Love is in the air when Parmigiano Reggiano® cheese is on the table.


On Valentine’s Day some people like to spoil their partners with extravagant gifts – like jewelry or surprise getaways to exotic destinations. Many others like to show their love by cooking a great meal for their partners. This is exactly what Alfredo di Lelio did for his wife, Ines, in 1908, after the birth of their son. He wanted to make something special to help Ines get on her feet, so he modified a simple fettuccine recipe by adding extra butter, a generous portion of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese and plenty of love. Eventually, this dish became known worldwide as Fettuccine Alfredo – and we think it is an excellent way to celebrate Valentine’s Day with the person you love most.

Fettuccine Alfredo started as a gesture of love
and has become one of Italy’s most famous pasta dishes

Ines, Alfredo di Lelio’s wife, loved the pasta that her husband made for her, and suggested he feature the new dish in his restaurant, “Alfredo alla Scrofa”, in Rome. A natural showman, Alfredo started mixing the Parmigiano Reggiano cheese into the pasta at the table – while telling his guests the story of how this tradition had started as a gesture of love. This ceremony helped popularize what became known as “Fettuccine Alfredo” and attracted a crowd that included Hollywood stars, famous business people, artists and political figures from all over the world. Many of these people were photographed with Alfredo, and the walls of the restaurant were soon lined with black and white photos of Alfredo and his celebrity guests – including such people as JFK, Ringo Starr, John Wayne, Sofia Loren, and many more. And in a brilliant example of his showmanship, Alfredo started including regular people and their families in the ritual he had reserved for famous stars, making regular people feel like celebrities – all of which continued to spread the love and notoriety of “Fettuccine Alfredo” – turning a simple dish into a globally recognized symbol of Italian cuisine and hospitality.

Our version features pink peppercorn,
adding a touch of spice and a lovely bit of color to an already great pasta

In honor of Valentine’s Day we asked our US Brand Ambassador, Chef Michele Casadei Massari to develop a special version of Fettuccine Alfredo. He added pink peppercorn to the traditional recipe, which makes the final plating more elegant and colorful, while enhancing each bite with a little bit of spice and crunchiness. The final dish is lovely, and we believe it will become a new classic. Chef Michele is so excited about it that he’s featuring it on the menu at his restaurant, Lucciola. Coincidentally, restaurants in Manhattan are finally re-opening their doors for inside seating just in time for Valentine’s Day – which is perfect timing, since the people of New York have been anxiously waiting for this moment. Lucciola is fully booked by couples ready to celebrate a romantic evening out and enjoy a wonderful meal. We are featuring Chef Michele’s recipe on our site – making it available for anyone who wants to make this special dish at home for their partners. You can access the recipe here: