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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Cheese and Antipasto Tasting Party, Part 2

Our original plan for SpriteKat's party had us stopping by the Italian market and picking up cold cuts. When scheduling conflicts prevailed, we went instead to the cold cases at Trader Joe's and Bi-Rite. Both had lots of options and we served up three platters filled with antipasto.

We asked our guests to choose their favorite meat and to choose the best in each category. We served the following meats. Platter 1: A Prosciutto Comparison: Trader Joe's, La Quercia, and Daniele. Platter 2: Daniele Cabrese Salame, Applegate Genoa Salami, Fra Mani Salmetto, and Daniele Capocollo, and Applegate Soppressata. Platter 3: Daniele Salchichon, La Quercia Pancetta Americana, Daniele Chorizo Cantimpalo, La Quercia Speck Americano, and Daniele President's Jamon Serrano.

The Winners:
  • La Quercia Speck Americano: Hands down everyone's favorite; great flavor, nice mouth feel; will be one of our staples from  now on when we entertain.
  • The offerings from Daniele, Inc. were the most consistent, great flavor without being too salty. The only criticism in their trio offerings would be that there's not enough of the President's Jamon Serrano or the President's Prosciutto Naturale. If they offer these two meats singly, I'd highly recommend getting the single packs in addition to the trio packs. We got two of each trio pack so that we'd have enough for everyone. 
  • Trader Joe's Prosciutto: Surprise favorite; good flavor, not too salty, sliced thin but not transparent.

The Losers:
  • La Quercia Pancetta Americana: very fatty, not a lot of flavor, not a meat we'll serve again on an antipasto platter
  • Fratelli Beretta Prosciutto di Parma: too salty; we eliminated during initial taste testing
  • Volpi Mortadella, Genova Salame, Coppa Trio: too salty, only the Genova Salame was passable; we eliminated during initial taste testing

To see more of the antipasto we sampled when planning our dinner as well as the antipasto platters we served, check out the Flickr set.

What are your favorite antipasto meats? Any brands we missed that we should try?

Bon Apetit!
Credits: All images taken by Eden Hensley Silverstein for Recipes for the Good Life.

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