From Molfetta to the tallest restaurant in Milan, Beppe Allegretta has taken some swift bounces up and though still young (he was born in 1984) he’s one of the most promising pastry chefs in Italy. First in his homeland, where he works at Gran Bar Pugliese in Giovinazzo. Then around Italy (among many others, he worked at Luogo di Aimo e Nadia) and even a collaboration with Massimo Bottura at Refettorio Ambrosiano during Expo, meeting Alain Ducasse, the Roca brothers and American Daniel Patterson.
Today Beppe looks at the hectic Lombard city at his feet from the top of Unico, where he works at the court of Fabrizio Ferrari in a relationship among peers in which pastry making is not subordinate to the rest of the meal. Beppe however doesn’t stop on the edge of the skies and moves from a collaboration to a consultancy, constantly exploring new ingredients and sharing ideas with young colleagues. For this reason, together with ten more pastry chefs, he invented Pass 121, a pastry making group in which Pass stands for Passion-Alchemy-Science-[Dream]Sogno and 121 (on top of being the square of 11) is the temperature at which sugar syrup becomes and Italian style meringue. With his partners Beppe lays claim to the dignity and importance of a moving and consoling profession.
Almost obsessively meticulous and precise in a work in which art meets mathematics, Allegretta believes pastry making is a simple and light matter (easy for him) and loves presenting his homeland through his dishes: Vieni in Puglia con me, the most popular in his menu, is a manifesto of his identity. But there’s also a hint to the mountains (Braulio and mountain pine) and assorted tropical references. Finally the hardest challenge, tiramisù (in fact, TiramisUnico) where everyone says “my sister makes a better one”. He turns this world renowned dish into spheres, and bets everything on ingredients of the highest level (the mascarpone comes from a famous cheese factory near Lodi) and transforms it into a round toy, leaving us like speechless children.
Roman, now living in Milan, sommelier, he's reporter of Il Giornale. He's been writing about taste for years
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Milk and honey, the signature dessert from Mark Welker, executive pastry chef at Eleven Madison Park (3 Michelin stars and 3rd in the World's 50Best) and The Nomad in New York. The American pastry chef will be among the speakers at Dossier Dessert, an event enriching the afternoon on the opening day of Identità Milano, on Saturday 4th March 2017 (photo Studiotraveler/Tabelog)