Three generations of pasta perfection
What began with a 21-year-old Italian immigrant seeking a better life for himself and his family has turned into Melbourne’s best-loved pasta supplier with a difference. Today Farinacci’s fresh pasta products appear everywhere: from the city’s finest restaurants, hotels and boutique supermarkets to Melbourne’s largest sporting events, Crown Melbourne and the Melbourne Exhibition and Convention Centre.
As the business celebrates 35 successful years, Vincent Farinacci is upholding his grandfather’s mission of giving Melburnians a fresh, authentic taste of Italy. Every morning the family is up before the sun, mixing Australian durum wheat, semolina and pasteurised eggs to handcraft their pasta with extraordinary fillings and sauces. Farinacci’s broad wholesale range, made traditionally with untraditional ingredients, is what sets them apart. Where else can you find ravioli stuffed with the likes of roasted duck, smoked salmon and fresh dill; or gorgonzola with black fig and ricotta?
Vincent’s grandfather, Vincenzo, was originally a cabinet maker when he came to Australia in 1951. But after a trip to Sicily, he returned to his new country inspired by a pasta shop he had visited. In 1985 he began offering locals a taste of home, living up to his occupational surname, Farinacci, or “flour merchant”.
That same year, Michael Farinacci joined his mother and father in the pasta factory, bringing with him a sales and marketing background that saw the Farinaccis land contracts with catering venues, airlines, restaurants, delis and hotels across Australia. For three years now, Michael’s son Vincent has been keeping the family tradition alive.
Farinacci focuses on quality, sourcing seasonal ingredients from accredited suppliers who appreciate attention to detail. In 2012, the family added a retail section out the front of their Caulfield South factory. The small space is strictly takeaway, and lucky locals pop in to pick up take-home pasta and sauces, pizza, lasagne and other ready-made meals.
Farinacci has also developed the only boutique, HACCP-approved, gluten-free pasta in Australia. The gluten-free pasta is nationally available in both wholesale and retail packs, but just because it’s gluten-free doesn’t mean the ingredients are any less exciting. Oversized, fructose-free ravioli contains delicious fillings like veal braised with tomatoes, carrot and celery; and roasted pumpkin, sweet potato and spinach.
“We continue to make top-tasting, quality pasta using traditional techniques, while adapting to modern-day trends,” says Vincent. “We’re often told that people double check to see if they’re eating the gluten-free option – they can’t tell the difference.”
After keeping catering clients and their customers happy since 1985, the Farinaccis only have one thing to say: “Here’s to another 30 years!”