Rao’s Specialty Foods

The iconic Rao’s has been pleasing lovers of Italian cuisine in NYC since 1896 and was featured on our January issue cover in celebration of its Caesar’s Palace/Las Vegas restaurant’s 10th anniversary. What you may not be aware of is that in addition to its three restaurants, Rao’s has an extensive line of products which will allow you to recreate some its delectable Italian cuisine at home.

Home cooks will appreciate the wide range of the line which includes categories of sauces; pasta; marinades & dressings; oils & vinegar; and roasted peppers, vegetables & tomatoes. These products can be used to recreate many of the dishes served at the Rao’s restaurants and on the Rao’s website you’ll find more than 90 recipes.

You can pick some of the products up at one of the Rao’s restaurants and at Smith’s, Albertsons, Whole Foods and on several online sites such as Amazon and Jet. To view the whole line and order go to www.raos.com with free shipping for orders over $50.

Havana Club Anejo Clasico Puerto Rican Rum

The Arechabala family founded their company and built their first distillery in Cardenas, Cuba in 1878. The family was forced to flee during the Cuban Revolution and now their rum recipe has been dusted off and revived to produce this premium, dark rum that celebrates the exuberance of Cuba’s golden age. It is a blend of finely crafted rums produced from a carefully controlled fermentation of sugar cane molasses that is distilled and aged in oak barrels in Puerto Rico for one to three years. After the aged rums are blended together, the blend is aged in oak barrels for a second period of at least three months. I found the result to be a very smooth, mellow tasting rum with a slightly sweet flavor complemented by oaky notes with hints of almond and vanilla. I enjoy drinking it neat, but the makers suggest it is an ideal rum for classic cocktails.

Havana Club Anejo Clasico Puerto Rican Rum is distributed in Southern Nevada and Southern California by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. The suggested retail price is $21.99 for a 750ml bottle. For more info and cocktail recipes, visit www.havanaclubus.com/us/en or contact your Southern Glazer’s rep.