Pasquale Torrente

 Credits Brambilla-Serrani

 Credits Brambilla-Serrani

Al Convento

piazza San Francesco, 16
Cetara (Salerno)


In 2015, at 50 exactly, he says he has accomplished all his dreams even though we can bet he still has many left. For sure, for a guy born in Cetara – a charming village on the Amalfi Coast – from a family with a fry shop, who during high school would sell sweaters and jackets to scrape together enough money to pay the bill in the best local restaurants, Pasquale Torrente has gone places.

Il Convento – the family trattoria his parents opened in 1969 in a 17th century cloister – is considered among the best trattorias in Italy and serves unforgettable spaghetti with anchovy colatura, the emblem of Cetara. Pasquale then put himself to the test with state of the art fried food, at Cuopperia, also in Cetara. He didn’t stop here, however, and has brought his cuisine all around Italy and in the world: from Rome to Istanbul to Dubai with various Friggitoria shops inside Eataly, and in the heart of Franciacorta where he opened Burro&Alici, "a seaside inn" born thanks to the collaboration with Vittorio Moretti and handed to his son Gaetano, a brilliant outpost of Southern cuisine in Lombardy. An extremist, a visionary and a wanderer by nature, he defines himself as "of no fixed abode" though on his pilgrimages around the world he always brings a small bottle of colatura, the precious, miraculous liquid.

«It’s a unique product. It unique with regards to its productive tradition, which some wanted to outlaw, and to its sensorial appearance, but which happens to be a true passe-partout: if you suddenly need to cook for 10 people without any notice, add a few drops to the pasta and you’ll make everyone happy. It is a concentrate of sapidity, the exaltation of sea in a mouthful. It is part of our story and represents the identity of Cetara, and of its people». So is he all about tradition? Not exactly. Quoting Massimo Bottura, Pasquale says you can start from there but always looking from 10 km away. The head wanders off, but there’s always colatura, used even in a glocal version of Bloody Mary called 'o sang e' Maria, keeping his feet on the solid ground of his land.

See also

Colatura full stop

Has participated in

Identità Milano


Luciana Squadrilli

a journalist born in Naples now living in Rome, she tries to make her three passions meet: eating, travelling and writing