Pasta Sauce Cook-off

How did it all begin? First of all, let me say that Hank and I love pasta with all kinds of sauces.

Pasta Sauce Cook-offHank’s father was from a little mountain village in Abruzzo and his mother’s family, a small town outside of Palermo, Sicily. Their sauces contained all kinds of things, from chicken necks to sausages. It took all day to make and nobody went away from the kitchen hungry. One of Hank’s fondest memories, as a child, was standing on a chair in front of the stove and stirring the sauce. Grandma, in her broken English, would make a stirring motion with her hand and tell him to keep the sauce moving.

A few years ago, we went to the Reno Festival and walked the main street, with the smells of sauces floating along side of us in every direction. Just about every province of Italy was represented. We bought a bowl and tried nearly all. The thought occurred to us that we could do this in Grass Valley. After all, there are many Italians in our area and with the help of Theresa from Bear River Pasta Co., we put together the cook-off. The event has attracted sauces from Sunday Gravy to Puttanesca, from meat to marinara. For two years, the Holiday Inn Express and Kate Malmgren have sponsored this event, where stories are shared about grandma’s secret recipe and the gathering of family around the table. Competition is always stiff so come early, taste often and vote for your favorite. Bring Nonno, Nonna, and Mama for pasta, great conversation and memories of slow afternoons with family and friends.

Special Events Committee,
Karen & Hank DiPillo, Erin Van Dyke

Pasta Sauce Cook-off Competition
Nearly 200 people attended the 3rd annual Pasta Sauce Cook-off at the Gold Miner’s Holiday Inn Express on Mother’s Day weekend. They tasted a variety of sauces and enjoyed a bit of wine and conversation. There were vendors from Olive Vitality, DiPillo Design, Italian Student Exchange, Kimala’s Jewelry, Stinson Ceramics and the Cultural Foundation. Also Diane’s wonderful plants and our genealogy group. The winners of this year’s contest were Don Mortaro, of the Italian American Club(1st Place), Dante Poverello, (2nd place) and Luke Maroney of “Uncle Luco’s Kitchen, People Choice Award. A special thanks to Theresa from Bear River Pasta Co. for donating the pasta, Kate Malmgren and all of the people at the Gold Miner’s Inn.