Pasta is the latest big food trend to hit London
Londoners are currently going mad for freshly made pasta. Try getting a table at Padella to see that it’s true! Several pasta-centric restaurants including Padella and Pastaio have recently opened up, although there is only one company delivering fresh pasta to your home.
Pasta Evangelists is a new start-up that delivers artisanal pasta by post. They supply you with everything you need, from freshly made pasta to sauces and garnishes for a homemade meal. The key selling point is in the simplicity, ease-of-use, and restaurant quality. There are actually very few places where you can buy comparable quality pasta, for example Selfridges or Harrods food halls, but you’ll be paying a small fortune and that’s without the sauce or home delivery!
I first heard about Pasta Evangelists when their mouth-watering pasta photos started popping up all over Instagram. Created in 2017 by Italian pasta lover Alex Savelli, it’s so far proving to be a case study in how to launch a food start-up successfully! From securing big-ticket investors to their on-point branding, marketing, and product, there’s a lot to get excited about.
So How Does It Work?
Each week there are 6 new pasta dishes to choose from, typically priced from around £7 to £11. You can either place individual orders or start a subscription. Orders are then delivered by post, with up-to-the-minute tracking so you’ll know when your meal is arriving. Their boxes also fit through the letterbox, with a cooler inside to keep your meal fresh until you come home. Once received, it takes less than 5 minutes to cook in a pan of boiling water or freeze for up to two months to eat later.
Miss Portmanteau’s Review
Pasta is definitely the dish I cook the most often at home. It’s also the dish I order the least often when I’m out. That’s largely because I can cook most pasta dishes quickly and easily for a fraction of the price. However, the rebound in pasta places have caught on, finding a gap in the market for the type of quality, artisanal pastas that, unless you’re going to roll your own from scratch, can’t be easily or quickly replicated in your kitchen. And that’s a really key distinction to bear in mind when judging a company like Pasta Evangelists.
Last week I received 2 complimentary meals of my choice to review. I picked the lobster tortelloni and lamb ragu as two dishes I wouldn’t try making myself and invited a fellow pasta-lover to try them with me. Receiving the order was easy, with live updates by text message and a link to see my order online. I popped it in the fridge to cook the next night. As you can see, its thin flat structure fit easily inside.
Inside the box, I found two recipe sheets, a menu of next week’s pasta, and the ingredients. Each dish is also colour coded to avoid any confusion between which sauce should go with which pasta!
Lobster Tortelloni with Yellow Tomato Sauce
Ingredients: Lobster, white fish, ricotta, butter, yellow tomatoes, onion, samphire, olive oil, sugar, lemon juice
Each meal serves one, but if you’re anything like me and want to taste it all, you could go halves. I used one pan to heat up my sauce, and another to boil the pasta for 3-4 minutes as instructed. Next, I removed the tortelloni with a slotted spoon and added to the sauce before plating.
This was our favourite dish of the two, as the lobster filling was hearty and meaty, and perfectly seasoned. Although I greedily wanted more of the yellow tomato sauce, the balance of flavour was indeed spot on. Samphire was the perfect compliment in both flavour and presentation.
Tip: Why not order the tortelloni to share as a starter, and a dish each for your main? Definitely advisable for customers with bigger appetites.
Lamb Ragu with Pappardelle
Ingredients: lamb, white wine, celery, onion, carrot, garlic, rosemary, thyme, bay leaf, mint, parmesan
This dish was prepared exactly as before. After boiling the pasta and heating the sauce, the two were combined and folded together before topping with parmesan cheese. I absolutely loved the thickness and colour of the pappardelle, made with organic flour and free-range eggs. This dish was slightly different to the photo, which looked like it had a tomato-based sauce, a small mistake perhaps. Even though it was a broth-like sauce, the pasta wasn’t at all dry and we both enjoyed the dish.
Tip: Contact Pasta Evangelists for wine pairing recommendations!
PREPARATION: 5/5 It could not be any easier to cook and prepare, taking no more than 5 minutes to whip up restaurant worthy pasta. Great for dinner dates or parties, especially if you aren’t too keen on cooking or maybe just don’t have the time.
PORTIONS: 4/5 Part of the business ethos is zero waste, which means getting the portion size absolutely right. First impressions were that the portions looked rather small, but once cooked and plated it was perfect and looked much bigger. Having extra food is also a mentality thing. While the company doesn’t do starters or sides (for now, anyhow), you can always serve your own or order an extra dish to share.
PRODUCT: 5/5 Pasta Evangelists are definitely the best pasta delivery service around. The product is very fair value for money, particularly for fresh artisan pasta and high-quality ingredients such as lobster, sea bass and beef.