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  • Writer's pictureCarlos Sarmiento

Spaghetti aglio, olio e peperoncino (garlic, oil and chili pepper) & 2020 Daou Discovery Chardonnay

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

In all my years of cooking, I cannot believe I have never made spaghetti aglio e olio, a traditional Italian pasta dish, until now.

Originated in Naples, the southern region of Italy, this simple dish from the cucina povera, or poor kitchen where dishes were quickly made with whatever was availavle.

(Photo: Olivier Guillard)

Aglio e olio means garlic and oil, the two main ingredients for this fragrant dish. For this recipe I am adding peperoncino, which is Italian for red chili pepper.

The amazing thing about this dish is that is so amazingly quickly to make and the flavors linger with every morsel. Let‘s get cooking!

Menu: Spaghetti rigati aglio olio e peperoncino (garlic, oil and red chilli pepper flakes)

Wine pairing: 2020 Daou Vineyards - Discovery Chardonnay (Paso Robles, California)

Serves 2-3


  • 1/2 of a box of Spaghetti rigati pasta (regular spaghetti works fine too)

  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced

  • 1/4 cup of extra Virgin olive oil

  • 1/2 tablespoon of finely chopped fresh parsley stems

  • 2 tablespoons of finely chopped fresh parsley

  • 2 teaspoons of dried red chili pepper flakes

  • 3-4 tablespoons of breadcrumbs

  • 1 cup of pasta water

Optional garnish: grated Parmesan or Grana Padano cheese


  • Cook spaghetti according to box instructions.

  • On a large pan pour olive oil, minced garlic and heat on low-medium heat.

  • Add parsley stems to pan with garlic oil and lightly stir once. Keep pan on low heat.

  • Once the pasta is cooked, carefully take 1 cup full of the pasta water that was used to cook the pasta and pour it on the garlic oil pan.

  • Drain the pasta and immediately place the the pasta on the large pan.

  • Mix pasta thoroughly with the oil, garlic and parsley stems. If you see that the consistency is getting dried, slowly add more pasta water and mix to create a creamy consistency.

  • While mixing, add fresh parsley, red pepper chili flakes and breadcrumbs. Mix well. Serve immediately.

Serve it up! This fragrant and bold pasta dish is amazingly complex considering its very simple ingredients.

You can either serve it family style on a big serving bowl or individually like I did here.

As for the cheese, this pasta really does not require it as it was originally created without it, but if you must have cheese, I highly recommend a very light dusting on top.

Buon appetito! Enjoy!

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

About the wine...

DAOU Discovery Collection wines represent our passion for approachable luxury.

Winemaker Daniel Daou has cultivated deep connections with families of growers for numerous vintages, allowing him to maintain absolute quality and consistency.

The 2020 growing season began on a dry note, followed by much-needed rain in April that replenished the soils and set the stage for healthy canopy growth.

Conditions through midsummer remained mild and steady, with the exception of a rare August thunderstorm.

The wines of 2020 are marked by voluptuous mouthfeel with considerable flesh and power.

2020 Daou Vineyards - Discovery Chardonnay (Paso Robles, California)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

(Photo: Carlos Sarmiento)

Tasting notes:

The 2020 Chardonnay presents luscious aromas of pineapple, pear and Granny Smith apple with appealing hints of lemon chiffon, nectarine and honeysuckle.

As the experience unfolds, the nose further reveals hints of star jasmine, nutmeg and vanilla bean.

The palate is plush and graceful, offering mouthwatering flavors of peach, mango, kiwi and fresh Crenshaw melon.

The rich fruit is perfectly complemented by suggestions of lemon zest and baking spice, while a voluptuous finish lingers with notes of pineapple, guava and hazelnut.

Grapes: 100% Chardonnay

Alcohol: 14.5%

Food pairing: Also pairs wonderfully with poultry, seafood and light cream sauces.


90 Points

Wine Enthusiast


Special thanks to Daou Vineyards for this unique opportunity to experience and pair this lovely wine. —————————————————————

Decorative wine bottle collar drip ring by:

(Special discount promo code: CFW15)

(Photo: Vincenzo Marotta)

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