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As a child, he was crazy about the chocolate version Buondì. He loved eating it and getting his fingers dirty with its cream. Now an adult, Simone Finazzi, born in 1970, has followed that flavour and recreated it in a panettone. He joined the Cerea family in 1995, when he married Barbara, and together with her runs Pasticceria Cavour, Locale Storico d’Italia, on top of organising events and making some of the products used for the desserts at three-star restaurant Da Vittorio.
Pastry making wasn’t love at first sight for him. But he did immediately fall in love with the Cereas. Finazzi arrived there in 1987 for an internship, when he was still studying at catering school in Lissone, and never left. He moved through the fish and the entrees stations, then chose pastry making following his passion for detail. «Cooking – he says – is a matter of instinct. Pastry making is about creativity and calculation». And study, of course. Being initially self-taught, he later studied in Italy and Europe, but without having a figure of reference.
There’s no cake in which he completely identifies himself. He loves them all, because «pastry making, like music, is something I change depending on my mood», he admits. For sure, among his favourites, there’s Creolo, a cake in which the exotic flavours of mango, coconut, lime and passion fruit are combined in a play of shapes and balances. Balance is indeed the first goal for Finazzi, who’s convinced cakes must be attractive. Balance is essential so as not to create addiction. A goal that for now he has “failed” to reach with his three children: they are the first to taste his cakes, but are still not involved in the family business.
A journalist from Catania, now in Milan, she was born in 1966. «I travel, meet people and tell stories on Volevofareilgiornalista» and on numerous other publications
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Chefs and pastry chefs discuss, at Dossier Dessert 2021, in partnership with Valrhona as usual. In the top row, the chefs: Chicco and Bobo Cerea, Mauro Uliassi, Ciccio Sultano. In the bottom row, their pastry chefs: Simone Finazzi, Mattia Casabianca, Fabrizio Fiorani
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