Osteria Francescana, Massimo Bottura’s contemporary Italy

From Osteria Francescana and at the head of Massimo Bottura, from Modena (Italy), it is learning from the ingredients, collecting traditions, recognizing flavors, and imaginatively reinterpreting new techniques and influences from other cultures.

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Never trust a skinny Italian chef. It is not a warning from us, not even a verbatim quote that we collect for some reason. It is the title of the autobiography of a genius in the kitchen, a virtuoso capable of doing true magic with new foods and techniques, with aromas and flavors, with colors and textures.

The chef in question is Massimo Bottura, and his restaurant is one of the best in Italy, Osteria Francescana.

Photograph by Paolo Terzi courtesy of Osteria FrancescanaLocated in Modena, a land famous for its vinegar and pizzas, ice creams, wines, and cheeses, established this uncommon chef is now the result of two decades of experimenting in the kitchen.

Because although the name evokes antiquity or ancient times – it comes from the old use that was given to the building as a hostel for a Franciscan convent – the particular tavern proposes one of the most innovative culinary experiences in the world.

Photograph by Paolo Terzi courtesy of Osteria Francescana

Because the restaurant kitchen looks more like a laboratory than it should, in it Bottura and his team express themselves, that is where they experiment, where they create and where they conceive the cuisine of contemporary Italy, the cuisine of Italy that is not afraid to preserve its gastronomic roots while planting cuttings that will evolve.

Photograph by Diego Poluzzi courtesy of Osteria Francescana

This creativity without limits, this desire to break down barriers, to go further and give rise to what was not conceived, has driven the creation of dishes as provocative as their names are genuine. Rock reinterpretation, whoops! I have dropped the lemon tart, An eel returns to the Po River, or The crispy part of the lasagna, are just a few examples.

Osteria Francescana is an explosion of imagination, desires, desires, and flavors, a journey through taste experiences that may be familiar to us but presented to us as we did not even intuit. A kitchen that unites conceptions, cultures, and processes. Everything, under a philosophy, that of the slow food movement. “Go fast, slowly”, the restaurant says.

An old bowling alley has become the quintessential Genoese food restaurant due to two friends’ work and good taste.

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A few minutes from the heart of Milan and away from the bustling golden ring of Via Montenapoleone, in the Porta Romana neighborhood, you will find a unique osteria. Don’t be fooled by its outdoor lanes, once used for bowling or petanque, because the tastiest traditional Genoa bites are cooked with great care inside.

Just smell the spicy aroma that comes from the door before setting foot inside. Mamma mia! As if it were part of a tale by Italo Calvino, this restaurant is a dream come true of two Genoese friends, Paul and Marco, who wanted to have a place in Milan where they could meet their friends and taste the classic food of their land almost made by one of his norms.

They searched every corner, and they got lost in the streets of the city. They searched every nook and cranny and without success. So one fine day, they decided to open an informal, cozy, and friendly space in this bowling alley. The result? U Beard. Named after a local comic from the thirties, the owners have maintained the industrial atmosphere with bicycles of the time, old suitcases, metal cabinets, a gigantic elongated solid wood table, and all those culinary deco objects they have found in markets in the area.

The flavors of Liguria translate into focaccia from Recco, ‘tried pasta with pesto – with potatoes and green beans -, fresh ravioli, stuffed ‘panzotti’ … All made in the workshop behind them. You’ll want to order everything on the menu! A recommendation, the game meat dishes. But don’t be gluttonous; after dessert, a bowling game awaits you outside. Ready for a plenary session?

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