Sicilian Culture
The People, The History, The Culture, The Food

The Events:  Francis Ford Coppola's Festa Macoroni!

(Morisi-Coppola Pasta Factory, Brooklyn, NY)  June 11, 2001 - - Hail Coppola! The 5-Academy Award Winner Director is now also the holder of a 5-Star Pasta and Sauce. Wait a minute, sauce from a jar? "I don't care whose name is on it if its another factory-produced sauce", you could never be more wrong. While has been the long time advocate of "all natural, from scratch and never from a bottle" we make this one (and only one) exception. Let me read you the ingredients to the Pomodoro-Basilico (Tomato & Basil Sauce): Organic Diced Tomato; Organic Onion; Organic Basil; Sea Salt; Organic Black Pepper; Organic Red Pepper. The pasta? As Francis says "I love the old pasta shapes, made on the original bronze molds. This was before the days of Teflon coating, so the texture is rugged and holds on to the sauce, we actually make over 80 traditional shapes." Call it a renaissance from a renaissance man. Classic Cinema, Wine worthy of collecting and now classic pasta to be served with an all-natural, organic sauce the same way our grandparents would have made it. Francis, another winner, in an age where "all natural" often includes corn syrup, citric acid and other stuff you can never pronounce 'to preserve, improve color, and flavor'. Take it from a very strong advocate of cooking from scratch, and with all natural ingredients, I am envious of the product he has made. Morisi-Coppola Pasta has my vote as the best dried pasta, anywhere.

The crowd enjoys Coppola's pasta

Antique carousel to add to the entertainment

A live band plays the traditional Italian Tarantella

On June 11, 2001, Francis Ford Coppola gave tribute to his father Carmine Coppola (who wrote the music for Coppola's film, The Godfather) in the traditional Italian way.  He had 8th Street in Park Slope, Brooklyn decorated in the traditional Italian colors of green white and red.  It looked much the way it was half a century ago, a live brass band, and great Italian food, in this case Coppola's pasta and sauces. What do you serve with all this? Quite possibly the best wine for the buck, Niebaum-Coppola wine. For the event they even prepared pitchers of sangria made with the Coppola wine since it was so warm that day.

Coppola made an investment with the Morisi Pasta Company. A Brooklyn institution, and a family run business for nearly 100 years, Mr. Morisi says "I appreciate the opportunity to continue my family's legacy with someone who understands and appreciates the importance of preserving tradition". And what does Coppola say about getting into the food and wine business?  "It's all entertainment".  In the spirit of a true Italian we are pleased that he took the initiative to set the standard of authentic Italian food.

Accompanying Francis Coppola's fine pasta, sauces, olive oil, wine (shown above) and old world-style European bread from the TomCat Bakery, Olde Brooklyn Soda, sausage and peppers on Italian bread, Ciao Bella ice cream and gelato, and what feast is not Italian without zeppole and Illy espresso? (They actually had Illy espresso cups there, some actually designed by who else? Coppola). They even had a vintage carousel in operation for the kiddies (and naturally some adults took pleasure in riding it as well).

The sauce retails for $6 for a 26 oz. Jar and the pasta (which comes in handcrafted shapes from brass molds that you rarely see such as Gemelli, Farfallone, Quadrefiore and Rosette) sells for $4 for a 12 oz. package.  Look for Coppola's mother at age 17 which adorns the package of his Mammarella brand.  Both products have a shelf life of well over a year, so I am personally going to stock up on those days when it is either too hot to cook or when I have a guest coming over and didn't have time to shop. I find it very portable for picnics as well.

Retail Sales of Francis Ford Coppola's products can be found at -- andiamo a mangia! (let's go eat)!


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