The tasting ritual. What does that remind you of? Perhaps, of legends of faraway kingdoms? In De Cecco the tasting ritual is far from being a legend: it’s an "all De Cecco" tradition, passed down from generation to generation to guarantee you the best pasta. Before the actual tasting, tasting experts smell the semolina flour, the raw ingredient obtained from milling the wheat, after moistening it with water and letting it rest to set its unique fragrance free. The experts check that the pasta, meaning every single penna or spaghetto, without sauce, meets the standard of excellence of the De Cecco brand: color, aroma, elasticity and firmness during cooking. The smell must be of wheat and the color pale yellow, distinctive of De Cecco grains, and it shouldn’t have bitter streaks. Finally, consistency and elasticity of the pasta are checked. After tasting, which is also done by the owners themselves, the pasta is set aside to rest for 5-10 minutes and then tasted again. This step checks the pasta's capability of not softening and overcooking in the time between being drained and making it to the plate. To pass the test it has to taste “just cooked”. But these are only the last tests of a long series. Before it falls into the tasters' plates, De Cecco pasta went a long way: lab analysis, carried out also on raw pasta, to check that it has the right thickness and is perfect in shape. All this is meaningless, without the tasters’ approval: they have the last word about quality. When it is your turn to taste the pasta, you will realize why De Cecco cares so much.