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OUR KITCHEN

APULIA, OUR HOME!

In our luggage we have brought a piece of Italy, Altamura in the province of Bari, an agricultural city of about 70.000 inhabitants.


The Italian cuisine is by no means one of the most known and appreciated all over the world. In Italy and for the Italians the food culture turns into culinary art. It is a recurring theme within the family and among friends in everyday life.


Nowhere else in the world but in Italy, food stands for history, tradition, culture and favours the sense of socialising and sharing. Sitting down at the table together it is a way to get to know each other, to tell about oneself, to spend a bit of life together. The right choice of ingredients and the typical Italian culinary flair have produced good, tasty and healthy courses. The Italian food is simple and quick! Its guideline is the quality of products and their combination. Major and useful hints about the Hotel Simonis cuisine will be provided later.

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HOTEL SIMONIS IS COOKING ITALIAN!

The Italian cuisine is by no means one of the most known and appreciated all over the world. In Italy and for the Italians the food culture turns into culinary art. It is a recurring theme within the family and among friends in everyday life. Nowhere else in the world but in Italy, food stands for history, tradition, culture and favours the sense of socialising and sharing. Sitting down at the table together it is a way to get to know each other, to tell about oneself, to spend a bit of life together. The righxb


The Italian food is simple and quick! Its guideline is the quality of products and their combination. Major and useful hints about the Hotel Simonis cuisine will be provided later.

THE RED TROPEA ONION

The onion is rich in precious ingredients including the delicate and sweet-flavoured essential oils. It comes from the Mediterranean Italian coast of Calabria its trade name is “ Cipolla Rossa di Tropea IGP” of geographically protected origin. Its growing was introduced into the Mediterranean countries by the Arabs. It is also famous for its genuineness rich in glucose, potassium, and sodium, but with little fats.

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FRESH HERBS

Herbs represent another major ingredient of our cuisine. Parsley, basil and rosemary uniquely flavour our courses. Freshly picked up from our garden and directly used on the courses, they make courses tastier than dried herbs. An Italian classic, to be more precise from Genoa, is the “Pesto Genovese” made by crushing fresh basil, pine nuts, Italian sheep cheese, garlic, pepper and olive oil. The Hotel Simonis’ guests will enjoy

THE TRADITION

Olive oil has always been present in our home, just like in most Italian families. It is part of our history and culture. Above all in Apulia which is the “olive oil region” par excellence, with centuries-old trees whose woods dominate the landscape. Owing to its acknowledged properties, olive oil is strongly recommended for a healthy life. It is the top for frying or cooking, or dressing fresh salads, meat or fish dishes. It is the base ingredient of the Mediterranean diet. The “extra virgin” olive oil we use, ranks high in quality, we collect it directly from a family run oil-mill near Altamura which guarantees the quality standard of the produce.


The olives are hand-picked or collected by shaking the branches and the same day they are taken to the mill and immediately milled. This is a key condition to get good extra virgin olive oil. Hence, extra virgin olive oil may be well considered as real fruit juice with all its benefits for the health.

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OUR APULIAN OLVE OIL „EXTRA VERGINE“

The “extra virgin” olive oil we use, ranks high in quality, we collect it directly from a family run oil-mill near Altamura which guarantees the quality standard of the produce.


The olives are hand-picked or collected by shaking the branches and the same day they are taken to the mill and immediately milled. This is a key condition to get good extra virgin olive oil. Hence, extra virgin olive oil may be well considered as real fruit juice with all its benefits for the health.

THE FAMOUS "PANE DI ALTAMURA" BREAD

Pane di Altamura is officially the first product which was granted PDO status within Europe in the “bakery and baking products” category, it is exclusively made from local durum wheat flour. It is the result of a special blend of different varieties of durum wheat grown on the Apulian central-northern plateau known as “Murgia”. These are the largest and most important wheat production areas in Apulia. Pane di Altamura has a long history and tradition, its quality not only is it due to raw material (such as: water, salt and natural yeast) but also the way it is made.


The typical and traditional shape of the bread in local dialect is named “U skuanete” (that is overlapped bread). In the past families used to knead bread at home, but since the use of private ovens was forbidden it was baked in public ovens.


Hence the need of marking each loaf of bread with the initials of the head of family before baking it. At first light then, the bakers’ cries announcing the completed baking, echoed along Altamura’s roads.

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A SLICE OF HISTORY

The typical and traditional shape of the bread in local dialect is named “U skuanete” (that is overlapped bread). In the past families used to knead bread at home, but since the use of private ovens was forbidden it was baked in public ovens.
 
Hence the need of marking each loaf of bread with the initials of the head of family before baking it. At first light then, the bakers’ cries announcing the completed baking, echoed along Altamura’s roads.

DAIRY PRODUCTS | MOZZARELLA TRECCIA

Mozzarella speciality of Apulia! It is a fresh soft cheese traditionally made from Italian buffalo or cow milk by the “pasta filata” method.


The classic mozzarella is white in colour and little ball-shaped, it is soft and characterised by a slightly acid taste. Because of these peculiarities and the wide range of uses in food preparation the mozzarella is much appreciated by consumers. It may also take the shape of “treccia” (plait) used in many dishes from a classic antipasto to the base and sole ingredient for our pizza.


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OUR PIZZA

We only use fresh and high-quality products for our pizza, durum wheat flour, extra virgin olive oil, salt, yeast, tomato, mozzarella and oregano collected directly from Italy. Cooked on the stone ovens, pizza takes on its unique fragrance and unmistakable taste, genuine like few tasty like no other.


We offer a wide choice of pizzas from the classic ones to those with the typical Mediterranean-Italian taste to customised pizzas.

OUR CELLAR

The hotel has a fine selection of local and Italian wines among which:


PRIMITIVO, so called because of the earlier-ripening of the grapes; full-bodied, harmonic Primitivo is one of the excellences of the Apulian viticulture and winemaking. It is a great red wine, strong and elegant at the same time fit for a number of dishes, it is widely praised for its versatility and organoleptic characteristics.


VRAZZUOLO, white wine produced on the hill of the upper Murgia Barese (Apulia) 350 to 500m a.s.l. recommended for fish dishes, delicate soups and cheese.


MALVASIA, bianca frizzante (sparkling) dense, fruity, fresh and harmonic taste, the vineyards extend across Apulia at 40m a.s.l. Ideal as aperitif and with cold antipasti, recommended for fish and soup courses of the Italian cuisine.


RIESLING, white, strong, fruity, almost perfumed wine produced in the German valleys run through by rivers such as Moselle. Its “terroir-expressive” character makes this wine widely praised for its roundness and aroma.

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OUR FURTHER SPECIALITIES

GRAPPA BARRICATA, so called because its aging, twelve to eighteen months, takes place in little various precious wooden barrels (barrique) in the dark under controlled temperature.

Round delicate taste, rich in aroma, the right mate during conversations among friends or in moments of relax. It is a real source of pleasure when sipped at the end of a lunch or in any other lapse of the day.

To make the most of its taste, let it rest for some minutes into the glass so that the numerous aroma molecules, by oxygenation, enhance the perfumes and the nose-palate harmony.


PADRE PEPPE, renown liqueur from Altamura, it dates back to a friar’s recipe in 1600. Mr Giuseppe Ronchi who stayed at the Convent got acquainted with the ancient recipe at the beginning of 1800. Today every single family in Altamura keeps jealously the recipe, of their own production, according to the ancient methods of preparation and aging.


LIMONCELLO, our own production liqueur made from organic lemons and alcohol.