International Day of Italian Cuisines

International Day of Italian Cuisines 2011

International Day of Italian Cuisines

Pesto Genovese: The Official Dish of the IDIC 2011

Pesto alla Genovese

The 4th Edition of the International Day of Italian Cuisines is around the corner. Already a tradition the event will take place next January 17th and it will be a worldwide celebration of authentic and quality Italian Cuisine. This year´s official dish is PESTO GENOVESE, this delicious landmark of Italian Cuisines was originated in Genova, Region of Liguria and is one of the most reproduced, for better or for worse, dishes of our cooking tradition. As in the past, the backbone of the global ola of Pesto Genovese will be the GVCI associates from more than 40 countries but any Italian Food lover or any lover of good food can join us in this celebration.

The launch of IDIC 2011 will take place in New York City with two days of great events. The Gala Dinner, Workshops, Master Cooking Classes just to mention a few, and a LIVE Conference with Genova where a press conference will be held simultaneously.



Pesto Genovese: an Ageless Benchmark of Great Italian Cuisine

Pesto alla Genovese
Trofie with Genoese pesto (La Cucina Italiana)

By Rosario Scarpato

There’s no doubt, it’s the most loved raw sauce of the world and, as such, it’s just as famous as mayonnaise, if not, even more so. ;We’re talking about Pesto, about the only genuine one; the Genoese one (not ‘alla genovese’). Basil, garlic, pine nuts, Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano and Pecorino cheeses, extra virgin oil and a few granules of sea salt. All the other diverse variations floating around the world are nothing more than unsuccessful bogus or aberrations of the original. Pesto is an ageless benchmark and a contemporary symbol of Italian cooking around the world. It’s enough to think that for dressing pasta only tomato sauce is used more.

In the name of Mortar & Pestle

Pesto alla Genovese

Already in 1876, ‘pesto’ was entered by Giovanni Casaccia in his Genoese Italian dictionary as a word autochthonous of Genoa. The word comes from ‘pestare’, to crush something with a pestle to reduce it to powder, a mash or to the thinnest of layers. Therefore, pesto is also known as battuto genovese’ (Genoese mince or mash). From ‘pestare’ also comes the word ‘pestle’ (‘pestillium’ in Latin) that together with the mortar is the utensil used for making this sauce; a wooden pestle, that is, of hard, compact wood, such as boxwood or pear and a mortar of white marble, of Carrara, unpolished inside. The word ‘mortar’ is derived from the Latin ‘mortarium’, a recipient in which ingredients are minced or mashed, historically not only used in kitchens but also in traditional pharmacies. In the proto-kitchens of many people of the Earth, similar utensils are found, although made out of different materials, such as the ‘molcajete’ and the ‘metate’ of Central America and the Japanese ‘suribachi’.

The ancestors: moretum and agliata

Pesto alla Genovese

Genoese pesto probably descends from the ‘moretum’ of the ancient Romans, a green paste obtained from cheese, garlic and herbs, the preparation of which is described, moreover, in a verse attributed to Virgil. Pesto, as we know it today, was not well known in the times of Cristoforo Colombo (1451 -1506), the world’s best known Ligurian. But in the Middle Ages, there was a sauce, defined plebeian by some authors, which can be considered, in some manner, to be the predecessor of pesto. It was called ‘agliata’, simply a mash of walnuts and garlic. For centuries, the latter ingredient has occupied a crucial place in the nutrition of the Ligurians, especially for those who went to sea. And there were many who did, for Genoa and Liguria have had ancient maritime traditions. These seafarers ingested great quantities of it since they believed it warded off illnesses and infections during the long voyages in conditions of extreme hygienic precariousness.

The first recipes

Pesto alla Genovese

Mashed garlic is mentioned in the documents of the City of Genoa of the 17th century, while the recipe for true pesto starts to appear only in the 19th century. During the first half of the latter appear recipes that do not contemplate pine nuts and in 1863 Giovanni Battista Ratto published La Cuciniera Genovese, considered to be the first and most complete book on the gastronomy of the Region of Liguria and in which the recipe for pesto, with pine nuts, is the following: “Take a clove of garlic, basil (‘baxaicö’) or, when that is lacking, marjoram and parsley, grated Dutch and Parmigiano cheese and mix them with pine nuts and crush it all together in a mortar with a little butter until reduced to a paste. Then dissolve it with good and abundant oil. Lasagne and troffie [Liguria kind of gnocchi] are dressed with this mash, made more liquid by adding a little hot water without salt.”

Pesto alla Genovese

The presence of Dutch cheese instead of pecorino should be of no surprise; first of all, various recipes of that time mention a generic ‘cacio’ (cheese), and then because Gouda was plentiful in Genoa since the city’s maritime commerce with Northern Europe. Furthermore, the differentiation between Parmigiano Reggiano and Grana Padano cheese is a recent one, it is very probable that until the institution of the respective consortia of protection (in the 1950’s), grana types of cheeses were used in pesto without distinguishing one from the other. Parsley or marjoram as alternatives to basil is a concession resulting from the fact that, then in Liguria, where this plant originating from India was abundant, but only when in season.

Pesto Genovese is for pasta!

Pesto alla Genovese

Ratto’s recipe for Pesto states unmistakably that it is a sauce for dressing pasta, for lasagne, and for ‘troffie’ or ‘trofiethat in Liguria are elongated and twisted gnocchi, with pointed extremities and fatter waists. These are not to be confused with ‘trofiette’ that are smaller and in fact are more used with Pesto. Trofie, kneaded out of white flour are a speciality of the town of Recco in the Province of Genoa, the same town that gave birth to the famous focaccia. Trofie and trofiette, there’s even a version made out of chestnut flour, are, therefore, fresh, handmade pasta. Genoa however is also an Italian capital of the production of dried pasta. Already in 1279, when Marco Polo was still in China, the Genoese Ponzio Bastone left a basket of dried pasta, in inheritance to his sons. Genoese Pesto honours this great tradition, so the dried pasta variation of the dish is ‘trenette’ (or ‘trinette’), with a shape similar to ‘mafalde’ but thinner than linguine or fettuccine.

Variation in progress

Pesto alla Genovese

In the 1800’s, the pasta al pesto was considered to be a working class dish and nowadays the recipe of that time has remained substantially the same. There was and there is still in Liguria the habit of adding potatoes, broad beans or French beans, and sometimes zucchini cut into small pieces and boiled together with the pasta. Especially in Genoa, potatoes and French beans are added to classic or improved (avvantaggiate) trenette, that is, ones made out of whole wheat flour, or to trofiette. Rules are not always fixed. For some, “avvantaggiate” are trenette to which vegetables have been added and there is, furthermore, a purist school that categorically excludes potatoes from trofie. In general it is said that in Liguria it’s difficult to find two equal versions of pesto, because of the variations, sometimes within the same family, such as the addition of walnuts, ricotta or other cheeses. This has happened with various typical Italian dishes, many of which have ‘terminated’ their evolution only within the most recent decades. In Italian cooking, the variations of a dish not only represent the wealth of diversity, but also an indirect legitimisation of its generally accepted version.

Uncouth Pesto

Pesto alla Genovese

It’s very possible that, as Giuseppe Gavotti wrote in 1973 in his Cucina e vini di Liguria, the original pesto was ‘uncouth’, that is, it contained a lot of garlic. In 1965, even the great gastronomist Massimo Alberini, in his I Liguri a Tavola. Itinerario gastronomico da Nizza a Lerici (The Ligurians at the table, a Gastronomic Itinerary from Nice to Lerici) made a similar commentary, letting us understand that the pesto recipes of the 1800’s were somewhat stingy with the basil, using only a couple of leaves, and abounding in garlic, using three or four cloves of it. Certainly the Arab-Persian taste, which dominated the sauces of Genoa from the Middle Ages until the 1800’s, had a lot to do with this. As well as the predilection for and the ‘need’ of garlic by the Ligurian seafarers, who considered it as almost medicinal. Invariably, today’s Pesto is far more lady-and-gentleman-like and balanced, with a far more noticeable presence of basil, preferably Ligurian basil and ideally basil from the Genoese hills of Pra, with a long, thin leaf.

PDO ingredients. When possible

Pesto alla Genovese

In the same text, Alberini underlined the role of the olive oil in the recipe; it should neither be too fruity nor too bitter. The Ligurian extravirgin olive oils are ideal. Just as Genoese basil, the exrtavirgin olive oil of the Riviera Ligure has obtained the D.O.P. granted by the European Union in recognition of its quality and typicality. Furthermore, for a pesto that does honour to the territory of origin are to be used: a) the garlic of Vessalico, in the Province of Imperia, of delicate flavour and particular digestibility, b) Italian pine nuts and c) the coarse salt of the Cervia salt flats. It’s obvious that outside Italy it’s not always possible to find all these autochthonous ingredients. The production of Italian pine nuts, for example, has noticeably dropped in recent years due to the Pine Processionary, a parasitic devastation for the pine nut pine. Therefore, in order to prepare an authentic pesto, the minimum necessary requirement is to have quality ingredients and to follow the original recipe.

It’s easier to find Grana Padano and Parmigiano Reggiano cheeses on the international market, and especially advisable are those that are good and mature. It’s relatively easy to find pecorini, ewe cheeses, from Romano cheese that is judged by some to be a little aggressive to Fiore Sardo cheese, ideal when seasoned six months.

Consorzio del Pesto Genovese and Pesto Championship

Pesto alla Genovese

The Genoese Pesto Consortium has been formed by the Region of Liguria and associations of producers. Its mission, as its president, Andrea Della Gatta, chef and owner of Trattoria Andrea un Genoa, explains is “to safeguard the traditional recipe for pesto, along with all its quality ingredients and first and foremost, obviously to use Liguria basil.” The Consortium has presented a request for the recognition of quality STG (Specialità Tradizionale Garantita, Guaranteed Traditional Speciality) for pesto. The Genoese Associazione Palatifini, led by Sergio and Sara di Paolo and by Roberto Panizza, organises the World Championship of Mortar-made Genoese Pesto every two years in Genoa, to confirm its Ligurian imprint and its universality as a foodstuff of quality and taste. The Palatifini initiative deserves particular praise because the mortar and pestle, both at domestic as well as professional level, have given way to the processor. From the gastronomic point of view, as pointed out by the chef Enrico Tournier: “When we prepare pesto alla genovese with the classic mortar and pestle, we subject the instrument to the product while respecting the right proportions of the ingredients because we are the ones to decide the proportions of the doses. While when using a mixer, in order to succeed in cutting the basil we have to add more oil than otherwise necessary, thus altering the doses and in such manner we subject the product to the instrument.”

Genoese Pesto in the world

Pesto alla Genovese

Pesto has reached great popularity in the world, also thanks to the crews of the mercantile ships and the passengers that set sail from the Port of Genoa to most diverse of destinations. Pesto found itself at home in La Boca, the ‘Genoese’ district of Buenos Aires, and started to spread out in the main ports of the USA Immediately after the Second World War, some companies began exporting pesto in jars to the US. And at the same moment, the first recipes appeared in American newspapers. According to many sources, pesto reached its greatest popularity is the United States in the ‘80’s of the last century. At the beginning of the ‘90’s its popularity grew even more when Frank Sinatra started to commercialise a pesto sauce that carried his face on the label. Also its counterfeiting began, with the supermarkets invaded by approximate copies of the original. In the meantime, pesto became to be really successful in the Italian restaurants around the world. A new breed of Italians, Ligurians chefs and restaurateur placed it on the menus and made the dish according to the original recipe. Zeffirino was, without a doubt, the pioneer of this generation. These days pasta, be it trenette, trofie, gnocchi or lasagne, with pesto is amongst the best known Italian dishes in the contempory world.


How to prepare and serve Pesto Genovese in the correct, traditional way

Pesto alla Genovese

By Mario Caramella

Prepare the Pesto sauce according the recipe below and serve it the traditional way! Trofie and Trenette are the pasta used in Liguria, however linguine or spaghetti al dente will make a good companion to this sauce, and as well potato gnocchi. Serving pesto to dip the bread is not really the traditional way to serve this sauce and also to mix it with other sauces is not recommended. The natural way of serving pesto is with pasta cooked in the same water with green bean and potato and then dressed like a salad (away from the fire) in a hot ceramic bowl. A spoon of pesto mixed in a minestrone soup (with out tomato sauce) taste just great.

Many non Italian chefs tent to use this sauce in very baroque preparation, and I have seen the most silly combinations around the world, things like pesto in a pizza… You can imagine how the pesto comes out of a 300/400 Celsius oven!

Do not cook pesto! OK!

Other chefs mixed Pesto with soya and wasabi and than spread on a roasted quail in a bed of polenta mixed with dry figs… This was a dish in a wine dinner for “Far Niente”, a Californian wine. I do not want to look like a bigot purist but I guess there is a limit to creativity, if you can call that so!

In my recipe below I modify a few things and eliminate others, for example I do not toast the pine nuts and I do not give a choice between walnut and pine nut, also I prefer to use a young Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano and eliminate the Pecorino, the reasons for this changes are, dictated first from my personal taste , and second from the need to give our non Italian colleagues a clear direction, to be honest mixing two great cheese like Pecorino and Parmigiano or Grana Padano does not do any good to both.

Probably this recipe will raise some controversial comments, but in my opinion and experience, this is a recipe that respects the tradition and at the same time gives a clear direction and allows anybody in any part of the world to be able to produce e great Pesto Genovese.

Pesto alla Genovese

Pesto Sauce Recipe

Essential equipment

  • 1 marble mortar
  • 1 wooden pestle


  • 100 gm of fresh Genovese basil. If you have challenges to import the fresh PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) Genoese basil which guarantees high-quality taste and flavor, use your local basil but make sure is not too strong or is one of those variety that tastes almost like mint
  • 30 gm pine nuts ( Sicilian are the best but also in California there is a great quality of this product)
  • 60 g aged Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese freshly grated, do not compromise on this ingredient and make sure is good quality
  • 2 garlic cloves from Vassalico (Imperia) if you can! Or just your local garlic would do, just make sure is no pre peeled and already fermented or you will obtain Korean keem chee instead of Pesto Genovese, just buy a garlic knob and peel the clove just before you need it
  • 10 g Maldon flaky salt
  • 80 cc Extra Virgin Olive Oil from “Ligurian Riviera” d.o.p., renowned for its sweet and fruity taste, which adds flavour to the basil and dressing.


  1. The marble mortar and wooden pestle are the tools traditionally used to make pesto.
  2. Wash the basil leaves in cold water and dry them on a paper towel but don’t rub them.
  3. In a mortar finely crush the basil leaves the garlic clove and pine nuts ,add the salt and cheese to he mixture and keep pounding using a light circular movement of the pestle ,add some of the Extra Virgin Olive from time to time and keep pounding and mixing until you obtain a very fine and smooth creamy sauce, pesto should not be greasy and the amount of oil used must be well absorbed and not floating on top
  4. The preparation must be done as quickly as possible to avoid oxidation problems
  5. You have now obtained more less 300 gm of pesto which should be more than enough to dress 6 to 8 portions of Trenette

NOTE: The reason why, you should not use a blender, is because rather than having its juices released by crushing action of the wooden pestle, the metal blade of the blender will chop the leaves and this action will compromise the flavor.


Mario Caramella’s preferred way of enjoying Pesto

Pesto alla Genovese

Trenette with Pesto Genovese, Potatoes and Green Beans (serves 4)


  • 280 gm Trenette
  • 160 gm Pesto Genovese
  • 160 gm young green beans
  • 160 gm potato cut brunoise
  • 20 gm pine nuts
  • Freshly grated Grana Padano
  • Ligurian extra virgin olive oil


  1. Cut the potato brunoise and wash under running water
  2. Cut the edges of the green beans eliminate the filament on the side and cut in half longwise
  3. Prepare a large pot of salted boiling water and cook the Trenette together with the green beans and the potato on it, until the trenette are al dente. By the time the pasta is cooked the beans and the potato cut brunoise will also be cooked
  4. Prepare a hot ceramic bowl big enough to receive the ingredients and allow you to mix it comfortably
  5. Start by placing half of the pesto in the bottom and add 2 spoon of water from the pot and stir, do the same for the rest of the pesto but keep it a side
  6. Strain now the pasta the beans and the potato, immediately place all this steaming ingredients in the ceramic bowl add the rest of the pesto on top and start mixing by adding some more grated cheese
  7. Arrange the Trenette in forur individual hot pasta plates or bowls decorate with the pinets and little sprikl of olive oil


  • I cut the beans longwise and cut the potato brunoise so that when I roll the fork this two ingredients will be also included in the bite with the trenette.
  • Pigato d`Albenga is my recommended wine!


The Recipe of the Consorzio del Pesto Genovese

Pesto alla Genovese

Consorzio Pesto Genovese website



Pesto alla Genovese
Andrea Della Gatta,
Conzorzio Pesto Genovese
  • 50g of PDO Genoese basil leaves
  • PDO Riviera Ligure Extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 Tbsp grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 2 Tbsp Pecorino (romano, toscano, sardo or siciliano)
  • 2 cloves of Vessalico garlic
  • 1 Tbsp Italian pine kernels
  • 1 tbsp chopped walnuts can be substituted for the pine kernels
  • Coarse sea salt from Cervia flats


  1. Start by pounding the garlic and salt in the mortar with wooden pestle, until you get a smooth paste.
  2. Add the basil, a handful at a time, and keep grinding using a circular motion until each batch of the leaves is incorporated. To preserve the essential oils in the basil, you shouldn’t be too rough with it.
  3. Add the pine kernel and grind some more.
  4. Add the cheeses and mix well.
  5. Add the oil, little by little, until the Pesto has the right consistency
  6. Serve with pasta or added to minestrone.

The recommended pastas are trofie, trofiette or trenette, but it goes with just about any pasta. I usually serve it with spaghetti or linguine.


IDIC 2011: Almost 1000 Chefs Joined the Global Ola

Pesto alla Genovese

Pesto Genovese (see its history here) was the official dish of the International Day of Italian Cuisines (IDIC) that took place on Monday January 17, 2011. It was IDIC´s fourth edition: the previous ones celebrated Pasta alla Carbonara, Risotto alla Milanese, Tagliatelle al Ragù Bolognese.

As the past editions, the IDIC was a worldwide celebration of authentic and quality Italian Cuisine, to defend it from bogus and counterfeiting. Hundreds of chefs and restaurateurs all around the world (see the Map) prepared simultaneously on that day Pesto Genovese with pasta, according to an authentic recipe. As in the past, the backbone of the global ola of Pesto Genovese were the GVCI associates in over 40 countries together with hundreds of italian food or just good food lover.

The 2011 IDIC was launched in New York City with two days (12 and 13 January) of great events, hosted by Cesare Casella, Dean of the Italian Culinary Academy and itchefs-GVCI senior member.

International Day of Italian Cuisines
Cesare Casella
International Day of Italian Cuisines
Massimiliano Alajmo
International Day of Italian Cuisines
Massimo Bottura

Talented chefs from all over the world – leaded by 3 Michelin starred Massimiliano Alajmo of Le Calandre Restaurant (Rubano – PD), who cooked the Gala Dinner for the Italian Cuisine Worldwide Awards - gathered in the Big Apple for a Media and Industry Preview of the worldwide Monday January 17 celebration. There was a video conference with Genova, where the IDIC was launched in Italy, and Singapore, where a sister event was held at Forlino Restaurant hosted by Guest Master Chef Massimo Bottura (Osteria Francescana, Modena, n. 6 in the 50 Best World Restaurant). On January 17, during the Pesto Genovese ola, there were special events in various cities, organised by itchefs-gvci senior members: Pietro Rongoni in Moscow, Elena Ruocco and Francesco Carli in Rio De Janeiro, Giulio Vierci in Sapporo and Donato De Santis in Buenos Aires.

International Day of Italian Cuisines
Itchefs-gvci chefs celebrating in Beijing (sent by Marino D'Antonio)

As an important part of this year´s IDIC celebration there was the qualification round of the World Pesto Genovese Championship made with a mortar. Both chefs and food lovers were able to participate in these events in: New York City, Genova, Moscow, Sapporo, Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires. For more information, please check our Program.

The International Day of Italian Cuisines is born from a mission: "we certainly aim at educating worldwide consumers, but more than anything else, we want to protect their right to get what they pay for when going to eateries labelled as "Italian", that is: authentic and quality Italian cuisine." says Rosario Scarpato, GVCI Honorary President, and IDIC 2011 Director.

International Day of Italian Cuisines
Pesto Championship 2011 in Sapporo (Japan) and Buenos Aires (Argentina)

IDIC 2011: The Global Program

Pesto alla Genovese

Click here to read the worldwide program of events for the IDIC 2011.


Bali goes green with Pesto Genovese

Michele Greggio, Mario Caramella, Giordano Faggioli and Massimo Sacco
Michele Greggio, Mario Caramella, Giordano Faggioli and Massimo Sacco in a photo shooting
to promote the IDIC 2011: Pesto genovese day in the local media

Chefs Mario Caramella, GVCI President, Michele Greggio, Giordano Faggioli and Massimo Sacco all Bali based, got together to promote the upcoming IDIC 2011 with the local media. Each chef will add Pesto Genovese to the menus at their restaurants on January 17 to celebrate authentic Italian cuisine.

As Mario Caramella puts it: “The International Day of Italian Cuisines is without a doubt a celebration of Italian flavors and culinary culture, and what’s more it’s an initiative promoted by Italian chefs abroad who are the ones who maintain the identity of Italian cuisine on international markets. Without this identity, it would be very difficult to sell food products ‘made in Italy’ abroad.


The list: chefs, restaurants and institutions joining and supporting IDIC 2011

The number of chefs and restaurants joining our International Day of Italian Cuisines celebration grows larger every year. We will be updating this list as chefs, restaurants, institutions get on board our global ola that will reach its peak on January 17th 2011 when all around the globe people will be cooking and tasting the real Pesto alla Genovese.


  • Donato de Santis, Cucina Paradiso, Buenos Aires
  • Leonardo Fumarola, Bengal Restaurant, Pilar Golf, Buenos Aires
  • Federico Mendieta, Vattel Restaurant, San Miguel, Buenos Aires
  • Sebastian Rivas Proia, Amici Miei Ristorante, Buenos Aires
  • Adrian Soldano, Capo Restaurant, Buenos Aires


  • Gianni Poggio, Ristorante D'Onofrio's, The Crane Resort


  • Francesco Carli, Hotel Copacabana Palace, Rio de Janeiro
  • Eduardo Graziano, Trattoria e Pizzerie Graziano, São Paulo
  • Elena Ruocco, Sitio do Moinho Organic Farm, Rio de Janeiro


  • Gabriele Paganelli, Romagna Mia Restaurant, Toronto
  • Angelo Rindone, BU Retsaurant, Montreal
  • Bruno Soleri, CENO restaurant, Toronto
  • Gianpiero Tondina, Copper Creek Golf Club, Kleinburg


  • Roberto Illari,Cuore Matto Trattoria con passione, Santiago de Chile



  • Andrea Fiorentin, Abbocato catering, Guanacaste


  • Luigi Passano, Riviera Restaurant, Guayaquil


  • Giuseppe Atzori, Las Ventanas, Hotel Vista Real


  • Ignazio Podda, Unique Villas of the Caribbean


  • Silvia Bernardini, L'Invito Restaurant, Veracruz
  • Umberto Fregoni, Ristorante Cabiria, Mexico D.F.
  • Dave Galasso, Mangia Mangia catering, Tlalpan, D.F.
  • Alessandro Mancuso, Palermo restaurant, La Paz, Baja California
  • Christian Testa, Ristorante Lucca, Grand Velas Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen


  • Fabio Boschero, Hilton Curacao Resort
  • Franco Burato & Daniele Messina, Ristorante Soprano, Sonesta-Maho Village, Saint Maarten


  • Alberto Gianati, Casa Italia Restaurant, San Juan de Puerto Rico


  • Gaetano Ascione, Da Gaetano Restaurant, Miami
  • Mario Batali, Otto Enoteca Pizzeria, Pizza & Pasta at Eataly, Lupa Restaurant & Babbo Restaurant, New York
  • Mario Batali & Mark Ladner, Del Posto Restaurant, NYC
  • Ivan Beacco, Testaccio Restaurant, New York
  • Paola Bottero, Paola's Restaurant, New York
  • Cesare Casella, Italian Culinary Academy & Salumeria Rosi, New York
  • Mario C. Cassineri, Bice Restaurant, San Diego
  • Giuseppe Coladonato, La Masseria, New York
  • Julia della Croce,, Nyack, NY
  • Chris DeLuna, Naples 45, New York City
  • Renato De Pitto, Cavour Restaurant, Houston
  • Liliana Dougan, Nantucket Pasta Goddess, Nantucket (MA)
  • Michele Grendene & chef Manuel Garcia, Ristorante CasaTua, Miami Beach
  • Michele Grendene & chef Loris Navone, Ristorante CasaTua, Aspen Colorado
  • Tony Guglielmelli, Panevino Ristorante, Livingston, New jersey
  • Italian Culinary Institute, Providence, Rhode Island
  • Alberto Lazzarino, Personal Chef, Hollywood, Los Angeles
  • Jasper J. Mirabile Jr., Jasper's Ristorante, Kansas City, Missouri
  • Jon Mudder, Bellavitae,, New York
  • Fortunato Nicotra, Felidia Restaurant, New York
  • Carolina Perego and Jose Morocho, Citarella di New York, NYC
  • Walter Potenza, Walter’s Restaurant, Providence
  • Marcello Russodivito, Marcello Ristorante, Suffern NY
  • Francesco Schintu, Zeffirino, Venetian Hotel & Resort, Las Vegas
  • Anthony Scillia, Ciao Down with Tony Mangia,, New Jersey
  • Aurora Smith, Aurora's catering, Grapevine (TX)
  • Gianfranco Sorrentino, Il Gattopardo, New York
  • Jeanie Voltsinis, Soho Grand Hotel, New York


  • Agostino Suriano, Villa Logoreci Restaurant, Tirana


  • Patrick Smart, Trattoria Alloro, Ieper


  • Iginio Cortello, Lavazza Club, Sofia


  • Maurizio Mosconi, Italy & Italy Restaurant, Ringsted


  • Giorgio de Chirico, Findi Restaurant, Paris
  • Max Orlati, ITAVOLA Restaurant, Lyon


  • Sante de Santis, Er Cuppolone-San Pietro Gastro Restaurant, Stuttgart


  • Luigi Favorito, Crete
  • Angelo Saracini, Athens


  • Andrea Alfieri, Sempione 42 Restaurant, Milano
  • Davide Allegrini, Villaggio Olimpico, Bardonecchia (To)
  • Matteo Arvonio, Hotel Metropole, Taormina
  • Fabrizio Barontini, Il Gallo Rosso, Iseo (Bs)
  • Maria Rosa Batini, Hostaria Della Rosa, Follo (SP)
  • Enrico Berretta, En Tragià, Lerici (SP)
  • Giorgio Broggini, Osteria di Porta Cicca, Milano
  • Marinella Calcinotto, Marinerei, La Spezia
  • Nicola Cavallaro, San Cristoforo Restaurant, Milan
  • Claudio Ceriotti, Il Maragasc Restaurant, Legnano (Mi)
  • Marina Chella, La Locanda dei Poeti, Ameglia (SP)
  • Andrea Cogorno, Ristorante Caffè degli Specchi, Genova
  • Luca Collami, Baldin Restaurant, Sestri Ponente
  • Marino Copetti, Ristorante Grande Italia, Rapallo (GE)
  • Lorenza e Luigi Cremona, Witaly Editore, Roma
  • Daniele Twitty Crespo, IPSSAR Erminio Maggia, Stresa
  • Andrea Cristofoletto, La Villa Hotel & Residence Restaurant, Badia (Bz)
  • Francesco Cubeddu, Ristorante 4 Venti, S. Teodoro, Olbia
  • Luca Dall'Argine, Il Ristorate Tre Ville di Parma
  • Stefano Dal Ry, La Pesa, Verbania
  • Fabio De Angelis, AcàdoLeo, Vignale (SP)
  • Giacomo Delbalzo, Ristorante Excelsior, Loano (SV)
  • Andrea Della Gatta, Trattoria Andrea, Genova
  • Giovanni Dello Stritto, Napulèone Resaurant, Caserta
  • Jerry Di Benedetto, Istituto professionale Galdus, Milano
  • Marco Epifani, Parma
  • Marc Farellacci, L’Assassino Restaurant, Milano
  • Angelo Franchini,
  • Matteo Francini, Ristorante Motel Europa, Domodossola
  • Mario Fraschini, Fiat Lux La Concessionaria, Brescia (
  • Brunella Frau, Basta Curve, La Spezia
  • Giacomo Gallina, D&G Gold, Milano
  • Alfredo Garibaldi, Laboratorio gastronomico, Fragagnano (Ta)
  • Franco Garzulano, Borgo Antico Restaurant, Robassomero (Torino)
  • Roberto Gillo, La forchetta curiosa, Genova
  • Giovanni Grasso & Igor Macchia, La Credenza Restaurant, San Maurizio Canavese
  • Gianfelice Guerini, Ferrari F1 Team, Maranello (Mo)
  • Emanuele Lattanzi, Ristorante Gaya, Casinò della Vallé, Saint Vincent, Aosta
  • Luciano Lombardi, Vignadelmar Restaurant, Monopoli- Bari
  • Pietro Lombardo, Locanda Portoantico, La Spezia
  • Franco Luise, Aromi Restaurant, Hilton Molino Stucky, Venice
  • Massimo Martina, Il Fiorile Restaurant, Borghetto di Borbera (Alessandria)
  • Michele Martinelli, Locanda Martinelli, Nibbiaia (Li)
  • Maria Teresa Mazzoni, Palinuro, Vezzano Ligure (SP)
  • Bettina Mettica, Vegia Ostaja de Prà, Genova
  • Michele Micati, Osteria delle Divina Provvidenza, Lecce
  • Zhor Monsif, Al Cantiere, Lerici (SP)
  • Paolo Montiglio, Ristorante Defilippi, Arona
  • Mario Musoni, Borgo Egnazia Resort, Savelletri di Fasano (Br)
  • Sergio e Roberto Panizza, Il Genovese - Cucina Ligure, Genova
  • Alessio Pappalardo, Gramsci 22, La Spezia
  • Alessandro Patanè, Boma Ristorante Caffè, Varazze (SV)
  • Fabio Peiti, Verdura Golf and SPA Resort, Sicilia- Sciacca (AG)
  • Marcella Pigni e Leonardo Russi, Ristorante Puro e Semplice, Milano
  • Giuliano Piscina, Balin Cuisine, Sestri Levante (GE)
  • Paola Porcellotti, Ristorante da Paola - Il ritrovo dei buongustai, Diano Marina (IM)
  • Anna Prandoni, La Cucina Italiana magazine, Milano
  • Piero Pulli, Canonico Restaurant, Carignano Torino
  • Samantha Ribotta, La Locanda, Portovenere (SP)
  • Pierluigi Rodelli, The Murphy’s Pub, La Spezia
  • Angelo Sabatelli, Masseria Spina Restaurant, Monopoli (Bari)
  • Lorenzo Santi, Ristorante alla Maniera di Carlo, Milano
  • Claudio Santin, Ristorante Vieux Braconnier, Cervinia
  • Domenico Sartori, Sartorifood gastronomia, Ceriale (SV)
  • Fausto Scola, Ristorante Scola, Castelbianco (SV)
  • Tano Simonato, Tano passami l'olio Restaurant, Milano
  • Alberto Dino Starace, Gastronomia Dino Starace, Madonna dell’Arco (Napoli)
  • Laura Tardini, Trattoria Dell’Acquasanta, Acquasanta (SP)
  • Giuliano Tassinari, Scuola Alberghiera di Serramazzoni (Mo)
  • Massimiliano Telloli, Ristorante Stallo del Pomodoro, Modena
  • Paolo Teverini, Ristorante Paolo Teverini, Bagno di Romagna (FC)
  • Giusy Veltri, Magic Bar, Milano
  • Cristian Verrilli, Vevè Happy Restaurant, La Spezia
  • Genova Gourmet: the Certified Restaurants Participating
    • Al Veliero, Genova
    • All'Acqua Pazza, Genova
    • Antica Cantina Tre Merli, Genova
    • Antica Osteria della Castagna, Genova
    • Buono e Semplice, Genova
    • Da Andrea, Genova
    • Da Martino, Genova
    • Da O Vittorio, Genova
    • Enoteca Sola Ristorante, Genova
    • Ferrando, Genova
    • I Tre Merli Porto Antico, Genova
    • Il Portichetto, Genova
    • La Brinca, Genova
    • La Cucina di Nonna Nina, Genova
    • La Pineta, Genova
    • La Rose en Table Vino e Desinare, Genova
    • La Perlage, Genova
    • Le Rune, Genova
    • Lupo Antica Trattoria, Genova
    • Manuelina, Genova
    • Ombre Rosse, Genova
    • Ostaia da U Santu, Genova
    • Osteria della Fonte Buona, Genova
    • Ristorante Benita, Genova
    • Ristorante Da Rina, Genova
    • The Cook, Genova
    • Trattoria Da Mario, Genova
    • Trattoria Lombarda, Genova
    • Zeffirino, Genova


  • Simone Gualtiero, La Commedia dell’Arte Restaurant


  • Fabio Cappellano, Il Tartufo Restaurant, Qualitalia, Delft
  • Giuseppe Cappellano, La Vita e Bella Restaurant, Qualitalia, Rotterdam
  • Silvan Claassens, Da Silvano Restaurant, Qualitalia, Vlissingen
  • Dario Donato, Donato Restaurant, Qualitalia, Deen Haag
  • Emilio Ganci, Espresso Bar Sportivo, Qualitalia, Den Hoorn
  • Saro Pulvirenti, That's Amore Restaurant, Qualitalia, Den Haag


  • Michael Molenda, Resturacja Bierhallle, Katowice


  • Andrea Aiudi, Il Ristorante Modigliani, Intercontinental Bucharest


  • Ezequiel Barbuto, Spago Restaurant, Moscow
  • Luigi Ferraro, Cafè Calvados Restaurant, Moscow
  • Pietro Rongoni, Aromi Restaurant, Moscow
  • Francesco Spampinato, Sky Cafè-Lounge Restaurant, Ekaterinburg
  • Antonio Voci, Il Borsalino Restaurant, Saint Petersburg


  • Montse Estruch, El Cingle, Vacarisses
  • Lello Sorrentino, Sa Torreta Arta, Mallorca


  • Pietro Fioriniello, La Cucina Italiana Restaurant, Göteborg


  • Nicola Buccari,Restaurante Matisse, Basilea
  • Luigi Guarnaccia, Capocaccia e Luigia Restaurants, Geneve


  • Antonio Carmine Lombardi, Mezzaluna Restaurant, Istanbul
  • Giuseppe Pressani, Paper Moon Milano Restaurant, Istanbul
  • Domenico Ranieri, Mezzaluna Restaurants, Izmir
  • Mezzaluna Acarken
  • Mezzaluna Atakoy
  • Mezzaluna Capitol
  • Mezzaluna Trio
  • Mezzaluna Etiler
  • Mezzaluna İstinye
  • Mezzaluna Suada
  • Mezzaluna Express Kanyon Shopping Center


  • Roberto Armaroli, Rym Bar (Bar Roma), Sevastopoli
  • Salatore De Vivo, Da Vinci Fish Club, Kiev


  • Roberto Osellame, Ristorante Leonardo, Brighton


  • Giacomo Turzo & Vincenzo Guglielmi, Il Ristorante Ernesto's presso, Domina Coral Bay Hotel, Resort, Spa & Casino, Red Sea, Sharm El Sheikh


  • Enrico Rodati, Heritage Le Telfair Golf and Spa resort, Domaine de Bel ombre


  • Alessandro Colangeli, Ristorante di Mare & Ristorante Luigi, Tanger


  • Giorgio Nava, 95 keerom Restaurant, Cape Town
  • Stefano Strafella, Strafella’s Restaurant, Morningside, Rivonia


  • Angelo Balbi, White Rose Resort, Zanzibar


  • Mauro Bellodi, ZEZ Restaurant, Four Seasons Resort Seychelles


  • Manuelo Pintore, Sofitel Hotel, Phnom Penh


  • Alessandro Bassotti, Oggi Trattoria, Guangzhou
  • Giancarlo Biacchessi, Biscotti Restaurant, Sofitel Silver Plaza, Jinan
  • Armando Capochiani, Venexia Restaurant, Shanghai
  • Leandro Carrega, Rosso Italiano Restaurant & Art, Shanghai
  • Roberto Cimmino, Ristorante "Danieli's", St. Regis Hotel, Shanghai
  • Marino D'Antonio, Sureno Restaurant, Beijing
  • Vincenzo Gatti, Mezzo Restaurant, Sheraton Shenzhen Futian Hotel, Shenzhen
  • Stefano de Geronimo, Prego Restaurant, The Westin Hotel, Shanghai
  • Valter Gosatti, Rose Restaurant, Furama Hotel, Dalian
  • Roberto Masili, L’Isola Restaurant, Beijing
  • Corrado Michelazzo, VaBene Restaurant, Xintiandi, Shanghai
  • Lino Montaruli, Veranda Restaurant in The Dragon Hotel, Hangzhou
  • Renaud Olivier, Il Nerovivo, Guangzhou
  • Stefano Pace, Acqua Restaurant, Gran Melia Hotel, Shanghai
  • Alberigo Parazzi, Riviera Restaurant, Dalian
  • Giovanni Parrella, Grand Hyatt, Beijing
  • Domenico Patruno, Nolita Restaurant, Shanghai
  • Luca Pecorari, Limoni, The Ritz Carlton, Guangzhou
  • Jennifer Prescott, Riviera Restaurant, Dalian
  • Antonio Puccini, Amore Italian Restaurant, Ningbo- Zhejiang
  • Francesco Sanna, La Dolce Vita Restaurant, Guangzhou
  • Andrea Tranchero, River Club Restaurant, Beijing
  • Buongiorno Restaurant, Guangzhou
  • La Tavola Restaurant, Beijing


  • Alessandro Angelini, Joia Ristorante
  • Andrea Assenza, Vivi Restaurant
  • Michele Camolei, Osteria Restaurant, Holiday Inn
  • Claudio Dieli, The Hong Kong Jockey Club
  • Marco Furlan, Habitu The Pier Restaurant
  • Vittorio Lucariello, Tosca Restaurant, The Ritz Carlton Hotel
  • Marco Medaglia, Aqua Restaurant
  • Paolo Monti, Gaia Restaurant
  • John Pesci, Casa Mia Wines
  • Massimo Santovito, Peccato Restaurant
  • Michele Senigaglia, Spasso restaurant
  • Luca Signoretti, H One Restaurant
  • Marco Torre, Grissini Restaurant, Grand Hyatt Hotel
  • Di Vino Restaurant
  • Carpaccio Restaurant
  • Goccia Restaurant


  • Bala,Mozzarella, Hyderabad
  • Goutham Balasubramanian, Toscano, Bangalore
  • Nishant Kumar Chaubey, CIBO, New Delhi
  • Suprabhat Roy Chowdhury, Lido Restaurant, Ista Hotel, Bangalore
  • Sergio Esposito, Ristorante Aloro, Crowne Plaza, Bengaluru
  • Anirban Ghosh, Chamomile, Bangalore
  • Amit Gupta, Crowne Plaza, Bangalore
  • Vikram Malhotra, La Terrazza, Bangalore
  • Giovanna Marson, Prego restaurant, Taj Coromandel Hotel, Chennai
  • Laveen Mathur, Lime light Resturant, Hotel Royal Orchid, Bangalore
  • Sanjay Meshram, Little Italy, Bangalore
  • Prashant Mukherjee, Earth Italian Lounge Bar, Gurgaon
  • Paolo Nonino, Via Milano, Bangalore & Hyderabad
  • Pawan, Mozzarella, Pune
  • Sundar Sudarshan, Cinnamon Restaurant, Trident Hotels, Chennai
  • Naveen Thapa, Zanotta Resturant, Leela Kempinski, Gurgaon


  • Luigi Calcagno, Papas Limoncello & I Fiori Restaurants, Bali
  • Giordano Faggioli, Ristorante Sami Sami, Ayana Resort, Bali
  • Michele Greggio, Nelayan Restaurant, Jimbaran Puri, Bali
  • Michael Luedtke, Pzza Ria Restaurant, Sanur Hyatt Hotel, Bali
  • Massimo Sacco, Da Massimo Restaurant, Sanur, Bali


  • Francesco Mazzi, Armani/Ristorante, Ginza Tower, Tokyo
  • Cristiano Pozzi, La Cucina, Roppongi Hills Club, Tokyo
  • Maurizio Roberti, Cinque Sensi Kobe Restaurant, Hagoromo-Cho Nishinomiya-City
  • Giulio Vierci, Wine Bar Restaurant, Sapporo


  • Antonio Lotito, Ristorante Casalingo, Moevenpick Resort Tala Bay, Aqaba


  • Stefano Vannini & Luca Marchesi, Signor Sassi Restaurant, Kuwait city


  • Gerardo Dereviziis, Aria Mixai Italian Culinary Arts, Ventiane


  • Michele Dell’Aquila, Aurora Restaurant, Altira Hotel
  • Luca Piazza, Portofino Restaurant, The Venetian Resort
  • Samuele Rossi, Rossio Restaurant, MGM Grand Macau


  • Armando Bonadonna, Ristorante La Midí, Kuala Lampur
  • Giovanni Ricci,The Saujana Hotel, Kuala Lumpur
  • Samuele Alvisi, Il lido, Kuala Lumpur


  • Marco Anzani, Anzani Restaurant and Bellini Bar, Cebu City


  • Luca Angioletti, Ramada Plaza, Doha


  • Vincenzo Raschella, Il Villaggio Restaurants & Lounges, Jeddah


  • Mario Caramella, Forlino Restaurant, Singapore
  • Carlo Marengoni, Bologna Restaurant- Marina Mandarin
  • Beppe de Vito, Il Lido Restaurant
  • Lino Sauro, Gattopardo Restaurant


  • Paolo de Maria, Fine Trattoria, Seoul
  • Sebastiano Giangregorio, Antonio Vinoteca Italian Restaurant, Seoul
  • Franco Sommariva, Trattoria Jiina & Franco and Divino Restaurant by Jina & Franco, Seoul


  • Upul Alagiyawanna, Ranweli Holiday Village, Eco Hotel
  • Paolo Collavini, Cinnamon Restaurant, Grand Colombo
  • Deepal De Alwis, Eden Resort and Spa
  • Harpo Goonaratne, The Bay Leaf Colombo Italian Restaurant
  • Kanthi Jayamaha, La Rambla Italian Restaurant
  • Senaka Jayasinghe, Benthota Beach Hotel
  • Ranjith Morugama, Echo Italian Restaurant, Cinnamon Grand Hotel
  • Nihal Nandasiri, The Blue Water
  • K. Pradeep, Club Hotel Dolphin
  • Imroze Salih, Hotel Galadari
  • Nihal Senanayake, Jetwing LightHouse
  • Priyantha Weerasinghe, Jetwing Beach
  • Chandana Wijeratne, Taj Airport Garden Hotel, Seeduwa


  • Claudio Rossi, Ristorante Il Circo, Four Seasons Hotel, Damascus


  • Matteo Boschiavo, Papa Gio Restaurant, Taipei
  • Dario Congera, The Westin, Taipei


  • Silvano Amolini, La Trattoria Restaurant, Dusit Thani Laguna, Phuket
  • Luca Appino, La Bottega di Luca Restaurant, Bangkok
  • Francesco Cantiani, Manchester United Restaurant and Bar, Bangkok
  • Roberto Collini, Locanda All´Aragosta, Kamala- Phuket
  • Antonio Facchinetti, Brio Restaurant, Bangkok Marriott Resort & Spa, Bangkok
  • Frederick Farina & Loris Pistillo, Spasso Restaurant, Bangkok
  • Gianni Favro, Gianni Restaurant, Bangkok
  • Francesco Greco, Prego Restaurant, The Westin Hotel, Phuket
  • Luca Mancini, Cucina Restaurant, JW Marriott Resort & Spa, Phuket
  • Flavio Manzoni, Beach Club Resorts and Hotel Ristorante Stingray Bang Tao, Phuket
  • Maurizio Menconi, Ristorante La Scala, Sukhothai Hotel, Bangkok
  • Roberto Petza, Inversus Restaurant, Bangkok
  • John Ranaudo, Ristorante Bellini dell'Amari Vogue, Krabi
  • Angelo Rottoli, Beccofino Restaurant, Bangkok
  • Gianmaria Zanotti, Zanotti, Vino di Zanotti & Limoncello Restaurants, Bangkok


  • Maurizio Bosetti, Frankie's Frankie Dettori and Marco Pierre White Restaurants, Dubai
  • Massimo Falsini, Ristorante Cavallino & Ristorante Mamma Rossella, Ferrari World, Abu Dhabi
  • Marco Legittimo, Zaytoun and Mezzaluna Restaurant, Intercontinental Dubai Festival City
  • Andrea Pastore, Amici Restaurant, Abu Dhabi


  • Michele Gulizzi, Opera Restaurant, Park Hyatt Hotel, Saigon
  • Egidio Latorraca, Angelina Restaurant, Sofitel Legend Metropole Hotel, Hanoi


  • Alessandro Colombis, Sydney


  • Paolo Pancotti, Milk & Honey Restaurant, Napier Hawkes Bay


  • Stefano Fontanesi, Executive Corporate Chef, Costa Crociere Chefs on all their cruising ships
  • Maurizio Lazzarin


The International Day of Italian Cuisines: why 17th January?


January 17 is a date of great symbolic importance. It’s the day of the catholic feast of Sant’Antonio Abate, one of the most popular saints of Italy, the patron of domestic animals, but also of butchers and salami makers. On this day, according to tradition, the Italian Carnival begins, that period of the year during which, since unmemorable time, it’s “licet insanire,” transgressions are tolerated and good, rich food is celebrated and, along with this: cooking.

The cult of Saint Anthony “of January”, who was a hermit who lived in Egypt in the 13th century, is rooted in earlier pagan feasts, le sementine (that celebrates the end of the sowing season) of ancient Rome in honour of Ceres, the Goddess of the Earth.


The sacred and the profane as well as Celtic and Latin rites are mixed together here. Therefore this occasion is celebrated in Italy, from north to south, on January 17th in many different ways. The devotion to the saint is very strong in Pinerolo, in the Province of Turin, in the Province of Como, in Lombardy and in Emilia Romagna.

On the other hand, in the south on that evening “fires” are lit, “focaroni,” “focarazzi” or “focaracci” – bonfires, people congregate in crowds around these pyres to give hommage to the saint who, according to legend, banished the devil and took dominion of the fires of hell. This is what is done in Puglia, Sardinia, Campania e Abruzzo.


In the latter, in the town of Scanno this feast has been celebrated since the fourteenth century until recently with great, steaming pans of sagna (home made pasta) and ricotta in the town square, while in Lanciano a holy representation was held. Also in Lazio, especially in the towns of Nepi and Velletri, in the area of Tuscia, the feast still has strong gastronomic characteristics. In general, almost all the celebrations of 17th January ended with a collection of food products that the entire community then consumed collectively.


Elsewhere, in Guastalla in Emilia Romagna, the fried gnocco (gnocco fritto) is the king of the feast. Saint Antonio has always been represented by a suckling pig (by a wild boar in Celtic countries) whose meat was the most highly esteamed ingredient of a meal at the Italian peasant’s table. Once, many rural communities collectively raised a piglet that they then butchered and ate on that day. Ancient fairs, such as that of Lonato, in Lombardy, that used to be held on 17th January but today have fallen out of use, were completely a celebration of cooking and eating of pork, of which in peasant tradition, as it is of common knowledge, nothing went to waste.