As early as the 14th century, Italian pasta was already one of Europe’s most celebrated dishes. Today, Italian pasta is arguably the globe’s most famous food: From Rome to New York to Tokyo and beyond, Italian noodles — long and short — are served in the world’s best restaurants. While all of this is very important, what I really want you to know is that I just started eating pasta last year. I’ve always hated pasta. An additional item of note, is that I have never eaten fresh pasta. Only the packaged stuff from the grocery store. Because of this, I rarely visit Italian restaurants, and If I do, I order pizza. During a recent visit to Roma Houston, my views on pasta changed.
ROMA| An Italian Eatery
Roma opened in January 2019 following the conversion of Restaurateur Shanon Scott’s previous concept Sud Italia. Roma focuses on (mostly) Roman dishes like Cacio e pepe, Carbonara and Bucatini alla amatriciana. The environment at Roma is casual and offers guests the options of indoor and outdoor dining. The quaint patio is very romantic around sunset, especially when paired with a bottle of affordable Italian wine. Although Shanon’s more casual and affordable spot has only been open for five months, Chef Angelo Cuppone’s Italian cuisine has already received accolades from Houston’s major publications.
PASTA | I’ve Spent the Bulk of my Life Hating You!
Whenever someone asks me about Italian food, I often smugly reply “I hate it.” That mindset is clearly rooted in ignorance, but it’s truly how I feel. Although I’ve never been to Italy, I have visited some of Houston’s top Italian restaurants. Unfortunately, I never gave pasta a try at those restaurants. I am the chick that goes to Tony’s(easily Houston’s most famous Italian restaurant) and orders Parmesan crisps, souffles and cotton candy. My goal is 2019 is try new things. To step outside of my comfort zone and enjoy life (lol). Oddly, eating pasta is on that list.
Following a private dinner at Roma with Italian Food and Wine enthusiast Dr. Jeremy Parzen and Maurizio Gamberucci, Deputy Director of Italy-America Chamber of Commerce of Texas, my views on pasta changed. This was one of the few dining experiences where I was able to rely upon the prowess of two Italian food experts. My dinner companions ordered an array of Roma’s classic dishes. Most of which I would have never ordered on my own. Additionally, the wine selected to accompany our meal made it even more memorable.
MENU | Let’s Talk About The Food
insalata di polpo
fettuccine nero di seppia allo scoglio
Earlier this year at the Taste of Italy I enjoyed Chef Angelo’s mouthwatering cocoa-infused tagliatelle. It was comforting to know that if all else failed, there would be at least one item on the menu I would enjoy. Throughout the night bowls and plates of carbonara, insalata di polpo, fritto misto, mozzarella in carrozza, ravioli salsiccia e tartufo and fettuccine nero di seppia allo scoglio danced across our table. I was thoroughly impressed with the table-side presentation of the Roma’s cocoa-infused tagliatelle served in a Pecorino wheel . The carbonara was easily one of the top picks at our table. I don’t eat pork, but could tell by how fast it went that it must have been scrumptious. The fettuccine nero di seppia allo scoglio was easily my second favorite dish. As an avid seafood lover, I enjoyed the squid ink-infused fettuccine with mixed seafood and pizziaola sauce!
GIVEAWAY | Win Tickets to the 2nd Annual Houston Pasta Festival
Hopefully this post makes you hungry for pasta. If so, you will want to get your tickets to the second annual Houston Pasta Festival!
On Sunday, May 19, more than 20 Houston-area restaurants and their chefs will present their interpretations of Italy’s gift to the world: Pasta. And the roster of participating restaurateurs includes not only some of our city’s leading Italian dining destinations but also restaurants and chefs from across the culinary spectrum.
I’m honored to announce that I will be a guest judge! I have several pairs of tickets to giveaway to my loyal subscribers and followers.
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