Haute Event: Chef Michael White Hosts Tasting with Acqua Panna at James Beard House

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Last night, Michelin-starred Chef Michael White and Altamarea Group Beverage Director Hristo Zisovski teamed up with Acqua Panna to deliver a water, wine and food tasting to be remembered. Yes, you heard correctly…water pairing is equally important!

While food and wine interact on our taste buds to reveal unique flavors, the average patron often forgets that fine dining waters are widely appreciated in the global culinary scene for a reason: they cleanse the palate to enhance your dining experience.

Michael White

Known to culinary experts as “harmonizing,” pairing food, water and wine is of utmost importance. When water is the first beverage consumed before a meal, why not do it right?

Chef Michael White and Hristo Zisovski guided guests through a tasting of olives, lemons, honey and radicchio paired with Acqua Panna, S. Pellegrino and average tap water to see how each kind of water influenced the tastes of saltiness, sourness, sweetness and bitterness. Chef Michael laughed, “The tap water in comparison almost tastes like that moment when you’re a kid…a little pool water with your candy!”

Acqua Panna is the light-bodied counterpart to S. Pellegrino, complementing fruity and fresh wines, sparkling wines, seafood and dishes with high salt content. S. Pelligrino’s natural carbonation, on the other hand, complements full-bodied wines rich with tannins and high in acid, and it pairs well with sweet dishes and rich dishes to ensure you enjoy every bite.

“Think of the water as another seasoning…an enhancement. High end restaurants always have a wide selection of waters on hand for connoisseurs, so really think about the kind you choose based on the meal you ordered,” he emphasized.


Following, guests enjoyed razor clam with fennel and soppressata, cavatelli featuring di semola, braised oxtail and fontina, and a dessert of mouthwatering torta di mascarpone of marscarpone mousse, lady finger, amaretto and coffee crema.

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Photos courtesy of theworlds50best.com and Acqua Panna

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