This Weekend, Try Our Recipe for a’Mare’s Spicy Tequila Rigatoni

A smokier, citrusy take on an old classic, from a’Mare’s Alessandro Pavoni.

Article by Victoria Pearson

spicy rigatoni_1a'Mare's Spicy Tequila Rigatoni. Photograph courtesy of A'Mare.

By now most diners are well versed in the communion of vodka and rigatoni. Many credit the Italian restaurant franchise (with its star-studded Manhattan outpost) Carbone as the originator of the dish.

The Crowne Sydney’s a’Mare restaurant is paying homage to the fan favourite this summer – with an Antipodean twist, swapping lashings of vodka for Patron tequila. The result is a smokier, more citrusy flavour, punching up the tomato sauce taste with a fragrant kick.

Here, the chef Alessandro Pavoni shares his recipe for T Australia readers to try this weekend.

spicy tequila rigatoni_2
a'Mare's Spicy Tequila Rigatoni. Photograph courtesy of A'Mare.

Spicy Tequila Rigatoni

Serves 4


320g rigatoni
3tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 medium white onion, finely sliced
40ml Patron tequila
400g peeled tomato Mutti
1tsp tomato paste
250ml cooking cream
1⁄2 bunch chopped parsley
100g parmigiano reggiano, freshly grated


Place a casserole dish on medium heat and gently fry onions with EVOO for 10 minutes, until soft and golden in colour

Add the tequila and let it flame. Cook until evaporated.

Add the peeled tomato and cook for a further 10 minutes with the pot lid on.

Remove the lid and break the tomatoes down with a fork.

Add the tomato paste and cook for a further 10 minutes with the lid on.

Add the cream and keep simmering for 5 minutes, stirring the whole time.

Turn of the heat and let the sauce rest with the lid on.

In a large pot, add tap water and salt and bring to boiling point. Once bubbling, add the rigatoni and cook to al dente.

Meanwhile, turn the heat back on the sauce and bring it back to boiling point.

Add the pasta al dente to the sauce, with parsley and parmigiano reggiano. Stir for a further 2 minutes and serve.