One would never look twice at La Casa Pasta driving by on Delaware Route 896 going to or from Newark, Delaware. Located in the Four Seasons Shopping Center next to a 7-11, one would think La Casa Pasta is just a neighborhood spaghetti/pizza house. Non-descript… nothing special. And one would be so wrong.
La Casa Pasta located outside of Newark, Delaware, has been a closely guarded secret for 30 years. The past three food critics for the News Journal Paper, in Wilmington, Delaware, have called it one of the best restaurants in Vice President Joe Biden’s home state.
Once inside the heavy wooden doors, one feels as if they have been transported to Italy. The atmosphere from the décor, to the opera playing in the background, to the Italian waiters all add to the illusion.
Start with the Calamari, fried golden brown to perfection, light never greasy, and oh so tender, served with a marinara sauce. Or another favorite, the Mussels Fra Diavolo, mussels in Marinara Sauce fresh, simple, uncomplicated flavors married together in a dish that is perfection.
The menu is large and features fresh pasta in traditional dishes, along with a wide assortment of fruit of the sea (seafood), beef, veal and chicken. While everything is wonderful, the cheese ravioli is to die for. Unless one has an Italian Grandmother at home in the kitchen rolling out the pasta dough, one cannot find better ravioli anywhere. The cheese ravioli are plump, pasta pockets filled with ricotta cheese, so light one expects them to float up, off of the plate any second. It doesn’t get any better then this.
Cannelloni is another favorite with homemade pasta filled with veal, chicken, pancetta, ricotta, mozzarella, marinara and béchamel sauces. Each bite is better then the one before.
Desserts include traditional cannoli, tiramisu and a wonderful orange sorbetto, served in a whole orange shell. The dinner portions are so large there is usually no room for dessert, so I order dessert to go.
Check out their web site at www.lacasapasta.com for week day specials. La Casa Pasta is open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week. While dining at La Casa Pasta is normally a leisurely experience to be savored, they do offer an express buffet Monday through Fridays from 11:30a.m. until 2:00 p.m. for $12.50.
Live music adds to the dining experience on Friday and Saturday evenings from 7p.m. until 10 p.m at the Piano Bar. While reservations aren’t required, they are strongly suggested. La Casa Pasta, Four Seasons Shopping Center, RT 896, Newark, DE. 302-738-9936.