Guess we have to stock up now. After 2022, their devoted followers will know if the quality goes to shit.
Everyone loves Rao’s, and call me a Philistine, but I tried it and I still prefer Classico. (Actually, I think the recipe Consumer Reports had fifty years ago is pretty good, very easy, and way cheaper: Saute a diced onion and a diced clove of garlic; add a 28-oz can of crushed tomatoes, 2 6-oz cans of tomato paste, a cup of water, 2 tsp dried basil (or 2 Tbsp fresh), and 2 tsp dried oregano; simmer 30 minutes. (Obviously, you can adjust the garlic, basil, and oregano.)
updating: picked up a couple of jars of mezetta’s at target — the marinara with plum tomatoes and the parm. the parm version i could eat with a spoon. the marinara i found quite oily and a bit salty.
so, i’m sticking with rao’s, which is now a bit more expensive at market basket (what isn’t?), but still far less than other places.
I have never heard of nor seen Carbone.
Is it widely distributed?
I know I miss a lot of things here in rural Oregon.
I keep trying new marinara, vodka, arrabbiata and Siciliana sauces.
I haven’t settled on a favourite.
I haven’t seen Carbone in Canada.
I’m trying Rao’s Arrabbiata next. I have liked Rao’s Vodka, Marinara and Tomato Basil Sauces. Deals in [Ontario]
My most recent sauce was Ursini Tomato Basil, which was pretty good. 8/10 $9.90 Cdn for 480 ml.
I had to look up a picture of it, as I’d never heard of it in New England. Nope. Never seen it.
By all accounts, actually eating at Rao’s in New York is a near impossibility – you have to know someone who knows someone who knows . . . So, an old friend managed the trick on the umpteenth try and reported back: “Why the fuss?”
It’ll probably earn me a ticket to hell, but I feel that way about most Italian restaurants.
Sandwiches and pizza: love em.
Sit down places, I’ll pass.
Lol ! I really do enjoy your sense of humour.
We love Rao’s but are always on the lookout for great items. Looked this up on line. Rao’s Marinara was $10.99 for 32oz yesterday at Albertson’s; less when I find it at Costco or on sale elsewhere. Carbone is available at a few local chains too, but seems to be $12 for 24oz. If I’m remembering my basic algebra, that means Carbone is 50% more per ounce. Not necessarily a total deal-breaker, but it wouLd have to be REALLY good at that price.
Agree for the most part… but some have outstanding dishes over and above pasta. Up here, the long gone “Dante’s on the River” had a calamari steak done in a white wine, lemon butter sauce with garlic and shallots that was a once a week lunch or dinner. Boy do I miss it.
The Farm Boy tomato basil sauce is very good, especially for a jar that costs less than $6 Cdn.
What are your favourite spaghetti sauce hacks, to improve a jar?
For a while I have been skipping the jarred sauces, but when I used them, I found I doctored them enough that the brand made very little difference. So I got the store brand. I recently got a bottle of HEB tomato basil, just in case, but frankly a sauce of crushed San Marzanos with a soffrito, white wine, plenty of black pepper, and the herbs or spices of my choice is awfully quick and easy. I keep a tube of tomato paste for times when something a little heartier is desired.
“Toasting” some tomato paste (and anchovies or anchovy paste) & RPF in a bit of olive oil before adding the jarred sauce. Adding onion and garlic powder & frozen or fresh basil.
I don’t always check out the peripheral-to-me food discussions. In Greater Boston these days, I choose Carbone over Rao’s. They’re both pricey but they’re often on sale.
Recently our local HEB stopped carrying Cento regular and San Romano whole peeled tomatoes in 14 oz. cans. 24 oz. is a lot. So I tried a can of Mutti. They are not San Marzanos, but they are incredibly good in a super quick marinara or a pizza sauce (basically marinara with a splash of red wine vinegar and some oregano). I refuse to let Rao’s, Mezzetta, or anyone else have the thrill of smushing the tomatoes in their hands.
I like the Mutti cherry tomatoes, too. Nice size of fan for my cooking style.
This is a huge thread and I haven’t had time to do more than skim it (possibly missing any earlier post I might have made here and forgotten).
But, let me add my small voice to the others above who applaud Rao’s. Having tried several of their offerings, we most like their plain Marinara. It can be gussied up as needed – basil, red pepper flakes (always), etc. It’s a really good commercial product.