An Italian feast

Gusto Italiano, an event celebrating the best of Italian cuisine, is back

Chef Gennaro Esposito. -- PHOTO: GUSTO ITALIANO
Chef Gennaro Esposito. -- PHOTO: GUSTO ITALIANO
Chef Enrico Bartolini. -- PHOTO: GUSTO ITALIANO
Chef Enrico Bartolini. -- PHOTO: GUSTO ITALIANO
Gourmet delights: Hokkaido scallops with cauliflower puree, mustard seeds and illy Coffee cloud from Garibaldi and Mediterranean scorpion fish stew (above) from Gattopardo. -- PHOTO: DESMOND WEE
Gourmet delights: Hokkaido scallops with cauliflower puree, mustard seeds and illy Coffee cloud from Garibaldi and Mediterranean scorpion fish stew (above) from Gattopardo. -- PHOTO: DESMOND WEE
Gourmet delights: Hokkaido scallops with cauliflower puree, mustard seeds and illy Coffee cloud (above) from Garibaldi and Mediterranean scorpion fish stew from Gattopardo. -- PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES
Gourmet delights: Hokkaido scallops with cauliflower puree, mustard seeds and illy Coffee cloud (above) from Garibaldi and Mediterranean scorpion fish stew from Gattopardo. -- PHOTO: DIOS VINCOY JR FOR THE STRAITS TIMES

Feast on a 10-course dinner on Oct 10 at Oso Ristorante in Bukit Pasoh Road as part of the Italian restaurant's 10th anniversary.

This decadent wine-pairing meal is one of many under Gusto Italiano, a gastronomic event celebrating the best of Italian cuisine. It is returning for a second edition after a successful debut last year.

The gourmet events are held at both casual and fine-dining establishments and run from Sept 1 to Nov 2.

And for the first time, the event features Michelin-starred chefs showcasing their culinary prowess.

They are two-Michelin-starred chefs Enrico Bartolini of Devero restaurant, Gennaro Esposito of Ristorante Torre del Saracino, as well as chefs Karl and Rudolf Obauer of the restaurant and hotel Obauer.

Italian chef Bartoloni, 34, who will be in Singapore for the first time, will present his restaurant's "Italian contemporary classics" and is looking forward to see how local diners react to his food here.

He will cook at The Lighthouse at The Fullerton Hotel Singapore from Sept 9 to 13, as well as present a special Quintarelli wine dinner on Sept 11.

While it may seem slightly odd for Austrian chef-brothers Karl and Rudolf Obauer to be cooking at an Italian cuisine festival, they believe that their "light and refreshing style of cooking resonates with Italian cuisine".

Their gourmet dinners, which feature seasonal and healthy produce, run from Oct 30 to Nov 2 at Mandarin Oriental Singapore's Italian restaurant, Dolce Vita.

Exclusive wines will also be brought in for the dinners and at Forlino at One Fullerton, diners will be able to meet Mr Pio Boffa, the fourth-generation owner of Pio Cesare in Piedmont.

Mr Boffa, 60, says: "Many people think of Italy's food as pizza, pasta and cheap wine. We are pleased to be part of an event that elevates our cuisine and diners can taste special vintages and exclusive wines that are not for sale anymore, from my family's private reserve."

Other event highlights include a coffee- themed dinner at Garibaldi Italian Restaurant & Bar in Purvis Street on Sept 2; a Sicilian seafood dinner at Gattopardo in Tras Street on Sept 17; and The Best Of Italy Gala Dinner on Sept 25, which brings together five Italian chefs, including inItaly Bar Ristorante's Mario Caramella and Gaia Ristorante & Bar's Emanuele Faggi.

Returning favourite events are Pizza Pizza!, a pizza buffet at Pete's Place in Grand Hyatt Singapore, and Flavours Of Italy culinary workshops at ToTT Cooking Studio in Dunearn Road.

Gusto Italiano is organised by Sphere Exhibits, a wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore Press Holdings, and food and beverage consultancy Poulose Associates. It is presented by The Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) and HSBC cardholders get a 20 per cent discount for the events.

Priority booking is open to HSBC cardholders and members of the public can make reservations from Aug 15.

The culinary series continues after the festival's anchor months as selected restaurants will participate in special EATaly dining promotions such as 15 per cent off a la carte dishes for HSBC cardholders.

Ms Elaine Chia, general manager of Sphere Exhibits, says: "After a phenomenal inaugural event last year, it is a natural progression to want to add greater value to our events. With international guest chefs, some of Italy's finest wine labels and new restaurants on board, we are able to provide more creative concepts, variation of cuisine styles and dining experiences for our guests."

euniceq@sph.com.sg


GUSTO ITALIANO HIGHLIGHTS

THE CUISINE OF MASTERCHEF ENRICO BARTOLINI WITH THE WINES OF SPERI

What: Tuck into the contemporary Tuscan cooking of two-Michelin- starred chef Enrico Bartolini of Devero restaurant, 20 minutes from Milan. Menu highlights include his signature risotto with red turnips and gorgonzola cheese; foie gras terrine, chicken jelly, roasted lemon and Sicilian almonds; and roasted beef tenderloin, light chestnut smoke and white truffle potato.

Where: inItaly Bar Ristorante, 38 Craig Road

When: Sept 23, 7pm

Price: $218++, $174.40++ (HSBC cardholders)

THE CUISINE OF MASTERCHEF GENNARO ESPOSITO WITH THE WINES OF QUINTARELLI

What: Two-Michelin-starred Italian chef Gennaro Esposito, owner of Ristorante Torre del Saracino in the fishing town of Vico Equense on Italy's Amalfi coast, showcases his cuisine with wines from the Quintarelli estate.

Where: The Lighthouse, The Fullerton Hotel Singapore, 1 Fullerton Square, Level 8

When: Sept 11, 7pm

Price: $298++, $238.40++ (HSBC cardholders)

THE CUISINE OF MASTERCHEFS KARL AND RUDOLF OBAUER

What: They may be Austrian but chefs Karl and Rudolf Obauer's cuisine has Italian influences. The brothers, who run the restaurant and hotel Obauer in Werfen, Salzburg, will feature dishes such as blueberry risotto with honey quail; veal goulash with semolina dumpling and salt citron; and apple strudel with soft cheese and chamomile sorbet.

Where: Dolce Vita, Mandarin Oriental Singapore, 5 Raffles Avenue

When: Oct 30 to Nov 2, 7pm

Price: To be confirmed

Info: Call 6885-3551

AN EXPRESSION OF ILLY COFFEE BY CHEF ROBERTO GALETTI WITH CAPARZO WINES

What: Chef Roberto Galetti's creations for this illy Coffee-themed dinner include Hokkaido scallops with cauliflower puree, mustard seeds and illy Coffee cloud; and pan-fried foie gras in illy Coffee crust with pumpkin puree. The dishes are paired with wines from Caparzo, one of Montalcino's most prestigious wine producers.

Where: Garibaldi Italian Restaurant & Bar, 36 Purvis Street, 01-02

When: Sept 2, 7pm

Price: $208++, $166.40 (HSBC cardholders)

SICILIAN SEAFOOD TREASURES WITH THE WINES OF JERMANN

What: Savour Sicilian seafood by Gattopardo's executive chef Lino Sauro. Dishes include pan-seared amberjack with sweet and sour onions and Jerusalem artichokes; and Mediterranean scorpion fish stew. Each dish is paired with Italian wines from the Jermann estate.

Where: Gattopardo, 34/36 Tras Street

When: Sept 17, 7pm

Price: $188++, $150.40++ (HSBC cardholders)

10 ANNI-VERSARY

What: To celebrate Oso Ristorante's 10th anniversary, executive chef Diego Chiarini is whipping up a decadent 10-course menu to represent the restaurant's history over the years. Don't miss specially sourced ingredients such as burrata from a fifth-generation Italian farmer in Puglia and classic risotto with black truffles from a third-generation family business.

Where: Oso Ristorante, 46 Bukit Pasoh Road

When: Oct 10, 7pm

Price: $248++, $198.40++ (HSBC cardholders)

PIZZA PIZZA!

What: One of the most popular events at last year's Gusto Italiano is back. Take the children for a casual buffet at the much-loved Pete's Place with a free flow of at least 10 varieties of pizza, bruschetta and salads.

Where: Pete's Place, Grand Hyatt Singapore, 10 Scotts Road

When: Sept 12 to 14, 6 or 8pm

Price: $40++ (adult), $20++ (child); for HSBC cardholders, $32++ (adult), $16++ (child)

Info: Call 6416-7113

THE FLAVOURS OF PIEDMONT WITH THE WINES OF PIO CESARE AT FORLINO

What: Forlino's chef Kentaro Torii will present contemporary Italian dishes accented with Japanese flavours. Wine lovers can also meet the fourth-generation owner of Pio Cesare in Piedmont, who will talk about the rare wines served at the dinner, which are specially brought in from his family's private cellar.

Where: Forlino, One Fullerton, 1 Fullerton Road, 02-06

When: Sept 4, 7pm

Price: $218++, $174.40++ (HSBC cardholders)

For ticket bookings and more information, call 6319-4038 (9am to 6pm, weekdays only) or go to www.gustoitaliano.com.sg

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