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There’s so much great food to try in DC, so we’ve decided to take a deep dive into some of the city’s best dishes! We kicked off the series with Immigrant Food’s Mumbai Mariachi Bowl earlier this week, followed by Money Muscle BBQ’s Texas Style Brisket. Now, we’re taking a look at Modena’s Barber II Tagliatelle:

For starters, when and/or where did the inspiration for this dish come from?

This dish hails from Emilia-Romagna, the heartland of food in Italy, the capital of which is our namesake, Modena.

Obviously all of the elements of the dish are important, but is there one in particular (whether it’s an ingredient or technique) that stands out as especially crucial?

To make it our own, we start with a special variety of wheat developed by plant breeder Steve Jones and Dan Barber of Blue Hill at a farm north of Seattle in Washington State called the Bread Lab. They started with a heritage Spanish variety called Aragon 03 and finished with a variety that “yields enough to have it make sense for the farmer, but still retain the characteristics of old wheats — the flavor, the ability to grow in a diverse environment, nutritional value.” This variety also helps to nourish the environment unlike many commercial varieties.

Our grains are grown locally in Charles County MD at an organic farm called Next Step Produce. We bring them in fresh every week and use a stone mill as it would be done in Italy to make our flour each day in the morning. Then, we hand craft each batch of pasta to exacting standards of perfection.

Finally, we prepare the ragu sauce with the best cuts of three meats, wine, tomatoes, carrots, plenty of good olive oil, onion and garlic, for a savory and hearty meal that is as nutritious as it is delicious.

And if someone were to order this, what are some good additional pairings (food or drink) to go with it?

The perfect pairing is a nice glass of Italian red wine such as a Chianti or a Super-Tuscan blend.


Get yourself a helping of Barber II Tagliatelle from Modena!

1100 New York Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20005

Lunch Hours
Tuesday-Friday 11:30am – 2:30pm

Dinner Hours
Tuesday-Thursday 5:00 – 9:00pm
Friday-Saturday 5:00 – 9:30pm

Open to close daily

Light Fare
Mon-Fri 3:00 – 5:00pm