Niko Romito and Bulgari’s adventure has begun with Ristorante in Beijing, China. It’s in Building 2 Courtyard No 8 Xinyuan South Road, in Chaoyang. Coming up: Dubai (by the end of the year), Shanghai (March 2018). In the photo, the entrance to the restaurant in a post taken from Romito’s instagram account
“I intend to create my code of the great Italian contemporary cuisine, capable of going very far. Where humble ingredients are made noble by means of technique, and sophisticated ones are adjusted and refined with a touch of simplicity”.
We had already published Niko Romito’s complete manifesto for his most recent challenge with Bulgari Hotels: bring the richness of Italian tradition, in its simplicity, to every corner of the world, as if it was just pulled out of the oven in the mountains surrounding Casadonna. Indeed it is there, in Niko’s Laboratorio, what with the bakery and the main kitchen at Reale, that Niko and his squires have discussed, prepared, catalogued and archived all the recipes for this project.
The squires, in order of opening, are: Claudio Catino, from Bisceglie (Best sous chef for Guida di Identità Golose 2017, when he was working with Andrea Berton in Milan) for the restaurant in Beijing, opened a few days ago; Giacomo Amicucci, from Romagna, for the restaurant in Dubai (to open by the end of the year) and Davide Capucchio, from Torino, for the restaurant in Shanghai (to open in March 2018). The ambitious idea is to create a cuisine of the highest standards, that is true and genuine and, in a way following the example of Ducasse, can be replicated in every corner of the world. A cuisine that even through some (seemingly) simple spaghetti with tomato can charm a guest in Dubai, Milan or Beijing, as well as one in the mountains of Abruzzo.
In the middle, Niko Romito and his resident chef in Beijing Claudio Catino (second from the right)
The ingredients are all there. The hotel is a marvel of made in Italy, with Bulgari’s taste for design, the interiors by Citterio, the use of workers from our country, from the suites to the amenities in the bathroom plus the gym and the swimming pool. All this in an amazing location, right in front of the clearing with all the embassies, in Chaoyang, enjoying one of the few green spaces in town. In every corner, you can smell a longing for perfection. And even at the helm of the restaurant, from afar, with Niko Romito, and on location with the chef de cuisine Claudio Catino.
“We understood the size of the challenge”, says Catino, “right from the first day we were running, when we realised the amount of commitment and attention required to feed 300 people.” All the recipes created and designed at the Laboratorio in Abruzzo were pondered, measured, standardised and catalogued. “Even the salt was weighed with milligram precision and codified”. Each course had an average of 4 mini-containers per guest...” times 300! The kitchen must have looked like Qin Shi Huang’s Terracotta Army.
Translated into English by Slawka G. Scarso
Niko Romito: il mio progetto con Bulgari
Tasty reports from China and the Far East from our collaborator Claudio Grillenzoni
A journalist with the bad habit of xenophilia (natural, he's a Germanist) and food (he's from Modena ), he now lives a happy life in China, in Shanghai, building connections between East and West