The Idrosommelier recommends: which water for Christmas dishes?


The Idrosommelier recommends: which water for Christmas dishes?

Even water can be combined with dishes: we asked a Idrosommelier to recommend the right waters for Christmas dishes.

Suffice it to say that the human body is made up of 60% water . Or, if we want to put it on the economic aspect, it would be enough to remember that, according to an Istat survey this year, Italians consume 224 liters each year per capita,we are the country that consumes the most mineral water in the worldand that ours is the country with the highest consumption of mineral water in the world. We are great wine connoisseurs, careful coffee lovers but we do not know how to distinguish the waters (in the plural because the types are many and very different from each other) and match them correctly to the dishes . In fact, water can enhance its flavor, dampen it, make it softer or have a sharper taste. This is even more true during the holidays: to make the most of the Christmas lunch (or dinner) dishes and to recommend pairing,  who better than the Idrosommelier who, just like the wine sommelier, knows how to suggest the best combinations to offer at the table but with water. The Idrosommelier selects and composes the water list , which is increasingly requested in restaurants alongside the wine list.

“ It is a cultural question – says Stefania Santini Simoncelli , one of the best known Idrosommelier in Italy – by now the water list is also present in restaurants that are not starred, and more and more chefs are interested in water even in the preparation of the dishes. For example, in cooking fish we are trying to use water that is low in sodium, since the fish is already rich in it ”. In theory, the water-dish combination can be done by analogy or by contrast: in general, however, the practice dictates that usually a light dish is with a low mineral content water, while a fatter and more structured dish is combined with water with bubble and richer in minerals, which are the markers of the taste of the water itself.

How to distinguish the waters

How are they distinguished? Reading the label : you will find all the presence of minerals responsible for the taste of the water . Calcium gives a sweet taste, bicarbonate a more savory, magnesium more bitter, the acid instead comes from carbon dioxide.

Pairings for the Christmas table

“ For Christmas, in the meantime, I recommend bringing water in important bottles to the table, so as to give the idea of ​​the preciousness of water equal to champagne: worked glass bottles, designer bottles, limited editions, collectible crystal bottles. Even the water itself can be valuable, like that extracted from the fog, ”says Stefania. And then of course you need a correct combination of mineral waters and Christmas lunch dishes .

Appetizers : if light (like steamed fish) you will start with a flat oligomineral, while if you focus on salmon or cured meats and cold cuts, a natural effervescent, that is a small bubble , will do well .

First courses : if it is non-filled pasta or even a vegetable or fish-based risotto, water with medium-small bubbles is excellent. For the first lasagna type, water with larger bubbles or with greater minerality is recommended, with a fixed residue of around 500 mg / liter.

Seconds : if it is meat – usually during the holidays it is roasted, sliced, fillet, cotechino – you need water that gives the sensation of degreasing, leaving the palate clean. Hence large bubbles , i.e. waters added with carbon dioxide and with a high fixed residue (higher than 500 mg / liter). If, on the other hand, it is steamed white meat or steamed fish , a flat oligomineral is perfect.

Desserts : if we have a classic leavened panettone, it will be paired with flat water with low mineral content, with a fixed residue of less than 300 mg / liter. With a creamy panettone, with a pandoro or with a tiramisu or in general a creamy dessert, the water with a small bubble with natural effervescence is excellent.


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