We talk food with Michelin Star rated chef Alberto Rossetti
Alberto Rossetti, the new Head Chef at Baglioni Hotel London’s Brunello Bar and Restaurant, brings to the fore extensive experience and a love for Italian food inspired by his mother while growing up in Parma, a region renowned for its excellent cuisine.
He believes that simple dishes can be sophisticated and refined using the right ingredients, attention to detail and passion.
The secret to his success is his perfect blend of theoretical knowledge with the use of quality produce, well thought-out cooking methods and most importantly his desire to continuously evolve in the culinary world.
Luxury Lifestyle Magazine food editor Natasha Heard had the opportunity to sit down with Alberto in London and discuss everything from his culinary hero to his favourite ingredients. Some of the highlights can be read below.
How would you describe your style of cooking?
I would say that my style is modern but distinct. I mean, I love healthy food and I try to prepare dishes using ingredients that are rich in vitamins avoiding the use of fat.
What or who inspired you to be become a chef?
I love the concept of “transforming” food and the changes that I can obtain using different styles of cooking. I must say that the person who inspired me most is my mother: I used to watch her with love when she was preparing our daily meals.
What would be your food heaven and hell?
I have a deep passion for pasta. I honestly prefer pasta with fresh fish, perhaps using Asian or Indian spices; on the contrary I am not a meat fan. I prefer preparing different types of fish using all the techniques I know such as marinating fish or smoking fish, from small anchovies to the big tuna.
Tell us about your favourite ingredient that you like to work with?
I do not have a favourite ingredient but I can say that I love shellfish.
You are known to be a strong advocate for healthy food, but how do you ensure both nutrition and taste?
Currently, technology has assisted in the development of chefs, for example vacuum cooking, probes and slow cooking. Cooking “a la minute” often allow the natural sweet flavours to come through creating a crispy crust and maintaining all the nutrients in the dish. Substituting plain flour with rice flour offers a gluten free option which is more digestible and very well received these days with so many people being intolerant to gluten.
What’s your favourite restaurant in the world?
There are lots of restaurant that have inspired me: Paul Bocuse in Lion, Alajmo family with Le Calandre in Padova and of course Massimo Bottura with Osteria Francescana in Modena. I like Heston Blumental and his restaurant here in London as well.
What would you say is your signature dish?
I have two signatures dishes: Pumpkin velouté with crunchy prawns in orange oil and Risotto with Lobster, courgettes and lime, cooked in Prosecco wine.
What is the single most important thing you have learnt about food?
Food should be a “trait d’union” between people. When you are seated at the table you should be relaxed in a good mood and give food the chance to take you through a journey.
What have you got coming up at Brunello Restaurant?
Here at Brunello Restaurant we are trying to introduce a semi-classic Italian cuisine, but at the same time we do not want to forget about modernity and innovation.
Baglioni Hotel is the epitome of luxury, do you enjoy the finer things in life?
There is no concept of luxury cuisine. I believe that even a simple dish could be sophisticated and refined if you use the right combination of ingredients, attention to details and passion.
Aside from cooking, what do you like to do in your spare time?
We are always under pressure, so in my spare time I love catching up with friends, going for mountain strolls looking for porcini mushrooms and taking photos. I love travelling, fishing and scuba diving. But what I love most is spending time with my children every time I can.