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Pasta Around the World

October 17, 2018
If one listens to the internet, every day is a holiday. There’s International Cat Day, National Siblings Day, National Mutt Day, and even National Video Game Day.

While we have nothing against any of those celebrations, we prefer the ones that we can taste. And that’s why today, we want to talk about October 17th, or National Pasta Day.

Some of our favorite non-profit fundraising auction travel packages take your donors to destinations well-known for their pasta prowess. Whether your supporters love red or white sauce, a fantastic wine paring or a beer, they can get their fill of noodles in one of these places.

Italy is well-represented in our Destinations of Excellence catalog with more than a dozen trips to the country on offer; when talking pasta, there’s no other place to start. The type of noodle in the homeland can differ wildly by region; the ruffled edges of gigli in Tuscany may not be available in Sicily, where ziti is a favorite. But whatever shape the dish takes, your winning donors will be thrilled to be eating it in its birthplace (and extra credit to those who find their way to Roma Sparita, the home of a pepper-and-cheese pasta that Anthony Bourdain swore by). Depending on the trip your supporters win, they might even learn how to best make it, right in their accommodations!

Of course, one of the largest concentrations of Italians outside of Italy resides in New York City, and there are plenty of great pasta joints in the metropolis. Restaurants like Carbone, Rao’s and Del Posto are all big names, but if your donors stop at one of many Little Italy eateries, they’ll find great Italian cuisine. If your supporters are real fiends for the dish, they can set their sights on the Festival of San Gennaro, the large street fair that happens every September, to get samples of pasta from dozens of different vendors.

Not all great pasta come with that traditional red sauce. A trip to Northern California will give your donors license to explore the quality of a good white clam sauce, as well. With the quantity of clams available from a fishing town like San Francisco, there are variations on clam spaghetti and linguine with clams on menus throughout the region (including several of our favorite restaurants in Napa Valley). Some of the area’s versions of the dish have even become famous; Wall Street Journal highlighted the linguine and clams of Charter Oak in neighboring St. Helena, where it’s a seasonal dish, earlier in 2018.