Miami Beach's Macchialina and its Brooklyn-based sister restaurant, the Saint Austere, will go head-to-head in a pasta-packed, March Madness-inspired tournament, MacMadness, kicking off Monday, March 12.
The carb-fueled event will challenge both restaurants to serve two unique pastas per week, both created by Macchialina's chef/owner Michael Pirolo. The pasta with the most orders will advance to the next week, and the last plate standing will become a mainstay on both Macchialina's and the Saint Austere's menus.
"MacMadness is an ode to the two constants in my life: pasta and basketball," Pirolo says.
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Right now, the final four contending pastas for MacMadness include a tagliatelle with lamb shank ragu; butternut squash raviolini with Taleggio cheese, Espelette peppers, and sun-dried tomatoes; agnolotti dal plin, filled with roast duck leg, vin cotto, and baby spinach; and a spaghetti carbonara topped with guanciale, black pepper, and pecorino. Pastas, which average $20 to $25, are subject to change.
The two family-owned restaurants specialize in Italian cuisine with a bounty of homemade pasta varieties. The Pirolo siblings — Fabrizo, John, Jaqueline, and Michael — debuted the Saint Austere in Brooklyn's Williamsburg neighborhood in 2011. The family went on to open a more casual Italian spot, which Miami knows as Macchialina.
MacMadness will tip off Monday, March 12, at 6 p.m., and the champion pasta will be announced at both restaurants Monday, April 2.