If you thought pasta infusions were limited to the expected—think vegetables and herbs—some savvy Atlanta-based chefs are challenging expectations with their creative flavor combinations. Using two of the world’s favorite beans—cocoa and coffee—their kitchens are turning out delightful and deeply complex flavors. Here are some of our favorites.
The pasta at Bellina Alimentari comes infused with a deep, roasted flavor thanks to locally roasted Radio Roasters Coffee, which is worked into the dough before being cooked and tossed with mushrooms, kale and cheese.
Prepare for a jolt of flavor from this vegetarian tagliatelle infused with locally roasted Radio Roasters Coffee and tossed with meaty shiitake mushrooms, vibrant kale and nutty Parmigiano-Reggiano. Carnivores may want to start with the thoughtfully built charcuterie board, complete with salt-flecked housemade schiacciata. 675 Ponce de Leon Ave. NE, 404.330.9933
Chef Andrea Montobbio may have grown up in Italy, but his menu makes it clear that he loves influences from neighboring Spain and France. One “greater than the sum of its parts” dish is his signature deep cocoa-hued pasta that creates an agnolotti purse holding fall-apart-tender braised lamb, accented with creme fraiche, salsify and silky lamb jus. 3586 Peachtree Road NE, 404.347.9558
Later this season, look out for chef Brandon Chavannes’ caffeinated twist on caramelle (made only by special request—the more you know), so named because the pasta’s shape resembles that of a wrapped candy confection—infused with coffee. This menu standout will debut as the weather chills, fitting timing thanks to the dish’s duck confit with juniper and thyme, chestnuts, cocoa nibs, and apple. 3455 Peachtree Road NE, 404.554.9995
The White Bull
For each of his toothsome pastas, chef Pat Pascarella mills wheat from DaySpring Farms in Danielsville, Ga., by hand, right in his Decatur kitchen. One of his tightly curated menu’s hits is the cocoa-infused spaghetti, made even more decadent with the addition of rosy pink-centered chicken livers and caramelized onions cooked with brandy, creamy fior di latte cheese and fragrant rosemary. 123 E. Court Square, 404.600.5649
Photography by: cora pursley