I have tried store bought whole wheat pasta, and the taste of car board is undeniable. Yuck. May be I am missing something. Can you recommend a brand?
The best "brand" of course is home made. There is Venetian pasta shape called bigoli. It's an extruded shape pressed through a device called a torchetto. You can substitute a meat grinder or substitute a fat, thick cut pasta. I agree with you about the cardboard taste of store bought. That said, DeCecco isn't bad as a substitute.
I have been using Montebello and find it quite good.
Personally, if I'm not going to eat semolina pasta, I prefer gluten free. We've been quite happy with Di Lallo (imported from Italy, sold at WFM) brown rice pasta. It doesn't get gummy and maintains its shape.
The Italian company Bionaturae has a line of organic whole wheat pastas that are, to my taste, a cut or two above the others available in US supermarkets. They scored well in a Cooks Illustrated taste test, too.
I prefer their thinner long pastas (spaghetti and linguine) to the fettucine and shapes, which seem grittier when cooked al dente.
I have to admit that since my kids are gone I've indulged myself with fresh pasta from my local Italian deli for the one or two times a week I have it. They've yet to offer a whole wheat offering during one of my visits.
I enjoyed this article though and the thoughts by Ms. Bastianich on what types of pasta dishes were best suited for the sweet nutty taste of whole wheat.
We really like Garofalo whole wheat pastas.
I'm not generally a big whole wheat pasta fan, but I've used DeCecco whole wheat spaghetti to make bigoli in salsa (Venetian dish made with anchovies and onions) and it worked well.
Hodgson Mill is pretty good. Trader Joe's also sells a whole wheat pasta that isn't too bad.
I like Bionaturae, Garofalo and, at the higher price point, Rustichella d'Abruzzo
I also really like farro pasta
Barilla multigrain (yellow package) is not whole wheat but better IMO than regular white.
Whole Foods carries a farro pasta which is good, although I am not sure it is whole wheat. I have tried a pasta from Puglia that is whole wheat.I think the wheat grains are smoked before they are ground. The pasta is really good with hearty sauces--especially with rapini or other bitter greens.
Rustichella d'Abruzzo Farro Buccatino is excellent. Agree with brown rice pasta instead of whole wheat for better texture and cooking applications.