Food & Wine // 5 min Read

Buffalo's Scampi

Written by Palmetto Bluff

Jun 29, 2020

Shrimp scampi. This classic Italian dish is named for two different crustaceans, yet only one is used. Let us explain...

Scampi is actually the plural of "scampo" - the Italian name for the Norway lobster (Nephrops norvegicus). This European crustacean with pale pink shells more closely resembles a small lobster (rather than a shrimp). So, how did shrimp become the "go-to" meat in this dish?

Originally, Italian chefs prepared scampi using the Norway lobster. However, without access to these crustaceans, Italian cooks in the United States needed to modify the dish. Adapting their Italian techniques and using American ingredients, they substituted shrimp for scampi yet they kept both names, creating the dish we know today.

Served over spaghetti, Chef Stuart Ainsworth from Buffalo’s restaurant shares his quick and easy recipe for shrimp scampi - a flavorful and well-rounded seafood and pasta dish that features shrimp (or chicken) sautéed in a savory sauce with garlic, butter, oil, and white wine.


• 12 Peeled and De-veined Shrimp (frozen works fine, or you can replace with diced chicken breast)
• Vegetable/olive/grape seed oil
• 1 Clove Garlic
• 1 Minced Shallot
• 1/2 Cup White Wine
• 1/2 Cup Chicken/Fish/Vegetable Stock
• 1 Tbsp. Chopped Parsley
• 10 Cherry Tomatoes
• 1 Tbsp. Butter
• Juice of 1 Lemon
• Salt & Pepper to taste


1. Heat large sauté pan with butter and vegetable/olive/grape seed oil and drop shrimp until they start to color.

2. Add garlic, shallot, and parsley.

3. Once aromatics have sweated, add white wine and begin to stir/toss in the pan to incorporate.

4. Use your stock to keep the sauce at the desired state. Heavy cream can be used if wanted (just don’t tell Chef Nate).

5. Add tomatoes, additional parsley, and season as desired.

6. Best served over cooked spaghetti with fresh basil, bread crumbs, and fresh-squeezed lemon juice.

Serves two.