Here in image-conscious southern California, people often avoid carbs. However, a big plate of pasta is not only comfort food, but also more flavorful than unseasoned chicken - or whatever is the favorite of those people who avoid carbs. And if pasta is good, then it's even better when it's fresh. Here are some of the best places in Orange County to get pasta made right in the restaurant.
2145 W. Chapman Ave.
Orange, CA 92868
When you think of pasta places, you probably don't think about Argentinian restaurants. Pasta Connection is a combination Italian-Argentinian restaurant where all of the noodles from spaghetti to lasagna and ravioli are made on site. The dinner menu is impressive, especially if you like cream sauces. This is also a good place for lunch. Here you can find spaghetti and ravioli (a whole plate, not just five ravioli) as daily lunch specials for less than $10.
1080 Bayside Drive
Newport Beach, CA 92660
Lasagna can be a great comfort food, especially if it's something your mom prepared when you were growing up. If you can't get mom's homemade lasagna, the lasagna here will be a good substitute. You can also get penne otero (made with vodka and bacon), cannelloni and ravioli made right in the restaurant. Sapori is open for lunch daily from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and for dinner from 4:30 to 10 p.m.
210 W. Birch St.
Brea, CA 92821
At the end of "Goodfellas," Henry Hill laments the fact that he can't get authentic Italian food after he gets placed into the witness protection program. You needn't worry about the authenticity at Bruno's, a place whose chef grew up in Venice. Among the pasta dishes made in Bruno's kitchen are ravioli with squash blossoms, gnocchi with pesto cream and pine nuts and pappardelle with short ribs and mushrooms. If none of those inspire a visit, then you probably don't like pasta. Bruno's opens for dinner at 4 p.m. daily.
Related: Best Pasta Places In OC
6700 W. Coast Highway
Newport Beach, CA 92663
Fettuccine Alfredo is one of the great pasta dishes - even if it does make you feel like you've overindulged. One way to make this dish even better is to get it when the pasta is fresh as it is at Cucina Alessá. This restaurant has a couple of other dishes made on site. The pappardelle Bolognese will make you realize that just because something is a staple on Italian menus, it doesn't have to be boring. You can also get an amazing butternut-squash ravioli made in the Alessá kitchen.
611 El Camino Real
Tustin, CA 92780
If you are a fan of stuffed pastas, Roma d'Italia is a place you should visit. Among the house pastas are two stuffed pastas. The manicotti is stuffed with ricotta and topped with meat sauce and mozzarella. The cannelloni is stuffed with veal and topped with meat sauce and mozzarella. However, if you don't want a stuffed pasta, Roma also offers gnocchi in a creamy tomato sauce. Best of all, the prices here are very reasonable. You can enjoy any of these fresh pastas for less than $15.
Related: Best Mac & Cheese In Orange County
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