via Meda 2,
Argentinian Simon Press shares with Uruguayan Matias Perdomo the helm of the kitchen at Contraste in Milan, awarded with a Michelin star in November 2017. Press was born in Buenos Aires in 1979, but raised in Patagonia, in Bariloche, close to the border with Chile. His family was originally from the North-East of Europe, and he’s the second of four children.
Patagonia helped making him passionate about cooking: «When we moved there with my family – he says, - my brothers and I were often alone at home, because our parents worked very hard. We had to walk 5 km to buy a piece of bread, so we learnt to cook».
When after having learnt to have fun in the kitchen he returned to Buenos Aires, at 17, he knocked on the door of a restaurant in town. They gave him a job in the kitchen, «I had to help the help of the help of the pastry-chef», Press recalls with a smile.
Then he met Dolli Irigoyen, a very popular chef in Argentina thanks to her TV programmes. Press became her assistant, and participated in her programmes on television. When one day people recognised him in the streets… «I decided to leave everything and go on a long trip. No more television for me. I wanted to go on a culinary exploration of Europe, I wanted to grow and become a real cook, not just someone who pretends to be cooking in front of a camera».
So some 15 years ago he left Argentina and his first stop was in Italy, in Milan, where he had some acquaintances. Here he found a job almost right away, and they asked him to stay at least a year. And now he’s still here! His journey of discovery came to nothing. Instead, a professional journey began thanks to which he met Matias Perdomo in the kitchen of Pont de Ferr, before the Uruguayan became a chef.
The meeting changed both their lives: they found each other. They share the same philosophy, they’re both very curious and willing to experiment and play in the kitchen. On these foundations they also based the decision to leave Pont de Ferr, after the Michelin star they conquered together, and they opened, together with maître and sommelier Thomas Piras, their restaurant Contraste.
Journalist, based in Milan. At 8 years old, he received a Springsteen record as a gift, and nothing was the same since. Music and food are his passions. Author and broadcaster at Radio Popolare since 1997, since 2014 he became part of the staff of Identità Golose
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