Al Dente Pasta Company
Whitmore Lake, MI
The year was 1981, and in the world of pasta, the times they were-a-changin’. Almost overnight, Americans went from thinking of pasta as "spaghetti and meatballs" to seeking an array of shapes, flavors and recipes. This was also the year that Monique Deschaine headed down an adventurous path to start Al Dente Pasta Company. From the very beginning, her soon-to-be husband, Dennis, was an integral part of the business.
Between Monique’s passion for food and travel and Dennis’s innate ability to fix/build anything, this energetic, young couple decided to marry their talents and pour themselves into making pasta with only the finest ingredients and traditional techniques. Combining these two essentials with love, history, ingenuity and determination, the Deschaines developed the perfect pasta, combining fresh, homemade taste with the convenience of a dried product.
Monique, always one to research and learn new things, had been fortunate to receive advice and mentorship from many. One of her most influential mentors was Marcella Hazan, an Italian cuisine master, who taught Monique everything she needed to know about making pasta. Hazan stressed the importance of rolling out the dough, just like an Italian grandmother, in order to achieve a “tender, but firm” homemade taste and texture. Despite the fact that sheeting the dough was a more expensive, labor-intensive way of making pasta (compared to extruded pastas) it was the only way to get the perfect result for which the Deschaines were looking.