Giacamo’s Italian Market for fresh mozzarella and sweet Italian sausage – the dinner came together with very little effort. The grand finale to the evening was a bright purple Summer Pudding topped with a giant cloud of rum whipped cream. I dressed the table in bright shades and small arrangements of sunflowers from the Market (how can you beat .30 cents a stem) and fresh oregano from my herb garden.

New and old friends – big personalities – and booze are always a great compliment to any meal. With that, we needed nothing more. Here is the menu I’ll be posting this week and the wine pairing my good friend Mark helped me out with:

Al Fresco Italian Menu

  • Homemade Pesto with Simple Kneads Bread
  • Caprese Salad with Ripe Summer Tomatoes and Giacamo’s Mozzarella
  • Grilled Giacamo’s Sweet Italian Sausages
  • Fusilli Lunghi Bucati with Breadcrumbs, Anchovies and Capers
  • Summer Pudding with Rum Whipped Cream

Mark’s Wine Pairing

  • Chateau Guibon Blanc with the Caprese Salad ($12.99 at Total Wine)
  • Bougrier Vouvray with the Fusilli ($9.99 at Total Wine)
  • Catena Malbec with the Sausages ($16.99 at Total Wine)


  1. great photo and perfect menu! really looking forward to the bucatini recipe (which is bec’s favorite pasta)…

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