Slideshow: Spiaggia's New Tasting Menu Celebrating Pasta

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Photo: Galdones Photography

When Spiaggia opened 29 years ago, it was noted for many things about the way it raised the bar for Italian food in a red sauce town, but perhaps the most notable of all was its pasta made with a delicacy and regional authenticity that instantly set it above nearly every other Italian restaurant in town. Three decades and dozens of restaurants aiming for Italian authenticity later, we would say Spiaggia has rivals, but no superiors, in that regard and that ongoing legacy of excellence is what a new degustation menu at Spiaggia celebrates. Or, rather, a series of menus, which will change with the seasons to highlight a different side of Spiaggia's skill with flour and egg. The first one up is devoted to filled pastas six courses showing how pasta serves as a container for all the flavors of Italy. Beginning in April they'll look at Italian-American classics ("reinvented Spiaggia style"); July kicks off a celebration of Italian coastal pastas, focusing on seafood; and October launches "Edible Earth," an exploration of grains and other earthy flavors (including the Mieli Thun honey that's a favorite of chef Sarah Grueneberg). The dinners are $95, with wine pairings for $55. Our man Huge Galdones was invited to document this first menu devoted to filled pastas; see his slides below.