Identità Chicago 2017: lectures on pasta and pizza

The fourth edition in Illinois is focused on our great symbols. During classes and dinners, with Italian and American chefs from all over


The protagonists of the 4th edition of Identità Chicago (7-8 October 2017): from the top left corner, clockwise, Vittorio and Saverio Borgia, Corrado ScaglioneSarah MinnickDavide OldaniSarah Grueneberg, Luciano Monosilio, Fernando Darin and Jonathan Benno

Identità’s trip to the United States – the eighth – will start in Chicago, this year, on Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th October. It’s the 4th edition in a row in the Illinois metropolis, always at Eataly Chicago, on East Ohio Street, in River North, just off Lake Michigan.

«Chicago is a very intriguing metropolis. Even in terms of food. It is somehow contradictory», explains Paolo Marchi, curator of the trip which will continue in New York (10-12 October) and, for the first time, Boston (13 October) « It has some of the most innovative and unpredictable chefs of the entire world, but it looks like this creativity is not mirrored in a rising variety of world cuisines, as in the Big Apple. They are present, but the other side of the story is represented by pizza, Chicago style, which is so rich in ingredients it’s very different from our own.

As Italians, we have to accept this: «When they say they have invented pizza on the banks of Lake Michigan, it’s not totally false. In the same way as we’ve acquired ingredients and dishes from all around the world, coffee, tomato and rice just to quickly name three, enhancing them with our taste, style and palate, so they have done with pizza. Naples invented it and many people around the world have done the same by interpreting it with their heart and experience. Each one has his own».

Sarah Minnick with Franco Pepe, a Portland/Caiazzo exchange

Sarah Minnick with Franco Pepe, a Portland/Caiazzo exchange

And then there’s the passion for pasta. «There’s plenty of Italy over there so why not focus Identità Chicago 2017 on pasta and pizza?». This will be the case, with eight main protagonists, four from Italy and four from the US, four chefs and four pizzaioli, working in couples. Let’s see in detail.

The schedule in Chicago will start on Saturday 7th October, at 11.30 am (6.30 pm in Italy), with a lesson on pizza held by Vittorio and Saverio Borgia and Federico Della Vecchia from Bioesserì (with restaurants in Milan and Palermo). There will also be Sarah Minnick of Lovely’s Fifty Fifty in Portland, Oregon, on the West Coast. The pizzaiola already participated in Identità Milano in March and in a twinning project with Franco Pepe from Caiazzo - we wrote about it at the time.

At 2.30 pm, Davide Oldani (D’O in Cornaredo, Milan) and Jonathan Benno (Lincoln, New York) will present their concept of pasta. This is not a first for Oldani, who was already at Eataly Chicago in the autumn of 4 years ago, first edition. It’s a debut for Benno, though he gave a lecture with Moreno Cedroni in New York, in 2011.

In the evening, there will be the Dine Around itinerary dinner event at Eataly Chicago a format that was already successfully implemented at Identità New York: Oldani himself and Roman Luciano Monosilio (Pipero, Rome), debuting overseas, will each cook a pasta dish. The Borgias and Dalla Vecchia and Campanian Corrado Scaglione of Enosteria Lipen (Triuggio, Monza Brianza, another debut) will make two pizzas, Katia Delogu of Eataly Chicago the dessert.

Sarah Grueneberg, last year during the lesson at Identità Chicago with Giancarlo Perbellini (photo Brambilla/Serrani)

Sarah Grueneberg, last year during the lesson at Identità Chicago with Giancarlo Perbellini (photo Brambilla/Serrani)

Sunday 8th October, 1 pm, closing date in Chicago with a pizza masterclass with Scaglione and Fernando Darin (Ray’s & Stark Bar – Lacma, Los Angeles), the Italian-Brazilian-American chef who makes pizza inside the Museum of Art of Los Angeles, the largest museum on the West Coast.

At 5 pm, pasta masterclass with Monosilio and Sarah Grueneberg (Monteverde Restaurant & Pastificio, Chicago), the chef who struck us during the last edition. You can reserve dinner and classes online.

See also
Identità Stati Uniti 2017: Chicago, New York and Boston


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