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Dry Pasta Preference and Where in Boston/Burbs?

For linguine, taglierini, sheets, i always buy the silky fresh pasta from Bella Ravioli in Medford. But for orechietti(sp) and other shapes, have you tried many brands and come down to preferring one(white and/or whole wheat)? thanks so much.

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Bella Ravioli
369 Main St, Medford, MA 02155

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  1. Barilla is my go-to. Haven't really been blown away by the "brass extrusion die" artisanal pasta thing. Love Dave Fresh Pasta but limited varieties. Surprisingly, the Meat House in Arlington Heights has a good selection of dried artisanal pasta.

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    The Meat House
    1285 Beacon St, Brookline, MA 02446

    2 Replies
    1. re: Guido

      I like the bronze die pastas, they hold sauce better which is why they are prized in Italy. At home we eat both standard Barilla and the fancier stuff.

      1. re: Guido

        I find it very difficult to get Barilla properly al dente. It seems to go immediately from chalky to floppy, without pausing in that awesome toothsome, chewy-not-chalky al dente zone. I've had much better success with the Granoro brand that recently popped up at Market Basket for $0.79-0.99/lb.

        I wish the Costcos out here would start carrying better pasta. For a while they had De Cecco for under $1.50/lb, and the ones in the Midwest still have Garofalo for a similar price. Both are much better than Barilla for only a tiny premium.

      2. I love the Setaro dried pasta sold at Central Bottle. It's brass extrusion, and I think in a completely different league than the boxed stuff at supermarkets. While it's not cheap, $9ish for a kilogram isn't bad at all.

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        Central Bottle
        196 Massachusetts Ave, Boston, MA 02115

        4 Replies
        1. re: DoubleMan

          when i asked the ingenue at Formaggio yesterday, she handed me an 8 ou pkg of orechietti for $10.......NOT. That's $20 lb. for DRY pasta!! nope, i'd much rather that go toward a downpayment on foie gras, thank you very much. i did spring for a lb+ of imported benedetto cavaglieri for $8. we shall see.

          1. re: opinionatedchef

            I think the problem with orecchiette is that it is hand formed while most other dried pastas are just extruded. I've purchased good dry orecchiette at Russo's and I think it was in the $4 range.

            1. re: DoubleMan

              Uhhh, not really. They LOOK hand made, but they are also made by machine.

          2. re: DoubleMan

            I love Setaro. It is very pricy though. I get mine at Salumeria Italiana

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            Salumeria Italiana
            151 Richmond St, Boston, MA 02109

          3. The Regina Food Store on Main St in Everett has an unusual mix of Salvadoran grocery items and an incredibly wide variety of dry Italian pastas in unusual shapes. Salsa Roja Paccheri or Queso Fresco Cavatappi anybody? Seriously though, the only other store that I can think of that comes close in the variety of dry pasta is the Farmland in Wakefield that also has a very wide selection. The J. Pace & Son in Saugus also has quite a few different kinds of dry pasta.

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            J. Pace & Son
            325 Main Street, Saugus, MA 01906

            1. Salem Foods in Waltham has a good selection and good prices in Waltham:

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/807986

              And there is a little grocery store across from the Turkish place in Somerville that has good stuff too. Forgetting the names of both.

              2 Replies
              1. I used to really love a brand called Torino for dry pasta which I found at the Shaw's in Brighton. I haven't been able to find it in quite awhile, but if you come across it, it's really really good.