Top Pick Of The Week

May 10, 2011

Pasta On Fork

Al Dente’s Curry Fettuccine with Roasted Garlic Sauce makes a delectable—and quickly prepared—dinner. Photo by Angela Foto | IST.

WHAT IT IS: Flavored pasta and pasta sauces from a fine artisan producer.
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: Top quality ingredients, lots of flavors and pasta sauce without added sugar! (That’s because the ingredients are so good, no sugar is needed.)
WHY WE LOVE IT: It makes easy and delicious “special” pasta meals, thanks to all the flavors.
WHERE TO BUY IT: and fine retailers nationwide.

.Al Dente Gourmet Pasta In Flavors Galore


CAPSULE REPORT: In cooking, the Italian expression al dente (oll-DAYN-tay) refers to pasta that is cooked to be firm.  It’s not soft but tender, and gives a bit of resistance to the teeth (dente means tooth). If your pasta is fully cooked and soft, you'll miss the pleasure that al dente texture supplies.

It was this textural perfection that led Monique Deschaine, who founded Al Dente 30 years ago, to choose the name. She makes three cuts of pasta—fettuccine, linguine and pappardelle—in a multitude of flavors. Made in small batches, the pasta is slow-dried in order to cook to al dente perfection.

The pasta is made from the finest quality durum wheat, eggs and herbs, and cooks to al dente in just three minutes!

In 26 different flavor/cut combinations, you can enjoy a different pasta almost every day of the month. If you’re concerned about carbs, there’s even low-carb pasta. The line is certified kosher by Quality Kosher Supervision.

And there are delicious pasta sauces—Luscious Leek & Sundried Tomato Sauce, Marvelous Marinara Sauce, Outrageous Olive & Caper Sauce and Rustic Roasted Garlic Sauce. Made with plump tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, fresh garlic and herbs—and no added sugar—the sauces are far superior to most of what’s on the shelves of specialty food stores (and certainly, supermarkets).

Anyone can turn out pasta dishes that taste as if a gifted Italian nonna (grandmother) is in the kitchen. There is something—nay, many things—for everyone:

  • Linguine in Egg, Lemon Pepper, Roasted Garlic, Spicy Sesame and Spinach.
  • Fettuccine in Basil, Curry, Dill, Egg, Fiesta (tri-color), Fennel Bell Pepper, Garlic Parsley, Lemon Chive, Red Chile Pepper, Spinach, Squid Ink, Three Peppercorn, Tomato and Wild Mushroom.
  • Pappardelle in Garlic Herb and Golden Egg.
  • Carba-Nada, a reduced-carb pasta with only 18 net carbs/140 calories per serving, in Egg, Roasted Garlic and Lemon Pepper fettuccine.
  • Whole Wheat Fettuccine in Fabulous (original), Multigrain and Roasted Garlic fettuccine.

Discover more in the article index below.

Photo courtesy Al Dente.

THE NIBBLE has been reviewing the finest foods in America since 2004.
Our recommendations are based purely on our opinion, after tasting thousands of products each year, that they represent the best in their respective categories. Product reviews are by a unanimous vote of our Editorial Committee. We do not accept placement fees: All products have earned their way into our webzine due to excellence.

Pasta Cookbooks: Beyond Spaghetti

The Complete Book Of Pasta And Noodles Everyday Pasta - Giada De Laurentiis Food Made Fast: Pasta

The Complete Book of Pasta and Noodles, by Cook’s Illustrated. A comprehensive introduction to the world's pasta, from everyday to obscure. More information.

Everyday Pasta, by Giada De Laurentiis. The popular chef offers more than a hundred new easy recipes for pasta dishes, sauces, sides and salads, from light and delicate to rich and hearty. More information.

Food Made Fast: Pasta, by Julia Della Croce for Williams-Sonoma. These easy-to-plan, easy-to-cook recipes are both simple and inspired, making quick cooking a truly satisfying experience. More information.


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