As everyone knows, I love my pork products. Cured pork products are twice as good as the fresh variety, as the nitrates really bring out my natural color. Recently, I noticed a new brand of salami at Zabar's: Fra'mani. Fra'mani is a company out of Berkeley, California run by Paul Bertolli, who was the chef at Chez Panisse from during the 80's and went on to be the chef at Oliveto's through 2005. Although Fra'mani sells a wide variety of salami, only the Sametto was for sale at Zabar's as of last week. The stuff is expensive (I think over $15 a pound, but this may be an underestimate), but I couldn't resist. And although I love Arthur Avenue in the Bronx, Zabar's was just closer.
The salami is about 12" long and a bit over an inch in diameter (you can all stop snickering right this second). It has an excellent flavor and a deep red color. My only problem with it was that it was a bit hard to cut and was a bit chewy, almost like it was over dried. I actually like the texture of Soprasetta Veneta better, but I think the flavor of Fra'mani was superior. Although I am not sure I am running out to spend this much money on sausage quickly, the taste did whet my appetite to try the other varieties Fra'mani sells. When I do get the energy and time to get back to the Bronx (usually after hockey season ends for the kids) I will certainly compare Fra'mani to the excellent home made sausages you can still get up there.