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Food Project

This section is entirely dedicated to Italy’s most important food products that are partners of Collisioni’s Food Project, also created by Ian D’Agata, the Creative Director of Collisioni’s wine project. At Collisioni, we deeply believe and uphold the value and the role played by the Regional cuisines and their importance relative to the great Italian gastronomic tradition, without which it would not be possible to understand the deep soul of the wines of Italy, “il bel Paese”, that is worldwide famous for its culture in the art of cooking and for the excellence of its agricultural products. Therefore, a novelty of this year's festival will be the birth of the Collisioni Food Project, which will receive great visibility on the W.E.B..

As in the already consolidated wine project, the Collisioni Food Project will invite to Barolo each year famous international food experts, ranging from importers, restaurant and specialty food shop owners, buyers, Michelin starred and other famous chefs, plus other food industry experts and operators, who will be engaged to conduct special tastings in order to discover the many Italian agriculture treasures. In the food selection of the W.E.B., we will dialogue directly with producers of extra virgin olive oil, artisanal cheeses such as Castelmagno and mozzarella di bufala, hazelnut Tonda Gentile and other Italian greats, cocoa and chocolate, coffee, in order to better understand their wise millennial agricultural and transformational work, not to mention their ability to renew recipes and traditions - in the belief that wine and food are two worlds that need to communicate, and that you’ll inevitably find side by side on the table.

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Agrishop in the kitchen

It begins the reign of Giorgio PolitanĂ²

Food Project

A grate news in the Collisioni’s Agrishop: since two weeks a new Chef settled in the kitchen, the twenty-nine-year-old Giorgio Politanò. He has calabrian origins, but born in Bra and grew up in Sanfrè, he studied at the Alberghiero school graduated as “hotel services technician” that is a managerial title for chefs and food and beverage directors. During the years of school in the weekends he worked at the Trattoria del Bivio in Cerretto Langhe under the guide of Massimo Torrengo, interpreter of a typical regional cuisine but revisited. When he graduated Giorgio did stages and worked in italian and foreign kitchens. For examples, one year in Switzerland in San Bernardino at the restaurant “Central”, where he was sous-chef. After he had other experiences at the Garibaldi restaurant in Bra and in Tenerife, in the Canary Islands for the Gourmetland restaurant chain. He also had his own restaurant called Osteria Nuovo Podio in Santo Stefano Roero “…I was too young and inexpert, today I would work differently” he confessed. He is very happy of arriving in Langa at the Agrishop ”… not just because it is a beatiful place to work but also because in Barolo you are in the centre of the wine world”.

He loves eating fish cuisine, raws, clams, but he hasn’t the desire of start cooking these kind of cuisine because he doesn’t feel himself ready at the moment. He loves the Piedmontese cuisine: “Please note that it is my childhood cuisine with wich I grew up. We have in our region a lot of very good raw materials, with wich is a pleasure to work and you can also revisit it. Than I love the Vitello Tonnato: and everyone tells me that mine is very good. The secret is to dose well the anchovy, the capers and the tuna in the sauce, it must be salty but not too fat”.

I had no chance of tasting the Vitello Tonnato, but I can guaratee instead for the Bunet: maybe light but very well balanced, and I would say definitely good.

I ask Giorgio wich is his favourite wine: “Honestly I love the Champagne, of course also the Italian sparkling wines today are very good; but if I could choose I would prefer a Nebbiolo d’Alba”. Attention, not the Barolo or Barbaresco, but he right says Nebbiolo d’Alba for its elegance, and more it is a wine that you can drink during the whole meal”.

He stops to think for a moment, and than adds: “You know, I love wines” he confesses “I really live for eat and drink” he smiles. “For the rest, with this belly, I can say that you can see it…”.

A chef that loves wines. A chef with “panza”, an italian word for belly. A chef that loves the Nebbiolo vine and Nebbiolo d’Alba.

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The first edition of the Food Project told by Michael Shemtov

The enogastronomic experience of the restaurateur in COLLISIONI 2017

Food Project

 

I very much enjoyed seeing the food programming and especially learning about the heritage grains from Piero Gabrieli. I have connected Piero to the leading grain thinker in the US, Glenn Roberts of Anson Mills, in August and I am sure when they meet they will feel like old friends. Maybe we can organize a dinner together in Italy one day with the grains of these two men and a mix of American & Italian chefs and bakers.

 

I did appreciate that you invited me and I felt like I was representing my region of the world, the South of United States. The cities in the south are smaller than the Northeast or West Coast cities, we are known for our cuisine, Charleston in particular. Charleston is one of the premier food destinations in the country, as evidenced by the the number of nationally recognized chefs and restaurants here. The restaurant FIG, which we have a close relationship with, is a finalist for the second time for Outstanding Wine Program nationwide for the James Beard awards. So we are a city that understands wine and foof and helps shape the national dialogue around the enogastronomy.

 

 

By Michael Shemtov

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An international appointment for a kick-start to a 2018 full of surprises

Four special guests for a debate on Italian enogastronomy's potentials on the ...

Food Project

Last January 2018, the educational program of Collisioni welcomed in Barolo three professionals of excellence of US food market. The group, guided by Ian D'Agata, participated in a series of seminars with tastings and winery visits in the region, of some of the most dynamic food-realities and some products of great excellence of the area: the hazelnut Nocciola Piemonte IGP, Castelmagno d'Alpeggio cheese, garlic-based products of Fattoria dell'Aglio, the story-telling of local productions of rice and saffron, chocolate, nougat and coffee to fresh pasta, bread and fresh cookies.

The important american guests, participating to the event were Mitchell Davis, already guest at Collisioni 2017, Vice-President of James Beard Foundation and curator of Expo 2015's american pavillion, member of the 50Best Restaurants; Christopher Bates, one of the very few chefs to be as well a Master Sommelier, owner of various restaurants, a winery, a brewery and hospitality at Finger Lakes and Richy Petrina, Private Client Director at Moët Hennessy USA and Professor at important Universities. Heading the debate and tastings, Ian D'Agata that, apart from his wine-related activity as Senior Editor of VINOUS and Scientific Director of Vinitaly International Academy, is as well curator of Vinous Table and speaker at the Food Sciences Master Program of the New York University in Italy.

The four experts had the chance to touch some of the most critics aspects of US restaurant and food sector and the importance for Piedmont and Italian qualitative realities to enter the market, speaking about difficulties of accessing such a varied market, to the positioning and to future perspectives in a fast-pacing world where Italian excellences represent an important asset to invest in. An important educational appointment for professionals to discover more of local food products and food culture, but as well for producers to receive tailored suggestions about their communication, potentialities and critical aspects.

The experts covered all the possible fields of debate: from receipes to personal tastes, from ingredient choices to price and positioning, from packaging to promotional texts, to some most "fashionable" product to focus on. An incredible unique think-tank to dialogue on a focus-topic of the eno-gastrnomy world of tomorrow, to give a right start to a 2018 that seems to be rich of new initiatives. A program that runs parallel and integrated with that of the Wine Project, dedicated to the communication and education of all those products of excellence belonging, just as wine, to the culture, history and future of Italy and its regions.

 

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Ian D'Agata meets the greatest chefs of France

The creative director of Collisioni Vino&Food Project travelling around France, ...

Food Project

From the beginning passionate of the world of Food, Ian D'Agata has always been attracted by the mixture of intellectual creativity, reserch of traditional products, discovery of ancient receipts and technology animating the universe of enogastronomy. In the latest weeks, among other great chefs and food experts, Ian met Guy Savoy, multi-awarded three-Michelin-starred chef known all over the world and Philippe Arrambide, rising star of french cuisine following the steps of his father Firmin, founder of the Basque-French cuisine. A kind of cooking full of tastes, that Philippe re-think with smart brushstokes of modernity. A kind of work Ian knows and appreciate for the beginning: he is in fact the one organizing a gala-dinner and show-cooking with Arrambide in Rome, more than ten years ago.

In the next months, Ian will keep on with his enogastronomic travels and meetings in France, Italy and the US. 

The new-born Collisioni Food Project, that saw its first "pilot edition" the passed July, in Barolo, is shaping up to be a mine of novelties and interesting ideas for Italian producers of enogastronomic excellences, as well as for the many chefs of the Country.

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Carmen Viscosi

United States

Food Project

Carmen Viscosi is the Director of Food & Beverage at the Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando. After spending over two decades working in Banquets at several properties in Orlando, Florida, Carmen decided to expand his area of expertise and was promoted to Assistant Director of Food & Beverage at Loews Portofino Bay Hotel. He mastered that role exceedingly fast and when the opportunity arose to become the Director and oversee the division he was the obvious candidate for the job. Under his leadership he has improved every aspect of the Food & Beverage division and the scores continue to rise. Although Carmen originally is from New York he now resides in Orlando, Florida with his wife Jennifer and his daughter Maddie. In his spare time he enjoys spending time with his family including his older children and also watching his sports teams the New York Giants and the New York Yankees.

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Brian Bistrong

United States

Food Project

"Corporate Executive Chef, Market Operations at Dean & DeLuca, Brian Bistrong's career counts years of rich experience in the culinary industry working with acclaimed chefs such as Wolfgang Puck, David Bouley and the late Bernard Loiseau. Bistrong brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to Dean & DeLuca, leading the culinary program across the fine food store’s markets nationwide. Bistrong’s love for food started at an early age growing up in rural New Jersey with access to nearby farms. He would assist his grandmother with cooking and baking fresh goods in the kitchen, Bistrong’s passion crossed over at school as well, where he studied and flourished in cooking courses.

Bistrong kicked off his career at the early age of sixteen, working on a nearby farm caring to the orchard, and washing dishes and prepping food across various restaurants throughout his young adulthood. Bistrong graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in 1989. In 1990 he landed a spot on the line at venerable Lepinasse in New York City. There he honed his skills and spent over a year rising from garde manage to saucier. Looking to continue his growth in the industry, in 1992 Bistrong left for a position at Bouley, the acclaimed upscale French dining destination by celebrated chef David Bouley. After two years at Bouley, in 1994 Bistrong decided to travel across Europe, taking up coveted apprenticeship positions in Michelin-starred restaurants abroad, Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons near Oxford, England, and La Côte d'Or, the late Bernard Loiseau's restaurant in Saulieu, France. In 2004, Bistrong accepted a position at The Harrison located in Tribeca, which later inspired him to open his first restaurant as Chef and owner, Braeburn. After three years, Bistrong decided to close and returned to work for Bouley as Chef de Cuisine, followed by prestigious roles as Chef de Cuisine at Bottega and most recently, as Wolfgang Puck’s Executive Chef for Test Kitchen.

Bistrong joined Dean & DeLuca in 2017 as the gourmet market’s Corporate Executive Chef, bringing a fresh, vision to the established fine food purveyor’s array of culinary offerings across its stores and catering. In his role, Bistrong contributes to Dean & DeLuca’s dedication of offering exceptional fare of the highest quality and variety.

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Giacomino Drago

United States

Food Project

Giacomino Drago's early years cooking in the kitchen beside his family was the ideal recipe for a man who would later, with his brothers, build a popular anthology of restaurants in Los Angeles. His nine restaurants serve more than 6,000 "regulars" and celebrities each week yet Giacomino treats each patron as if he or she is a guest in his home.

Giacomino couldn't help but become a leading restaurateur in America. It's in his DNA. Growing up the youngest son of a big Italian family in the tiny ancient hilltop town of Galati Mamertino on the island of Sicily, Giacomino and his siblings stood beside Mama, making the dough,rolling the pasta, simmering the sauce, canning tomatoes for the winter from the family's extensive hillside farm, making cheese with milk from the family's cows and sheep, crushing the olives from the family's olive tree grove to make oil, and baking bread and cookies. Giacomino moved to Los Angeles 23 years ago, at the age of 16, to work in the kitchen of his oldest brother's restaurant, Celestino. Celestino was, himself, quickly recognized as a rising star chef in Beverly Hills.

Today, the collection of Drago family restaurants reads like a top-ranked Who's Who list of the culinary scene in Los Angeles and Beverly Hills: Il Pastaio in Beverly Hills, Piccolo Paradiso in Beverly Hills, A1 in Beverly Hills, Tanino Ristorante in Westwood, Panzanella in Sherman Oaks, Celestino in Pasadena, SHU Sushi House Unico in Bel Air, Via Alloro in Beverly Hills, and the newest establishment, Yojisan in Beverly Hills.Far from a chain of restaurants, each Drago establishment is unique in personality, design and culinary offerings. From the trattoria-feel of Il Pastaio, which sits in the heart of Beverly Hills and serves up phenomenal fresh-made-daily pasta, risotto, and Branzino flown in from the Mediterranean, to SHU Sushi House Unico in Bel Air, which fuses the best in Japanese and Italian cuisine. And yet, one element is consistent throughout all of the nine eateries: each kitchen adheres to using fresh, very high-quality ingredients which are simply prepared.

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Allison Spurrell

Canada

Food Project

Allison has been in the retail cheese industry since 1987, when she founded the Vancouver cheese shop les amis du FROMAGE with her mother Alice Spurrell. She is responsible for the acquisition of over 500 types of cheese, from across Canada, the U.S. and Europe. She has been a judge for the Canadian Cheese Grand Prix, and for the “retail competition” at the American Cheese Society’s annual conference. She is a member of both the Guilde des Fromagers Confrerie du Saint-Uguzon, and the American Cheese Society. She is a passionate lover of all things related to cheese and she loves to share that passion with her customers and co-workers.

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Al Fini

United States

Food Project

Born on 1958 and immigrated to USA on 1979 Al Fini is Culinary Master Chef and Wine Location Specialist with more than 35 years of experience and 11 previous businesses - original concepts, all successful: 1986 Seafood Stop - Austin, TX 1987 Bella Italia #1 1988 Bella Italia #2 1988 Cafe Di Roma 1989 Boun Apettito Ristorante Italiano 1990 Mama Mia’s Ristorante Italiano 1995 Mama Mia’s Ristorante Italiano #2 2000 Piccolo Italian Cafe 2000 Girasole Fine Italian Dining 2003 360 Uno Trattoria.

In 2015 he opened "It’s Italian Market & Cafe" bringing best of Italy all in one place.

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Nancy Silverton

United States

Food Project

With partners Mario Batali & Joe Bastianich, Nancy Silverton is the co-owner of Pizzeria and Osteria Mozza in LA, Newport Beach and Singapore, as well as Mozza2Go and Chi Spacca in LA. She also founded the world-renowned La Brea Bakery and Campanile Restaurant, an institution that Angelenos cherished for decades. Nancy has worked with some of the nation’s most notable chefs including in the kitchens of Jonathan Waxman at Michael’s Restaurant and Wolfgang Puck at Spago. Additionally, she has served as a mentor to numerous others who have gone on to become award-winning chefs and restaurant owners themselves. In 1990, Nancy was named one of Food and Wine Magazine’s “Best New Chefs.” Also that year, she was named “Pastry Chef of the Year” and “Who’s Who of Cooking” by the James Beard Foundation. In 2014, she received the highest honor given by the James Beard Foundation for “Outstanding Chef” as well as listed as one of the Most Innovative Women in Food and Drink by Fortune and Food and Wine Magazine.

In early 2015, Nancy launched Nancy's Fancy, a line of premium gelato and sorbetto which will be sold in supermarkets nationwide. Additionally, she is the author of nine cookbooks including “The Mozza Cookbook”, and the newly released “Mozza at Home.” Nancy Silverton has an amazing capacity for embracing the beauty of wonderful food, and will undoubtedly continue to do so for the rest of her ingredient inspired life.

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Al via il nuovo Progetto Food

Gemellaggi, degustazioni, incontri e seminari

Food Project

Da quest'anno il Progetto Food di Collisioni ha inaugurato una grande novità. Sulla falsa riga di quanto è stato svolgo con successo per il vino in questi anni dal direttore creativo food and wine di Collisioni Ian D'Agata, è stato creato un panel di esperti internazionali, buyer, chef proprietari di catene di ristoranti, responsabili di istituzioni di primo piano nel food del panorama estero, al fine di creare delle sessioni professional a porte chiuse, in cui produttori ed esperti potranno confrontarsi in lezioni, seminari, cene dedicate confronti su particolari mercati, al fine di creare nuove opportunità per l'esportazione. Il progetto ha riscosso una grande attenzione da parte degli esperti internazionali del settore food e ha già  confermato la partecipazione di tantissimi personaggi illustri che raramente vengono in Italia per manifestazioni di questo tipo, tra i quali Mitchell Davis, Executive VP della James Beard Foundation, l'istituzione che ogni anno consegna gli Oscar del Food negli Usa. O Brian Bistrong, il Product Buyer della nota catena di supermarket americani Dean e DeLuca, uno dei maggori importatori di food italiano negli Usa e Nancy Silverton, co-proprietaria di La Mozza con Joe Bastianich e proprietaria di altri locali in stile italiano. Gli incontri della durata di 2 ore ciascuno si terranno presso l'Agrishop di Barolo, un nuovo edificio realizzato in collaborazione con la Regione Piemonte, dodato di cucine professionali e di postazioni video per illustrare le lavorazioni in cucina e documentare le produzioni nello stabilimento.