World cooking in Pollenzo: Asian, Mediterranean, and Eastern and Northern European cuisines alongside Italian regional tradition

chef tavole accademiche (2)

Twenty-six chefs from nine countries (Italy, China, Denmark, France, Japan, Israel, Morocco, Russia, United States), including seven women and nine from Michelin-starred restaurants, will bring us the flavors of cuisines near and far. All share the same care and attention for local food products and for their own cultures, and all keep a special eye on the sourcing of ingredients and innovation.

The guest chefs for the Academic Tables project at the University of Gastronomic Sciences of Pollenzo introduced themselves to students on Friday January 30. They are…


Flavio Biserni of Antica Fattoria del Grottaione – Montenero D’Orcia (Grosseto) – Italy

 Alessandra Bazzocchi of Osteria la Campanara – Galeata (Forlì-Cesena) – Italy

 Antonio Terzano of Osteria Dentro le Mura – Termoli (Campobasso) – Italy

 Jörg Trafoier of Kuppelrain  – Castelbello (Bolzano) – Italy * One Michelin Star

 Alda Bosi of I Diavoletti – Capannori (Lucca) – Italy

 Bonetta dell’Oglio, member of the Slow Food Presidium Alliance – Palermo – Italy

 Noura Herrag of Darna – Azeglio (Turin) – Italy/Morocco

 Students from Niko Romito Formazione – Castel di Sangro (L’Aquila) – Italy

 Vladimir Mukhin of White Rabbit – Moscow – Russia

 Matteo Baronetto of Ristorante Del Cambio – Turin – Italy – * One Michelin Star

 Maoz Halonim and Itai Hargil of HaBasta – Tel Aviv – Israel

 Zaiyu Hasegawa of Jimbocho Den – Tokyo – Japan – ** Two Michelin Stars

Giorgio Rapicavoli of Eating House – Miami – USA

Michel Bras of Bras – Laguiole – Francia –  *** Three Michelin Stars

 Alessandra Buglioni di Monale of Real Castello – Verduno (Cuneo) – Italy

 Roberto Flore of Nordic Food Lab – Copenhagen – Denmark

 Giovanna Bianco of Cà del Re – Verduno (Cuneo) – Italy

 Amy Lim and Corrado Leali of Mangiare Bere Uomo Donna – Suzzara (Mantua) – Italy/China (Hong Kong)

 Davide Palluda of All’Enoteca – Canale (Cuneo) – * One Michelin Star

 Christian Milone of Trattoria ZappatoriPinerolo (Turin) – Italy

 Mauro Colagreco of Le Mirazur – Menton – France – ** Two Michelin Stars

 Torsten Vildgaard of Studio – Copenhagen – Denmark – * One Michelin Star

 Yoji Tokuyoshi of Tokuyoshi – Milan – Italy/Japan

 Enrico and Roberto Cerea of Da Vittorio – Brusaporto (Bergamo) – Italy – *** Three Michelin Stars

 Pino Cuttaia of La Madia – Licata (Agrigento) – Italy – ** Two Michelin

Mauro Uliassi of Uliassi – Senigallia (Ancona) – Italy – ** Two Michelin Stars



This year, evocative flavors will be coming from distant places, from chefs with different and interesting stories behind them. From Japan comes the tradition of Zaiyu Hasegawa and the Italian-influenced cooking of Yoji Tokuyoshi, who after years working as a sous chef for Massimo Bottura has now opened a restaurant under his own name in Milan.

Then there are stories of cuisines that have come to Italy from far away, like that of Amy Lim from Hong Kong, who has blended her native style with the typical Po Valley cooking of Mantua, and that of Noura Herrag, who has created an oasis of refined Moroccan food in Piedmont.

Standard bearers for Northern European cooking will be Roberto Flore of the Nordic Food Lab, which carries out research for restaurants, and Torsten Vildgaard, previously of Nordic Food Lab, then sous chef at Redzepi, now the Michelin-starred chef at Studio, both in Copenhagen.

Then there are names that have written the history of food such as the French chef, Michel Bras, holder of an honorary degree from UNISG, and the Israeli Maoz Halonim of HaBasta, who works with ingredients sourced at the Shuk HaKarmel market in Tel Aviv.

Now in its third year, the Academic Tables project has captured the enthusiasm of the chefs who have accepted UNISG’s invitation. For them the challenge of cooking high-quality food at reasonable costs at a university restaurant for students from all over the world proved just too hard to resist.

Christian Milone, the young chef at Trattoria Zappatori in Pinerolo, says: “I live off stimuli and challenges… and open discussion is the quickest way to grow and evolve. They taught me that anyone who’s had good masters isn’t afraid of sharing their knowledge, and I’ll continue to respect this custom. That’s why I’m here.”

“My dishes are seasonal,” says the internationally acclaimed Russian talent Vlamir Mukhin of White Rabbit in Moscow. “This means that I use the finest and freshest food products. It’s what my father taught me. In my family we’ve been cooks for five generations and we’ve got Russian cuisine in our blood.”