Marinara vs. Red Gravy: New Orleans Italians explain

Nov 08, 2018 275

BY: Ann Maloney

I’ve spent a good part of 2018 writing about New Orleanians of Sicilian descent and their food. Inevitably, the discussion turns to “red gravy.” In New Orleans, many of us call our spaghetti sauce by that moniker, which is a term new-to-town Italians find confusing. That includes chef Giovanni "Gio" Vancheri of Villa Vancheri in Mandeville, who in March was on a | The Times-Picayune panel judging locally owned jarred tomato sauces.

He recalled feeling insulted at first when diners at his North Shore restaurant called his sauce red gravy. It’s not gravy, he insisted. After he tasted the many varieties of New Orleans-style spaghetti sauce, however, he said he better understood why the term applies.

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