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It’s a hard life for pastry chefs. Starting from the dash, do you need one or not? Yet spelling is not Dario Nuti’s worry. 36, he’s the pastry chef at Imàgo, the restaurant dominating the centre of Rome from the top of hotel Hassler. He wonders: how can I give a meaning to the unrewarding task of accompanying the last part of a meal after all the rest has already been said, and by a top player such as Francesco Apreda? How can I capture the taste buds, as tired as marathon runners on the 41st km and convince them to make another sprint? Dario has made his mind: the chef took care of feeding, the pastry chef now needs to make people relish, dream, be surprised.
Of course technique must be present. But it’s not enough. You need emotions. Ideas. In this way perhaps the guests might be even charmed by a dessert, an adventure that in Italian restaurants – let’s admit it - is rara avis. For instance this happened to Dario with Memory of egg zabaglione, orzata granita and coffee crumble – he got the idea in Apulia – which a little while later charmed the audience in a crowded culinary event in Rome so that the Tuscan chef moved beyond being only famous among professionals.
Dario comes from Florence but also from far away. His culinary education is complete, it’s not imprisoned in the golden fence of fireworks ending the feast. In his career he was a sous chef, he knows the vegetables, since he was a kitchen garden child, he shares Apreda’s idea of cuisine, and the chefs takes him on his travels to the east, in search of spices and a few images to be later reproduced in the shape of an edible memory, he works hard so that his part of the road fits the journey preceding it. This is his modern concept of pastry making, the most unrewarding art in the kitchen in the 21st century, the most sublime.
Roman, now living in Milan, sommelier, he's reporter of Il Giornale. He's been writing about taste for years
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