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Share Your Table Featuring Marino
“My grandmother used to make this dish, and so did my mother. It is easy to prepare, it’s great to share with the family and it warms the soul on a holiday evening.”
Marino is a fixture at DAOU, serving as our Vice President of Hospitality Operations. A native of the Piemonte wine region in northern Italy, Marino brings an effortless charm and a deep hospitality expertise to his role at DAOU, which includes working at some of the world’s finest restaurants.
When he joined DAOU starting in April, Marino and his family moved from Los Angeles to Paso Robles. Here, he, his wife and their two daughters have embraced the slower pace of wine country life.
Which brings us to Marino’s choice for DAOU’s holiday dinner series—Red Wine and Italian Sausage Risotto. “This dish is a staple in Piemonte, and the ingredients are all things that are plentiful there,” he says. “My grandmother used to make this dish, and so did my mother. It is easy to prepare, it’s great to share with the family and it warms the soul on a holiday evening.”
For this recipe, Marino has one secret ingredient that he cannot share—his mother’s cherished wooden cooking spoon. “I left Italy back in 1994, and as an Italian mama’s boy, it’s something I’ve always kept with me,” he says.
But while you cannot have his mother’s spoon, Marino encourages you to wield your own. “This may just be tradition speaking, but I think it’s best to use a wooden spoon,” he says. “You keep it in the food while you cook, and it just makes everything better.”
And by the way, if you think you have seen Marino Monferrato before, you probably have—at least if you watch the hit culinary show Hell’s Kitchen with Chef Gordon Ramsey. Marino has served as the show’s maître d'hôtel for the past eight seasons, making him a household face for many.
Watch Marino's Story:
Red Wine Sausage Risotto
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
12 Oz of Arborio or Carnaroli rice
1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
5-6 cups of stock (meat or vegetable)
10 Oz of fresh sausages, skin removed.
1 ½ cup of DAOU red wine (Reserve Unbound)
½ a chopped onion
1 sprig of fresh rosemary (optional)
1 cup of grated Parmigiano Reggiano
2 tbsp of butter
Bring stock to boil
Add the olive oil to the sauté pan and brown the sausage meat
Add the chopped onions, stir for a few minutes
Add the rice and toast for 1 minute
Add the red wine. Once completely absorbed start adding the stock, one ladle at a time. Let simmer on low heat and add stock as needed.
After about 18 to 20 minutes risotto is “al Dente”
Add butter and Parmigiano Reggiano and start the “mantecatura”(whisk)
When the right creaminess is reached serve in a flat dish