Bittersweet Top of the Year: Chef of the year 2016

Bittersweet Top of the Year: Chef of the year 2016

End of the year, time for reports: we at Agrodolce, among all the professionals who have distinguished themselves this year, have chosen the chef of 2016.

Two cooks . The first among the most stimulating and controversial of the boot, teacher and guiding star for many young Italian chefs and at the same time flogged and contested by some critics. The other, who emigrated to Paris and soon became a point of reference in the catering of the transalpine capital, acclaimed as a rock star. Paolo Lopriore and Giovanni Passerini .at some point in their career there was a sharp break, one way or anotherAt a certain point in their career a clean break: Lopriore leaves Il Canto and all the aftermath of controversy that marked his adventure in Siena; Giovanni Passerini, closes his bistro, Rino , which led him to success and set the hearts of Parisian enthusiasts on fire. Two opposite closures, one also for economic reasons, the other at the height of success. And two subsequent different paths: Lopriore in Como for a short period at the Kitchen and then in Milan at the Tre Cristi; Passerini on a sabbatical break, also enjoying their newborn daughter, between events and consultancy. Both with a strong idea that unites them. Put a stop to what had been done up to then and start again with a new proposal. The cook goes back to cooking whole pieces, be they meat, fish or vegetables and frees himself from the single thought of serving , a cause – not alone – of homologation in many contemporary kitchens. The customer, on the other hand, becomes the absolute center, the protagonist of the table. Each of them got there in different ways.

Paolo Lopriore

At its new Portico  in  Appiano Gentile , Lopriore offers  dishes where the ingredients are served separately and the customer composes them using the pieces of the puzzle as he sees fit. You can decide whether to sprinkle the bay leaf tench with the butter and mussel water emulsion or soak it inside, or choose what to combine with the chicken grains including toasted nuts, spinach in vinegar, cloves and lemon. A similar thing had already happened to 3 Cristi, but here Lopriore really raised the bar. Fun and aware.


Passerini playing more on conviviality and pushing the pedal towards Italianness: no longer a bistro where certain ingredients seem obligatory, but a contemporary trattoria, whose roots lie in the pasta factory, opened a few months before the restaurant next door, where every day produces fresh and stuffed takeaway pasta, which then becomes the protagonist on the table together with supplì and tripe. But in the center, a primitive idea of ​​the new Passerini (nomen omen for the restaurant) i plats à partager: duck, lamb, turbot, lobster or whatever the market offers. Cooked whole, served in the center of the table, with their side dishes, everyone uses them as and as much as they want, arguing perhaps over the last crouton of duck offal. We do not tell you it is the restaurant model, even high-end, of the future, above all because we do not love models, but a new, personal look, yes. And it also seems successful.
So they are Paolo Lopriore and Giovanni Passerini chef of the year 

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